DIY skin care

Who doesn’t love the idea of DIY skin care? I mean, what better way to know exactly what is going on your skin? But while there can be some benefits to creating skin care concoctions on your own, there can also be some serious downsides and health concerns.

First, the upside. There’s nothing better than making a DIY face mask at home with wonderful fresh ingredients like avocado, honey, or yogurt. All three have fantastic moisturizing benefits for the skin. In addition, yogurt has lactic acid which will gently exfoliate dry skin. Avocado has vitamin E, which is moisturizing for the skin. And honey is a natural humectant, which helps attract moisture to the skin. All amazing ingredients and amazing results. Imagine, soaking in a warm bathtub with a glass of wine and your own homemade and nourishing skin mask. Sounds wonderful to me!

Now, the downside. While it’s great to use a fresh avocado as part of a DIY face mask, what if that same mask was in the refrigerator for a week? Or two weeks? How do we know if our do-it-yourself has turned into a don’t-you-dare? Here are a few guidelines to help you decide:

Have you done your research to find out how the ingredient might be beneficial to your particular skin issues?

I’ve seen several DIY masks that call for salt or sugar as an abrasive in a scrub/exfoliant. However, if you have any redness, irritation or open skin from cancer treatments or medications, this is a big no no! Again, just because it is an ingredient you recognize, doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for your skin.

If you’re using a food item, is it fresh?

A good rule of thumb is, if you wouldn’t eat it, don’t use it in your skin care.

Throw away the leftovers!

If you have done your research and found a DIY skin care product that you want to make, use it once and throw away the leftovers. Without the added benefit of preservatives, which all good skin care will have, you don’t know what might be left to “grow” in your homemade product. Bacteria? E-Coli? If you don’t want it in your body, you don’t want it on your skin.

I hope this has given you some good food for thought when it comes to making your own skin care. Do your research, and understand both the upside and downside of DIY skin care. It can be a wonderful way to treat yourself, and your skin, if you take the time to do it right.

Here’s one of my favorites to try at home. Again, if you have any open skin or wounds, seek a doctor’s advice before trying any skin care product, homemade or otherwise.

1 half ripe avocado

2 tablespoons oatmeal

2 tablespoons honey

Place all ingredients into a blender, and blend until smooth. It should have the consistency of a thick pudding. If it’s too thin, add more oatmeal, one teaspoon at a time. If it is too thick, add more honey, one teaspoon at a time, until desired results are obtained.

Wash your hand thoroughly, then apply mask to clean face. Leave mask on for 15 – 20 minutes, then rinse face with slightly warm water, removing all of the mask. Pat skin dry and apply favorite moisturizer. Throw away any of the remaining mask.