Chrysanthemums are old and valued Chinese herbs. Chrysanthemum was used as a tea and healing herb already a thousand years ago. During the Song Dynasty (960-1279), chrysanthemums were highly valued. Chrysanthemum leaves and shoots were used in salads and steamed as an addition to gourmet meals.
Chrysanthemums are known as long lasting autumn flowers. We are not used to using chrysanthemums for nutrition. Please remember that no decoration plants can be used for food or skin care. Chrysanthemums bought from florist cannot be used in cosmetics. If you want to try chrysanthemums in cosmetics, get dried chrysanthemum flowers for tea. Chrysanthemum tea is very delicious and healthy. You can also use the same tea versatilely in skin care. Let’s see what a wonderful herb chrysanthemum really is.
The chrysanthemum family is extensive
Chrysanthemums (Chrysanthemum) belong to the family of aster plants. Asters are a very large family of plants, which includes more than 1,600 plant genera. The same tribe includes different types of daisies and the familiar chamomile. The name chrysanthemum comes from the Greek language and means golden flower.
Chrysanthemum flowers come in many colours. White, yellow and lilac flowers are the most common of them. The world’s finest chrysanthemums, snow chrysanthemums grow wild high in the mountains of China, in Xinjiang. Snow chrysanthemums are extremely rare. They produce few flowers that bloom for a very short time. That is why snow chrysanthemums are the most valuable of all chrysanthemums. Snow chrysanthemum flowers are used to make tea.
Some chrysanthemum varieties are used to make the insecticide pyrethrin. Insects avoid chrysanthemum scent.
How does chrysanthemum infusion affect your health?
Chrysanthemum infusion is drunk in China and other parts of Asia not only because of its wonderful taste, but also because of its healthiness. Chrysanthemum infusion is even healthier than green tea. It has a lot of different minerals, antioxidants and amino acids. Helenatur is not really a health blog, but I still want to tell you about the health effects of chrysanthemum infusion. This way you will better understand the wonderful properties of this plant.
Chrysanthemum infusion is particularly relaxing
According to Chinese medicine, chrysanthemum is a cooling plant. Cold chrysanthemum tea with ice cubes is a drink on a hot day. The cooling feature is also relaxing. Chrysanthemum infusion contains a lot of potassium. Potassium dilates the blood vessels and makes the blood flow more gently also along the small blood vessels under the skin.
Chrysanthemum infusion boosts immunity
Chrysanthemum decoction contains plenty of vitamin A and C, which improve immunity. The high mineral content of the infusion also boosts the immune system. Potassium, calcium and magnesium work in their own way to support the immune system. Every cell in the human body needs potassium to function the way the cell is supposed to function. Magnesium helps regulate blood pressure. It is an important part of many body processes.
Chrysanthemum tea contains plenty of vitamin B
The group of vitamin B is big. Chrysanthemum decoction contains many of them such as folic acid, riboflavin, choline and niacin.
The benefits of chrysanthemum infusion in skin care
Chrysanthemum is a real treasure for your skin. As I already mentioned above, chrysanthemum is a cool type of herb. The cool herb is soothing. Excessive heat correlates with inflammation. You should take advantage of this characteristic of chrysanthemum if you want to use it in cosmetics.
Chrysanthemum contains a lot of beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is a precursor of vitamin A, which is very safe and beneficial for your skin. Beta-carotene is a powerful antioxidant that helps you keep your skin looking youthful.
Chrysanthemum infusion in hair care
Chrysanthemum zawadskii is a chrysanthemum species that has been found in some studies to have properties that affect hair growth. An extract made from this particular chrysanthemum has successfully treated hair loss and stimulated hair growth.
Chrysanthemum extract has been found to have a revitalizing effect on hair follicles. Sleeping hair follicles also come to life with the chrysanthemum treatment. This is how thin hair starts to thicken.
Even ordinary chrysanthemum can help with hair and scalp care. In hair care, use chrysanthemum decoction as a hair conditioner. After washing, rinse your hair with chrysanthemum water and leave it on for 5-10 minutes. Rinse your hair lightly with just water and let it dry on its own. Chrysanthemum water soothes the scalp and makes the hair soft and bending. The chrysanthemum rinse also soothes a flaky scalp.
You can also use herbal oil made from chrysanthemum to treat the scalp. Wash the scalp and hair carefully. Use your fingertips to apply about a tablespoon of chrysanthemum herbal oil to the scalp and leave it on for about 30 minutes. Wash your hair and scalp as usual with shampoo.
This is how you prepare chrysanthemum infusion
Chrysanthemum flowers can also be extracted into water. A herbal infusion made of chrysanthemum is suitable for facial lotions, steaming the skin or as a hair rinse. You can also use herbal infusion in the water phase of emulsion creams. As a base for washing products, an astringent and skin-soothing chrysanthemum infusion is ideal.
You can make chrysanthemum infusion from dried chrysanthemum flowers. All you need is 5 dried chrysanthemum flowers and 3.5 decilitres of boiling water. Pour boiling water over the flowers and let them brew for about 3-5 minutes. Strain the flowers from the tea and your perfect infusion is ready.
Herbal oil made from chrysanthemum soothes your skin
In addition to herbal infusion, you can extract chrysanthemum flowers into the vegetable oil of your choice. A suitable oil for extracting chrysanthemum flowers could be, for example, filtered grape seed oil or safflower oil. These two oils are light and support the effect of chrysanthemum on the skin.
When I talk about chrysanthemum oil, I don’t mean chrysanthemum essential oil, but vegetable oil-based herbal oil. These two things should not be confused. Herbal oil made by extracting chrysanthemum flowers and base oil is a really effective cosmetic product just as it is.
Oil extract made from chrysanthemum has traditionally been used for oily skin. It is an astringent oil that shrinks pores and brightens and evens skin tone. Chrysanthemum oil removes irritation and helps reduce inflammation and acne.
Chrysanthemum oil is full of polyphenols such as quercetin, luteolin, apigenin. These antioxidants help your skin fight the signs of aging. You can also use chrysanthemum oil on its own for the sensitive skin around the eyes. The beta-carotene in the oil helps regenerate cells and remove waste products from the skin.
The anti-inflammatory properties of chrysanthemum oil soothe the skin and remove swelling. The oil can also be used for burns and after sunbathing to soothe the skin.
This is how to make herbal oil from chrysanthemum flowers
Using Chrysanthemum oil is one popular way to use this herb in cosmetics. Prepare herbal oil from dried chrysanthemum flowers according to my basic instructions. Chrysanthemum oil is well suited for the preparation of creams and serums. You can also use chrysanthemum oil as it is, either in skin care or on the scalp.
Chrysanthemum is a phototoxic plant
The chrysanthemum also has its unpleasant side effects. If you are exposed to UV light at the same time as using chrysanthemum cosmetics, your skin may develop a rash or even blisters. This is called a phototoxic reaction. Some plants have a tendency to react with sunlight. So, use chrysanthemum only in night creams and serums used only during night time.
You can be allergic to chrysanthemum. Chrysanthemums belong to mycorrhizal plants, which are known to cause allergies. However, you should not worry about this unless you are really sensitized to composite plants. Chrysanthemums are such effective and useful plants in skin care that you really should pay attention to them. If you are concerned about allergies, you can easily do an exposure test yourself with chrysanthemums.
Calendula oil is one of the most popular oils in cosmetics. It is not made by pressing calendula or its seeds. Calendula oil is an oil extract, i.e., macerated oil. It is made by extracting calendula in carrier oil, that is base oil. Often, calendulas are extracted into sunflower oil. Sometimes you also find calendula extract based on olive oil. Ready-made oil extracts are very difficult to find. Calendula oil is, however, a classic that can be found in all online stores that sell cosmetic ingredients. Why is calendula oil so popular?
Calendula oil is a very gentle cosmetic oil
Calendula comes from the Mediterranean region. Calendula has become a favourite plant among gardeners because they bloom long and abundantly. The pleasant grassy scent and bright orange-yellow flowers of calendulas delight everyone. Calendulas are non-toxic and can also be used as a decoration in salads and as a substitute for expensive saffron to bring in some colour to the food.
Calendula is known in cosmetics for its many benefits. Calendulas are anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial. A wide range of compounds found in the plant’s flowers, including various essential oils, flavonoids, saponins, triterpene alcohols and carotenes, work together to accelerate cell proliferation and inhibit bacteria and fungi at skin lesions. Calendula does not contain strong plant chemicals that cause allergies and skin irritation. Therefore, calendula products are also suitable for babies and elderly persons. Of course, anyone can also be allergic to calendula. If you suffer from allergies, test all new products carefully on your skin first.
How calendula oil is made?
If you want to add plant power to your products, the easiest way is to prepare macerated oils. Calendula oil is perhaps the most common macerated oil. The most important active ingredients of calendula are transferred to the oil extract during maceration.
Maceration is basically a fairly simple method. Calendula flowers are dried and crushed. In this way, most of the plant’s valuable active ingredients are recovered. Good quality sunflower oil is poured over the dried petals. Good quality olive oil can also be used. The mostly used oil in maceration is purified sunflower oil. Unrefined sunflower oil has a very heavy scent that may bother some users.
Calendula oil is usually macerated using a hot method. Nowadays, I myself prefer the fast and safe hot method. In the hot method, the mixture of petals and oil is heated up to around 60-70 degrees Celsius, sometimes up to 80 degrees. At this temperature, delicate plant chemicals are extracted into the oil. Some manufacturers use higher temperatures and others macerate their oils at lower temperatures. The quality of the oil depends a lot on the temperature used and the extraction time. That’s why there are big differences in calendula oils from different manufacturers.
Calendula oil does not contain any additional chemicals. A little vitamin E is often added to calendula oil to prevent oxidation of the oil. No other chemicals are needed.
If you want to know more about the quality of the calendula oil you are using, you should contact the seller and ask more detailed information.
Make your own calendula oil
If you want to make calendula oil from your own calendulas, it is quite easy. I have written a comprehensive article on my blog about the preparation of oil extraction. Homemade calendula oil has many advantages. You know exactly the quality of the ingredients used and the best before -date of the oil you are using. You can also choose the oil you like for maceration and the temperature at which you want to macerate. You should try different oils and different temperatures. You can also make your own calendula oil in organic quality, if you just choose organic oil.
How does calendula oil affect the skin?
Calendula oil is full of wonderful phytochemicals. It is antimicrobial and full of skin-protecting antioxidants. Use calendula oil as such.
For minor skin damage and abrasions – Calendula is recommended as a first aid for minor skin damage such as abrasions. You can use calendula oil as such for rubbing or make a treatment salve from it together with beeswax for your home pharmacy.
For irritated and reddened skin – Your skin may be irritated for many different reasons. The reason is often cosmetics that are not suitable for the skin, external conditions such as wind or too dry indoor air. If your skin is irritated, avoid complex cosmetic products with many ingredients. Replace your cosmetics with simple products such as pure oils. Calendula oil contains skin-soothing and moisturizing ingredients that are beneficial for irritated skin.
After sunbathing to soothe the skin – Calendula oil soothes the skin because it is anti-inflammatory. Calendula’s soothing agents care for skin irritated by the sun. The skin also dries out easily due to the influence of the sun. Calendula contains ingredients that affect the moisture balance of the skin. However, before adding the oil, skin irritated by the sun should be moistened for example with aloe Vera gel.
As a moisturizer for oily skin – Oily skin clogs easily. If you have easily clogged skin, you should avoid complex cosmetics that contain a lot of chemicals. Instead, use very simple products like oil. Calendula oil contains skin-soothing ingredients that curb inflammatory reactions on the skin and prevent surface dryness of the skin. Remember to use the oil on moisturized skin. A very small amount is enough to take care of your skin.
For dry skin – If your skin is dry, calendula oil will help keep it moisturized. Rub a small amount of calendula oil directly onto pre-moisturized skin.
Calendula oil for hair
Calendula oil should definitely be tried for hair care as well. In hair care, attention must be paid to the condition of the scalp and hair follicles. Hair follicles are parts of the scalp from which the hair grows. The condition of the hair follicles also significantly affects the condition of the hair. If the scalp and hair follicles are suffering from dryness or irritated from excessive washing and processing, the hair is not doing well. Hair starts to fall out more abundantly and the scalp may also become inflamed.
The condition of the hair collapses little by little. It also recovers little by little. That’s why you have to be very patient while taking care of your hair. One treatment session is just the beginning.
Calendula’s antimicrobial agents help damaged hair follicles to heal. Calendula contains a lot of useful minerals for the scalp, such as iodine and manganese. It also contains a lot of carotenoids, which are precursors of vitamin A. Calendula improves blood circulation in the scalp and gives the hair follicle more oxygen. This way, new skin cells are able to form faster.
Calendula oil treats and moisturizes dry, sensitive scalp
If your scalp itches easily, it’s probably too dry. Itching can also be caused by an allergy or because your scalp is irritated by some chemical.
Calendula treatment helps with dandruff if the dandruff is dry. Oily dandruff does not go away with calendula oil.
Use your fingertips to apply a small amount of calendula oil to the scalp and leave it on for about an hour. Wash the unabsorbed oil from your hair. However, do not use the same shampoo as the last time, as it may be the reason for the poor condition of the scalp.
If your scalp is irritated, stop using your usual shampoo. It might be too washing for you or contain irritating chemicals. Even natural cosmetics-grade shampoos may irritate the scalp.
There are many other ways to clean up your scalp than just using shampoo. I personally prefer washing with water and, if necessary, egg yolk. Mix one egg yolk with a dash of lukewarm water and mix. Wash your scalp with the mixture. Egg yolk contains a lot of lecithin, which is a fat-releasing agent. When washing with the yolk, use only lukewarm water, as the yolk starts to coagulate already at 40 degrees Celsius.
Calendula oil is suitable for young children as well as for elderly people
Calendula oil is a multipurpose oil for the whole family. It is suitable for childcare to soothe, for example, nappy rash. Calendula oil is well tolerated and has been used for centuries in child care. However, check that your child is not allergic to calendula.
A salve made of calendula oil and beeswax is well suited for children over 1 year old. Salves are easy to use and easier to store than liquid oils.
Special attention should be paid to the skin care of the elderly people over 80 years old. The elderly persons are big consumers of the pharmacy’s basic creams. The skin thins significantly with age. Thin skin is prone to dryness and many skin diseases. The thin, dry skin of the seniors cannot withstand strong chemicals or essential oils. For the skin of the elderly persons, it is worth trying mild, natural oils such as calendula oil or a salve made from it.
Remember that the skin of the elderly persons should also be well moisturized before applying anhydrous oil or salve. A mixture of distilled water and glycerol (1 part glycerol, 9 parts water) is very suitable for moisturizing the skin of the seniors.
Calendula oil in pet care
Calendula oil is perfect for treating skin problems in family pets. Try calendula oil on small damage to your pet’s skin, such as insect bites, abrasions or post-surgery scars. You can make a salve from calendula oil or use it as such. Calendula can also be used as an infusion or brewed tea to wash your pet’s irritated skin. Calendula has a mild skin astringent effect and antimicrobial nature.
Calendula can also be used in the health care of dogs in many different ways. It is a safe and mild herb giving incredibly effective results.
How do you use Calendula oil in skin care?
This toner should be prepared when the spruce tips are at their best. The effect of this toner is based on the spruce tip glycerite so it should be prepared in the spring at the spruce tip time. Glycerites will be preserved well at least 6 months, perhaps even longer.
Spruce tips are very antibacterial and regenerates the skin. Spruce tips also contains slightly the same ingredients as spruce resin. Therefore, spruce tips should be used in skin care to regenerate the skin.
Spruce is also really rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C is a very important vitamin for the skin and is especially suitable for toners.
Spruce tip glycerite
For facial toner, you need spruce tip glycerite. You have to make it yourself, because spruce tip glycerite or hardly any other spruce products can be bought ready-made. I think that’s pretty strange. After all, we live in a land covered with forests full of spruce. Find here the recipe to spruce tip glycerite.
Glycerite is needed in facial toner for 5%. Glycerine aka glycerol is a very moisturizing ingredient but only if it is mixed with a sufficient amount of water or other liquid. The rule is that at least as much water as glycerol should be in the product. Otherwise, the glycerol begins to absorb moisture from the skin and the effect is drying.
100% water-based ingredients
When you start making a facial toner, you should first think about what could be the water phase to which you make the toner. I recommend you to choose distilled water instead of tap water. Distilled water differ from tap water in that all minerals have been removed.
An herbal infusion can also be prepared as a base liquid for facial toner. See instructions for making an herbal infusion here.
Choose the hydrolates you like
Boiled water and glycerol alone make a very useful facial toner. Personally, however, I hope for a little more cleansing feature from the toner. That’s why I like to use only hydrolates to make facial toners. The hydrolate added to the facial toner should be 20-100% of the total volume of the product. The product is much better preserved if you only use hydrolate. Most hydrolates already contain a preservative.
For spruce tip toner, I wanted to use birch hydrolate. Birch hydrolate, as a product from a tree, somehow feels like a very natural choice. Of course, you are free to choose lavender hydrolate or rose hydrolate, for example.
Ingredients for spruce tip toner
In this recipe, the ingredients are calculated for a 100 gr dose only. Of course, you should first make only 100 gr because you still can’t know if the product suits you at all. The dose is easy to double in the future if you like the toner.
You may not need any preservative at all if you make only a small amount of toner and store it in the refrigerator only few days. However, if you want to store the toner in room temperature, you should add a natural, safe preservative like Preservative Eco.
- 5 gr spruce tip glycerite
- 53,5 gr birch hydrolate
- 40 gr distilled water
- 1 gr Preservative Eco.
- 0,5 gr essential oil to scent, optional. When glycerite is present in the toner, the essential oils are well soluble in the liquid.
Measure all the ingredients into a larger bottle and shake well. Personally, I always like to mix all the toners in a bigger bottle properly and then pour the toner to a smaller bottle using a funnel.
You can pack facial toner in a spray bottle, if you want to apply it directly to your face. The spray bottle is also handy if you want to get a layer-type moisture.
However, keep in mind that when layered, the toner should be very mild. So, if you are going to spray toner, for example 5 times in a row, dilute the toner with water so that one bottle becomes 5 bottles of toner. If the toner is not diluted, there will be 5 times the amount of strong plant chemicals on the skin. This can irritate and sensitize the skin.
How do I use a spruce tip facial toner?
Apply spruce tip facial toner in the morning on cleansed skin. I think this facial toner suits best for daytime use. You can wipe your face and throat area with a cotton wipe gently moistened with facial toner. Also try spraying facial toner on your face. Allow the toner to be absorbed deeper into the skin to bring in the desired moisture. Then apply a day cream to protect your skin.
In this way, fresh and skin-treating toner is easily created from natural products. I hope you liked the guide and got excited to give it a try.
Tell us again about your experience, how this toner has worked for you!
Cocoa was originally a rainforest plant that is now widely cultivated. Cocoa is originated in South America but is currently farmed mostly in Africa. Cocoa only thrives in the tropical areas as it needs plenty of warmth and moisture. For sure anyone who has made homemade cosmetics is familiar with cocoa butter. The smell of cocoa butter is wonderful, like chocolate and it has many good skin care properties. I wanted to write my own article about cocoa butter and also raise ethical and ecological concerns related to cocoa.
A brief history of cocoa
Cocoa was probably used originally by the Aztecs. It was especially the delicacy of the Aztec Emperor Moctezuma (1466-1520). Emperor Moctezuma drank as many as 60 golden cups of cocoa daily. From the Aztecs, cocoa ended up in Europe with the Spanish conquerors. During the colonial period, cocoa ended up in European-hosted colonies such as the West Indies archipelago, the Philippines, and Africa. Currently, the largest cocoa plantations in the world are in Ivory Coast. Ivory Coast, together with Ghana, produces more than 70% of the world’s cocoa.
Cocoa trees produce elongated, yellow fruit that contains very fatty seeds. The fat content varies between 37-54%. The seeds are used in the production of both cocoa butter and cocoa powder. The cultivation and processing of cocoa is mainly done by hands. Yellow legumes are cut open with a jungle knife. The seeds, or cocoa beans, are separated from the opened pieces. Cocoa beans are fermented, dried and roasted. In the roasting process, the cocoa fat is separated from the cocoa beans by heat. Roasting takes place usually in buyers location, closer to consumers like in Europe.
What is raw cocoa butter?
Raw cocoa butter is not heated as hot as regular cocoa butter. Therefore, it has more nutrients stored. Raw cocoa butter is also more expensive because at lower temperatures, very little cocoa butter is produced. In Finland, the term raw cocoa is not used, as it may mislead the consumer. Raw cocoa means different things in different countries.
Ethical problems of cocoa
Cocoa is grown where it is warm and moist enough. Ivory Coast is one of the most popular cocoa growing areas. Cocoa plantations and monopoly buying organizations are almost always owned by a large, multinational company. They want to maximize their profits and relocate cocoa production to the world’s poorest countries. Where labour is cheap, it is worth cultivating cocoa. The price of cocoa is very low at the origin because big business wants their profits.
The fact is that cocoa plantations employ a very large number of children. Children are either forced to work at the request of adults or they are sold into slavery. The work is very dangerous. The heat makes the job extremely heavy. Cocoa cultivation also uses very potent pesticides to which children and all other workers are exposed.
Children do not receive education and do not have health care. The situation of children with cocoa plantations is very difficult.
International organizations have paid attention to the ethical problems of cocoa plantations. Cocoa production has started to be certified but the certification bodies have encountered overwhelming problems.
Local authorities have blocked free access to cocoa plantations. The visits of the inspectors of the certification bodies are known in advance and the children are removed away the plantation.
Certification bodies are also lowering standards to get more customers. Not all certificates are reliable.
The cocoa crop is collected from different farms and sold to wholesalers. The certified and non-certified crop is intentionally mixed so that the wholesaler can sell everything at a certified price. This is, of course, a criminal activity but very common.
Certification does not improve the situation of farmers. Cocoa is still too cheap to workers earn a decent wage. Certified farms live in poverty. Even if big cocoa buyers pay compensation to farmers, the money doesn’t end up in their pockets. The money is used in municipal administration, for example, to train farmers.
Cocoa butter protects and moisturizes the skin
Despite the ethical problems of cocoa production, it is a very versatile plant. Cocoa butter has its place as an ingredient in cosmetics. Next, I’ll give some facts about the properties of cocoa in skin care.
Cocoa butter is high in hard fatty acids such as palmitic acid and stearic acid. Therefore, it is quite hard fat. The good side of cocoa butter is that its melting point is almost the same as the skin temperature, 34-35 degrees Celsius. Therefore, even full-bodied cocoa butter products spread well on the skin.
- Cocoa butter is rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants protect the skin from premature aging.
- Cocoa butter moisturizes the skin. It is rich in oleic acid, which supports the skin’s moisture balance.
- Cocoa butter protects the skin from drying out. It is rich in palmitic acid, which is a protective fatty acid.
- Cocoa butter clearly smells like chocolate. Many consider it a good thing but very often this is not the case. Not everyone wants the smell of a chocolate bar.
- One disadvantage of cocoa butter is its blocking effect on the skin. It will not absorb easily to the skin. Therefore, it is recommended to keep the cocoa butter content low in creams.
For which products is cocoa butter suitable?
Cocoa butter is suitable for normal and dry skin. For oily and easily clogged skin, you should choose another vegetable butter. Cocoa butter is too heavy on the skin of the face. So, use cocoa butter for body products. Especially whipped body butters and other creams applied to the body are easy to make using cocoa butter.
Cocoa butter is much harder than shea butter. It is good to know when making cosmetics.
Cocoa butter is well suited for preventing pigmentation disorders on the skin. As the sun shines in the spring, more and more dark spots begin to form on the skin of the arms and chest. The effective antioxidants in cocoa butter brighten the skin and fade darkening of the skin.
Choose cocoa butter as one of the ingredients in the foot cream. Cocoa butter is also very useful in lip creams and lip balms.
With the help of cocoa butter, many women have avoided pregnancy scars. Cocoa butter can be applied as such to the skin or used as one of the ingredients in the cream. It is best to use cocoa butter on the body regularly throughout pregnancy as well as after pregnancy.
Get organic, ethically produced cocoa butter
Cocoa butter is a great product for skin care. It should not be left unused. When you buy cocoa butter, buy organic quality. Toxic pesticides have not been used in organic cocoa butter. However, organic does not necessarily guarantee that the product is ethical.
Check the ethics of the product with the seller. For example, Foodin’s organic raw cocoa butter is ethically produced. Foodini’s cocoa butter producers are SPP (Símbolo de Pequeños Productores) certified. SPP is an international network of small organic producers. The organization operates in South America, Asia and Africa. Foodin’s cocoa butter comes from farms in South America that are part of the SPP network. SPP certified farms are also always organic farms and farms have an organic certificate.
SPP certified producers operate ethically. The use of child labour is closely monitored by the SPP organization. The SPP organization also makes sure that producers and employees receive reasonable compensation for their work. Community children are provided with access to schools and health care.
Do you use sustainably produced cocoa butter in the making of your cosmetics?
Butterfly pea is a plant that is not known and not much used in western world. Personally, I got acquainted with the plant in Asia, where it grows wild quite commonly in small forests and roadside areas. The butterfly pea is not actually a rainforest plant although it needs warm and moisture to thrive. In this story, I’ll tell you about the great features of butterfly pea and how many different ways you can take advantage of it.
Butterfly pea; The sacred flower of India
The butterfly pea is native to Asia. It is a fairly common “weed” in South and Southeast Asia. The Latin name Clitoria ternatea tells of the appearance of the flower. It somehow resembles a clitoris. Ternate is again a city in Indonesia from which the botanist Linnè found a flower and gave it a name. Today, butterfly pea has also spread to the continents of America, Africa and Australia.
Butterfly pea flowers are sacred flowers in India. They are an important part of the daily worship ritual, the puja. The puja ritual means worshipping different Gods. The idea is to provide food, water, light, and flowers as a symbol of love to the Gods. The Puja ritual is a very integral part of the Hindu tradition. In Asia, people are seen daily practicing Puja rituals in their yards. The Puja ritual originally meant a flower sacrifice to the gods. An important flower in this ritual has always been the butterfly pea.
A rare, deep blue colour is characteristic of a butterfly pea
Butterfly pea as a plant is quite modest. It is a climbing plant that thrives in places where only hay thrives. Dusty, dry roadside area is the home of butterfly pea. Dry forest side areas are often blue with butterfly pea flowers. The blue colour is very intense. It’s hard to come up with anything that would be as blue.
Butterfly pea is also grown in gardens. The plant spreads on the ground and covers large areas with its blue flowers. Butterfly pea is a great undergrowth in tropical gardens.
As a pea plant, the roots of the butterfly pea form a symbiosis with the soil bacteria. The phenomenon is known as rhizobia. The root nodules of a plant contain rhizobia bacteria that bind nitrogen, converting it to a form suitable for the plant.
Butterfly pea is part of Far Eastern culinary culture
The butterfly pea is an integral part of the food culture of India, Indonesia and Thailand. The blue-coloured rice is obtained with the flowers of a butterfly pea. Many drinks get their colour from the butterfly pea. For example, there is a colour-changing gin for sale. The drink is beautifully blue first. If you drop a slice of lime in it, it will instantly turn purple red. At its most typical form, however, butterfly pea is a non-alcoholic beverage served both hot and cold with ice.
Butterfly pea is an important part of Ayurvedic medicine
Butterfly pea is a highly antioxidant plant with absolutely incredible effects on health. Ayurveda is an Indian traditional medicine that was established as early as the Vedic period. In Ayurveda, the butterfly pea plant is used to improve memory, relieve stress, depression, anxiety and prevent seizures.
The Chinese use the butterfly pea plant to increase female libido as the plant resembles the clitoris.
Butterfly pea extract has been shown in some studies to affect the problems caused by the neurotransmitters like serotonin and acetylcholine.
Due to its rich blue colour, the butterfly pea plant is also used for dyeing fabrics and yarns.
Butterfly pea is perfect plant for cosmetics
Butterfly pea has really a lot to give to cosmetics. The intense blue colour of the plant is really welcome in many products. Blue is best utilized in soaps and other alkaline products. The colour changes to a beautiful purple if the pH of the product is below 7. This is usually the case with all products left on the skin. There are very limited amounts of dyes in natural cosmetics. If mica colours are not included, only shades of orange (yellow base) are available in shades of red. The natural, blue-refracting shades of red I cannot think about other than the butterfly pea.
Butterfly pea is very therapeutic in skin care
Butterfly pea contains the same flavonoid called anthocyanin as, for example, super healthy wild blueberries. Butterfly pea anthocyanin just isn’t that messy and smudging than blueberry. The anthocyanins contained in the butterfly pea are called deacyl ternatine, ternatins (A1, A2, B1, B2, D1, D2), etc.
Polyphenols such as proanthocyanidin contained in the butterfly pea are powerful antioxidants. They stimulate the natural production of collagen and elastane and thus affect the elasticity of the skin. Antioxidants also soothe the skin and prevent inflammation. Such a feature is good, for example, in products used after sunbathing.
Butterfly pea has been of interest to cosmetic manufacturers for a long time. In one study, fermented butterfly pea extract was tested on irritated skin. The extract relieved itching, soothed the skin and reduced inflammation. Fermented a butterfly pea could be an even more effective antioxidant.
A particularly good feature of Butterfly pea is that it is astringent. The extract made from the flowers is a particularly good base for toners. Butterfly pea toner shrinks pores, soothes and brightens the skin and fights the signs of aging.
The butterfly pea cares for the scalp
Butterfly pea extract is used as a medicine for hair loss due to the anthocyanins it contains. Anthocyanins nourish hair follicles. This promotes hair growth and prevents hair loss. Therefore, butterfly pea extracts are quite often found in hair products such as shampoos, conditioners and hair masks.
I hope that the wonderful properties of butterfly pea would be better known
Currently, dried inflorescences of butterfly pea are quite difficult to find. Although the plant is as common in Asia as chamomile in Europe, it has not gained the attention of the general public. I wrote this article about butterfly head just because you could get excited to try it. I already mentioned the beautiful blue butterfly pea flowers in my book Home Cosmetics – Raw Materials and Manufacturing.
If you are able to get dried flowers of butterfly pea you can use them in many of your projects. The flowers remain good for about a year depending on, of course, how old they are when purchased. Store flowers in a light, cool, dry place. However, not in the refrigerator. I prefer to keep my own flowers in a paper bag, as they do not contain volatile aromatic substances. The flowers are completely odourless. In the dry room air, protected from light, the flowers remain flawless.
Usually only 4-5 flowers are needed for cosmetics. You can use the remaining flowers, for example, as a tea or you can prepare a fresh, cold drink from the flowers. This way, you also get good antioxidants for your skin internally. The tea has a mild taste and is suitable for the whole family.
The introduction of the cosmetic treasures of Amazon rainforest continues. Andiroba oil is still a very unknown cosmetic raw material from Amazon area. Amazon rainforests are bursting with useful ingredients. Andiroba is one such treasure. It belongs to the mahogany family. Andiroba tree is a traditional medicinal plant. Its bark, oil and leaves have been used in ancient indigenous medicine. In this article, I will tell about the benefits of andiroba oil in cosmetics use.
Andiroba is a traditional tree in the Amazon rainforest
The Andiroba tree, (Carapas guianensis), is a typical tree of the Amazon rainforest. It belongs to the plants used by the indigenous people of Brazil. The greenery of Andiroba is dense and the tree is very tall. It grows riverside in tropical rainforests. Andiroba is one of those trees that is preferably logged from the rainforest into lumber. The tree belongs to the mahogany family, although it is not classified as genuine mahogany.
The popularity of Andiroba as sawn timber is due to the terpenes it contains. The tree naturally repels mold, fungi and other microbes. It is a durable wood and therefore highly sought after as a building material. Andiroba also has an insect repellent property. Pests do not thrive on andiro boards. Andiroba oil is also commonly used to make insect repellents.
Andiroba oil production
An adult tree can produce up to 120 pounds of seeds. The average output is about 50 pounds. The seeds contain 40% fat. 12 kilos of seeds are needed to make one litre of oil produced by solvent technology. If produced by mechanical cold pressing, considerably more seeds per litre of oil are needed.
Traditionally, andiroba oil is made by boiling nuts. After boiling, the nuts are fermented for 25 days. The soft core is removed from the fermented nuts. The core is left to drain for a few weeks. This naturally removes oil from the seeds without pressing. The process is completely natural. No chemicals or compression equipment is required. Such andiroba oil is rare. Andiroba oil sold for cosmetics is usually cold pressed.
Why is it important to favour andiroba oil in cosmetics?
I am writing this series of “Rainforest Treasures” for ecological and ethical reasons. Of course, we have to favour domestic products, that’s for sure. However, Amazon’s rainforests are the lungs of the world. The world’s rainforests are threatened by massive logging. Many trees are utilized as sawn timber. Once the rainforest is felled, it will be replaced by a corn field or perhaps soybeans. The destruction of a natural rainforest biotope is catastrophic for many different reasons.
If we diligently use the natural products of Amazon’s rainforests, there is no need to cut down the trees at all. The indigenous people earn their living by selling the products that the jungle produces and there will be no need to log the trees anymore. Andiroba nuts is a good example of this.
Andiroba trees have also been cultivated in rainforests, with large plantations. With this cultivation, the problems are same with the monoculture. The biodiversity of the rainforest is disappearing. Trees are exposed to pests and the crop suffers. Chemicals are needed to destroy diseases and insects. Chemicals destroy other organisms in the rainforest. The circle is ready. It is worth researching carefully that the rainforest products you buy are sustainably produced.
What is andiroba oil?
Andiroba oil is also called crab oil although it has nothing to do with crabs. Andiroba oil is a 100% vegan product that is pressed from the nuts of the andiroba trees. The oil is rich in hard fatty acids. It is thick and slightly reminiscent of Vaseline when cooled. The oil is pale yellow in colour and very bitter. The bitterness is due to a group of terpenes called Meliacines. Andiroba oil solidifies at 25 degrees like coconut oil.
One of the Meliacines in andiroba oil is called Gedunin. Gedunin has been shown to have similar anti-malarial properties to quinine. In chemical analyses, andiroba oil has been found to be highly curative and anti-inflammatory. These properties are due to the limonoids in the oil, called andirobins.
Fatty acids from andiroba oil
Andiroba oil is rich in hard fatty acids. However, the main fatty acid in andiroba oil is oleic acid. Palmitic acid in andiroba oil is up to over 30%. It is the rich palmitic acid that makes andiroba oil very firm and thick. Stearic acid is also abundant in oil.
The main fatty acids in andiroba oil
- Oleic acid 45-58%
- Palmitic acid 25-32
- Stearic acid 6-13%
- Linoleic acid 6-14%
Comedogenic classification 2
The aroma is strong, muscular
Andiroba has numerous medicinal properties
Andiroba oil is one of the best-selling medicinal oils in the Amazon rainforest. Andiroba oil is usually mixed with honey and used internally for many ailments. Honey is included not only as a health-promoting product but also because the andiroba oil tastes very bitter. With a mixture of honey and oil, locals have always fought flu and sore throats.
Fatty and thick andiroba oil doesn’t sound very good for acne prone skin. However, local people in Amazon have successfully used andiroba oil for acne prone skin. The oil is very antimicrobial. Therefore, it soothes inflammation well.
Andiroba oil is well absorbed into the skin. Therefore, it can affect the deepest parts of the skin. Local people have also used andiroba oil to treat bruises and sore joints. Andiroba oil is especially popular as a massage oil. It’s like made to relax sore muscles.
Benefits of Andiroba Oil in Cosmetics
Andiroba oil contains a huge number of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. It is a very useful oil to regenerate the skin. The nutrients in andiroba oil are especially suitable for aging skin. The oil contains ingredients that have a beneficial effect on collagen production. Andiroba oil reduces wrinkles on the skin.
Andiroba oil is worth trying for many skin problems. It has plenty of skin rejuvenating and protective effects. Please bear in mind, however, that this particular oil is very strong and contains terpenes. Terpenes can cause severe allergies, especially to people who are allergic to resins. First, test if you tolerate andiroba oil at all. If you suffer from eczema, be really careful when trying new products. Although andiroba is specifically recommended for eczema and psoriasis, I would still be careful.
Andiroba oil has been used with success in the treatment of hair and scalp. As an antimicrobial oil, andiroba oil is well suited for treating scalp problems. For example, dandruff or itching of the scalp could be cured with a serum containing andiroba oil.
Andiroba oil also supports hair follicles and stimulates blood circulation to the scalp. This will make your hair grow better.
Andiroba oil is rich in palmitoleic acid, which protects the skin from drying out as well as external factors.
What products can andiroba oil be used for?
First of all, Andiroba oil seems to be a specialty oil suitable for body products. However, its use range is much wider. Andiroba oil, despite its heaviness, is a relatively fast-absorbing oil. That is why it is also worth trying for facial skin and hair care.
Prepare from andiroba oil
- Massage oils to treat sore joints and muscles
- Night creams and protective day creams to treat aging skin
- Creams for impure skin
- Creams for irritated skin
- Antimicrobial creams for foot care
- Oil treatment serums for the scalp
- For soap making; special care soaps
Due to its bitter taste, andiroba oil should not be included in lip products.
Try andiroba oil as an insect repellent. Andiroba oil has a strong, musky scent that repels insects. If mosquitoes are being fought in the Amazon rainforest, why not in other areas as well. Did you know that neem oil is also quite an effective mosquito repellent?
Sandalwood is a hard, heavy and fragrant type of wood. Sandalwood grows wild in tropical rainforests in India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. Sandalwood is one of the most expensive woods in the world. It has been very popular for hundreds of years and continues to do so. The story of the wild sandalwood is quite sad, although there is some hope in the horizon. Fortunately, sandalwood has been cultivated. This is how we will continue to enjoy fragrant sandalwood in the future. How, then, is sandalwood related to cosmetics? The story of the sandalwood is very interesting. Keep on reading to learn more about this marvellous tropical tree.
Sandalwood is a tropical tree
The Santalum album (Santalum album) is originally native to the tropical rainforests of India. There are a dozen different look a-like species of sandalwood.
Santalum spicatum is a variety of sandalwood that is grown commercially in Western Australia. The sandalwood oil used in cosmetics comes from Australia. Australian sandalwood oil can be used safely as it is grown sustainably. Today, Australia has overtaken India in sandalwood production. However, Indian sandalwood oil is of higher quality and significantly more expensive.
Other sandalwood species
- White sandalwood
- Hawaiian sandalwood
- Sandalwood in Fiji
- Red sandalwood
Other tree species are also used as a substitute for the rare sandalwood. The red sandalwood is obtained from the red tree Pterocarpus santalinus, which belongs to the bean family. This species of wood may be the same one used in ancient times in the temple of King Solomon.
The sandalwood is a parasite
The sandalwood is actually a parasite. To succeed, it needs an authentic and the right kind of rainforest biotope around it. Sandalwood does not take nutrients directly from the soil but absorbs phosphorus, nitrogen and potassium from other plants. Sandalwood also does not grow in the open area but requires shade from a humid, hot jungle to thrive.
Sandalwood lives about a hundred years. It never grows very tall. Only 4-6 meters, sometimes up to 10 meters high, a small tree forms small groves. The bark of the tree is brown at a young age. As it gets older, it turns almost black and forms red cracks. The inside of the tree is green and drill.
The wild sandalwood is an endangered plant
Sandalwood has been used for centuries completely unsustainably. Old, wild sandalwoods are hardly found in nature anymore. The smuggling of sandalwood is incredibly common. In nature reserves, this happens all the time despite careful guarding.
Planting and growing sandalwood is challenging
There have been attempts to grow sandalwood in many different countries. Unfortunately, genuine natural sandalwood is still the best in quality. Cultivated trees do not succeed in creating as intense a scent as they can in wild-growing trees.
Sandalwood always needs a parent plant. It can only live as a parasite after forming an efficient food chain with the surrounding plants. Especially at a young age, the environment is very important for the well-being of the tree. It is really easy to understand that creating such a biotope is challenging. Indeed, most planted sandalwood dies at a young age.
Sandalwood can only be utilized at the age of about 15-30, depending on the variety. The trees grow really slowly.
Sandalwood has a very wide user base
There is a Hindu culture in India that has always valued sandalwood in religious ceremonies. Fragrant sandalwood was used to make furniture for Hindu temples. Incense also often contained sandalwood.
One of the most important uses for sandalwood has been in Ayurveda medicine, which is an ancient Indian folk medicine. Sandalwood is still used in Ayurveda to treat the flu, liver and gallbladder problems, mental health problems, muscle problems, digestive problems, scabies and haemorrhoids.
Ground sandalwood is used in the paste used in India to make caste marks.
Aromatherapy has been quite popular since ancient cultures. Sandalwood oil is still used in aromatherapy to promote mental and physical health.
Due to its refined aroma, sandalwood oil has been commonly used as a base fragrance in the perfume industry. Indeed, most of the essential oil of sandalwood is used for the needs of the perfume industry.
Sandalwood was once used to make furniture. Today, it is not anymore possible. Small items made of sandalwood, on the other hand, are quite popular. Scented sandalwood beads and rings are popular. The scent of sandalwood relaxes and soothes.
Sandalwood combs take care of the hair. Small amounts of essential oils are released from sandalwood combs to repair damaged hair and reduce electricity.
Sandalwood contains valuable oil
The essential oil contained in sandalwood is very valuable. The oil is separated from the wood by steam distillation. Wood contains about 0.3-0.6% essential oil. The sweet, strong and very durable scent has made sandalwood oil a favourite product in the perfume industry. The scent of the sandalwood itself lasts for about 40 years. Sandalwood objects are best identified by the scent.
The essential oil obtained by steam distillation from sandalwood is particularly strong and therapeutic. The free fatty alcohols contained in sandalwood oil are known as alpha-santalol. Pure sandalwood oil has a minimum fatty alcohol content of 90%. This kind of oil is way too strong. Sandalwood oil sold to consumers is therefore always diluted. Pure sandalwood oil is mixed with jojoba or some other oil. There is usually about 10% of sandalwood oil in the mixture. The concentration varies depending on the supplier. Contact your dealer for more information on safe use of the oil.
Beware of synthetic sandalwood oil
Because sandalwood is a very rare type of wood today, there are also synthetic variants of sandalwood oil for sale. Synthetic sandalwood oil smells the same as genuine but does not have the same therapeutic effects. When purchasing sandalwood oil, check the authenticity of the oil.
The Benefits of Sandalwood Essential Oil
Sandalwood essential oil is an important ingredient in cosmetics. As I have already said, sandalwood is one of the most prized scents in perfumes.
Calm down and stress relief
Sandalwood oil has remarkable therapeutic properties. It is used in meditation as a means of calming the mind. In aromatherapy, sandalwood is a very valuable and used fragrance. Sandalwood calms and reduces stress and improve the Quality of sleep. Sandalwood reduces anxiety and helps the mind calm down and ground. Sandalwood brings out the spiritual side of man and helps free oneself from the tyranny of intellect.
Acne and irritated skin
Sandalwood essential oil is very antiseptic. Use sandalwood in products intended for irritated skin. Sandalwood essential oil also does good for acne. It soothes inflammation and brightens the skin. Sandalwood oil also has a restraining effect on sebum production. This feature also helps in the treatment of acne skin.
Sandalwood oil also has a calming effect on insect bites. The cream containing sandalwood oil soothes the itching by cooling the skin.
However, do not use sandalwood essential oil on broken skin or open wounds.
In India, sandalwood oil is used to treat irritated skin along with rose hydrolate. These ingredients support each other in the treatment of irritated and acne prone skin.
Sandalwood essential oil contains ingredients that support normal cell growth. That is why sandalwood has traditionally been used to treat scars. Sandalwood oil also improves skin elasticity and nourishes and moisturizes the skin. These properties are good when you want to fade scars. Sandalwood oil has been found to be effective on scars, especially in combination with honey.
Sandalwood brightens the skin and evens out the uneven colour of the skin. This is due to the Ayurvedic effects of sandalwood oil. According to Ayurveda, darkening of the skin is caused by excessive heat. Sandalwood oil cools down and soothes the skin.
Another factor that makes sandalwood oil brighten and lighten the skin is the alpha-santalol it contains, which blocks an enzyme called tyrosinase. Tyrosinase is a key factor in the synthesis of the skin pigment, melanin. Another tyrosinase inhibitor used in cosmetics is vitamin C, or ascorbic acid. I’ve written about vitamin C on one of my blogs before.
Treatment of aged skin
Sandalwood oil has been found to reduce the formation of wrinkles on the skin. Sandalwood contains a significant number of effective antioxidants that have an anti-aging effect.
Sandalwood is used in cosmetics in many different ways
By far the most famous sandalwood product is the essential oil of sandalwood. However, sandalwood is used in a wide variety of cosmetics.
A product familiar to many is sandalwood soap. Sandalwood soap soothes and brightens the skin. It is suitable for daily use on most skin types.
Powder from sandalwood is a very useful product. There are two types of sandalwood powder available, red and white. White sandalwood powder is a very medicinal product used in Ayurveda to treat various ailments. Red sandalwood powder is suitable for skin care, for example for acne prone skin.
Sandalwood hydrolate is a by-product of the production of sandalwood oil. Sandel hydrolate is used in the manufacture of lotions, hair cosmetics and lotions.
Now in the winter time, when there are fewer domestic herbs available, I want to tell you about good foreign options. Moringa powder is made from the same plant as moringa oil. I have written about moringa oil earlier in one of my blogs. The moringa tree is a wonderful plant because all its parts are suitable for use. Now I want to introduce you to the properties of moringa powder obtained from the leaves of the moringa tree.
The moringa tree is a useful plant
The moringa tree (Moringa oleifera) grows in the most barren areas of the world. It thrives in tropical and subtropical areas on dry soils. Moringa is native to the Indian subcontinent but the plant has spread over a very wide area. The fast-growing Moringa thrives almost anywhere and has become a willow-like waste tree and a sort of hated alien species. Fortunately, the great benefits of moringa have been notified. Moringa produces valuable oil. In addition, its leaves are particularly nutritious.
Cultivation of Moringa is very ethical as it does not require any special care, any plant protection products or even additional watering. Moringa fights soil erosion.
Moringa leaves are especially nutritious
Moringa leaves is valued food in Indonesia and the Philippines. Moringa leaves are rich in trace elements, vitamins and protein.
Moringa leaves provide B vitamins such as thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, folate, and vitamin B-6. In addition, moringa leaves contain vitamin A as well as more than 50 mg of vitamin C per 100 grams of leaves.
Of the trace elements Moringa contains iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc.
The specialty of Moringa is that it is rich in protein. One hundred grams of fresh moringa leaves contains almost 10 grams of protein. Such an amount of protein matters. Due to its high nutrient content, moringa leaves are a very important part of the diet of local people.
Moringa roots, leaves, flowers, seeds and bark are used in traditional herbal medicine. Western medicine has also explored the benefits of moringa in blood lipids and in the treatment of diabetes.
Benefits of Moringa Leaf Powder in Skin Care
All of the above-mentioned nutrients of moringa make it a very useful raw material for skin care.
The powder obtained from the leaves of Moringa is particularly antibacterial. Therefore, it is recommended for acne prone skin. Moringa does not dry out inflamed skin but moisturizes the skin. Moringa powder is suitable to prevent acne. It removes blackheads and pimples from the skin. This prevents the skin from becoming more inflamed. Ingestion of moringa powder as a food supplement also has a cleansing effect on the skin.
Moringa leaf mask brightens the skin. The numerous antioxidants contained in Moringa calm the skin down. The Moringa mask also reduces enlarged skin pores.
Vitamin C in moringa powder accelerates the formation of collagen. Vitamin C also acts as an antioxidant, fading the signs of aging.
Moringa leaves contain 90 different nutrients; 15 amino acids and 49 antioxidants. Some of the amino acids contained in moringa leaves are essential amino acids for humans. This means that they cannot be made by the human body but must be obtained from food. The major amino acids contained in moringa are methionine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine and threonine. Amino acids are widely used in skin care masks and creams. The benefits of amino acids in skin care are widely recognized.
- Leucine reduces skin wrinkles and fine lines
- Lysine strengthens the skin’s surface
- Methionine protects the skin from harmful substances
- Threonine supports skin regeneration
It is the wide range of amino acids that makes moringa leaf powder such a unique good skin care product. Few products have such a wide range of valuable amino acids.
How can you use moringa leaf powder in cosmetics?
Moringa leaf powder is a finished cosmetic product and can be used just as it is. It is suitable for all ages. Moringa in particular treats aged skin as well as acne prone skin.
Moringa is especially suitable for face masks. To get all the benefits of moringa leaf powder, mix the powder with honey.
Face mask made of moringa leaf powder
- 1 tablespoon of honey (liquid)
- 1 tablespoon of moringa leaf powder
- 1 small avocado, mashed
- If necessary, add a drop of water
Mix all ingredients together and apply to clean skin. Leave on for 20-30 minutes. Wipe off the face mask and rinse your face thoroughly. Apply a little moisturizer on your face. Your skin is velvety soft and dull.
You can do the moringa mask treatment once a week.
Moringa leaf powder is the perfect cosmetic product
All of this, what I just told you, clearly shows how unique product the moringa leaf powder is. Moringa leaves contain an incredible amount of active skin care ingredients ready to use. In my own cosmetics, I prefer plant products in the most natural form possible. You can find the perfect combinations in nature with the best vitamins, minerals and amino acids ready to use. By using Moringa, you don’t have to learn how to make complicated products.
Moringa is very good for your skin. If you don’t need all the moringa powder into your face masks, you can eat the rest. The best part is that you also get the needed moringa’s important nutrients internally. Mix a spoonful of moringa with a smoothie or morning porridge. Especially in wintertime, moringa powder brings much-needed extra energy to your diet.
Kerro, miten sinä valmistat kasvonaamion!
Vinegar, especially apple cider vinegar, is already a legend in homemade cosmetics. Apple cider vinegar is a multi-purpose product that is effective in everything you can think of. So many people love apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar can be found in every home and is considered to be a fairly safe product for the skin as well. However, the scent of vinegar does not please everyone and therefore many people are looking for alternative product to vinegar.
I started to examine easy and natural alternatives to cosmetic acids. Surprisingly, I found plenty of natural and acidic raw materials suitable for cosmetics. This time I’m going to tell you about an incredibly antioxidant-rich hibiscus.
Acidic ingredients are part of skin care
The skin’s natural acidity, known as pH -value, is acidic. Normally, the pH of the skin is between 5 and 6. If the skin is strained with soap or some other very alkaline ingredients, such as clay or baking soda, the skin may be irritated. It is then necessary to restore the skin’s pH back to normal. The easiest way to treat it is with home-made cider vinegar.
In commercially made cosmetics, other acids are used instead of apple cider vinegar. Vinegar gives the product a strong scent that many do not like at all. That is why the cosmetics industry uses highly processed cosmetic acids in their products. The most popular acids in skin care are fruit acids. Fruit acids, or alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), are all plant-derived acids.
- Lactic acid
- Citric acid
- Glycolic acid
- Malic acid
- Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid, also known as BHA
In industrial cosmetics, fruit-derived acids are used in purified and processed form. The same acids are available in online stores that sell ingredients for homemade cosmetics.
However, the use of cosmetic acids requires quite good skills and equipment. You need a good quality pH meter to ensure the safety of your product as well as information on the use of acids on the skin. Especially for beginners, the use of cosmetic acids can be very challenging.
Hibiscus aka Roselle brew is a safe alternative to homemade cosmetics.
Hibiscus, China rose or Roselle is a natural plant living in the Far East, which is imported to Europa as a houseplant. The INCI name of the hibiscus is Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract.
Hibiscus belongs to the mallow plants such as the marshmallow. Hibiscus has stunning, large, purple flowers. Flowers are by no means used for hibiscus infusion, but flower calyxes or flower bases. All hibiscus does not produce bright red flower bases. So, you should buy dried hibiscus from an herbalist or ethnic stores.
Hibiscus is used as an infusion in cosmetics. The dried flower beds are boiled in water for a while so that the plant releases its active ingredients. Hibiscus calyxes are very intensely red and sour. Hibiscus calyxes are rich in malic acid, an alpha-hydroxide acid (AHA). The pH of the hibiscus infusion depends on the strength of the infusion. The finished infusion can and usually should be diluted to get suitable pH.
The benefits of hibiscus in skincare
Hibiscus is very sour plant
Acids play an important role in cosmetics. Acids balance the pH of the skin. The acidity of the product can also affect the performance of preservatives and emulsifiers. Hibiscus broth of normal strength has the same acidity as apple cider vinegar. I recommend using pH strips to determine acidity. They give a sufficiently accurate result to determine the pH -value.
Hibiscus is a natural alternative to Botox
Botox is familiar to many, at least as a concept. The idea of Botox injections is to fade out facial imperfections and aging-related phenomena such as wrinkles. Taking Botox injections is not a very safe method although it is very effective. Why is hibiscus called a Botox plant? Hibiscus is a very effective herb to prevent the signs of skin aging. It has the ability to tighten up your skin and make the connective tissues firmer. Hibiscus is one of the most popular non-surgical products against skin aging. Of course, you can’t stop aging, but you can control the signs. Hibiscus is a very effective herb in controlling skin aging.
Hibiscus is rich in antioxidants.
The most important antioxidant in hibiscus is anthocyanins, the same antioxidants as in our super-healthy forest blueberries. Anthocyanins are particularly strong antioxidants that help fight free radicals that age the skin. Free radicals make the skin look lifeless, grey and tired. Anthocyanins also shrink pores, making the skin smoother. The astringent effect is, of course, only momentary.
Hibiscus is a moisturizing ingredient
Because hibiscus is a mallow plant, it is also very moisturizing. All mallows have moisturizing properties. That’s why you should try hibiscus toner for dry, tired and stressed skin. Hibiscus gives your face more moisture and a youthful glow.
Hibiscus contains a cleansing saponin.
Saponins are natural surfactants that deeply cleanse your skin. The saponins and malic acid in hibiscus work together to remove dead skin cells. Therefore, hibiscus is also particularly suitable for skin cleansing products such as shampoos and cleansers. Some people have also used hibiscus-infused oil in soap making. Hibiscus gives the soap a beautiful colour.
What can hibiscus infusion be used for?
Hibiscus is used as an infusion in homemade cosmetics. The active ingredients in hibiscus are water soluble when dried flower calyxes are boiled.
Hibiscus is especially suitable for acid rinsing of dark hair. It slightly emphasizes the cold redness of the hair and at the same time gives a wonderful shine. For blond hair, I do not recommend hibiscus as it changes the colour of the hair. If you want to use hibiscus infusion for skin and hair care, the appropriate acidity is 5.5-7. Do not use too acidic hair rinse as it will dry your hair.
Also use hibiscus for toners and as an aqueous phase for lotions. Hibiscus is highly antioxidant and thus slows down the skin aging process. Measure the pH with appropriate acidity strips.
Hibiscus broth has a beautiful deep red colour. It is also used as a dye. If you want beautiful, reddish toner, try hibiscus.
Prepare a moisturizing, antioxidant-containing hibiscus spray this way
- Measure 5-7 dried hibiscus calyxes into a pot
- Pour in 5 decilitres of water and boil
- Let the pot boiling for about 10 minutes
- Cool down and filter hibiscus calyxes from the liquid
- For a stronger hibiscus broth, increase the amount of hibiscus
- Bottled hibiscus broth stays usable in the refrigerator for about a week, maybe even longer, as it is particularly antioxidant-rich.
- Hibiscus broth is also well suited for drinking like juice, either as it is heated or cold with ice and lemon or lime. Hibiscus is called the healthiest drink in the world because of its antioxidants. That is, if you don’t use everything from hibiscus to cosmetics, you can enjoy a healthy and delicious juice internally. Add some sweetening if desired.
Hibiscus broth is suitable, for example, for hair rinses and lotions
You can use the diluted hibiscus infusion as a hair rinse. The acidity of the infusion is almost the same level as that of wine- or apple cider vinegar. Therefore, always dilute the broth before use. A suitable dosage for a hair rinse is 1 decilitre hibiscus broth and 1 litre of water. If necessary, measure the acidity with pH strips. The right acidity depends on your hair. For oily, thick hair, you can use a more acidic rinse. For thin, dry and brittle hair, an almost neutral rinse is enough. The hair rinse does not have to be very acidic to work. Slightly less than 7 is often quite appropriate acidity.
Diluted hibiscus broth is excellent for toners. It is just the right moisturizer to use under an anhydrous cream. A suitable acidity for toner is pH 5.5. Therefore, dilute the hibiscus broth with water or another neutral liquid suitable for toner. You can combine your favourite hydrolats with the hibiscus in your toner. A small amount of allantoin is also suitable for toner. Remember that aqueous toner always needs a reliable preservative. If the product contains water, it will only be preserved for a few days. Even then, it should be stored in the refrigerator.
Hibiscus is an easy and versatile cosmetic ingredient
Hibiscus is a tropical herb that is well suited for us living up North as well. Hibiscus has so many benefits in skin and hair care that it is definitely worth trying. That’s why I recommend you try if hibiscus works on your own skin. In the past, tea bags were sold under the name “rose hip”. They were by no means a drink made from rosehip but 100% hibiscus. I would think there are still hibiscus tea bags for sale. So, it is worth asking hibiscus health food stores.
Have you already tried hibiscus in cosmetics?
Vitamins are important micronutrients. They are also useful when used externally. Active ingredients have always been added to cosmetic products. The effect of many active ingredients is based specifically on vitamins. I wanted to bring together all the vitamins used in skin care in this article. This will give you the best overall picture of the effects of vitamins and also their sources. Let’s start studying.
Vitamins; what they really are?
Vitamins are micronutrients. The body is unable to produce vitamins itself or produces them in just very small quantities. Vitamins must therefore be obtained from food. The condition of your skin is very much affected by what you eat. Up to 80-90% of skin care depends on internal issues of human body. Eating variedly and healthy, outdoor activity and relaxing skin condition can make the most effective result. However, external skin care is also very important.
Vitamins are organic substances as opposed to minerals such as zinc or magnesium which are also essential to nutrition. Vitamins are a rather miscellaneous set of substances. Vitamins are divided into water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins. This partition is very important to understand when making cosmetics. The fat-soluble vitamins are mixed with the oil phase during the manufacturing process and the water-soluble ones with the aqueous phase.
Many vitamins are very easily destroyed. Therefore, you should be careful when dealing with them.
How do vitamins work on the skin?
Vitamins have different functions. When used externally, vitamins act slightly differently than internally. External use does not treat vitamin deficiencies. If you are clearly nutrition deficiency, you may want to use vitamins as a supplement.
Vitamins A is a group of fat-soluble vitamins. Vitamin A is also commonly referred as retinol. Natural A vitamins include retinoids and carotenoids. Retinoids are found in products of animal origin and carotenoids in vegetables. There are also synthetic A vitamins. Some of the synthetic A vitamins are classified as drugs. In particular, synthetic vitamin A may irritate, dry out and make the skin sensitive to light if the product is used for long period of time.
The safest and at the same time simplest is to use herbal retinol in cosmetics. Retinol is found in many plants. Carrot carotenoids are perhaps the best-known source of retinol for skin care.
- Retinol helps the skin to tan
- Retinol stimulates collagen production and thus reduces wrinkles and fine lines
- Helps skin cells regenerate faster
- Improves skin texture and tone
- Helps treat acne skin. Some acne medications prescribed by your doctor include synthetic vitamin A.
- Smoothens skin discoloration and hyperpigmentation
The Group of Vitamin B
Group B vitamins are water-soluble vitamins and there are many of them. Internally, many use a combination of all the B vitamins. All B vitamins, when used internally, are also important for skin health. Group B vitamins are rich in both vegetarian and animal products. Only vitamin B12 can be a problem in a vegan diet. This is why many vegans regularly take vitamin B12 supplements.
Three different B vitamins are mainly used in cosmetics; niacin, panthenol, folic acid and biotin.
- Biotin is very important for hair and nails.
- Folic acid supports aging skin. Together with creatine, folic acid helps in the absorption of collagen.
- Niacinamide is added to products designed to reduce pores. Niacinamide also smoothens small lines on the skin and refreshes the skin in general.
- Panthenol is used not only in hair care products, but also to treat dry, scaly skin. Interestingly panthenol is also used to treat acne. You can find panthenol in INCI under the name pantothenic acid.
Visit my article on niacin: Niacin is very important vitamin for the skin
Vitamin C or ascorbic acid is a very important vitamin in skin care. Vitamin C is always vegan.
Vitamin C is always a water-soluble vitamin. Fat-soluble vitamin C does not exist. You often see products that claim to contain fat-soluble vitamin C. This substance is actually L-ascorbyl-6-palmitate. L-ascorbyl-6-palmitate is not vitamin C. It is an ester of palmitic acid. Ascorbic acid has been used for esterification in this case. L-ascorbyl-6-palmitate is used in the food industry as an acidity regulator in high fat products. However, L-ascorbyl-6-palmitate is a fairly safe compound for the skin.
Vitamin C is used in cosmetic products as a powder. When dissolved in a liquid, vitamin C is particularly sensitive to destruction by heat, light, air and bases. It is worth preparing products containing vitamin C by yourself. This will ensure that you will get effective vitamin C.
- Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant on the skin
- Vitamin C is important in collagen synthesis
- Vitamin C brightens the skin
Make an easy and effective vitamin C serum: Cheery vitamin C serum treats tired skin
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin. There are two different types of vitamin D; Vitamins D2 and D3. Vitamin D2 is herbal. Vitamin D3, in turn, is formed on human skin. It is also obtained from products of animal origin such as fish liver.
Vitamin D3 is created on the skin by itself when we can stay under the sun long enough. Herbal vitamin D2, on the other hand, is very commonly used in skin care products. Vitamin D2 is naturally present in many vegetable oils. The vitamin D2 levels of different oils vary greatly.
Vitamin D should be used in skin care products, especially during the long and dark winter months.
- Vitamin D is an antioxidant that helps fight the signs of aging on the skin
- Vitamin D supports normal skin function and cell regeneration
Vitamin E, or tocopherol, is a fat-soluble vitamin. Vitamin E is mostly found in vegetable oils, seeds and nuts. Especially untreated, unheated, cold-pressed oils are very rich in vitamins E. Refined oils also still have a lot of vitamin E left. Vitamin E is not just one compound. There are many different types of e-vitamins. In oils, vitamin E usually occurs in four different groups of vitamin E.
- Vitamin E is very well absorbed into the skin as it is a natural component of the skin
- Vitamin E is a very strong antioxidant. Therefore, it is well suited for aged skin
- Vitamin E improves the skin’s moisture balance
- Vitamin E repairs minor skin damage
- Vitamin E supplementation improves the shelf life of products
Vitamins are a safe and effective way to add active ingredients to a product
If you are wondering how to add more power to your own skincare product, choose one or some of the vitamins mentioned above. Vitamins are relatively safe to use in cosmetics. The best and safest way to add vitamins to a product is to use ingredients that contain vitamins in their natural form. For example, vitamin E can be obtained on the skin by using vegetable oils with a special vitamin E content. Carotene is easily obtained from carrot oil and sea buckthorn oil.
Do you use vitamins in skin care?
Black cumin seed oil is an ancient product used in ancient cultures such as India and the Middle East. Black cumin oil has multiple uses. In this article, I will tell you how you can use black cumin oil for hair and skin care. Black cumin oil is a quite unknown product. All of its features are not yet known. Black cumin oil is clearly different from all other oils. Therefore, its use must be properly studied. Next, I will tell you about the history of black cumin oil and its benefits for the skin and scalp.
Black cumin oil was a cosmetic for Cleopatra
Black gum, or Nigella sativa, is originally coming from Southwest Asia. Black cumin should not be mixed with spice caraway or Roman cumin, aka jeera. Black cumin belongs to a completely different plant family: Nigella is a member of the buttercup family. Its flower looks like the flower of a buttercup but is azure in colour.
Black cumin is getting along well in the extreme heat of the Middle East. It has been cultivated in the territory of Egypt since the time of the Pharaohs thousands of years ago. Black cumin seeds have been found in the tombs of the pharaohs. That is why it is also called Pharaoh’s oil.
The oil made from black cumin is almost black and smells slightly like tar. The scent can be quite intense but still pleasant.
Black cumin oil is rich in antioxidants
In skin care, the popularity of black cumin oil is based on its really rich antioxidant content. Antioxidants protect the skin from oxidation thus also reduce the signs of aging.
Black cumin oil contains an antioxidant called thymoquinone. Thymoquinone is an anti-inflammatory and curative compound. Thymoquinone has even been studied in the treatment of cancer. It may have a reducing effect on squamous cell tumours.
Other highly effective antioxidants in black cumin oil are carvacrol, t-anethole and 4-terpineol.
Black cumin oil also contains calcium as well as numerous vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin D, folic acid, vitamin B3 and niacin.
Due to its rich content of antioxidants and vitamins, the effect of black cumin oil has also been tested on several skin diseases such as
- Eczema, you can find the study here. Black cumin oil has been tried for eczema in the hands with encouraging results.
- Psoriasis, research can be found here. The study has only been done in mice, so in humans, the effect may be quite different.
- Acne, research can be found here. For acne, studies have been done in humans and the results have been encouraging.
Black cumin oil has a very rich and versatile fatty acid composition
Black cumin oil is a very old and popular product. Therefore, it has been studied very thoroughly. Oleic acids have also been carefully studied and analysed many times.
Black cumin oil mainly contains linoleic acid, which is a very good fatty acid for the skin. Linoleic acid is not pore-clogging. There is little oleic acid in black cumin oil. EPA and DHA fatty acids have mainly nutritional importance.
- Linoleic acid 42.76%
- Oleic acid 16.59%
- Palmitic acid 8.51%
- Stearic acid 2.22%
- Eicosantric acid 4.71%
- Eicosapentaenoic acid EPA 5.98%
- Docosahexaenoic acid DHA 2.97%
Black cumin oil is antiseptic
Black cumin oil is very effective for skin problems where microbes have succeeded. One typical microbial problem is dandruff. Dandruff is often caused by overgrowth of yeast. An oil treatment on the scalp containing black cumin oil can control the dandruff problem.
The antioxidants in oils are never strong enough to cure the actual inflammation or acute fungal disease of the skin. They only work as maintenance treatment or as a preventative measure. If you have a clear, acute skin condition or inflammation of the skin, always consult a dermatologist.
Black cumin oil protects the skin from infections. Especially in summer, the skin can easily become inflamed and get fungal infections. I have used black cumin oil in foot creams to protect my summer feet in advance. foot cream should always be applied to damp feet after a foot bath and possible scratching
Black cumin oil shrinks pores
Black cumin oil has been found to have pore-reducing effects. Open pores are not just a cosmetic problem. Open pores collect dirt and contaminants in air more efficiently than closed pores.
Black cumin oil activates hair follicles
In India, black cumin oil is one of the best products against hair loss as well as promoting hair growth. Black cumin oil increases blood circulation in the scalp. When you apply black cumin oil to the scalp, you will feel a pleasant feeling of warmth. It means that the blood circulation starts to wake up. Increased blood circulation brings more oxygen and nutrients to the hair follicles and gives your hair new growth.
Black cumin oil supports the health of the scalp and prevents scalp problems.
Black cumin oil keeps skin elastic and moisturized
The oils do not actually moisturize the skin. If you already have very dry skin, applying the oil to the skin does not bring it more moisture. Moisture always means water. Therefore, oils must be applied to damp skin. The best humidification is clean water. Of course, you can add a little glycerine to the water to bind moisture to the skin.
Black cumin oil effectively locks moisture deep into the skin so that the skin feels very elastic and soft. Black cumin oil is well absorbed and does not leave greasy feeling on surface of the skin.
Black cumin oil removes darkening of the skin
The best way to remove darkening from your skin is to use antioxidant skin care products. The antioxidants in black cumin oil work well on dark spots caused by skin aging. You may need to use black cumin oil for a while before getting results and the darkening fades.
How do you use black cumin oil?
Always choose 100%, pure, cold pressed black cumin oil. Of course, organic quality is always the recommended option.
Black cumin oil is sold in very small bottles. It is not a base oil but a very strong specialty oil. Black cumin oil should always be mixed with a base oil such as sunflower oil or safflower oil. The mild base oil dilutes black cumin oil to suitable level for the skin.
Black cumin oil is well suited as a skin oil
Use black cumin oil at a dilution of about 5-20%. A stronger, 20% dilution is best used in case you have a skin problem. Normally a 5% dilution is just enough to maintain the condition of the skin. You can use black cumin oil diluted with mild base oils directly on the skin. The same oil applies to the face, body and scalp.
Use black cumin oil for anhydrous ointments
Black cumin oil is suitable for anhydrous creams containing beeswax. In ancient Greece, black cumin oil was always used in conjunction with beeswax and propolis. Propolis is a beeswax. It contains a huge number of antibacterial agents such as resins. If you are allergic to resins, do not use bee products. At least not propolis.
You can also make an effective caring cream with about 5-20% black cumin oil. Antibacterial cream made from black cumin oil is well suited for foot care. You can also make a face cream containing black cumin oil for problem skin.
It is highly recommended to use black cumin oil in hair care products. Add a few drops of black cumin oil to the conditioner before applying the conditioner to your hair. Leave on for a few minutes and rinse off the conditioner normally.
Black cumin oil is an interesting specialty oil worth trying
Black cumin oil is a very exceptional oil that is less commonly used in cosmetics. However, it is a highly nutritious and antioxidant product. Thanks to its antioxidants, black cumin oil also retains better than other oils with a high linoleic acid content. A good feature of black cumin oil is its suitability for cooking as well. You can also use healthy black cumin oil in the kitchen to give a full-bodied taste to, for example, vegetarian dishes and salad dressings.
Caffeine is a quite familiar substance to most of us. We are used to consume caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea and cola drinks. Caffeine is also quite common in many cosmetic products. The popularity of caffeine in cosmetics is growing. It is an incredibly versatile ingredient. You can find caffeine in lotions and eye creams. What exactly does caffeine do in cosmetic products.? That is what we are going to find out now.
Caffeine is a naturally occurring plant chemical
Caffeine is found in many different plants. However, large amounts of caffeine are found in only a few plants; tea bush, coffee, cola bush and cocoa beans. Caffeine in plants is highly soluble in water. The most typical way to take advantage of the cheery effect of caffeine is to make beverages from the aforementioned plants.
Pure caffeine is also produced synthetically. Synthetic caffeine is made using malonic acid and dimethyl urea.
Pure caffeine is often a by-product of industry
Commercial caffeine is rarely chemically produced. In general, pure caffeine is obtained as a by-product of the industrial process of decaffeinated products. The pure caffeine obtained is used in the soft drink industry and to caffeine tablets.
How is pure caffeine extracted?
When using caffeine products, it is worth paying attention to how pure caffeine is extracted. Caffeine is usually removed from coffee beans by extraction into water using various chemicals. Extraction can also take place using chemicals alone. Chemicals used in process are not very safe. Some of them are even carcinogenic.
Supercritical carbon dioxide can also be used to remove caffeine from coffee beans. In this method, carbon dioxide is maintained at a certain temperature and pressure to extract caffeine. The supercritical carbon dioxide method is the safest and least toxic extraction method for caffeine.
There are other methods for extracting caffeine from coffee beans. These include, for example, extraction with organic solvents or triglyceride oils.
Is regular coffee safe as a raw material for cosmetics?
The most popular way to use caffeine in homemade cosmetics is simply to make coffee. The caffeine extracted from the organic coffee powder using hot water is non-toxic. However, coffee contains plenty of other plant chemicals that can irritate the skin. So, it is better to test the effect of coffee on the skin.
You’ve certainly come across popular coffee scrub guidelines. In them, ground coffee is mixed with an oil and used to exfoliate the skin.
Coffee scrubs may not be very skin-friendly. Ground coffee is very coarse. It is not suitable for sensitive skin at all. Coffee scrub can damage the skin. If you want to try a coffee scrub, use it only on your body. Use only very finely ground coffee. Rub the skin very gently to avoid scratches on your skin.
Have you tried green coffee extract?
Coffee beans are also available unroasted. The colour of them is green. In addition to caffeine, unroasted coffee beans contain substances that are not present anymore in roasted beans. So, I recommend you to test green coffee instead of roasted black coffee in your products. Green coffee extract is commonly used in industrial cosmetics because of its beneficial effects.
Effects of green coffee extract on the skin
- Antioxidants; Green coffee beans are rich in a variety of plant chemicals that fight free radicals on the skin. The most famous of these is a powerful antioxidant, chlorogenic acid. In addition, green coffee extract is rich in a variety of polyphenols and flavonoids.
- Green coffee extract removes dead cells on the surface of the skin. This way the skin regains its youthful glow.
- Many anti-cellulite products contain green coffee extract. Green coffee extract is thought to stimulate skin metabolism and be effective against cellulite. Of course, the formation of cellulite is affected by many reasons.
You get these effects by using green coffee extract. The caffeine contained in coffee also has its own effects.
Caffeine is a very versatile ingredient in cosmetics
The popularity of caffeine in cosmetics is growing exponentially. The benefits of caffeine in skin care have been fully understood and caffeine is used in many products.
- Caffeine constricts blood vessels
- Caffeine lightens and brightens the skin. Use it to treat skin pigmentation disorders
- Caffeine works on dark eye areas. Therefore, caffeine is found in many eye creams.
- Caffeine soothes the skin and eliminates redness. Caffeine is used to soothe the skin after sunbathing.
- Caffeine improves blood circulation and lymph circulation when used externally. Therefore, caffeine should be tried in bath and foot care products.
Caffeine also has a few harmful properties for the skin
When caffeine is used, we must avoid over-use of it. Caffeine has at least two properties that can be harmful to the health of your skin.
Although the external use of caffeine soothes the skin and reduces redness, in some cases it can also cause redness. Redness is suspected to be caused by the skin getting used to caffeine. If the skin does not receive its regular dose of caffeine, it will start to turn red. It’s a pretty exciting thing that the skin can also get hooked on caffeine.
Decreased collagen production
Caffeine can interfere with collagen production. There are studies on this as well. One of them is here.
The study finds that caffeine inhibits collagen synthesis on the skin. Collagen is a protein found on the skin. Collagen deficiency is seen on the skin as increasing wrinkles.
Young people with steady collagen production certainly have no worries. For aging skin, I would not recommend caffeinated cosmetics, at least for continuous use. However, the occasional use of caffeine products should not be harmful.
Grape seed oil is the next topic in our oil introduction series. Grape seed oil is used in both cosmetics and cooking. That’s why it’s easy to find it in larger supermarkets as well. The popularity of grape seed oil in cosmetics has been solid for several years. It has plenty of good features. Personally, I like the versatility of grape seed oil. Grape seed oil is one of the cornerstones of cosmetics and I now want us to have a deeper look at it.
Grape seed oil is a by-product of the food industry
If you want to fight food waste, you can participate in the fight by using grape seed oil. The grapes are used to make juice and wine. However, seeds are never used in these products. Grape seeds are a waste that has little other use. Fortunately, grape seeds contain valuable and especially good quality oil. Now the entire crop can be used.
The oil is extracted from the seeds in many different ways. When choosing oil for cosmetic products, you should choose the cold pressed quality. It contains all the vitamins and other beneficial substances of the oil. The anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial properties of cold-pressed oil remain unchanged.
Grape seed oil is a very light oil
Light oil means oil that is well absorbed and does not feel greasy on the skin. However, grape seed oil is not a so-called dry oil. Dry oils are rich in alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Grape seed oil doesn’t contain it.
The fatty acid composition of grape seed oil is one of the most ideal. It contains the right proportions of fatty acids that are important for the skin. The variation of the fatty acid profile of grape seed oil is really small. The oil is made from the most popular grape types that grow under about the same conditions.
- Oleic acid 25, 84%
- Linoleic acid 55.25%
- Stearic acid 5.75%
- Palmitic acid 11.85%
- Comedogenic value (value describing pore clogging) 1
Grape seed oil is also rich in vitamin E, tocopherol, resveratrol, quercetin, procyanidin, carotenoids and plant sterols. Due to its abundance of phytochemicals, grape seed oil is indeed a popular ingredient in cosmetic industry serums and other skincare products. Grape seed oil is a great oil to use for skin care. It has a huge amount of active, natural ingredients.
How does grape seed oil affect the skin?
Grape seed oil has several positive effects on the skin. Here are a few of them;
- Soothing effect on the skin
- Brightening of the skin and whitening of pigment changes (hyperpigmentation, dark spots)
- Effect of antioxidants on skin aging
- Moisturizing effect; the oil retains skin moisture if you apply it on slightly moist skin
Store grape seed oil carefully
Grape seed oil contains a lot of linoleic acid, which makes the oil very easily oxidized. when buying grape seed oil, make sure the oil is as fresh as possible. Always ask the best before -date when buying it.
Always store grape seed oil out of the light. Light spoils many products incredibly quickly.
The oil storage place should also be as cool as possible, always keep the opened bottle in the refrigerator. And products containing grape seed oil should be stored in the refrigerator. This ensures the freshness and highest possible quality of your products.
How can we use grape seed oil in homemade cosmetics?
Grape seed oil is a versatile oil. It is very suitable for many different skin types. Grape seed oil is one of the few carrier oils. The carrier oil is required to have a neutral odour and colour. Very fragrant and intensely coloured oils are not suitable as carrier oils.
You can mix a few drops of the special oil(s) you want with grape seed oil. This allows you to enhance the effect of the oil and complete the fatty acid composition.
Grape seed oil is excellent for many different uses
- For oil extractions
- As a carrier oil for oil-based products
- For bath oil
- Oil serums; well-absorbed oils should be used in serums
- Eye products; light, well absorbable
- Aging skin products; rich in antioxidants
- For sensitive skin products; Grape seed oil is a very mild and well tolerated oil
- For easily clogged skin; comedogenic value 1
- As one of the ingredients in the cleansing oil
Grape seed oil is a cosmetic oil worth trying
There are not so many good carrier oils available. Each of them is suitable for skin care as such.
Because the best carrier oils are perishable, it is better to buy them in smaller bottles and one oil at a time. You can vary the different oils according to your skin. Grape seed oil is easy to obtain. Like most cosmetic carrier oils, grape seed oil is suitable for human consumption. Extra oil you do not need for cosmetics is easy to use in kitchen.
I recommend to get familiar with grape seed oil. It is easy to add more power to your products with it. It is good to change the carrier oil from time to time and grape seed oil is one really good option for you. Try how your skin will like it.
What is your favorite carrier oil?
Argan oil has become one of the most popular cosmetic oils. For many different reasons, argan oil has even gained a superior reputation. The properties of argan oil are widely praised. It is sometimes even difficult to find a product that would not contain this substance, also called miracle oil. That’s why I decided this time to thoroughly explore the secrets of argan oil. Where argan oil is produced, what it is used for and what its power is based on.
The roots of argan oil can be found in Morocco
Most of the Morocco’s land area is quite dry and rocky land. Much of it is located in the Sahara Desert. There is also some plants growing in the desert. The plants of the deserts of southwestern Morocco includes Argania spinosa, the argan tree. The area is called Arganeraie. This area has a unique biosphere with endemic (only present in the area) plants. Argan tree is a traditional plant in the area.
Argan tree is a unique plant in the world
Argan tree has adjusted to extremely dry conditions. Argan tree cultivation is completely dependent on the area’s sensitive ecological system. Therefore, the whole Arganeraie region with its biosphere is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Argan tree produces fruit with a hard-shelled nut inside. The fruit flesh is removed and used for animal feed.
The oil is obtained from the seeds of the argan tree, which are inside the hard shell. The hard shell of the nut must be crushed by hand. Mechanical seed peeling has not been tried without success. Argan tree seeds are usually peeled by poor Berber women in remote Moroccan villages.
Argan oil production also has an environmental socio-economic purpose.
The population of the Arganeraie region lives on sheep farming and agriculture. Argan oil production is a major source of additional income for local residents. Argan oil is traditionally used in the Arganeraie region for cooking, ointments and cosmetics. Argan tree is also used as firewood.
It rains only five days a year in the area. The surface of the soil is particularly dry. Argan trees effectively prevent desertification and take care of the area’s poor groundwater resources.
Why is the argan oil is so popular in cosmetics?
This is a question that has been on my mind for some time. Argan oil feels quite oily on the skin at first. It is not an easily absorbed, light oil. The greasy impression of argan oil is due to its heavy fatty acids.
- Oleic acid 43-49%
- Linoleic acid 29-36%
- Palmitic acid 11-15%
- Stearic acid 4-7%
As you can see, based on fatty acids, this is a fairly conventional oil. In terms of oleic acid, argan oil is mainly similar to almond oil or avocado oil. Based on fatty acids, argan oil could be recommended for aging and very dry skin. However, fatty acids are not the reason why argan has become such a popular cosmetic oil.
Argan oil is rich in active ingredients
The secret of argan oil lies in the plant chemicals it contains. First of all, argan oil is particularly rich in tocopherol. That is vitamin E. Argan oil is rich in a variety of phenolic compounds such as
- Carotenoids; antioxidant, strengthens the skin’s UV protection
- Squalene; the sebaceous glands of the skin produce squalene. It is a very important lipid that protects the skin
- Caffeic acid; antioxidant, antibacterial agent, anti-cancer agent
- Oleuropein; a bitter substance found in green olives whose medicinal properties are being studied
- Vanillic acid; a vegetable chemical that is especially abundant in argan oil. Vanillic acid has among other things antibacterial properties.
- Tyrosol; strong antioxidant effect. In addition to argan oil, tyrosol is abundant in olive oil
- Catechols; Used in the perfume industry
- Resorcinol; a very valuable and rare compound found only in argan oil. Resorcinol is used in haircare products to give colour to hair. It is also an antioxidant.
- Catechin; antioxidant
As you can see, argan oil is very rich in a variety of antioxidants. Studies have shown that the phenolic levels of argan oil are clearly higher than other oils.
Many of the plant chemicals contained in argan oil are very rare. They occur in other plants only in modicum or not at all. These rare plant chemicals are the reason why argan oil beats other oils used in cosmetics.
The benefits of argan oil for the skin
Argan oil has a great many positive effects on skin care. Indeed, all of its effects are not even known yet. My advice is; if you have a skin problem, try genuine, good quality argan oil.
Effects of argan oil on skin and hair
- Brightens the skin
- Reduces redness
- Works anti-microbial agent
- Reduces signs of aging
- Treats scar tissue
- Promotes wound healing
- Can help treat some skin conditions (no inclusive information available, just try)
- Moisturizes the skin
- Moisturizes hair; use argan oil in haircare products such as emulsion-based conditioners
Make sure you get good quality argan oil
The quality of argan oil depends of the oil extraction process. Local people living in the argan tree area use argan oil mainly for food. they dip the bread in argan oil as we sometimes dip the bread in olive oil. For edible argan oil, the seeds are first lightly roasted to create a nutty flavour. Such argan oil is not suitable for cosmetics use.
Argan oil used for cosmetics is squeezed from fresh argan tree seeds. The fruits of the argan tree are dried. To get one litre of argan oil about 40 kilograms of dried argan fruit is needed. The seeds are removed from the dried fruit. Before pressing into oil, the hard shell is removed from the seeds by hand. Now the seeds are ready to be pressed.
Unfiltered argan oil is brownish red and thick. The oil is poured into decanters to separate the dregs from the oil. After the oil has got brighten for about two weeks, the clear oil is bottled.
However, the oil can be decanted many times. This gives a particularly clear, beautiful oil. The oil that has been filtered many times no longer has so many active ingredients left. The colour of argan oil tells us about the quality of the oil and the production methods.
Argan oil is still produced very traditional way
Poor Berber women in the southwestern part of Morocco still make argan oil according to old traditions. Berber women could not keep up with the growing demand of the oil. Industrial production of argan oil began. The advantages of industrial production are standard quality and large production volumes. The downside, on the other hand, is that the profits go to big business. Local residents remain unemployed. Money talks. Industrially extracted argan oil costs less than half the price of oil produced by Berber women.
The international cosmetics giant L´Oreál has shown its humanity. L´Oreál is committed to buying all the argan oil it uses from small Berber cooperatives. This is a very fine thing and a great social act.
Valuable argan oil is a particularly counterfeit product
Argan oil has gone the same way as olive oil. It has been counterfeited. The oil is mixed with cheaper oils and sold as genuine argan oil. The Moroccan government has been active in blocking the export of counterfeit oils. Argan oil shipments have been tested frequently to solve the problem.
Look for responsibly produced argan oil from a reliable supplier
Argan oil is a great product that you should definitely buy. It is a very preservative oil. Argan oil has been found to oxidize even more slowly than olive oil. However, it is worth to study carefully where argan oil comes from and how it is produced. It is not easy for the average consumer to find out the origin of oils. I recommend buying only from a shop where they know the origin of their products.
Have you used argan oil in your homecosmetics? Share your experiences in the comments section!
Sea buckthorn oil is one of the special oils in cosmetics. You will find genuine, highly appreciated, domestic sea buckthorn oil in the finest natural cosmetic creams and serums. Sea buckthorn oil is a very effective and caring product. That’s why I dedicate this blog post to sea buckthorn oil. While researching sea buckthorn oil, I came across surprising things. If you are planning to get sea buckthorn oil, this article is just for you. You’ll probably want to hear more about sea buckthorn and the oil made from sea buckthorn seeds and berries.
Sea buckthorn do flourish on the coast
The sea buckthorn is a thorny shrub with grey leaves that flourish wild on the shores of the Gulf of Bothnia. It is a provincial plant of Satakunta province in Finland. If you think your products should be organic and natural, then the sea buckthorn is very suitable for you.
The sea buckthorn shrub has been protected until 2006. Due to the great popularity of sea buckthorn, it has been cultivated. All sea buckthorn products for sale are made from cultivated sea buckthorn berries.
The sea buckthorn has adapted to the barren and salty environment. Bacteria of the genus Frankia live in the roots of the sea buckthorn. Bacteria fixes nitrogen from the air and thus helps the sea buckthorn to grow in poor soils. Sea buckthorn shrubs do get plenty of sunlight and reflections from the sea. Above all, light is vital for the sea buckthorn’s success. It does not flourish in the shade of forests. With the help of light, the small, Orange berries of the sea buckthorn do ripe, resembling mini-oranges in many ways.
Sea buckthorn can be utilized in many ways
Sea buckthorn is cultivated especially because of its healthy berries. Oil is squeezed from the seeds. Sea buckthorn leaves are also very antioxidant. They are rich in a variety of amino acids (building blocks of proteins) as well as fatty acids, trace elements and minerals. Sea buckthorn leaves are usually utilized as infucion that is ingested internally.
Sea buckthorn berries are a real health bomb
The small, juicy berries of the sea buckthorn are sheltered by long, sharp spikes. Picking sea buckthorn berries from a thorn bush is not an easy task. That is one reason for the high price of sea buckthorn.
Sea buckthorn is rich in vitamin C; up to 360 mg / 100 gr. and vitamins E and K. The orange colour of sea buckthorn berries indicates the carotenoids they contain. In addition, sea buckthorn berries contain a variety of polyphenols, amino acids, sugars, minerals, and plant sterols.
Sea buckthorn is a very sour berry. Its acidity comes from malic acid. Sea buckthorn also contains quinic acid, which has an astringent effect.
The fatty acids in sea buckthorn berry oil have been found to relieve the symptoms of people with dry eyes. Sea buckthorn berry oil must then be consumed internally. The research was conducted at the University of Turku in 2011 (Petra Larmo).
Sea buckthorn juice is a pretty expensive product. However, the most valuable part of the berry is the oil made from the fruit flesh and seeds. This story is specifically about that precious oil.
Sea buckthorn oil is made in two ways
Sea buckthorn oil is made from both fruit flesh and seeds. Sea buckthorn seeds contain 7-11% oil. The oil content of the fruit flesh is 1.5-3%.
- The oil made of the flesh is dark orange in colour. Its composition is thick. The oil becomes liquid at room temperature. In the fridge it thickens clearly and does not want to come out of the bottle.
- The oil made of seeds is light orange and clear in colour. It does not solidify in the refrigerator.
- Many sea buckthorn oils contain, in addition to seed oil, some oil made from fruit flesh.
Sea buckthorn oils contain valuable fatty acids
Sea buckthorn oil is an example of an oil that can be a completely different product depending on what part of the plant it is made from. Fruit flesh oil differs greatly from seed oil in terms of fatty acids.
- The oil in the flesh of the fruit contains a lot of unsaturated fatty acids as well as carotenoids.
- Seed oil is rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids. Both oils are rich in tocopherols, tocotrienols and plant sterols.
There is also sea buckthorn oil available that is done by using both fruit flesh and seeds. The fatty acid composition of such an oil is much wider.
Sea buckthorn seed oil is rich in linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid
These fatty acids make sea buckthorn seed oil well absorbed one, so-called dry oil. Sea buckthorn seed oil is really well absorbed into the skin. This oil is well suited for a wide range of uses and most skin types.
Due to the high alpha-linolenic acid content, sea buckthorn seed oil dries the skin when used excessively. High linoleic acid as well as alpha-linolenic acid content also means poor shelf life. Sea buckthorn oil made from seeds should always be stored in the refrigerator. So it is better buy in capsules. You don’t need very many drops of sea buckthorn oil for your product. A couple of capsules is just enough for a dose of cream or serum.
Below is the fatty acid composition of sea buckthorn seed oil. The fatty acid composition is indicative. The composition of fatty acids is greatly influenced by the place of growth, the weather conditions and cultivar.
- Linoleic acid 37-44%
- Alpha-linolenic acid 27-31%
- Oleic acid 18-22%
- Palmitic acid 7%
- Stearic acid 2.5-3%
Benefits of sea buckthorn seed oil for the skin
Thus, the following benefits of sea buckthorn oil for the skin only apply to sea buckthorn seed oil. Some oil may also contain oil from fruit flesh. The oil is pressed from the mash left over from the juice production.
- The linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid contained in sea buckthorn seed oil are oils that are well absorbed into the skin. They do not leave a greasy feeling on the surface of the skin. Therefore, sea buckthorn seed oil is suitable for oily skin and light day creams
- The linoleic acid in sea buckthorn seed oil is very suitable for skin care. Linoleic acid does not clog the pores. The best skin care oils are high in linoleic acid.
- Sea buckthorn seed oil contains a lot of important antioxidants and nutrients for the skin.
- Alpha-linolenic acid has been discovered to reduce the signs of skin aging. With age, our ability to utilize alpha-linolenic acid in food decreases.
How do I use sea buckthorn seed oil?
Use sea buckthorn seed oil for creams under makeup as it is easily absorbed and does not leave a greasy feeling. Sea buckthorn seed oil is also one of my favourites for eye care products. As a thin and easily absorbed oil, it does not cause swelling of the skin around the eyes.
Due to its high antioxidant content and trace elements, sea buckthorn seed oil is a particularly caring product. Therefore, it is well suited for nourishing serums. In addition, add a little sea buckthorn seed oil to anti-ageing products.
Sea buckthorn berry oil is rich in omega-7 fatty acids
I don’t know any other oil that contains as large amounts of omega-7 fatty acids as sea buckthorn berry oil. Omega-7 fatty acids make sea buckthorn berry oil a special caring skin oil.
Sea buckthorn oil squeezed from sea buckthorn berries is used both internally and externally because of the omega-7 fatty acid it contains. This fatty acid is called palmitoleic acid (16: 1). There is palmitoleic acid also in animal products as well as in some plant products such as macadamia nuts. Palmitoleic acid is also moderately abundant in breast milk. Palmitoleic acid is chemically very close to sapienic acid, which is a human fatty acid.
Oil made from sea buckthorn without seeds will be better preserved than seed oil. It contains only a small amount of easily oxidizable fatty acids.
The following fatty acid composition of sea buckthorn berry oil is indicative. The composition of fatty acids is greatly influenced by the place of growth, weather conditions and cultivar.
- Palmitic acid 33-43%
- Palmitoleic acid 32-41%
- Stearic acid 1-2%
- Oleic acid 1-6%
- Eicosanoid acid 5-7%
- Linoleic acid 7-12%
- Alpha-linolenic acid 1-2%
Benefits of sea buckthorn berry oil for the skin
Sea buckthorn berry oil is a skin care product that is very difficult to replace. Omega-7 fatty acid, palmitoleic acid, is a substance that is especially useful for the skin and mucous membranes. Palmitoleic acid is particularly abundant in oil extracted from sea buckthorn berries.
- Sea buckthorn berry oil has been used for centuries to treat skin conditions. It has alleviated burns, for example.
- Sea buckthorn berry oil is suitable for aging skin thanks to its antioxidants
- Sea buckthorn berry oil brings moisture and elasticity to the skin
- The palmitoleic acid contained in sea buckthorn oil is a substance that protects the skin. Palmitoleic acid strengthens the epidermis and protects it from moisture loss.
- Sea buckthorn berry oil is rich in ingredients that work to soothe the skin. Sea buckthorn oil reduces redness and swelling of the skin.
- Sea buckthorn berry oil is recommended when treating rosacea, eczema and acne. There is no medical evidence for the effect of sea buckthorn berry oil. However, many people have found it helpful with skin problems.
How do I use sea buckthorn berry oil?
Sea buckthorn berry oil is especially suitable for protective products such as night creams, outdoor products and lip products. Using sea buckthorn berry oil will significantly increase the palmitic and palmitoleic acid content of the product. While sea buckthorn berry oil is a valuable product, you just need very little of it.
Sea buckthorn berry oil can be added to the oil infusion of the product along with other oils. It can be safely heated up to 80 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes to improve shelf life.
Sea buckthorn oil squeezed from the whole berry
If the oil is made squeezing the whole berry, also using the seeds, the fatty acid composition changes again. You now have significantly more different fatty acids at your disposal. Sea buckthorn is often utilized as juice. Oil is squeezed from a mash containing a little fruit flesh and seeds. The fatty acid composition of such an oil cannot be accurately said. However, it resembles sea buckthorn seed oil more than sea buckthorn berry oil.
Sea buckthorn oil made from whole berries is easily oxidizable, as it is rich in easily oxidizable fatty acids. That’s why it’s better to buy in capsules.
Here is an indicative fatty acid composition of sea buckthorn oil made from the whole berry with seeds.
- Palmitic acid 33%
- Palmitoleic acid 30-37%
- Stearic acid 1-2%
- Oleic acid 2-6%
- Eicosanoid acid 3-6%
- Linoleic acid 18-20%
- Alpha-linolenic acid 1-2%
All three sea buckthorn oils are worth a try
Now that you know a little more about sea buckthorn oils you can choose the product you like. When buying, check with the seller whether the oil is sea buckthorn berry oil or sea buckthorn seed oil. If the seller does not know it is better not to buy it at all and find another supplier. Differences in these oils are big.
When purchasing sea buckthorn oils, it is worth considering the shelf life of the oil. Domestic sea buckthorn oil (from berry and seeds) often contains a lot of linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid. These are really easily oxidized. So, get your products in the smallest possible lots. Personally, I prefer sea buckthorn oil capsules.
Dark orange and thick sea buckthorn berry oil survive much better. It is full of carotenoids and skin-gentle fatty acids. Sea buckthorn berry oil is the right choice for winter protective products.
The rutin is a quite unknown plant chemical to many. However, it is a very effective substance that is definitely worth checking out. I have presented here on my blog usually herbs and other natural ingredients used in cosmetics. I have intentionally avoided bringing up only one active ingredient of a plant. Now I am making an exception. Rutin’s effect on the skin is very impressive. Read on to find out more about the gentle effects of the rutin on the skin.
What is a rutin?
The rutin, sometimes also called vitamin P, is a glucoside that is named after the plant garden rue (Ruta graveloens). The name refers strongly to fragrant. Garden rue is used as a spice, medicinal plant and decoration in gardens.
Rutin is polyphenol. I’ve told about polyphenols in the past here. Phenols are aromatic, organic compounds found all over nature. There are many different types of phenols. They are widely used by industry in synthesizing plastics and many other materials. Cosmetics industry has also utilized various plant phenols due to their beneficial effects on the skin.
Rutin is found in many plants
Rutin is a very common compound in many plants. Whatever herb you use, it most likely contains some rutin. Personally, I prefer to use real herbs for this very reason. At the same time, I get a lot of other useful compounds in the product.
The following plants have been studied to be particularly rich in rutin
- Capers (fresh) (Capparis spinosa) 332mg / 100gr
- Moringa oleifera leaf extract 60mg / 100gr
- Olive (Olea europaea), black (raw) 45mg / 100gr
- Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum) 36mg / 100g
- Raspberry, red (Rubus idaeus), (fresh) 11mg / 100gr
- St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum)
- Gingo Biloba
- Hawthorn (Crataegus)
- Indian burdock or amla (Emblica officinalis), concentration is unknown
Many of the plants listed above are not suitable as such for homemade cosmetics. Fresh capers or olives are almost impossible to obtain. Amla is available as a powder. However, it is far too acidic to use for skin care. Amla is used in skin care as an oil extract. The rutin is insoluble in oil.
Use familiar herbs as a source of rutin
Almost all natural herbs contain some rutin. However, rutin concentrations of natural herbs are not generally known. The rutin concentration in them varies very much due to the place of growth.
Marigold has been extensively studied. Rutin is one of the primary flavonoids of marigold. Chamomile also is particularly rich in rutin.
Citrus peel contains moderate amounts of rutin. However, use citrus cautiously in skin care. They are rich in strong plant chemicals that can easily damage the skin.
How rutin effects the skin?
The rutin has been studied really a lot lately. Many rutin health claims are proved to be fact through numerous studies. Rutin is very helpful, for example, in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases and allergies. Rutin mulberry berries are used in diets. We Finns can eat raspberries rich in rutin for the same purpose.
Effects of rutin on the skin
The effects of the rutin on the skin have also been studied. The rutin is a powerful antioxidant that protects the skin from aging. The rutin also helps the skin to produce collagen as well as make better use of vitamin C. Of course, an increase in collagen production means a reduction in the signs of aging on the skin.
The rutin strengthens surface blood vessels
One of the effects of rutin which is much praised is the ability to strengthen blood vessels. The rutin has been used for this purpose as a dietary supplement. It has also been found that the rutin is able to effectively strengthen and soothe the surface blood vessels of the skin.
The weakness of the surface blood vessels is easy to recognise due to spider-like patterns. Rutin products can help to improve the condition of surface blood vessels by strengthening the vessel walls. Rutin has also been found to reduce the permeability of skin blood vessels. Blood vessels are mainly collagen. Rutin along with vitamin C takes care of collagen formation.
Embarrassing rosacea on the skin often requires consultation with a dermatologist. However, you can reduce redness on your skin by using products containing rutin. The rutin works to soothe the skin, reducing inflammation.
If your problem is varicose veins, rutin can be helpful. Rutin, especially so-called oxerutin has been shown to have a positive effect on varicose veins.
Rutin is a very effective compound that should be used in skin care
All of the above properties make rutin one of the most important active ingredients in cosmetics. Rutin is rarely mentioned on the INCI list. However, if you use or make natural homemade cosmetics, it will inevitably be found in the products. The most common natural ingredients of cosmetics contain moderate amounts of rutin. You don’t have to pay much attention to the rutin content of your products. Only in the case of skin problems it is worth trying and adding rutin into your skin care products.
How is rutin extracted from herbs?
Rutin is a water-soluble substance. An herbal infusion is therefore the right way to extract rutin from plants into cosmetics. All phenols are water-soluble, so at the same time you have access to other active ingredients of the herb.
You can also mix herbs rich in rutin and other ingredients into a water-based face mask. Such a method is suitable, for example, for ground buckwheat. A particularly rutin-rich moringa powder is also a really good addition to face masks. The powders should be mixed with water (not oil) as this will easily release the rutin from the plant.
Thanks for reading my blog!
What active ingredients do you use in your products?
Carrot oil is a well-known and respected skin care product. Many of us rely on carrot oil’s healing properties in spring season.
Carrots are considered as symbols of a healthy life. It’s hard to come up with any other plant that is so famous for its healthy effects. The carrots are also considered as an example of sustainable vegetable production because they are usually locally produced. They are also easy to obtain in organic quality and fresh. So why not use such a good plant in cosmetics? What are the ingredients in carrot oil and how is it made? What are the skin care effects of carrots? Carrot oil has many good properties. A variety of very different products are sold under the same name. Let’s see what carrot oil is.
Carrot oil means many different products
The carrot itself is not an oil plant. You cannot squeeze oil from the carrot root. This is a good thing to remember when you are going to buy carrot oil. Orange carrot oil is a mixture of carrot and some oil or extracted liquid from carrots. For the extraction Either dried or fresh carrots are used for extraction and some carrier oil is added. The carrier oil is often sunflower oil, soybean oil, avocado oil, corn oil or other neutral vegetable oil. Usually a mixture of several oils is used in carrot oil.
There are also other, added ingredients in many carrot oils. Glycerol and essential oils can be found in many products sold under the name of carrot oil. Carrot oils are thus refined cosmetic products. Some of them contain many other things than just carrots. Therefore, there are big differences between the carrot oils on the market. When purchasing ready-made carrot oil, always look at INCI very carefully. Then you know what you are buying and what you are paying for.
Carrot seed oil is not the same thing as carrot oil
Carrot seed oil and carrot oil are very often mixed together. However, they are two completely different products. Carrot seed oil is squeezed from tiny little carrot seeds. It is a very valuable oil that is full of antioxidants. Carrot seed oil should be used in small quantities for particularly nurturant creams and facial masks.
The myth about the UV-filtering effect of carrot seed oil and carrot oil
Carrot oil is sometimes used as a tanning and sunscreen product. Reason for that is the skin colouring effect of carrots and the carotenoids it contains. However, carrot oil does not contain any ingredient that will prevent the skin from burning under the sun.
Carrot seed oil contains a large number of antioxidants. These antioxidants are said to prevent skin burns. Carrot seed oil is even given an SFP (Sun protection factor) of 40. That would mean incredibly effective UV protection. However, this is not the case at all. Applying carrot seed oil to the skin does not prevent sunburn. It is just a waste of expensive oil and the result will be disappointment.
A good sunscreen is really difficult to make by yourself. Large, multinational manufacturers have for decades been trying to develop good sunscreens. The development efforts of sunscreen have required huge financial sacrifices and years of testing for them. You cannot make reliable sun protection at home. So do not even try. Just buy it from the store and stay with reliable manufacturer.
Next time someone offers you carrot oil for sun protection, first look at the official SFP label on the product. In some products it could be, say 15. The SFP 15 is not very high number in sun protection, and with such a low quality sunscreen it is better to stay under shadows of trees on a beach.
The effects of carrot on skin
I am talking about the carrot and its benefits for the skin only. Let’s talk about carrot seeds at another time.
Carrot contains skin-friendly ingredients such as carotenoids and vitamin C. Carotenoids are plant pigments. They give the plants their characteristic colour. Carrot’s bright orange comes from beta-carotene, a carotenoid.
Beta-carotene is a potent antioxidant
The skin benefits of beta-carotene have long been known. Carrot benefits the skin both internally and externally. Carrot juice is healthy, but if you drink it too much, it may colour your skin yellow. However, this is not dangerous.
In external use, beta-carotene acts as an antioxidant on the skin. It fights free radicals, preventing the skin from oxidizing. This keeps your skin youthful.
Carrot carotenoids help the skin regenerate. Old skin cells are removed and make room for newer, younger skin cells. This process makes the skin look younger.
Carrots are naturally antibacterial
Carrot soothes the skin and prevents excessive bacterial growth. Therefore, it is advisable to use carrots after sunburn, when the skin is irritated and red.
Carrot lycopene helps treat impure skin
I also recommend to use carrot for oily skin. Not only does carrot soothe acne skin, it also balances and moisturizes oily skin. Lycopene in carrots is an important antioxidant in the treatment of oily skin. Therefore, many products mentioned for oily and combination skin contain precisely lycopene.
How to make carrot oil yourself
Carrot oil is really easy to make by yourself. I wrote you a simple recipe for making your own carrot oil. Nowadays I try to put all my simple recipes in the “recipes” tab. It is easy to find them from there. You don’t have to look for them in the middle of blog text.
Have you already bought a sunscreen for becoming summer or perhaps for a holiday? What is your favourite sunscreen product?
Carrot oil is a very popular product in cosmetics. Many different manufacturers are making it and it is available in almost every shop selling beauty products. Carrot oil is a product that you could make at home, if you have the time. As a multipurpose product, you can use home-made carrot oil in many ways.
Choose the right carrier oil for your carrot oil
Commercially available carrot oils often contain many different ingredients. Their oils are blended with many different oils suitable for skin care. Now you can choose the best oils for your own carrot oil.
In fact, I use sunflower oil most often to extract carrot oil. Other suitable oils are
- rice bran
- Soybean Oil
- Safflower oil
- Avocado oil
It is never a good idea to choose expensive oils for making extracts. Light, mild oil is the best carrier oil. Always choose organic oil that has been produced by cold pressing (Virgin quality). If you need to choose between organic or cold pressed oil, prefer the cold pressed. Cold pressed oil is rich in vitamin E. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that also affects the shelf life of the final product. If you cannot find cold pressed oil, you have to add vitamin E to improve the shelf life of the oil extract.
With special oils you’ll get additional healing ingredients to oil extract
You can use special oils rich in antioxidants for the herbal oil. There is no need to use only expensive special oils, you can make a mixture. If you wish, you can make several small batches of carrot oil using a variety of special oils. I personally prefer very simple products with up to two different oils. However, if you wish, you can mix 4-5 different oils together to create your own oil.
Special oils are often expensive. Therefore, use them with caution. Below I have listed some particularly good special oils.
- Rosehip Seed Oil
- Carrot Seed Oil
- Jojoba oil
- Argan oil
Carrot is the most important ingredient in carrot oil
You cannot use just any carrot for carrot oil. I use organic, dried carrot myself. Dried carrots are much easier to handle in oil extractions than fresh carrots.
If you make an oil extract using a fresh carrot, there is too much water in it. Water is not a good thing in oil extracts. You must definitely get the water out of the oil to prevent the oil from spoiling. Dehydrating the oil takes several days and is laborious. Therefore, I recommend using only dried carrots for this product.
I drained the carrots I am using by myself. Dried carrots are hard to find, especially in late winter.
The carrot is easy to dry
- Grate two large carrots (no need to peel) and sprinkle evenly on baking sheet. Use baking paper
- turn on the oven to 100 degrees Celsius.
- Put the carrot plate into the oven and leave the door slightly open
- Allow the grated carrots to remain in the oven until dry (about 2-3 hours)
- Turn the grated carrots around, it helps them to dry
Dried and grated carrots can be used as such for extraction.
Making of homemade carrot oil
Now that you have selected the right oil and have dried, grated carrots, you can start making the oil extract
- Pour grated carrots into a steel bowl
- Add 3 decilitres of your oil, your choice (enough to cover all carrots)
- Lift the bowl into the water bath (double boiler) on top of the pot.
- Do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water.
- Heat up the water bath so that the water is bubbling and steamy but not yet boiling
- Allow the carrot oil mixture to remain in the water bath for 1½ hours, stirring occasionally
- Remove the carrot oil mixture from the water bath and let it cool down for a while
- Filter the oil mixture through a gauze cloth.
Now you have the homemade carrot oil extract ready to use for skin care. It is ready to use but if you want to tune it up you can add other ingredients into it.
How to make homemade carrot oil?
- 60 ml of carrot oil
- 20 ml of special oils of your choice
- 10 ml glycerol to provide moisture (optional)
- Essential oils to have a scent (optional)
- Vitamin E drops in case the oil you used was not cold pressed
Do like this:
You can add am. ingredients to the carrot oil without using a preservative or emulsifier. However, to improve shelf life, you need to heat the whole mixture (no essential oils or vitamin E) for 30 minutes at 80 degrees. This will ensure the shelf life of the product.
Bottle the ready-made product immediately into clean, sterilized bottles and seal using cork stoppers. Remember to label your products! Remark the ingredients (INCI) and the date of manufacture and expiry date on the bottle.
To calculate the expiration date of your carrot oil, look at the expiration dates of the oils you used. Deduct 2 months from the date of the oil whose expiry date is nearest in the future.
Your homemade carrot oil is now ready
It likes a very cool place, protected from light. Carrot oil does not tolerate light at all.
Use carrot oil as a skin serum with night cream. You can also mix carrot oil with your daily cream you use.
Are you inspired to make your own carrot oil? Please let me know me how you did it!
Polyphenols sound like a very scientific thing. How do they relate to the ingredients and making of homemade cosmetics? Are there any polyphenols used or added in natural cosmetics? I included polyphenols in this blog for two very good reasons.
First of all, anyone who has prepared homemade cosmetics has added polyphenols to their products, with or without the knowledge of them. Another reason is the effective ability of polyphenols to affect the outer layers of the skin. Polyphenols do indeed produce positive effects in skin care. What are polyphenols and how can we use them in cosmetics? Let’s take a closer look.
What are polyphenols?
Polyphenols are mainly natural chemical compounds found in plants. The purpose of polyphenols is to protect the plant from getting spoiled, insects, ultraviolet radiation and microbes. Polyphenols are antioxidants.
There are plenty of polyphenols in almost all plants
Vegetables, fruits and berries classified as healthy contain significant amounts of polyphenols. A cup of coffee or tea contains up to 100mg of polyphenols. Evidence suggests that eating polyphenol-rich foods reduces the risk of getting chronic diseases. Polyphenols can also affect the skin externally.
Polyphenols in cosmetics
We can hardly find the word polyphenols on the packages of cosmetic products. Still, almost all cosmetic products contain polyphenols, especially natural ones. All cosmetics containing genuine, plant-derived extracts will certainly also contain polyphenols.
Polyphenols have antioxidant effects
You must have come across cosmetics that are said to contain antioxidants. Antioxidants are a large group of substances that inhibit oxidation. In addition to polyphenols, vitamins do belong to the antioxidant group. Now we are only talking about polyphenols, because they have a very unique effect on the skin.
How do polyphenols affect your skin?
Polyphenols, when applied to the skin, act on the outer layers of the skin. Polyphenols in cosmetics can affect many skin problems that are right on the surface of the skin. Products containing polyphenols do not affect the deeper layers of the skin.
Polyphenols are potent antioxidants
They protect your skin from external stimulus such as sunlight. However, they cannot be used as actual protective sunscreen against ultraviolet radiation. You need to get a functional, tested sunscreen from the shop. However, products containing polyphenols have been found to boost sunscreen’s effect on the skin.
The dark spots caused by strong sunlight on the skin can fade and even disappear when using effective polyphenols in skin care.
Polyphenols work well also in after-sun products
They inhibit the UV-exposed skin damage. Polyphenols control possible inflammation and cool down the skin after sunbathing.
Polyphenols are able to repair small signs of aging on our skin, such as fine wrinkles. The anti-aging effect of polyphenols is based on antioxidants as well as sunscreen ability. The antioxidants in polyphenols prevent oxidation on skin. You can read more about this here on NCBI article.
Polyphenols is a large group of plant chemicals.
There are more than 8000 different types of polyphenols. The best-known polyphenols are flavonoids.
Different polyphenols have different specific properties. I will now list a few polyphenols and plants containing them. There are always several different polyphenols in the same plant.
Flavonoids are the largest single group of polyphenols
Flavonoids are polyphenols that affect plant’s taste and what colour it is. About 60% of all polyphenols are flavonoids. They are therefore the main group of active ingredients extracted from herbs used in skin care products. Next, I will list some very useful flavonoids for you.
Tannins are astringent and bitter flavonoids.
Green tea and coffee contain plenty of tannins. They are also found in smaller quantities in rose plants. The astringent effect of tannins is based on their ability to precipitate proteins. You can use astringent, tannin-rich extracts, for example, in facial toners. Tannins reduce pores and make skin look firm. The use of coffee grounds in facial masks is a good idea. You can also make feet and hands scrubs from coffee containing tannins.
Blueberry and red cabbage are famous for their anthocyanin pigment
Anthocyanin is the most famous flavonoid. It is the pigment in blueberry and red cabbage. Dark grapes are also rich in anthocyanins. Anthocyanin is a particularly powerful antioxidant.
Raspberry and olive are rich in rutin
The rutin also belongs to the group of flavonoids. The rutin improves blood circulation. Rutin-containing extracts should be used when the purpose is to revitalize the skin’s blood circulation. The rutin also inhibits infections. Raspberries, buckwheat and fresh olives contain plenty of rutin.
Why use green tea in cosmetics?
EGCG is a flavonoid that is found especially in green tea. It is the most important active ingredient in green tea. Even a study of anticancer effect of EGCG is currently going on. EGCG protects the skin from the sun’s UV radiation.
EGCG has a particularly moisturizing effect on the skin
It is also a very effective antioxidant. You will get all these incredible effects to your cosmetic product when you use green tea. Green tea also contains other polyphenols which make it one of the best ingredients for skin care.
Polyphenolic amides are special types of polyphenols
Polyphenolic amides include burning capsaicinoids found in both paprika and chili, which are not commonly used in skin care. They suit better to herbal medicine to eliminate pain and aches. But oat avenanthramides, on the other hand, are particularly useful in skin care. I have previously written an article about oat, which can be found here.
How can I add polyphenols to homemade cosmetics?
Adding polyphenols to homemade cosmetics is really simple. Polyphenols are soluble in hot water and vinegar. All you have to do is make an infusion using your favourite herb. If you’ve ever prepared homemade cosmetics, you presumably should know how to do it. If you do not know how to do it, please take a look here.
You can add polyphenols easily to the lotion using the herbal infusion as a water phase. An herbal infusion made from camomile or nettle, is a good base for an emulsion lotion. You will get a lot of valuable polyphenols in your lotion. Chamomile is rich in polyphenol called apigenin. Apigenin rejects the signs of aging and protects the skin against harmful UV radiation.
Polyphenols help your skin in many ways
There is plenty of talk about the effect of antioxidants in our diet. We should eat berries, fruits, and vegetables to get these valuable substances to prevent our cells from oxidizing. On our skin, polyphenols are able to function about the same way.
Cosmetics containing polyphenols protect our skin from oxidation. Next time you prepare homemade cosmetics, please remember skin protecting polyphenols. The easiest way to get them to your products is to use different herbal infusions. So, look at the herbs you dried in the summer and extract valuable polyphenols out from them to protect your skin.
Have you used herbal infusions in cosmetics?
Olive oil suits well to the body peeling purpose. It is an antioxidant and skin nourishing oil. Olive oil suits best for skin care and body products of ageing skin. Olive oil is not recommended for acne-prone skin. It clogs the pores easily and stimulates acne.
Although olive oil is not the best oil for facial care, it can be used to make a skin scrub for body. Buy only extra Virgin quality olive oil. It still has all the antioxidants left. I personally prefer Greek and Spanish organic olive oils. You can find them in big supermarkets. There are usually several options to choose from.
To this skin scrub I have added also mango butter and shea butter. They are very popular now and many may have them already.
Mild and full-bodied shea butter is a great addition to this body scrub. Shea butter is originally an African beauty product. Traditionally, shea butter is also used in cooking in Africa. Its natural colour is ivory but very often it is also sold bleached. I personally like the untreated quality but some people may find its odour unpleasant. I myself don’t smell anything unpleasant. You can order shea butter from several online shops. Here is a tip: You can order it fairly because you can use shea butter as it is for dry skin, cracked heels, hardened elbows and more.
Mango butter is a popular, hard fat in home cosmetics. It smells lovely and is very caring. Mango butter is made from fat derived from mango seeds. It suits best for body care and wash-away products. The fatty acid composition of mango butter is not suitable for facial products. Mango butter may block some people’s pores.
As an exfoliating ingredient I am using a very fine sugar. Sugar is a very common exfoliating agent. It does not harm the skin but is still a very effective ingredient. Sugar also moisturizes the skin. Choose very finely ground sugar, but not powdered sugar as it will not peel. Fine ground sugar removes dead tissue more efficiently from the skin, but is even more gentle than coarser sugar quality.
I used ginger as an active ingredient. Ginger has tremendous positive qualities. It activates the skin’s blood circulation and improves metabolism. Ginger makes this product a good cellulite cream. Be sure to use only dried, ground ginger, which is sold as a spice. Fresh ginger is too moist for this recipe. There is no room for moisture in peeling products based on sugar. Otherwise the sugar will begin to melt and the peeling cream will be spoilt.
For mango-ginger skin scrub you will need
- 50ml solid shea butter
- 50ml of mango butter
- 75ml of olive oil
- 130ml of very fine sugar
- 1 tablespoon powdered, dried ginger
Do like this
- Measure shea butter, mango butter and olive oil in a double boiler or water bath
- Using low temperature cook until all solid fats have melted
- Lift the pot off the stove and allow it to cool slightly but not solidify completely
- Mix the sugar and ginger powder and add melted fat
- Stir and can, use lids
- Peeling cream remains good for several months if it is free of moisture or dirt.
- When using the cream, always use a clean spoon for picking up the amount you need and close the jar carefully.
Olive oil can also be used to make herbal ointments, which are healing products. Olive oil is a very preserving oil. It does not rancidify as easy as sunflower oil. In herbal ointments, long shelf life is an advantage. We will take a closer look at herbal ointments in the summertime. There will be plenty of herbs both in nature and in the garden.
This scrub is so simple and effective that you really should try it.
How did you like it, please share your experiences in the comments section!
Would like to learn more about herbs in cosmetics. What herbs do you prefer for your skin and hair? If you want to pamper your skin with superfood, read about the 11 best herbs for skin care.
For thousands of years, natural herbs have been healing humans, but they have also treated our beauty. The same herbs ancient Egyptians used for beauty care, do still exist. Because we make our own cosmetics by our self, we can always choose the best herbs for our skin.
Many herbs have real magic power in skin care. Some are gentle and soothing plants that soothe the skin. Read more how herbs can help your skin and choose the right plants for your skin.
Next, you can learn what plants are in the nature’s own cosmetic power pack, the 11 best herbs for skin care.
All of these herbs can also be used internally. It is worth of investigating more about the internal use of herbs.
11 best herbs for skin care
The order is coincidental. All the herbs I am presenting are unique. You can also use some of them together in the same product. According to my experience, 1-3 of them is maximum you can use in same product. Plants do contain complex compounds which may irritate the skin when used as big quantities. Use herbs only reasonably in order to save your skin.
I have added some products to the description of the herb that contain the herb in question. You can feel comfortable to click the links, I am not getting any single penny out of your click. And I do not get anything else either from the businesses in question. These links are just to give you ideas about the products available. In case you do not want to create your own cosmetics you can try these products.
Nettle is a very mineral herb. It rises early in the spring and boosts both the dining table and the skin after a long winter. Of course, the stinging nettle should not be used fresh on the skin. Make a braised herbal tea-like infusion.
Because the nettle is a mineral-rich herb, it is especially suitable for hair. Silicon in the nettle treats your hair and supports their growth. If your hair is dark, nettle rinse is absolutely essential for your hair. You can replace vinegar rinsing with nettle rinse. Look here to get the how-to do infusion. It is naturally acidic.
Nettle is also suitable for internal use.
Natural Cosmetics containing nettle
Mádara has introduced a complete set of cosmetics containing nettle.
Benecos shampoo has nettle and Melissa
I think the nettle is at its best in hair care products.
The calendula is a very mild herb. If your skin is irritated or otherwise sensitive, try to add a calendula to cosmetics. The scent of calendula is refined and aromatic but not strong. Therefore, it is advisable to use calendula in products in which you want natural, not perfume scent.
Only use flowers of calendula for skin care. Leaves and stem have no value in cosmetics. Flowers should be dried for the winter. Dried calendula petals remain at least two years in usable condition. If the colour fades, just use a little more petal as they get milder when fading.
The calendula purifies the skin effectively. That’s why it’s the best ingredient for skin cleansing products. For example, calendula is suitable for gentle cleansing lotions and cleansing emulsions. Also use calendula for children’s products. You can also extract a little calendula for cleaning oil. Calendula can also be used in food preparation. It gives a nice colour to rice dishes, for example.
Natural Cosmetic Products Including calendula
Frantsila Bracelet Cream, a multipurpose cream that is suitable for babies You can use it to treat small skin problems. Soothes itchy skin.
Weledan Calendulavoide, an old friend, which I have used a lot. In addition to the calendula, the product also contains skin-protective beeswax. That’s why it’s a good cream for winter use. Weleda products are top quality.
Chamomile belongs to aster plants. It is natural in Finland but quite rare. Therefore, it is advisable to obtain chamomile for cosmetic purposes from sellers of dried herbs. You can of course also cultivate chamomile in your yard. Chamomile has so-called. the weeds of the spades so it grows and blooms in a really sunny place. Use chamomile flowers in cosmetics. Chamomile stalks and leaves cannot be used to make creams and lotions. Chamomile has been used in cosmetics as a fragrance before the spread of perfumes. The luxurious, sophisticated scent is best found in essential oil of chamomile. The essential oil of German chamomile is deep blue in colour. It can also colour the product in addition to the scent. The main etheric compound of German chamomile is terpene called biabololine. Chamomile has antimicrobial. It is therefore recommended for irritated skin. Chamomile has also been found to contain anticonvulsant and soothing compounds. In cosmetics, chamomile can be used as a herb stew, i.e. by brewing chamomile tea with hot water. You can use herbal teas for facial water, hair rinsing (light hair) and as a foundation for creams. You can also extract dried chamomile in glycerol or oil. One very useful way is to grind dry chamomile into dust. You can add such flower dust to, for example, powders and talc. How do You Make Chamomile Strawberries? Visit the recipes page for instructions on braising herbs. Use the chamomile internally as a tea. It calms and gives a restful sleep.
Natural cosmetic products containing chamomile
Argital Chamomile Cream is an Italian natural cosmetic. Cream soothes and refreshes the skin. At least Ruohonjuuri sells it. The product is of DEMETER quality.
Frantsila natural toothpaste contains chamomile
Aloe vera has already dealt quite extensively with this blog. I think it’s an absolute herb for beauty care. I prefer aloe Vera gel for hair washing and as a substitute for a conditioner. Aloe Vera Gel is an antimicrobial and caring product. It suits well to form creams and lotions. Aloe Vera is quite gentle on the skin. However, some are very allergic to it, so it is advisable to test the gel before use. An allergic or hypersensitivity reaction may not occur until a few days have passed. That’s why you should test your aloe Vera gel for longer on the skin in an unobtrusive place.
Aloe Vera is also used internally as a juice. Aloe Vera juice, for example, helps with bowel problems. However, before taking the juice, make sure you are not allergic to aloe.
Natural cosmetic products containing Aloe Vera
Eubiona Aloe Vera Night Cream. Eubiona product line is eco-certified natural cosmetics. The products are made of high-quality raw materials. For example, this night cream has 70% aloe vera.
I chose the gotu kola for the cosmetics superstars because of its unique properties. Gotu Kola supports the connective tissue of the skin. That’s why it’s absolutely necessary for aging skin. It has been found to be a superior anti-aging herb. Gotu kola can also be used to stimulate the blood circulation of the skin. Gotu kola has skin healing properties. So, you can use gotu kola if your skin is irritated and needs special attention. For example, it is advisable to try gotu kola products to treat acne scars.
In Korean skin care kits, gotu kola is called cica. It is highly appreciated in Korea because of its incredible features.
Gotu kola should not be used regularly on the skin. Already in a week, the treatment makes wonders for the facial skin.
How can you use gotu kola in cosmetics?
Gotu kola is very suitable as an active ingredient of facial masks. Since gotu kola is only suitable for limited period of time, it is advisable to limit the use of face masks a few times a week.
You can also add gotu kola extract to the moisturizer and use it as a night cream for about a week. However, first check the suitability of the gotu kola for your skin. It is a very mild herb that is used as a salad and or braised in Asian cuisine. You may still be allergic to gotu kola.
Gotu kola is used in Asian kitchen as raw material for fresh salad as well as in other foods. The taste is bitter and resembles dandelion leaves. We use gotu kola as a herb in the form of extracts. You can grind the pill in the mortar and mix it with the cream. If you do not want to apply a solid substance to the cream, you can use the extract.
Natural cosmetics containing Gotu kola
Antos Lifting Serum This serum contains a lot of naturally occurring ingredients, as well as gotu sprouts or gotu kola.
Liquorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
liquorice is a herb that stimulates the skin and stimulates blood circulation. Always use liquorice only limited period of time as it is a fairly potent herb. Liquorice soothes reddening skin. It also curbs inflammation. That’s why I recommend trying natural liquorice powder for acne.
liquorice smooths the skin’s pigment and makes your skin’s colour even. In Asia, liquorice is also used to lighten the skin.
liquorice is suitable for internal use. It raises blood pressure, so ask your doctor’s advice on the internal use of liquorice. liquorice is also not suitable for all drugs.
Natural cosmetics containing liquorice
HURRAW! liquorice Lip balm is 100% natural cosmetics. In this lip balm, the task of liquorice is to season and sweeten the product with a natural flavour. HURRAW! is from USA.
Green Tea (Camellia sinensis)
Green tea is a very powerful antioxidant. All antioxidants fight against the causes of skin aging. Green tea is also bitter and has tannins. Tannins contract pores. Prepare the green tea for a brightening peel on your face. Find recipe here.
Green tea is so versatile. You can create incredible many products using green tea. Use tea leaves by brewing tea or grinding them finely. You can also use Japanese ground green tea, matcha.
How would you feel a foot bath in a green tea or a relaxing, pore-reducing facial spray of green tea and chamomile hydro late or chamomile flower water? You can use minced green tea to peel and masks. It is an unbeatable raw material for hair care. Green tea prevents hair loss and, as an acidic substance, also substitutes for acid rinsing with vinegar.
I always wonder why to use bad smelling vinegar as a hair rinse, when there are so many acidic and good smelling alternatives.
Green tea is also a very good, stimulating and healthy drink.
Bio: Veganen’s 24-hour Skinfood cream contains genuine green tea and licorice.
Turmeric is a ginger-like plant from Southeast Asia. In addition to its superior health effects, turmeric is a very good raw material for cosmetics.
Turmeric is at its best as a mask. You could not treat your skin better than covering it for 20 minutes with a turmeric-yoghurt-honey mask. Although turmeric is intense in colour, it brightens the skin and soothes acne and other skin irritations. If you do not get all the colour of turmeric away from your skin, make an oil purifier. The colour of turmeric is oil-soluble and will not remain on the skin if oil is used for cleaning. I very often make turmeric mask on my face.
Turmeric is better known as a spice. It is one of the main ingredients of the Indian curry spice mix and at the same time a very effective antioxidant for the whole body.
Unfortunately, I could not find any natural cosmetic turmeric products that are for sale in Finland. So, it’s a good idea to make a turmeric mask yourself. I will make a separate blog post about turmeric and I will add some recipes as well.
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalus)
Rosemary is an aromatic lipstick plant with a wonderful fragrance. The fragrance of rosemary is said to eliminate stress and increase concentration. The effect of rosemary is based on its essential oils. Rosemary is commonly used in skin care when extracted with oil. The essential oil of rosemary can also be used when mixed with a suitable neutral carrier oil. Carrier oil is a neutral, skin-friendly base oil such as sunflower oil or safflower oil.
The use of rosemary-based creams makes the skin elastic. Rosemary effectively improves skin surface blood circulation. Rosemary helps dry skin to retain its moisture. That’s why it’s also a good addition to dry winter skin creams. If your skin is prone to milium, rosemary can bring relief. As an antimicrobial herb, rosemary is also suitable for acne.
Rosemary is most commonly used to treat scalp and hair. It is antimicrobial and thus prevents the spread of bacterial and fungal infections on the scalp. Rosemary oil can also be mixed slightly with tea tree or basil essential oil to enhance the effect. A little bit more power for rosemary oil treatment can be achieved by heating oil carefully.
The braised infusion made by rosemary stimulates hair follicles. Rosemary also prevents hair loss.
A strong extract of rosemary is often used as a preservative for natural cosmetics along with grapefruit extract. Rosemary extract has almost as good preservative properties as grapefruit extract.
Due to its strong and fine aroma, rosemary is one of the most popular herbal flavourings with countless applications.
Natural cosmetics containing rosemary
Bioemsan Rosemary Shampoo is a product worth of trying. It is rich in extracts of various herbs and of course rosemary.
Greater burdock (Arkticum Lappa)
Greater Burdock in the picture is photographed in the spring, so it’s not very big yet. During the summer, the handsome Greater burdocks will even grow up to 2 meters high.
Greater burdock is a friend of dry skin. If your skin needs moisture, it is advisable to prefer cosmetics made from Greater burdock’s leaves. It is not easy to find them from shops. That’s why it is better to make your own greater burdock creams. You can also use the roots of the plant, but you must be sure you are digging on your own land.
There are very few dry skin plants. That’s why I chose the Greater Burdock on this list. Prepare infusions, oil extracts, or glycerides. The Greater burdock can also be fermented. Fermented natural plants are really valuable for the skin.
The Greater burdock contains particularly moisturizing, slimy ingredients. These ingredients deeply moisturize the skin naturally and gently. Greater burdock also contains a lot of flavonoids, important minerals as well as vitamins for skin needs.
Greater burdock is a gentle herb that does not irritate sensitive skin. It does not contain high levels of acids or other skin irritants. Sure, somebody can be allergic to a GB. All new herbs should always be carefully tested on your own skin before you actually start to use them in skin care.
You can also use GB for hair care. It gives dry hair moisture without greasing the hair. Ecotourists greatly appreciate the GB:s in their products. You can read more here.
The Greater burdock is a fully eatable plant. If you happen to find a GB from your own yard, you can dig up its roots. The roots are used as food, such as mustard
Natural cosmetics with greater burdock
Here Finnish handmade herbal cosmetics. Spruce sponge cream also contains GB extract. This ointment dates back to the old times and the Finnish folk tradition.
Basil (Ocimum basilicum)
In Finland there is no tradition to use basil in cosmetics. It is perceived in Italian cuisine as a tomato friend. However, basil is one of the superheroes of skin care, the king of herbs. The Basilica name comes from the Greek word “Basileus” which means the king. There are many different varieties of basil, but here we are talking about spice basil.
Basil is always best as fresh. When dried, basil loses a lot of power.
Use fresh basil extracted with oil. Most of the active ingredients in the basil are dissolved in oil. You can prepare emulsifying ointment or skin cream based on Basil oil. You can also use basil oil as it is on your skin.
Basil increases the metabolism of skin cells. It is useful in the treatment of aging skin and in case of skin problems. Basil has the ability to reduce skin stress. The skin looks younger and more relaxed after the basil mask.
You can also use basil for dirty skin. Basil prevents the action of harmful bacteria and microorganisms on the skin. It cares for acne and makes the skin to clean itself more effective. With the Basilica you can prevent blackheads on your skin.
Basil brightens the skin and makes the skin glow. It has a lot of flavonoids that have an antioxidant effect.
Natural cosmetics with basil
Florame Basil Oil is a certified natural cosmetic. Florame is a French company producing high quality essential oils at Provence. This oil should always be added to a clean base oil such as sunflower oil or rice bran oil. You can add a few drops Florame Basil Oil, for example, to cleansing oil.
Here’s a good selection of herbs that you should definitely try out in cosmetics or finished products. There is a huge number of herbs suitable for cosmetics.
Tell us what is your super herb no 1
Baking soda is a very effective raw material. Often, its effectiveness is not understood. Baking soda is used for purposes for what it is not mentioned. It is easy to spoil skin or hair by using baking soda. That is why I do not give any instruction how to make deodorant or any hair care tips related to baking soda.
In peeling creams, Baking soda is a class of its own. Baking soda has the ability to remove dead tissues from the skin. I gave the Coconut Baking soda scrub recipe here. Baking soda is good for removing acne-left sloughs from the skin. Calluses on the hands and elbows are easy to remove, when using baking soda to soften them first.
In this next recipe I have laced baking soda with green tea. Green tea is highly antioxidant and skin-brightening. It also cleans skin pores from sebum and dead skin cells. Green tea removes excessive redness from the skin and soothes the skin. It prevents very effective the aging signs.
Epsom salt contains high levels of magnesium. Magnesium is able to penetrate through the skin to the muscles. Your muscles will be relaxed wonderfully during peeling. Blood circulation system can carry much more easier toxins away and bring the nutrients to the skin in relaxed muscles. Epsom Salt also has sulfur and oxygen. Sulfur is commonly used Treatment of acne and eczema. Even if you do not have these problems on your skin are sulfur and oxygen still in many ways useful for your skin.
For oil I chose olive oil, which is rich in antioxidants and is very suitable for body treatments. Olive oil is a favorite of many and therefore it happens to be in most people’s fridge.
I have written More about olive oil Here.
For brightening green tea Baking soda scrub you need
- 30ml Baking Soda
- 30ml Epsom salt
- 2tbsp green tea powder
- 140ml Olive oil
How to do
- Use pre-ground Japanese green tea powder.
- Mix Epsom salt, baking soda and tea powder in a bowl
- Add olive oil gradually, stirring continuously
- When the mixture is ready you can pack the peeling material in a glass container
- Use the scrub for your body only. This product is not suitable for facial treatment.
- Rub the whole body in a circular motion with a peeling cream.
- If desired, you can allow the peeling to affect the moment on the skin before you wash it off.
This peeling brightens the skin and removes dead tissues from it. If you have acne on your body you can gently rub our acne area and let the scrub to treat acne. If olive oil is unsuitable for your skin you can change the oil to say sunflower oil.
The soda instructions cannot be shared without giving you the instructions of DIY bath bombs. It is perhaps the most common cosmetic product that is produced from soda. I’ve actually made a few times the bath bombs with different instructions. Unfortunately, I have not notified the original instructions I have been using in my bathroom. However, it is not possible to make bath bombs in many different ways. All the bath bomb instructions are confusingly similar.
Bath bombs are everyone’s luxury. They are also useful because you can use a bath bomb to give yourself an instant foot bathing. Soda will detach the soles of your feet and it will be easier to rasp them smooth. In the bath the bomb works in the same way and detaches the dead tissue from the whole body.
The secret of making the bathroom bombs is the moisturizing of the powders. The powder mixture begins immediately fizzing If you put too much water on it. So, use only the shower bottle from the beginning to wet the powder. Only very little water is needed.
I have used witch hazel water. Also, plain water can be used but witch hazel water keeps better the powder ingredients together.
Flower petals and food colouring are a luxury that can be left out. You can also use only flower petals. Remember that the petals of flowers bought from a flower shop should not be used because they contain high quantities of harmful chemicals.
There is no need to use any essential oil unless you want the bath bombs smell. If you use bath bombs in your baby’s bathtub, consider using essential oils carefully.
For Bath bombs you need
- 250 Gr Baking soda
- 125 Gr citric acid powder
- 10-30ml witch hazel water in a spray bottle
- 5-10 drops of essential oils according to your preferences, optional
- Dry flower petals, a handful or two
- 2-3 drops of food color that fits the colour of the petals of the flowers, optional
- Vinyl gloves
- mold of ice cubes or chocolate-confections, silicon is the best
How to do
- Put on Vinyl Gloves
- Mix with great care citric acid powder and Baking soda
- Add if you want a few drops of essential oils and food coloring drops
- Stir the drops carefully into the mixture
- If you want to add food coloring drops: do it only at the end, “carelessly”, this way you get a very natural colour for the bath bombs
- Now follow the hardest part: start spraying gently Witch Hazel Water into the mixture
- The mixture starts fizzing immediately, but do not bother
- At the same time, mix very quickly dry and wet powder together, so that the fizzing would end as quickly as possible. I do the mixing by hand. This gives me the best touch of the mixture and I can work fast enough.
- Continue spraying and mixing until you can squeeze the powder and it stays together.
- Now add flower petals and Food coloring drops (if any)
- Stir and add the mass tightly into molds
- Let the molds dry for 24 hours and detach bath bombs from the molds.
- Now the bath bombs are completely dry and can be stored in a sealed glass container.
The bath bombs will be preserved well when protected from light in a dry place.
Use bath bombs in the bathtub or on foot baths. Self-manufactured bath bombs are a great gift idea and a souvenir.
Tip: You can also use the same recipe to prepare air fresheners for toilet. Use 20-40 drops of blue food coloring as well as 40 drops of essential oils for one dose. The best odors for toilet-fresh fruits are lemon, lime, eucalyptus and conifer scents. Witch hazel water is not needed so much. Store ready-made air fresheners in a glass container with a lid. Their odor is otherwise quickly lost.