Summer is in full bloom, which means I’ve officially pulled my floral pieces out of the closet. Along with wearing flower patterns, I like to give some extra love to the buds growing in my backyard. I’m here to help you get your green thumb glowing and to reap the beauty rewards of plant extracts. Don’t sweat it if you’re not an A+ gardener. I’m also going to give you some easy drugstore products with the same extracts.
DIY: Add your lavender plant to distilled water for a great facial toner.
Everybody loves lavender. You can put it in your bath, inside your pillow case, in your food and on your face. If you’re like me and addicted to the purple stuff, you should do all of the above on a regular basis. The Look Beauty Sleeping Facial Mask with Lavender is like a dream or at least it helps you start dreaming a lot faster. This overnight face mask is rich in lavender extracts, which is great for soothing your mind and your skin. This natural astringent paired with aloe and witch hazel is sure to have you waking up with well-rested skin.
DIY: If you’re growing your green tea leaves (gold star for you) just boil them in water and let the tea cool. Then use cotton pads to soak up some tea and place them on your eyelids to relieve tired eyes.
A mug of green tea a day keeps the acne at bay. I love green tea, it’s great for calming my skin, my stomach, and waking me back up when I’ve maxed out on coffees for the day. The plant can be grown indoors, but if you put it outside it will really flourish. This trick is easy, grab your Tetley Green Tea teabags, soak two in a mug of boiling water and then place the mug in the fridge to cool. Once they’ve cooled off, turn on a good audio book (I recommend anything by Mindy Kaling) and place the tea bags on your eyes. The caffeine will brighten up those dark circles, plus you can throw the tea over ice for a refreshing beverage!
DIY: You can buy big aloe leaves of at many grocery stores. But if you’re growing your own, pluck the leaf from close to the root, slice down the centre and apply the gel to skin to relieve sunburns and rashes.
Since, in Canada, we have what feels like six months of winter, it’s easy to forget about the effects that the sun can have. Sun Bum to the rescue! I personally don’t burn (I also never leave the house without a 60 SPF) but have had a mean heat rash before. The Cool Down Soothing and Restoring Aloe Lotion is like a sweet sigh of relief. This vitamin E lifesaver quickly absorbs into skin, leaving my it super smooth and hydrated.
DIY: This oatmeal face mask is super-affordable and gentle so you don’t have to limit your use. I like to use this particular beauty potion twice a week max because we only have seven days in a week and I’ve got a long list of masks and facials I can’t live without. Combine in a small bowl: half cup oats, one teaspoon each of baking soda and honey, and brewed chamomile tea (just enough to make a paste). Slather all over your face and watch an episode of your favourite show (HIMYM is my go-to). Wash off and enjoy your soft, calm skin.
I like a lot of grit in my facial cleansers. As someone who enjoys keeping my makeup removing wipes for on-the-go or slumber parties only, I like an all-in-one cleanser that removes dirt, excess oil and makeup in one step something that won’t leave my bathroom towels covered in foundation and mascara. Burt’s Bees Soap Bark & Chamomile Deep Cleansing Cream is my go-to cream cleanser. The second you lather this formula on to your skin you can feel its deep cleaning effects. Plus chamomile is great for neutralizing the effects of acne scars and cleans out pores.