I never had pretty skin. Once I hit puberty, acne was a constant, embarrassing, demoralizing problem. I was a shy child anyway but add braces and pimples and my confidence was completely shot. My mom tried to help me by buying me the latest cream/lotion/soap/medicine/pill. We went to doctors. Sometimes something actually worked for a little while. Nothing was ever perfect, but it was nice when I had somewhat clear skin for a time. Other products were downright ugly. We’re talking red, raw, dried out, peeling, painful skin after a couple uses of the product. All of these products were full of chemicals. Starting with the standard benzoyl peroxide and other over the counter remedies, to infomercial and home shopping network systems, to pills and prescription creams. The last pill I tried required bloodwork after a year of use because of possible kidney problems!
I finally did find a conventional product that worked reasonably well. I was pretty happy with it, it didn’t hurt my skin but it was still full of chemicals and was expensive to boot. I was reluctant to give it up even though I still had breakouts, albeit less severe. I was content to have minimal breakouts though compared to what I’d struggled through in the past even if I pretty much always had some sort of acne on my face at all times.
In my quest to go more natural and ditch the toxins, I knew I needed to make the switch so when Crunchy Betty had her honey face washing challenge, I decided to go all in. You can read all about my experience in the post, but it was pretty magical. But if you have make-up on, honey alone won’t take it off. Crunchy Betty had an answer for that, too. You just add some baking soda to your honey, follow with apple cider vinegar and you’ve got a fresh, clean face. For eye make-up, (and this is in the link above as well) I use olive oil. I squeeze a little on a cotton ball and then swipe it across my eyelids. Certainly check out the link for complete instructions if you want to try it out for yourself. This is the method I used for a long time and finally, no more breakouts! No more acne, not even a little bit. I’m telling you, it’s magical! 🙂 And my skin was so soft and, well, glowing.
I was happy with my routine but had read so much about the oil cleansing method (and you can, too at all the links in my natural skincare resources post) that I was pretty curious. Of course, Crunchy Betty has a post all about it where she goes into all of the whys and hows of oil cleansing. And, even better, she just put up a post with troubleshooting, tips and tricks for the newbie and the seasoned oil cleansers among us. I’ll admit, though, the actual buying and assembling oils was a tad intimidating to me. Imagine my delight when Crunchy Betty opened an Etsy store with her own signature oil cleansing blends all ready to go. Pretty perfect for the intimidated like me! And, the cool part is she includes the recipe with it so if you are so inclined you can make your own. Me? I’ll just buy it because I’m lazy.
I put the It’s Tamanu Thyme Cleansing Oil on my Christmas wish list (because I’m crazy crunchy like that) and my mom bought me some. It comes in a dark glass bottle with a dropper filled with the oil (of course). It comes with a pretty paper with instructions and the recipe to make yourself when you run out (or just buy more like lazy me). The full instructions for using the oil are linked in Crunchy Betty post above so I won’t say too much about it other than it feels amazing. AMAZING. Like I’m suddenly transported to a spa amazing. Luxurious. You rub the oils into your skin for 3 minutes and it just feels so very nice. Then you drape a hot washcloth over your face for a minute. SO NICE. When you wipe it all off (with hot, hot water, making sure you get it all off, so several rinses and wiping) and feel your face, you are going to be blown away. I’m not exaggerating! My face feels so incredibly soft and moisturized. I thought the honey made it soft but this takes it to a whole new level of softness. My skin looks soft and supple and glowing. Beautiful, wonderful skin. I touch my face a lot more than I should because it just feels so nice.
I really am amazed that I can actually confidently say that I love my skin now after years of being embarrassed of it, ducking away from pictures while I had a breakout, trying in vain to cover it and staying home because I had giant pimples. I am so excited that my children won’t have to go through all of the pain (physical and emotional) that bad skin caused me. I actually forgo make-up now (which is shocking for me) because I just don’t feel I need it. I don’t even want to cover my skin anymore because it just feels wrong somehow. I do still wear make-up when I go out (it’s pretty and I like it) but I no longer feel like I HAVE to. Now I can just do it because I want to which is pretty freeing.
One last product I like from the Crunchy Betty shop is her Cleansing Grains. It is a gentle clarifying sort of scrub. It makes me skin feel like I just poured fresh cream over it and gives me rosy cheeks. It is a nice fresh feeling and just feels like something good to do to kind of scrub away any yuck that may have settled over your skin. You use these with make-up free skin, by the way. I use the Tamanu Thyme again for these. One little note about the Tamanu Thyme blends (both the oil and scrubs), I want to give a little warning that they do smell like you are putting a pizza on your face. No really. My husband affectionately refers to me as “pizza face” which is humorous if you consider that normally that term refers to someone with acne. In this case, my “pizza face” oil makes my complexion clear and beautiful. He actually commented that may skin look amazing after I started using the oil cleansing method and felt super soft.
For storage, I use an empty spice container for my baking soda so I can sprinkle it out, a little plastic jar for my honey and the oil is in a dark glass bottle with dropper. My olive oil is in an old Philosophy soap bottle with a squeeze top.
Have you tried any of these natural methods for cleaning your skin? Do you have any other favorite non toxic facial treatments?
Disclosure: I was not compensated in any way nor did I receive free product for any of the items I talk about in this post. I really just love them so much and wanted to share them with you. Crunchy Betty does not even know I am writing this.
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