Tuesday, August 2

Natural Skin Care Routine for Normal to Dry Skin

I have been wanting to do a skin care article for quite some time now, because I finally have the experience to talk confidently about the subject. About three years ago, I started learning all I could about dermatology, with a focus on facial skin care specifically. I read books, researched online, watched documentaries, and started to implement new lifestyle changes. All of this exploration has lead to a clearer understanding of skin and what it takes to care for it. So without further ado, here's what I've found works best for my skin.

My normal to dry skin care routine in 5 easy steps:

1. In the morning upon waking I wash my hands followed by my face with warm water.

2. After my face is wet, I apply a pea-sized amount of 100% Pure Nourishing Carrot Facial Scrub, and in a circular motion work this into the skin for 30 seconds.

This product is worth every penny and it smells amazing. I noticed a huge difference from my previous cleanser that contained sulfates, which stripped all of the moisture out of my skin and left it feeling very tight. I'm a believer in the saying "You get what you pay for", BUT you also have to be knowledgeable about what you're putting on your skin. Not all expensive things are good, and $18 is not bad compared to some products I've purchased in the name of skin care. Be aware that the skin absorbs everything straight into the bloodstream and can be more harmful than eating toxic things. When eating something harmful, let's say processed foods filled with chemicals, the body can digest and filter it. There is no such thing when it comes to topically applying something to your skin. All of those bad ingredients just seep right into your blood.

Another thing to mention is that this product is 100% natural, 100% vegetarian (not vegan because it contains honey), cruelty free, and is in BPA (marked with a 07) and Phthalate free packaging. I still prefer glass to plastic but the fact that is doesn't contain these chemicals makes me sleep a little better at night. If you don't know about these, I highly recommend you read the links provided. They are not something to mess with. Just think, if it was in the packaging (plastics are know to leak chemicals), it would be in the product, and then on your skin. Awesome!

3. After 30 seconds is up, use cool water to rinse the product completely off and pat skin dry (do not rub) with a clean towel. Note that sometimes in the harsh winter months if my skin is super dry I'll skip washing my face in the morning and only do it at night because water dries out your skin whether it's cold or hot. Cold water is best, because it doesn't dry out the skin as badly at hot water. None the less, it still washes the natural sebum away, and in the winter dry skin needs all the help it can get. It's truly about balance; learn to know what your skin needs and treat it accordingly.

4. Straightaway, before the skin completely dries, apply Trader Joe's Spa 100% Australian Tea Tree Oil (costs $6.49 and is packaged in glass) with fingers. Use this to spot treat any blemishes you have, lightly massaging the oil into the spot for a few seconds. Note that less is more when it comes to using this oil. I used way too much when I started out, and had red patches on my face where the oil had completely dried out my skin. So yes, a little goes along way.

5. After all of the spots have been oiled, take a small amount (a little goes along way) of Trader Joe's Spa 100% Pure Jojoba Oil (costs $6.99 and it's packaged in plastic, so I recommend transferring it into a glass bottle) on your fingers and work over your entire face using patting motions until skin feels completely moisturized. The warmth of your fingers will help the product absorb into the skin better.

Overall this process only takes a minute or two. Once you get it down, it's a piece of cake. I also repeat this routine an hour before going to bed as well. Just so the oils have a little bit of time to absorb before I hit the pillow.

As far as storage is concerned, I keep all of these products in a dark, cool place. Specifically the medicine cabinet of my half bathroom, so they do not get exposed to the damp heat from the shower. Another place to consider putting them is in your refrigerator. This will help them stay fresh longer (especially if they are natural products) and cool products feel wonderful on the skin.

Pairing this routine with a low sugar diet, high in protein, fiber, and healthy fats will produce wonderful results. Just remember that the products are only part of the equation. Diet plays a huge roll in keeping skin healthy. It is after all our biggest organ.

Here's to awesome skin.