Oh lovely lime!

     PEOPLE WILL STARE.MAKE IT WORTH THEIR WHILE (1)

I love the smell of lime. It’s so refreshing. So I decided to make a lime body scrub today. Not to mention that I had a dose of lime a bit earlier in the day when I enjoyed an amazingly relaxing back massage. If it lasted any longer than half an hour I would have fallen asleep. Ally, who has her little massage studio near me makes her blends on the spot, depending on my mood and preferences. And today it was… Yes, you guessed it. LIME!

Body scrubs are not at all complicated to make and surely cheaper and more skin friendly than the shop bought ones. After all, what do you need the body scrub for? To buff away all those dead skin cells, right? You don’t really need fancy ingredients, or a lot of them for that matter, as the scrub doesn’t stay on your skin long enough to benefit from them. The best body scrubs for me are those rough ones that moisturise your skin and you don’t need any body lotion or butter afterwards.

So I have collected my few ingredients and utensils I needed: fine sugar (you can replace it with salt, depending on what you want to achieve, read this post here), coconut oil (left in by the window so that the sun would melt it), lime and lime oil (like this one here). Plus a bowl, a spoon and a grater. That’s all. Simple, right?

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I was considering using virgin olive oil but decided against it purely because it would give my scrub this greenish colour and the lime zest wouldn’t show as nice. Oh, yes! You will also need a container to hold your scrub of course.

I measured half a cup of sugar, poured it into a bowl and then measured about 1/3 of a cup coconut oil and added it to the bowl.

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I stirred it all up to make sure that the sugar is coated in oil. Then I added 15 drops of lime essential oil and a zest of a lime, finely grated. Stirred it again and voila! My very own lime body scrub!

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Benefits of lime essential oil

What benefits does the lime essential oil actually have? I chose it based on my smell preferences but I promised myself, and all of you, my dear readers, to learn along the way so here we go. Lime essential oil is antimicrobial and has calming properties (hmm…maybe that is why I felt so sleepy during my back massage? Although I am pretty sure that was due to Ally’s fantastic skills and me generally loving massages). But also an uplifting aroma. It is also said to improve cognitive performance. Lime oil can be used on acne-prone, greasy and problem skin and it acts as an antioxidant which may help with reduce the dark spots that appear due to aging (I have just read it here, and because I have noticed some darker patches on my face, not sure if it’s already because of aging or something else, it is definitely good to know). However, a word of warning! Lime oil, as well as most of the citrusy oils, is phototoxic which means that if applied on the skin and then exposed to the sunlight it may result in severe burns. So it is best to avoid it during sunny days. If you want to know even more, read this post here. Very comprehensive!

And as for me, I am off to scrub away those dead skin cells with my beautiful lime body scrub!

Luscious Lime Body Scrub

P.S. This post contains associate links which means I earn a small commission on the products bought through these links. However, I would never recommend anything I don’t use and love myself!

Sugar or Salt?

 

Be your ownkind ofbeautiful

Body scrubs are my absolute favourites. Don’t ask me why. I have no idea. I love using them and I love when they finish so that I can open a new one (or make a new one now I know how) and get lost in the smells and textures. I especially love the oily scrubs that leave that protective film on your skin after using them. But the questions I have had on my mind for a while are: What is better as a base? Sugar or salt? Is there actually any difference? So I decided to do some research. Gosh, how I love the internet lol

So what is the difference?

So, the first difference is apparently the size of the particles (sheknows.com). Sugar being less abrasive than salt since the sugar particles are smaller. However there is a variety of sugars out there, demerara sugar having much bigger granules than caster sugar. I personally prefer using fine sugar, like golden caster, as the end result is much less messy than if working with bigger granules. I once used very coarse salt to make a body scrub and, well…it wasn’t the best idea. The scrub wouldn’t stick to my hands or skin enough for me to give myself a good scrub. Instead it kept dropping into the bath and making a lot of mess. Did I waste it? Not at all. Used it as bath salts with the additional benefit of the butters from the scrub that melted in the warm water and left my skin feeling lovely and smooth. So I accidentally discovered a good recipe for bath salts 🙂

Back to the difference between salt and sugar as a body scrub base. The size of the granules means that sugar scrubs are more suitable for delicate or sensitive skin like your face. And the salt scrubs for everything else, especially for the knees, elbows and heels.

Another difference – the minerals that the salt contains and the sugar doesn’t (happi.com). Different salts contain different minerals and in a different concentration. But regardless of this they offer certain benefits: improve blood circulation, detoxify, help to relax muscles and act as an anti-inflammatory agent. However refrain from using salt scrubs if your skin is irritated, cut or you have just shaved your legs. It is going to sting! And the salt can dry out your skin so remember to use a moisturising body butter after buffing off the dead skin cells. However sugar contains glycolic acid that helps to protect against toxins. It also moisturises and conditions the skin.

So which is better you may ask? All depends on what you are looking to achieve. Both will get rid of the dead skin cells and this is the primary benefit of scrubs. For your face use sugar based scrubs only, never salt as it’s too abrasive. The rest depends on your skin needs and the additional ingredients such as oils, butters and essential oils. As this blog progresses I will be investigating other ingredients, learning more about their properties and benefits (and side effects if there are any) and will also be sharing recipes using those ingredients.

WELCOME TO MY JOURNEY!

 

From buying to making

 

The things that excite you are not random.They are connectedto your purpose.FOLLOW THEM. (1)

I actually never knew that making cosmetics in your own kitchen, using natural ingredients was possible, let alone fairly simple. I am not talking about formulating your own cosmetics, just about following recipes. Until about two years ago…

Finding inspiration

I went to pick up some bits and pieces from Holland and Barrett and picked up a copy of their Healthy magazine. Not sure if I intended to or if it was my destiny to buy it that day. And there I found this article that had my attention in a matter of seconds. Unfortunately the on-line version of Healthy doesn’t have that article (or maybe I just cannot find it) so I can’t share it with you. I can’t even remember what the title was (my memory can’t always be relied on). But I can remember WHO the article was about! Karen Gilbert! I have never heard of Karen before but I was quickly captivated by the images and her story. And there I also found a few of her natural cosmetics recipes. The article mentioned her book Natural Beauty. 35 step-by-step projects for homemade beauty. What did I do? I ordered the book immediately (you can get it here) and I waited.

natural beauty

And when it finally arrived I was in heaven. I love reading and I love cosmetics. Can you imagine what the combination of both did to me? Don’t ask me which recipe I tried out first. I have no idea. I wanted to try them out all at once but to this day I haven’t actually tried them all yet. But if you are, like me, interested in making your own cosmetics at home I definitely recommend this book. Besides the very easy to follow recipes there is also plenty of information about different types of ingredients and other resources needed when you are a beginner, like I was.

I now own more books about making natural cosmetics but this was the one that influenced me the most. One of my Pinterest boards is dedicated to DIY cosmetics. I add pins and then test them or adapt them to my needs or liking. Not all finds are great but those get deleted (!) And don’t forget about the internet as a tool to find anything you need or are interested in. A word of advice however… Do NOT make or test every recipe you find there. Do some research if you have that gut feeling that an ingredient used isn’t quite safe. I have seen all sorts. Really!

What happened to all my jars, pots and tubes of cosmetics you may ask. Well…They got replaced (not all of them, not yet, as I am still learning and don’t know how to make all cosmetics I used to use). So what you can find around my flat now are all different types of empty jars, pots and bottles waiting to be filled with my creations. Ingredients: all kinds of essential oils, tinctures, clays and powders, carrier oils and butters and whatever else I need. And of course some simple equipment like a food thermometer, a milk frother (yeah, I know lol), a separate set of spoons, jugs and labels. I even have this little, cute stamp that says “Handmade”. That’s for when I make cosmetics for my friends and as gifts.

I still cannot wait for my cosmetics to be used up. The only difference now is that I simply cannot wait to try out a new recipe. And body scrubs are still my biggest love…

 

P.S. This post contains an affiliate link which means I make a small commision on products bought through it. However I fully recommend this book because this is the one that inspired me to start making my own cosmetics.

Hello my fellow cosmetics and natural beauty lovers!

Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful

 

I always loved cosmetics. For as long as I can remember. I have no idea how it even started to be honest.

I have this memory in my head: I’m about 3 or 4 years old in the very first house I lived with my parents (and my younger sister). And I am carrying this huge, for my then size of course, plastic bag full of cosmetics. Mostly make up and mostly just left overs or unwanted ones. I seriously don’t even remember how it all started. Whether it was me showing an interest and asking my mum or my aunties for stuff or whether I was given something to begin with and that triggered my interest. I might actually ask my mum, thinking about it now, I wonder if she remembers me even having this huge bag.

I remember one specific treasure in my bag. It was a left over bit of a beautiful red lipstick. I think I even know which auntie gave it to me (she still loves her red and pink lipsticks). Funny enough I have actually never worn red lipstick myself. I’m more of a lip gloss girl. Anyway. I loved that treasure so much that when another auntie asked me to give it to her as she really liked it, and of course she would have used it, I refused. I loved my auntie. She was a fashion icon in my family. But I refused. I offered her the entire content of my bag because I didn’t want to upset her but I refused to give her that lipstick. And unfortunately that is as far as that memory of mine goes.

I can’t remember what really happened between then and my teenage years when I developed love for perfume. I couldn’t afford buying the ones I really wanted with my pocket money so I used to buy cheap ones. And there is another memory or rather as my mum remembers it (I have no recollection of it, I wonder why…). My mum has recently told me that I bought this bottle of expensive perfumes, expensive for the amount of my pocket money I had back then, and hid it in my room. I then told her to come in to my room one day as I wanted to show her something – take a wild guess lol. Obviously I asked her first to promise not to shout at me (not that she ever did much of that anyway) and then I dug that precious bottle out from underneath all my clothes. I think my need of sharing that with her was stronger than my fear of her reaction but after all it was my money I spent. I remember doing a similar thing with an expensive book that I bought…

I was always more into skincare cosmetics than the make up ones though. I started wearing make up when I was about 19, I didn’t feel the need for that earlier and even now, I enjoy wearing make up to work or on a night out but I appreciate my make up free days. My attitude being that if someone doesn’t like my non make up look they simply don’t have to be looking at me. How’s that?

If you looked through my cupboards and drawers, not just the bathroom ones, a few years ago you would have seen pots, jars and tubes of cosmetics pretty much everywhere. I loved spending money on cosmetics and I loved when something was finished as it gave me the chance to open a new pot and explore new smells, textures etc. I would say that body scrubs were my biggest love, and still are.

And then, about two years ago, everything changed…