A Pretty Hippy Face

By on 12/04/2013
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While driving down to Bahia Honda Park a few weekends ago my very hippy, and very pretty, sister in law told me about how, like me, she has struggles with different face creams/cleansers/moisturizers/masks/whatever they market next. Then she told me her solution which seemed so awesome to me I’ve been thinking about it ever since. She simply uses olive oil, castor oil and vitamin E.

Before I started this blog, a statement like that would have confounded me. Olive oil? On my face? That sounds greasy and pimply and terrible. But then I started this blog (inspired, by the way, in a large part by both my awesomely natural, eat-local, volunteer on farms and love all things living sister in law, as well as the equally hippy lifelong sister from another mister, Princess Burlap). Wow. Tangents, I have them!

One of my first quests on this blog was to create a homemade eye makeup remover, and after a lot of interneting I came to learn that olive oil is a serious thing. Then I tried it. That was over a month ago.

Let me tell you, that stuff works! I’ve only used it on my eyelids an under eyes, but I can already notice a HUGE difference in my skin. My under eyes just feel so… supple. For all my written meandering, I really have no great words to describe it. My skin feels soft, smooth, moisturized but not at all oily. I haven’t developed any blemishes from putting olive oil on my skin either. There goes that theory.

Back to the car ride. So when my sister in law told me she uses olive oil, castor oil and vitamin E as her entire facial skin care routine, I did not flinch. It makes so much sense, and she has the skin to prove it.

I, however, am not at all versed on why castor oil or vitamin E are so helpful though, and that makes me happy because that means I have something to research, learn and then report on this blog about natural, healthy living. YAY! Content! Every blogger’s dream!

So, in layman’s terms, what do these natural ingredients have to offer?

(Insert Jeopardy theme song and imagine me toiling away through research and scary, unexpected rouge websites with haggard hair, pencil in teeth, coffee by my side, while furiously learning, absorbing, and notating.)

Extra virgin olive oil is awesome for your skin (even if it’s naturally oily!) because:
  • It’s full of antioxidants and even better, some of these antioxidants have anti-bacterial properties, which is good for preventing blemishes.
  • If you have oily skin, the olive oil clings to the facial oil and both get rinsed away! Thanks, science!
  • It has vitamins E and K, both good for the skin.
  • It contains oleocanthal, an anti-inflammatory agent. This makes it great for sensitive skin, or puffy, tired eyes.
  • It contains linoleic acid, which is a compound that prevents water evaporation.
    • (Maintaining properly moisturized skin is one of the best ways to prevent aging, reduce blemishes, and in my case, prevent horribly annoying and honestly uncomfortable dry skin. Seriously, if I go more than 24 hours with out some form of moisturizing, my face will literally start to flake. Gross. Sorry. Hope you weren’t eating.)
And Castor Oil?

All I’ve really known about Castor Oil is that some women will drink it to try and induce labor when they are full term and ready to evict that freakin bundle of joy already. (Luckily I didn’t go a day past 40 weeks and didn’t have to toil with this apparently painful remedy. Unluckily it was because I had an emergency c-section, but that’s a story for another time. Short version: we are all happy and healthy, so phew!)

  • Castor oil is a very powerful anti-inflammatory, even more so than the oleocanthal found in olive oil.
  • It is also anti-fungal and anti-bacterial.
  • It contains a small amount of vitamin E.
  • It contains essential fatty acids which help maintain healthy cell membranes.
  • It opens, purges, and cleanses the skin’s pores.
Finally, the Ever-Loved Vitamin E:

Vitamin E is well known as the amazing antioxidant that protects and repairs your skin simply because IT DOES. An oxidant is a free radical that damages your skin’s collagen, which helps contribute to aging and dryness. An antioxidant obviously destroys these free radicals, protecting your skin from their damage.Vitamin E is king of the antioxidants. You want this on your face.

The catch with vitamin E is your body does not naturally produce it. So to benefit from its effects, you have make sure you are getting enough from your diet, as well as apply it externally to benefit from its skin protecting and repairing abilities.

So now that you understand WHY these ingredients are awesome, how to you use them? Well, this hippy stuff isn’t an exact science. Each face is different and what I did learn is that castor oil is very portent and needs to be cut and diluted by another ingredient (like olive oil) to prevent it from OVER treating you face and causing dryness and irritation. Therefore it is safe to assume that the dryer or more sensitive your skin is, the less castor oil you’ll want to use.

I think a good base ratio is 1:4, so 1 part castor oil to 4 parts of olive oil. If this dries out or irritates your skin at all, dilute your mixture with a bit more olive oil until you find your perfect balance. Just make sure you write down what the final measurements per ingredient were, so you can replicate it!

Like the eye make up remover I referenced earlier, you should premix and store in a small bottle. Then simply get face wet, apply your mix, massage, and rinse with a warm wash cloth. Then apply a very light layer of Vitamin E around your eyes or other trouble spots and smile at your awesome self.

Voila! Beautiful, natural, healthy skin from very pure, inexpensive and not-from-a-mad-science-lab ingredients!

*Note: This information pertains to organic ingredients only. As is true with most big industries, many companies do not use pure oil and will cut it with various seed or nut oils or use improperly cultivated olives, or castor seeds soaked in pesticides. These practices will obviously affect the quality/content of the oil or vitamin E and thus render the above statements less effective.

 

 

Sources, so ya’ll know I’m not full of it:

www.drweilonhealthyaging.com (LOVE this guy and his beard! He wore it before it was cool!)
www.thedailygreen.com
health.discovery.com
www.theoilcleansingmethod.com/
http://www.prevention.com

About Anna

Hi there! This is my little blog project where I am trying to learn more about health, wellness and living a balanced life, while also sharing a bit of my silly side as well. By "silly" I mean sarcastic. And by "a bit" I mean way too much. Sorry about that.♥ - Anna

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