Sunday, January 6, 2013

The Secrets in the Pantry for Healthy Skin

Last month, I decided that enough was enough. I no longer wanted to deal with the mom-acne I've been suffering since April. "Breast is best" be damned, the hormones that my body is still surging with are reeking havoc on my skin and I am not a happy camper. I think anyone would be upset by the state of epidermal duress that I am enduring but you see, I have been dealing with acne since I was a teen. It cleared up a few years ago after I tried treatment after treatment, finally enjoying beautiful glowing skin during pregnancy and shortly thereafter... very shortly, anyway.

I take my "'breast is best' be damned" statement back, because I actually wouldn't trade being able to nourish my son naturally (psst... and for FREE!) for anything, not even clear skin.

My best friend introduced me to the benefits of using natural and essential oils in skin cleansing (The Oil Cleansing Method, or OCM for short) but like most people, I was immediately skeptical. Oil, to cleanse my skin? Please. I ended up spending a total of 8 months and hundreds of dollars on different ways to heal my skin, some that made my acne worse and none that made it better. Then a couple months ago, I started having an interest in natural ways of caring for my skin with things I already have at home: greek yogurt, olive oil, baking soda, et cetera, things that many people already have in their kitchen arsenals for consumption or cooking. What did I have to lose with giving OCM a try? Could it be the olive leaf that I've been looking for?

I started on my journey by researching a few websites (this one being my favorite resource!) for a few days, experimenting with cleansing simply with olive oil for the first few nights, then finally digging in and purchasing Castor and Jojoba Oil, as well as some Tea Tree essential oil. I'm a 3 weeks in, give or take, in what OCM junkies refer to as the transition/purging stage. To be able to say that my skin looks healthier as it is healing is incredible.

Other natural skin care techniques I've started to include are Greek yogurt masks and baking soda scrubs. I began using plain Greek yogurt as a mask back in October and I definitely love the way it makes my skin feel. I stopped using it after a while but have started using it again. After starting OCM, I learned about the benefits of baking soda and coconut oil as a face scrub. I exfoliated with just baking soda last week and I loved the results but I found that my skin was a tad irritated and raw when I was done. I decided to try a different tactic and instead of making a paste with water, I mixed the baking soda with liquified coconut oil (with hot water, not the microwave, so to not denature the oil). Let me tell you, this made a world of difference! My skin felt SO smooth, even my eyelids and upper lip! I found this website that gives a bunch of different natural scrub recipes, baking soda and coconut facial scrub being one of them. I've been hooked on using coconut oil for skin care since we started Daniel on cloth diapers but now I'm all about using it on me, too!

So what's next? I'm not sure. Even if it doesn't completely clear my skin up, it's doing a whole lot better than anything I've spent a lot of money on has thus far. I spent about $30 up front for the different oils I didn't have, bottles that will last me for a while. I am still hopeful though, not just about OCM but about natural skin care in general. Keep your figures crossed for me!

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