On Wednesday I shared my thoughts on celebrating earth day, simplifying our lives, and living more naturally. I also shared that I’m developing an eBook of natural beauty solutions for women at 40. The eBook, the first in my new 40 for 40 series, is tentatively titled, Radiance: The natural guide to radiant, healthy skin at 40 and beyond. It will include 40 tried and tested simple alternatives (or enhancements) to commercially available beauty products.
I’m not a member of the anti-aging brigade, with its endless wrinkle cream demonstrations and elusive fountains of youth. I find aging, and almost everything that comes along with it, far superior to the alternative. I also don’t buy into society’s narrowly defined standard of beauty or the notion that we can, or should try to, “buy” our way to happiness. If I’d accepted every botox, lipo, and plastic surgery business that wanted to advertise on this site, I’d be writing this post from somewhere in Bali. But I’ve made a conscious decision not to because we deserve better.
So, what’s a woman at 40 to do?
I think it’s good to always want to look and feel our best. Our best. Untarnished by the expectations and definitions of others, and unsullied by comparing ourselves to others or even to our former selves. It’s quite a balancing act – the desire to push against societal pressure to look 21 all our lives versus the fact that we do want to look our best selves for as long as we can. One of the ways we can do it is by making smart, conscious decisions about the products and ingredients we put on our skin. We can buy more responsibly, and we can find solutions in our own home.
So whether it’s a remedy for dry skin, age spots, or a good moisturizer you seek, here are 5 simple, natural solutions you can probably find in your pantry…
1. Banana Skin for Adult Acne – You thought your days of acne were over. Not so much? This acne remedy is as easy as it gets. You know that banana peel you’re about to throw away? Don’t. Take the bottom half, cut one segment off and rub the inside of the peel against your acne spots until the inside of the peel browns. Leave the residue on your face for anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight and then rinse. Continue daily until the acne subsides.
2. Aloe Vera Gel for “Age Spots” – Because we begin noticing these darker pigmented spots on our skin in our 40s, they’ve been dubbed aged spots. But age spots can happen at any age, because they’re (for the most part) caused by sun exposure over many years. Age spots aren’t dangerous, but if you’d like to lighten them, applying aloe vera gel is said to do the trick.
3. Coffee Grounds Exfoliant – When you’re done with your morning cup of Joe, don’t dump those coffee grounds, use them to exfoliate. Mix 1/4 cup used coffee grounds and one egg white. An alternate recipe calls for mixing 1 Tbsp coffee grounds with 1 Tbsp of water or olive oil. Massage onto face, let it dry and then rinse with warm water. When used as a body scrub, caffeinated coffee grounds are also said to help relieve cellulite.
4. Vitamin E Moisturizer – I know several women with flawless skin who swear by this easy, inexpensive facial moisturizer. Simply break open vitamin E capsules and gently massage into your skin. I find that in the winter especially, Vitamin E does a great job at keeping the dryness away.
5. Dry Brush Scrub – Our bodies detoxify in a number of ways, including through our kidneys, lungs and skin. Our skin is responsible for a quarter of our body’s daily detoxification. Dry brushing stimulates the lymphatic system, improving circulation and detoxification. Dry brushing also helps remove dead skin cells, softens skin, and helps reduce cellulite. Always brush skin when it’s dry, moving from your feet upwards, and before a shower or bath. If you don’t already own a body brush, Fantasea Natural Bristle Body Brushis an affordable and highly rated option.
Do you have any natural beauty solutions that work wonders for you? Share them here, or on the Women at Forty Facebook page.
Note: If you have allergies, or are sensitive to any of the above ingredients, do not apply them to your skin.