Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Natural Skincare

I thought I would share with you some skincare products that I've found to be particularly effective. Admittedly, some of them aren't very exciting or luxurious but they work for me. This post is a bit wordy but I hope you'll understand why as you read on. I did want to explain why I like these products as opposed to just saying, " it works, you should buy it". These are three things I pretty much won't live without now.

While I occasionally get sucked into buying certain things that aren't quite as 'natural' as I would like (Oh, the power of the internet!) on the whole I do try to use organic or 'chemical-lite' products where possible. They also have to be animal friendly, that is, neither tested on animals nor contain animal ingredients.
For me, if it comes down to a product being either 'natural' OR animal friendly, the animals win every time but more and more it is becoming easier to not have to make that compromise.

Rosehip Oil

I think it's fair to say I've had mixed results with Rosehip Oil but on the whole I love it! I bought it initially to try as a night 'cream'. I had read lots of testimonials from people saying it had melted away wrinkles, scars, pigmentation etc...and left skin glowing, firmer, looking younger. Well, we all want some of that don't we! At first I applied it all over my face and neck. For the first three nights in a row, I was woken by an itch on my jaw, just on the left side. So, I stopped putting it on my cheeks and lo and behold, no more itching. Hmmmm....maybe it was a coincidence. Until I apply it there again, I won't know for sure. BUT! I have had what I consider to be some quite spectacular results regarding wrinkles. (Oh dear, I've just admitted it!) In fact, I'm a little bit obsessed and daren't leave off applying it!

You know those vertical 'furrows' you get between your eyebrows? I've had one ever since I can remember but being the sort of person who's quite erm, expressive when I talk, both with my face and hands it was inevitable that I would get the double whammy (ouch, this hurts!).
Well, one is all but invisible now and the other (the older and therefore deeper one) is looking much better. Somehow, shallower and 'lighter'.

I've also seen other improvements, on my neck, forehead and nose to mouth lines. Now, let me just say that I am probably THE most cynical person you're likely to meet so I'm not easily impressed but I've seen the results with my own eyes and better still, even my other half noticed!
Of course, this is just my experience and it may not work for you. By the way, although I admit to having a few wrinkles, I'm no Mother Theresa! I do also think it's probably down to massaging the oil into my skin in a way I wouldn't do with ordinary moisturiser, at least partly anyway.

I am using roship by A'kin via Naturisimo (link above) who are selling it for £11.00 which is £5.00 off the normal price with free delivery. I can't find it anywhere else for that kind of price so a great buy if you want to give it a go. I really like the A'kin brand generally, all lovely natural products from Australia, many organic. Not cheap but certainly not 'top end' prices.

Coconut Oil

I am planning on never buying a body lotion ever again after using Coconut Oil. It's the most amazing stuff. You can apply it to your skin, hair, add it to your bath, cook with it, even give it to your cats and dogs to improve their coats as well as rubbing it on your chickens legs to prevent scaly mite! I admit I haven't tried the last one.

I buy mine direct from Coconoil (link above) because they take Paypal on the website but you can also buy it through Amazon at the same price and again, all delivery is free! I have started buying three tubs at a time and the more you buy the cheaper it gets. There is an organic and a non-organic one but I've yet to try the organic. I chose Coconoil for two reasons. One is that it's VegSoc approved and the other is that I liked the ethos of the company and the reason it came into being. There is nothing in it but Coconut oil.
There are of course, many brands of Coconut oil out there. I just happen to like this one.

I originally bought it to apply to my hair as I am having awful hair problems. For the first time in my life I have frizzy, flyaway hair and I was willing to try anything to cure it. You can use it on dry hair for helping flyways lie down but also conditioning your hair too. I have also applied a larger quantity just before bed and then washed it out (really well!) in the morning. It leaves the hair silky soft.

It is solid at room temperature but turns to liquid once it hits the warmth of your hands. Be careful as what looks a small amount when solid is much more when liquid.
I can't say it's cured my hair problems but it certainly helps and works just as well as any of the commercially made hair oils and serums I've tried.

I also cook with it and although it does seem to impart a slight coconutty tang to the dish I find this perfectly agreeable. It's cholesterol free (that's good for obvious reasons) and has a very high smoking point so great for stir frying. It has lots of other uses and health benefits which you can read all about on the website.

The thing I love most about coconut oil though is putting a good spoonful in my bath and having a soak. When I get out my skin is so soft I find I need no other moisturiser. I don't have any particular skin problems but I do get dry, cracked heels in the winter from keeping my feet in tights and socks for months on end. I have tried files, pumice, scrubs, oils, creams, you name it and although some things have helped the only products that have cleared it up completely are coconut oil and Epsom Salts (see below). I haven't scrubbed at them or applied the oil topically. I used to have cracked heels all year round but then I started taking Oil of Evening Primrose capsules which cleared the problem in the summer at least.

Don't have a coconut bath if you need a wash by the way! The oil just kills any cleansers that are meant to foam. I can also do all those ladies shaving bits just with the oil that is sitting on my damp skin. I have had no reactions whatsoever from doing this, no rash, no stinging. And I seem to stay hair free longer than using a normal shaving gel (usually half-inched from hubby but full and I mean full, of nasties)
It's also superb applied topically to your skin, anywhere. Body and face. I don't use it on my face regularly though but just occasionally. Oh, and you will need to give the bath a good scrub afterwards!

Epsom Salts

Again, Epsom Salts is something I bought to help with one problem but seems to be multi purpose. Mr TVL is plagued with a bad back as well as problems with his wrists and achey legs. Good old fashioned Epsom Salts have helped enormously. Just throw a good handful in as hot a bath as you can stand and soak for around 20 minutes. Result: less aches and a good nights sleep.

I think it's also helped with my dry heels (as I'm using both products it's difficult to be sure)
As it's supposed to be beneficial for serious skin problems such as excema and psoriasis that would seem to make sense. Apparently, the magnesium draws out impurities from your skin.

Once again, my skin is lovely and soft when I get out of a salty bath. Strangely, my skin seems to dry more quickly than when I get out of a normal bath or shower.
There are lots of sellers out there but I buy it in large quantities from Westlab (link above) although they do smaller bags too.
What I'm going to do when (if) the warmer weather arrives I don't know as I cannot think I'll want to be soaking in a hot bath! Hopefully, the effects will be cumlative and will last until Autumn!

(By the way, I have not been paid or sponsored in any way to write this post. I do not endorse these companies for any other reason than I like their products and service)