Healthy diet + all-natural facials = glowing skin

My work as an acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist has completely changed my understanding of healthy. Food is medicine in the Chinese way of thinking, and you have to put the right medicine in to be well in your body.

Kimball Fruit farm at the Central Square market

Fresh veggies at Central Square farmer’s market

No matter what your constitutional needs, switching to a diet of minimally processed foods is going to make you feel better. You’ll eat lots of fruits, veggies, protein and actual whole grains. I know you can’t be perfect every day–shoot for 80% unprocessed and 20% whatever you want (well, within reason. . .). The goal is to avoid as many added chemicals as possible (the unpronounceable ingredients on processed foods, which appear in a shocking number of products).

Fixing your diet is an important part of having radiant, healthy skin.  A healthy diet with lots of fruits and veggies is high in antioxidants, which makes your skin glow!

What you put on your skin matters as much as what you put into your body. We know that you absorb all kinds of things through your skin, including chemicals (nicotine and estrogen patches? Stick on birth control patches? I could go on).  We know that most commercially prepared skin care products are full of the same sort of unpronounceable chemicals you try to avoid in your diet.

So, why not make your own skin care products?  You don’t need to make all of your products–all-natural products do exist–but it’s not too much work to make some things of your own.  Many are easy to whip up right on the spot.

One way I enjoy passing cold winter nights here in Boston is to give myself a natural facial (preferably followed by a hot bath, when I have the time).

Calendula

I follow Rosemary Gladstar‘s 5 step program: 1. Scrub, 2. Steam, 3. masque, 4. tone, 5. moisturize. Rosemary includes a great selection of skin care recipes in her book, Herbs for Natural Beauty.

I keep a variety of herbs on hand, and I know that you might not, but it’s easy enough to visit your local herb shop (if you’re lucky enough to have one), or order a few things on the internet.  I order my herbs from MountainRoseHerbs.com, which sells herbs in small quantities, making it easier to experiment. They carry an extensive selection of organic herbs and oils, giving you to option of making your skin products that much better!

Here’s what I’ve been doing lately:

1. Scrub–2 tsp honey mixed with 2 tsp ground nuts (almonds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, etc).

You can grind nuts and seeds in an electric coffee grinder (I recommend buying a dedicated grinder for herbs and nuts–you will ruin your coffee if you do them in the same machine!).

2. Herbal facial steam: in a large pot (soup pot?) boil a handful or two of herbs that you have on hand (tea bags are just fine!): Calendula, Rose, Lavendar, Chamomile and Mint are all excellent and gentle options (I like a combination of them all). Boil them for 2-3 minutes, keeping the pot covered until you are ready to use it (the essence of the herbs is in the steam, and you want all of it to go into your skin!).  I recommend setting the pot on a low coffee table, tent a bath towel over your head and sit on the couch so you can steam for 5-10 minutes (longer is supposed to be better).  It should be hot under your “tent”, and if it’s too much, you should let some air in to cool the steam.

3. Masque: Betonite clay and whole milk yogurt, cream or calendula hydrosol. (start with 1 tsp clay and 2 tsp liquid, and adjust until spreadable but not runny)

Betonite clay is a mineral-rich clay that is appropriate for most skin types.  It’s action is to gently and throughly pull all the dirt out of your skin.

I love using fatty milk products–the lactic acid gently exfoliates while the milk fat moisturizes.

This masque doesn’t smell very good, but it’s great for your skin. The least messy way to remove it is in a shower or bath.

4. Tone: spray on Calendula or Rose hydrosol

Toning helps close your pores back up after the steaming and cleansing masque.  If your pores stay open, it’s easier for dirt to make it’s way back in.

5. Moisturize

I like to make my own lotion. Most of us use lotion every day, so it seems like the most important product to make. I make mine with organic oils and organic true hydrosols.  I haven’t seem many products that boast such an ingredient list.

Making lotion takes some finesse, but it’s extremely satisfying when you succeed. I hope to post instructions soon.  I highly recommend Rosemary’s excellent Herbs for Natural Beauty, where you will find clear instructions and an excellent lotion recipe to get you started.

 

Pot Marigold (Calendula officinalis) photograph by AudreyJM529 under creative commons licence.

This entry was posted in Chinese Medicine, Health and wellness, Natural Bath and Beauty by cathy. Bookmark the permalink.

About cathy

Cathy Thomason, MAOM, Dipl.Ac., Dipl. CH, is a graduate of the master’s degree program of the New England School of Acupuncture. She is certified in both acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (signified with Dipl.Ac. and Dipl.C.H.). Cathy has completed advanced herbal training with Dr. Tao Xie, and studied advanced needle technique with Dr. Cheng Xiao Ming. She became interested in studying acupuncture while living in South Korea, where acupuncture enjoys equal status with Western medicine.

7,483 thoughts on “Healthy diet + all-natural facials = glowing skin

  1. Hello this is kinda of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding know-how so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  2. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the video to make your point. You clearly know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your weblog when you could be giving us something informative to read?

  3. Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the images on this blog loading? I’m trying to determine if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog. Any responses would be greatly appreciated.

  4. I’m curious to find out what blog platform you have been using? I’m experiencing some minor security problems with my latest website and I would like to find something more secure. Do you have any suggestions?

  5. Hello there! Quick question that’s totally off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My weblog looks weird when viewing from my iphone4. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to correct this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share. Appreciate it!

  6. Hmm is anyone else encountering problems with the pictures on this blog loading? I’m trying to find out if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  7. Hi there I am so grateful I found your blog, I really found you by accident, while I was searching on Askjeeve for something else, Anyhow I am here now and would just like to say thanks a lot for a incredible post and a all round entertaining blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to look over it all at the minute but I have saved it and also added your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read more, Please do keep up the great job.

  8. Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and everything. But think of if you added some great graphics or videos to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and video clips, this blog could certainly be one of the very best in its niche. Superb blog!

  9. Wow that was odd. I just wrote an very long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t appear. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyways, just wanted to say fantastic blog!

  10. Hi there! I know this is somewhat off-topic however I had to ask. Does operating a well-established website such as yours take a lot of work? I’m completely new to writing a blog but I do write in my diary everyday. I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my own experience and thoughts online. Please let me know if you have any kind of ideas or tips for new aspiring bloggers. Appreciate it!

  11. With havin so much written content do you ever run into any problems of plagorism or copyright infringement? My blog has a lot of exclusive content I’ve either written myself or outsourced but it looks like a lot of it is popping it up all over the internet without my permission. Do you know any techniques to help stop content from being ripped off? I’d genuinely appreciate it.

  12. Pingback: новости игр ps3

  13. Amazing blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it from somewhere? A theme like yours with a few simple tweeks would really make my blog stand out. Please let me know where you got your theme. Many thanks

  14. I’m not that much of a internet reader to be honest but your blogs really nice, keep it up! I’ll go ahead and bookmark your site to come back in the future. Many thanks

  15. When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get several e-mails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove people from that service? Appreciate it!

  16. Nice blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it from somewhere? A design like yours with a few simple adjustements would really make my blog stand out. Please let me know where you got your theme. Bless you

  17. Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and all. Nevertheless imagine if you added some great pictures or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and video clips, this site could certainly be one of the most beneficial in its niche. Awesome blog!

  18. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d without a doubt donate to this outstanding blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to fresh updates and will share this blog with my Facebook group. Chat soon!

  19. Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the images on this blog loading? I’m trying to find out if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog. Any feed-back would be greatly appreciated.

  20. Good day! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering which blog platform are you using for this site? I’m getting sick and tired of WordPress because I’ve had problems with hackers and I’m looking at options for another platform. I would be great if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.

  21. Hmm it looks like your website ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to the whole thing. Do you have any tips and hints for rookie blog writers? I’d definitely appreciate it.

  22. Admiring the time and energy you put into your site and detailed information you present. It’s good to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same outdated rehashed material. Fantastic read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m adding your RSS feeds to my Google account.

  23. Hello! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog. Is it difficult to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinking about creating my own but I’m not sure where to start. Do you have any tips or suggestions? Cheers

  24. Hey! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a team of volunteers and starting a new project in a community in the same niche. Your blog provided us beneficial information to work on. You have done a wonderful job!

  25. My spouse and I stumbled over here coming from a different page and thought I should check things out. I like what I see so i am just following you. Look forward to finding out about your web page yet again.

  26. Hmm is anyone else having problems with the images on this blog loading? I’m trying to determine if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog. Any feed-back would be greatly appreciated.

  27. Hey just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different browsers and both show the same outcome.

  28. Do you mind if I quote a couple of your posts as long as I provide credit and sources back to your blog? My blog site is in the very same niche as yours and my users would certainly benefit from a lot of the information you provide here. Please let me know if this ok with you. Appreciate it!

  29. Wonderful blog! I found it while searching on Yahoo News. Do you have any suggestions on how to get listed in Yahoo News? I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there! Thank you

  30. My wife and i were satisfied that Louis managed to deal with his investigations with the ideas he was given when using the blog. It’s not at all simplistic to just always be giving out steps which the others could have been trying to sell. We see we have the writer to appreciate for that. The illustrations you made, the easy site navigation, the relationships you can aid to engender – it’s got many remarkable, and it’s really leading our son in addition to us believe that that theme is satisfying, which is certainly especially fundamental. Thank you for all!

  31. Have you ever thought about publishing an ebook or guest authoring on other blogs? I have a blog based upon on the same information you discuss and would really like to have you share some stories/information. I know my audience would appreciate your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e-mail.

  32. I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you make this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you? Plz respond as I’m looking to construct my own blog and would like to know where u got this from. kudos

Comments are closed.