What’s on your face?!: Household Helpers for Healthy Skin

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I’ve heard of some pretty weird home remedies for skin and body care in my time. I remember my grandmother once told me she used to put mayonnaise on her hair once a week when she was young. Yikes! Some of the things I suggest using for your skin care routine might seem just as strange, but hear me out: they’re super affordable and can make a huge difference in your skin care regimen!

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Citrus

If you paint your nails, adding a couple of drops of lemon juice to a sink full of water and soak your nails to help repair them from frequent polishing. Citrus oils like orange and grapefruit are also energizing–add them to a restorative bath or make yourself a quick exfoliating skin scrub by adding them

Tomato

I’ve been using raw tomato as an acne aid for years. Reserve the ends of a sliced tomato and rub over your breakout zone. Tomatoes’ acidity is enough to help with acne but isn’t strong enough to dry out or hurt your skin. I’ll take this over peroxidey acne treatments any day.

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Coconut Oil

I always keep a jar of this around the house because its uses are truly endless! I use it in cooking, especially for baking projects as well as for my skin. Rub some on your lips for a quick lip balm, on your dry spots for a deep moisturizer, or even on your hair for a weekly hair treatment.

Apple Cider Vinegar

I’ve done this a time or two myself, but I have to say it isn’t something I regularly practice: the ACV hair wash. Dilute about a capful of ACV in a bowl of water and pour it over your hair, massaging it in. Allow it to sit for several minutes, then rinse it out. This will help remove any buildup from shampoo or other haircare products.

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Banana

Another weird haircare treatment that I’ve used for years. Take a very ripe banana, mash it up with a fork in a bowl. Rub the pulp into your hair, massaging all the way down to your scalp. Oddly enough, this will help moisturize your hair and like the ACV it restores it after weeks of blowdrying and product buildup.

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Tea 

I’ve already talked about drinking tea for your skin, but how about using your leftover tea bags for your epidermis too? Green tea bags on your eyes will help remove puffiness and redness, especially after err… uh… a night on the town. (In that case, you should probably be drinking a good bit of the tea too.) You can also toss used tea bags in the tub for a quick, scented soak.

So, no mayonnaise, but there is some coconut oil. The oil and all of the other home helpers for healthy skin are so affordable, and are probably products you already have in your kitchen some where. Their pure, natural qualities are hard to find in a bottle. Sometimes going straight to the source is as good as it gets.

Any strange home helpers you have in your skin care arsenal?

#rachelinveganlandbirthdayweek2014

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March 1-8 was Birthday Week. I get really really really REALLY excited about my birthday. It’s a chance to indulge and celebrate, to look back at a year of hard work, trials and tribulations, transitions, delicious vegan food, cat and rabbit toes, and so much more. Like New Year’s, Birthday week is a time when I reflect and absorb, think about where I was a year ago and where I might be a year from now. This year I had a Parks and Rec themed birthday part complete with a vegan, gluten free waffle bar.

Birthdays feel like a turning point in so many ways. Mine, in March, comes at a time when the weather begins to fade from gray to green. Spring feels just around the corner, yet we have foggy days filled with icy edges and cold rain that persist for what seems like forever. This birthday was a turning point for me in many ways, mostly because I’m on the cusp of a few shifts in the next 6 months or so. I can’t wait, but until then I’ll be drinking cups of tea out of my new cat lady cup, snuggling with my evil tuxedo cat, and chasing the wonder rabbit around the house.

What’s on your face?!: Ingestible Digestibles for Glowing Skin

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So far, we’ve just looked at external skin care routines. But doesn’t gorgeous, glowing skin start on the inside? As vegans we so often think about what we put into our bodies based on moral, ethical, environmental, and health standards. But what about ingesting a few delicious items that can add a bit of skin care power to the mix? On this third installment of “What’s on Your Face?!” we’ll be looking at a few of my favorite ingestible digestibles to promote gorgeous, glowing skin.

Eat your greens!

We all know that green foods are good for you in so many ways. Leafy greens like spinach and kale offer a multitude of vitamins and minerals that keep us healthy. These same delectable greens that we so often eat are also great ways to keep your skin gorgeous, glamourous, and happy. Getting your daily dose of greens (at least a couple good handfuls in your smoothie for starters!) will fast track you to keeping your largest organ happy. Greens come in so many forms: in juices, in your favorite foods (like sushi) or in a giant salad bowl. Eating lots of the green things is not only delicious but also gives you that unmistakable glow of health and energy.

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Berrylicious daily dose.

I just mentioned adding a few handfuls of greens to your favorite smoothie for an added kick. A handful or two of berries thrown in will also pack a powerful antioxidant punch into your daily diet.  Antioxidants are known for promoting glorious, happy skin and repairing the damage that we’re constantly subjecting our epidermis to.

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H2whoa!

So, we’ve talked about a couple of ways to get antioxidants and nutrients for your skin. How about skin detoxifiers? Your easiest detoxifier is as close as your tap. Drinking plenty of water (the fabled 8 glasses per day) keeps impurities out of your system and flushes them away. Try keeping a water bottle or glass with you at all times during the day, especially during exercise or work. When I’m at home, I keep my bottle on my bedside table for a quick drink at all hours.

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Brew or two?

If you’re a tea drinker like I am, it’s nice to have an added punch of skin care in your cup, and if it happens to be your favorite brew then that’s just swell. There are so many teas out there made just for detoxifying your skin. A few of my favorites are: Republic of Tea’s Get Gorgeous, Yogi Tea’s Skin Detox, and Traditional Medicinals Dandelion tea. Each of these teas tastes delicious and is a product I’ve personally used before in tandem with other healthy skin care methods.

Many of us already incorporate some, if not all, of these things into our regular eating practices. Just tweaking a few things here and there and eating a bit more epidermis-consciously goes along way toward making your feel happier and healthier in your own skin. Pun definitely intended.

What’s your favorite ingestible skin aid?

Through the looking glass: In the Dead of Winter

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It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these posts. For some reason I often feel vibrant in the cooler weather–perhaps one of the reasons that I love winter so much. Winters in the past have been an interesting mix of feeling invigorated by the cold and feeling run down by too many carbs and not enough fresh food. I vowed to change that cycle this year. Cutting most of the gluten out of my diet has greatly helped with that. In its place I’m eating pastas and breads that are brown rice based, and munching on far more delicious fresh foods.

This particular day is a good example of what I eat on the regular, especially on my days off from work. It started with a breakfast sandwich on gluten free bread. I’ve decided that I like this one, but only if it’s toasted.

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My sandwich contained: Daiya jack wedge, tofu scramble, fresh greens, and a side of root vegetable chips. There was a green smoothie thrown in there too.

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Post work out I was hungry again. Delicious, homemade roasted red pepper hummus and farmer’s market carrot sticks.

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Eaten while managing emails.

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Leftover tacos for lunch, from work. Then it was a walk in the park with my friend and her pup (it was nearly 70 degrees on this particular day) then some reading, writing, blogging, and the like.

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Dinner was an extra special treat.

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Delicious, gluten free noochy crêpes stuffed with spinach, veggie sausage, mushrooms, onions, and finished with a balsamic reduction. Heaven.

It was a simple, beautiful tasty day. Writing this post, I am now officially hungry. Off to food, folks!