Pampered Chef Self
Here are 3 great natural ways to pamper your body, while salvaging every scrap from your fridge and pantry.
1. Berry Beautiful Mask
When the weather warms up, one of my kids’ favorite desserts is yogurt with berries and honey. Inevitably, there are always a couple of funky berries and a little bit of yogurt left behind. Instead of tossing them into the trash, I make this nourishing Berry Beautiful Mask for my face.2 – 3 organic strawberries 2 Tbsp organic plain yogurt 1 tsp raw honey In a small bowl, mash the berries with a fork, add yogurt and honey, and completely mix. Apply to your face and neck; enjoy for 15 – 20 minutes. Why it works: The strawberries have beneficial salicylic acid, as well as alpha and beta hydroxy acids to help brighten and exfoliate skin while keeping acne at bay. The honey is anti-bacterial, and the naturally occurring probiotics and lactic acid in the yogurt help soothe and smooth irritated skin. 2. Holy Guacamole Hair Treatment I always keep my eyes open at the local co-op for discounted avocados that have seen better days, to replenish my damaged hair. Here is my simple recipe for Holy Guacamole Hair Treatment (my 5-year-old son says it looks like Yoda’s head). 1 organic avocado (long, thick hair can use more; for short hair try ½) ½ cup organic extra virgin olive oil 1 Tbsp organic aloe vera 1 Tbsp organic lemon juice Mash the avocado very well and mix with olive oil thoroughly, then add the aloe vera and lemon juice. Completely massage through hair and scalp, cover with a shower cap, and leave on for 20 – 30 minutes. Rinse and shampoo until all residue is removed. Why it works: Avocados are a great source of monounsaturated fat and folate to help soften hair and increase shine, and antioxidant vitamins E and C protect against environmental damage. Olive oil provides even more monounsaturated fats with Omega-6 to encourage hair growth, the lemon juice provides natural acidity, and aloe vera helps to repair existing damage. 3. Vanilla Latte Scrub Try this Vanilla Latte Scrub for some extra oomph to start your day, morning coffee now optional. 1 cup ground organic coffee ½ cup raw sugar 8 – 10 drops vanilla essential oil 1 tsp organic cinnamon (avoid this if you have sensitive or irritated skin) ½ - ¾ cup unbleached organic virgin coconut oil Mix the dry ingredients, add to your container (small jelly jars work well), melt the oil in a small saucepan or leave in direct sunlight until liquefied, and cover the dry ingredients with the oil. Using a washcloth, loofah or bath gloves, gently scrub, starting at your limbs and moving inward toward your heart. Be careful, both you and the shower will be slippery! Why it works: The caffeine in coffee constricts the blood vessels and helps to smooth stretch marks and minimize the appearance of cellulite and varicose veins, while the grainy texture exfoliates dead skin. Coconut oil helps to strengthen skin tissue, is easily absorbed (but can feel greasy at first), and continues to benefit your body after it’s absorbed into your skin by providing extra energy, plumping wrinkles, boosting the immune system and weight loss, and minimizing acne (to name a few). Next time you clean out your fridge, rethink every ingredient and get creative to prevent waste. After all, natural beauty treatments are more fun than trashing scraps. Do you have any “recipes” to share? Leave them in the comments.