You may remember my housemate, Maggie, as the model for Saturday Crafternoon's post on cold brew coffee. Well, looking cute as a button in photographs isn't her only skill; she's a DIY pundit, to boot! (She has a dozen other charms and talents, but I'll save those for another day!) Her specialty? Making all-natural bath & beauty products with things you'd find around the kitchen. Her motto is, "If you wouldn't put it in your mouth, don't put it on your face!"
That seems like a totally common sense idea, but if you really start to think about it, it's actually pretty radical in this day and age. The average person puts nine (yes, nine!) different products on his or her face every day, each with a long list of chemical ingredients you likely couldn't even pronounce, let alone would consider eating. But your skin absorbs a significant proportion of what you put on it: why wouldn't you be as mindful about what you put on your skin as you are what you put in your digestive track?
Today, Maggie and our fellow housemate, Poli, walk us through making a cleansing facial mask that requires only four ingredients... all of which are not only FDA-approved, but probably in your kitchen already. This recipe is specifically beneficial for combination skin, but Maggie also offers substitutions for any dry- or oily-faced DIYers out there.
And in addition to this easy-peasy recipe, there's another free printable! You may have noticed that I've never included a craft on this blog that incorporates illustration. That's because, despite my love of all things artsy-fartsy, every dog I draw ends up looking like a cow, every person looks like an octopus, and so on. There are five-year-olds who draw better than I do.
However, what I love about this blog is that it gives me an excuse to try my hand (literally!) at new things, including crafts outside my comfort zone. When Maggie suggested I package up her face mask all fancy-pants so others could more readily make this as a gift, I decided to try hand-drawing a label. I probably won't be switching careers any time soon, but I loved working on this label, and I'm pleased as punch with the final result! If you want to use this printable yourself, it's available at the bottom of the post, and as always, it's free for personal use. Now, let's get started!
What you'll need:
- 1 part oatmeal
- 1 part coffee beans or grounds
- 1 part plain yogurt
- 1 part honey
- coffee grinder
This recipe is best for folks with combination skin: dry in some areas and oily in others (most likely in the T-Zone, i.e. nose, forehead, and chin). If your skin type tends toward being dry all over, skip the coffee and add in vitamin E oil or olive oil. If your skin type tends toward oily all over, keep the coffee, but substitute strawberries for the oatmeal.
Maggie recommends using somewhere between 1 teaspoon and 1 Tablespoon per ingredient, per person. A little goes a long way: we used two Tablespoons of each ingredient, and had enough to make masks on six different faces!
What do each of these ingredients do, exactly? According to Maggie, each ingredient plays a critical role in revitalizing your face. Coffee improves circulation and serves as an exfoliant. Oatmeal is an exfoliant, too, as well as being anti-inflammatory. (Anybody else have childhood memories of Aveeno's oatmeal baths after chicken pox or a bad sunburn?) Yogurt serves as a soothing base, moisturizing the skin and holding all the ingredients together. And finally, honey is not only a natural moisturizer, it is also a powerful antimicrobial. In fact, one kind of honey been proven to cure the dreaded MRSA infection, which is resistant to most antibiotics (source: National Geographic). So say goodbye to your zits, and hellooooo smooth, clear skin!
Step 1: Grind the coffee and oatmeal up in your coffee grinder until you've got a fine powder. Since there was likely only coffee in your grinder prior to this use, there's no need to wash it out beforehand. It's up to you if you want to wash it out afterward: the thin dusting of oatmeal left on the grinder walls isn't likely to affect the taste of your coffee, unless you're a descendent of the Princess and the Pea.
Step 2: Pour all the ingredients, including the oatmeal-coffee mixture, into a bowl. Mix the contents of the bowl thoroughly until you have a nice paste the consistency of wet mud. It's that easy! Your face mask is ready to go.
Step 3: Dampen your face to prepare the "canvas," and begin buffing a small quantity of this mud mask in a circular motion over the entire surface of your face. Buffing as you go sloshes off the dead skin cells, leaving your skin fresh and glowing. By the time you're done buffing, you should have a thin layer of "mud" over your whole face. Maggie wants to remind readers not to forget their lips: they're an important piece of facial skin, too!
Step 4: Now you wait! Find a comfortable spot to relax while the face mask does its magic. If you have a cucumber around, throw some slices on your eyes for the full spa experience (not to mention moisturizing and anti-inflammatory benefits) When the mask starts to dry and you can feel your facial skin tightening, you know the mask has done its job. For oily skin, this will be after five or so minutes, and for dryer skin, closer to ten minutes. Maggie recommends washing the mask off with a warm washcloth.
At this point in our photoshoot, Maggie's boyfriend and Poli's husband walked in and wanted to join in the fun. And why not?! Face masks aren't a gendered activity: they're beneficial for everyone with a face to put them on!
|To download the full-sized printable (free for personal use), click here or on the image above.|
Face masks are a great treat for yourself or for a friend. Download and print out this free printable to gift your next batch to a loved one: the label looks adorable on an 8oz mason jar. You can use Maggie's recipe or do some internet research to come up with your own: yogurt serves as a base for a lot of homemade face masks, and there are so many different kitchen foods that can benefit more than just your digestive track.
Now go treat yourselves! You DO deserve it! Happy spa day, everyone.