DIY skincare is not only affordable, but is also an enjoyable pastime. This activity seems so convenient, requiring basic kitchen ingredients of which you probably already have at home or can easily purchase from your local grocery store. If you go on Pinterest, you will notice numerous DIY recipes for the skin that are said to be exceptionally beneficial for almost anyone. Sounds too good to be true doesn’t it?
The truth is concocting your own face mask or facial scrub from natural ingredients can appear to be all fun and games till it isn’t. Now more than ever, it is not difficult at all to glorify the wrong things online and it is imperative that we do not dive head first into purchasing or applying random solutions on our faces simply because of all the hype around doing so. If creating your own skincare products was genuinely as harmless and fool proof as most people say, dermatologists and beauticians would not exist.
You’re probably thinking “Are all DIY skincare ingredients and recipes bad?” The answer is no. There a few raw elements that are safe and trustworthy enough to use on your face as a moisturizer or treatment. Before we get into which elements those are exactly, let us explore the most common DIY ingredients, you are most likely using and didn’t know were defective to your skin’s health.
If you’re reading this, it is probable that you have used or are contemplating using coconut oil on your face. Many people are drawn to this oil because of its anti-bacterial properties and while that is a good characteristic for any potential facial product to have, what you may not know is that using this oil for the skin on your face will undoubtedly clog your pores, eventually resulting in unwanted breakouts. Although coconut oil is not the best for your face, it is however excellent for your hair and more suitable for the skin on your body. If you are looking for a natural oil to include in a DIY, incorporate almond or sunflower oil as a healthier alternative.
Next up on the list of forbidden ingredients is lemon. Lemon is extremely acidic, with a ph. of 2.3 using this on your face (which naturally has a ph. of 4.6 to about 6.5, designed to prevent bacteria from penetrating) will disrupt the balance and because this ingredient is so far off on the scale, applying it directly to your skin will make it difficult for it to function the way it should. Despite all of this, lemon is also rich in Vitamin C. This itself is actually good for the skin and is why most people think lemon would be good for their faces. Lastly, one other con in regards to using lemon on your face is that you are highly likely to burn in the sun due to the photosensitive chemical within lemons. The safest option, if Vitamin C is what you’re after would be to invest in a Vitamin C serum.
Another ingredient that is too acidic for your skin is apple cider vinegar which is frequently used as a toner. It measures 2.8 on the ph. scale which I’m sure after reading the previous paragraph you know now that is a bad thing. Witch hazel is much worthier natural substitute to use as a toner.
Toothpaste is the next item you should avoid applying on your face. It is said to serve as a knock off spot treatment and that is definitely not true. However, this assumption is not entirely bizarre. It is easy to see why some may think it would benefit their skin by reason of its contents being baking soda and hydrogen peroxide which are known to kill bacteria but, toothpaste also contains menthol as well as peppermint. Those two components are known to burn and over irritate the skin, resulting in rapid oil production and ultimately an extra unsolicited pimple or two. Your best bet when it comes to banishing pimples is to go out and acquire a legitimate skincare product formulated to treat such issues.
Finally, we have baking soda which has a ph. of 9. This component is exceptionally alkaline and even though acidity levels in it are pretty much nonexistent, using baking soda on your face will destroy your skin’s moisture barrier causing you to be more vulnerable to acne breakouts. In addition to that, you could also suffer from trans-epidermal water loss (dehydration) which ages your skin. All in all, this ingredient is too harsh to use directly on your face alone, though it has been proven to contribute to the skin’s health in carefully formulated skincare products by professionals.
It is only fitting we end on a high note and survey the nontoxic DIY ingredients, those being the following:
• Sugar– works best in scrubs, but it is imperative that you wash your face thoroughly afterwards. This is because bacteria feed on sugar and any traces left behind will promote a breeding ground for it. As well as that, these types of scrubs can be abrasive and therefore should not be used by those with sensitive skin.
• Tea tree oil – is a good anti-bacterial and effective acne treatment, but should be diluted with a carrier oil e.g. almond oil because it can be too intense and or harsh on its own.
• Aloe– Is completely safe to use and is most beneficial as a moisturizer.
• Charcoal/ activated charcoal– this is good to incorporate in masks because it effectively absorbs toxins in the skin
• Organic honey – this ingredient is great to incorporate in masks due its nourishing, authentic properties.
Don’t believe me? Go check out LaBeautyologist’s YouTube channel and hear what a certified esthetician has to say about DIY skincare.