I've been experimenting with random ingredients to see what kind of benefits they have. As I'm getting older, I'm finding my skin is dull, dry, and oily all at the same time. It's weird, I know. I think I've got this dry/flaky top layer that prevents moisturizer from soaking in and so then my skin reacts by producing oil. So, my first point of attack was to try to address the flakiness.
I used to be a big fan of that apricot scrub that you find everywhere. However, I'm not sure of it's cruelty-free or vegan status, so I'm skipping it and going for a homegrown solution. Specifically, coffee grounds and coconut oil. I bought food grade coconut oil, because I also like to spread it on my toast instead of butter. I also figure, if it's safe enough to put into your body, it's good enough to put on your body. I know that there is a lot of information out there that says coconut oil is actually bad for your skin and can clog your pores. Disclaimer: don't try this at home, kids, unless you know what you're doing. But seriously, I don't do this every day (a few times a month) and I haven't had any issues. I'm also good about rinsing with water really well. Sometimes, if I'm feeling extra greasy, I'll just use some soap to wash off the coconut oil.
So, all I did was mix the oil and coffee grounds until I got a gritty paste like consistency. You'll actually probably use more grounds than oil since the oil will melt on your skin and help lubricate the grounds so you can gently rub it on. Don't rub real hard, let the grounds do the work for you. The grounds I had were very fine, so it was pretty gentle. If your's are not fine, you might want to pulverize it a bit more.
Results: my skin felt like a baby's butt for a few days and I had a lovely glow
Another time, my dad had bought a papaya and I decided to take the fibrous pulp and seeds and stick in a blender and slap it on my skin. I think I might have seen papaya as an ingredient in some mask, so I figured I'd go right to the source. I was hoping that it would tighten up my skin a little and make it look more even toned and brighter. I might be biased, but I think it did tighten up my skin a bit and even out my skin tone. Rubbing it on with the pulverized seeds and leaving it on like a mask, also, left my skin feeling soft...yep, just like a baby's butt.
I have to admit, I haven't wiped a baby's butt, ever (I don't do diaper duty), so I'm not even sure they are soft, but I imagine this is what it must feel like. So soft and smooth.
I simply scooped out the pulp and seeds, stuck it in a blender (note to self: do not use the blender your mom just blended garlic in) and rubbed it in. The seeds provided a little exfoliation. I then let it sit on my skin until the papaya got dry and started to tighten on my skin. It almost feels like those cucumber masks that dry on your skin and you can peel off like glue. The papaya mask, unfortunately, did not peel off like glue, but did wipe off easily with a damp cloth.
Share your at-home mask and scrub recipes in the comments.
P.S. I don't like eating papayas. Good thing my dad does.