Winter skin care

The climate is chilly and dry. Our skin and hair tend to get really affected by the change in climate. I have previously written a post on winter skin care regime in 2016  but I should say the only product I still use from the stash is the burt’s bees lip balm.

My skincare regime has evolved over these two years and I am more inclined towards the Korean skin care method of layering products on skin, than using heavy products on skin.

So here are some products I have been using for quite sometime now and the only difference I would make for the Winter, is to layer it more.

  • Cleanser : Washed ghee(click for review)
  • Toner : Chamomile and Roman Witch Hazel mist from Indulgeo essentials.

Continue reading “Winter skin care”

Juicy Chemistry Neem Butter, Pumpkin & Vitamin E Scalp Repair Hair Mask

This post is a review of one of the new launches from Juicy Chemistry kitchen, the Neem Butter, Pumpkin & Vitamin E Scalp Repair Hair Mask.

Ingredients:

Coconut Butter, Neem Butter, Olive Oil, Baobab Oil, Natural Vitamin-E, Castor Oil, Argan Oil, Pumpkin Seed Oil, Beeswax, Lavender, Ylang Ylang Essential Oil, Rosemary, Lemon, Tea-Tree Essential Oil and Ginger.

Price: Rs 850 for 75g

Fragrance and texture : This is a runny oil with a slight green tinge. It is not sticky like heavy oils. The fragrance is strong, with mostly tea tree and rosemary notes; but not overpowering.

Packaging : It comes in an amber glass bottle with a pump and cap.

My take on the product:

Usually a mix of tea tree oil, coconut oil, vit e from capsule, castor oil and ginger juice is my go to hair potion for dry and flaky scalp. This hair product (I wouldn’t call it a mask since this is like a hair oil/tonic) has many more beneficial ingredients for the hair. I either mix it with my normal hair oil and use or most times I replace hair oil with just this.

I like this product a lot. My hair is not chemically treated and I only use natural products to cleanse. Eventhough I have hair fall because of the hard water, my hair is not damaged in any way. But I do get flaky scalp and excessive oiliness at times. This oil has really helped in controlling that.

A little quantity is enough to massage the scalp, and then it has to be left for 30 min before cleansing it off with a mild cleanser.  I use it only twice a week.

JC keeps having sale on the website often, and that would be a good time to get this product if you wan tot try it out. I would recommend this if you have dandruff/flaky and oily scalp or if your hair is thin, straight and has less volume.

NOTE : Incase you have dry, frizzy and brittle hair which is chemically damaged and is in need of deep conditioning, you should try the Argan and Mango butter mask instead.  especially if you have curly hair.T he mask is very thick (more like a body butter) and has to be applied from root to hair tip as a pre-wash mask. This will weigh your hair down incase you have straight, thin hair.

These products are for improving the overall quality of the scalp and hair and not a treatment for hair fall. Incase you have hairfall problems, you should also take care of your diet and water intake in addition to using natural hair care products.

Hope you liked this post.  Do subscribe using email id, for timely updates of latest blog posts.

 

Let’s discuss face mists : Juicy Chemistry and Blend It Raw Apothecary face mist review

I wouldn’t say face mist/toner is an integral part of skincare. But they surely helps in refreshing the skin. Rather than the added benefits of face mists mentioned below, I enjoy using it first thing in the morning to wake up my sleepy self.

I have reviewed the  Kama Ayurveda Vetiver face mist which I like for its earthy natural fragrance and the Zofla rose water which the most affordable quality rose water I have come across . Here are some more great options for you, from Juicy Chemistry and Blend It Raw Apothecary.

We are all familiar with the  Dabur Gulabari Rose Water. The description of this product in Amazon is :

  • 100% pure & natural rose water skin toner
  • No added preservatives
  • Cleanses, refreshes & cools the skin

Ironically the Ingredients include : Propylene Glycol, Propyl and Methyl Parabens, Fragrance, Rose oil and Aqua.In short it is not 100% pure and natural rose water but a mix of everything you shouldn’t be applying on your body. So make sure you read the ingredient list (which should ideally be just 1 ingredient) before purchasing these waters.

WHAT IS A HYDROSOL?

Hydrosols are made by steam distillation of fresh flowers, leaves, fruits etc. This process gives two products: the essential oil, which contains the oil-soluble constituents of the plant, and any condensate water, which contains the water-soluble constituents as well as microscopic droplets of the essential oil. This condensate water is what we call, the plant hydrosol.

Hydrosols are much less concentrated than essential oils. Their scents are much softer and subtler when compared to those of their essential oil counterparts. Due to their high water content, they’re also very gentle and can be applied directly to the skin without any sort of dilution.

Here are the benefits of using a pure and natural hydrosol :

  • Soothes, refreshes, hydrates, refines and rejuvenates the skin
  • Great for all skin types
  • Helps clear pores and tones the skin
  • Helps maintain the skin’s natural pH balance
  • Has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.

Here are the ways to use a face mist:

  • If you are in a humid region, instead of using heavy moisturizers, you can carry a small bottle of face mist in the bag and spray it often throughout the day. This will help in keeping the skin moisturized, cool and will keep you refreshed throughout.
  • These can be used in face and hair masks for added benefits and can even be used to soothe minor burns, cuts and flaky skin.
  • In case you like using face oils/oily serums and wants the oil to get absorbed easily on skin, spritz face mist before application.
  • You can also cleanse your face with a cotton swab spritzed with the toner.

Juicy Chemistry Organic Lavender and Rose Water

JC offers a wide range of face mists for specific skin type and conditions. I have tried the lavender and rose one. It comes in an amber bottle

Lavender face mists are great for dry and sensitive skin. It works well as an after sun mist. The Lavender water can be applied to the scalp to soothe flakiness.

I personally am not a big fan of lavender fragrance in general as I find it a bit heady. But it is fine and mild in face mists and I feel this one provides the best moisture boost out of all the mists.

I use the rose variant more often, as I like the pure mild rose fragrance. Rose water suits all skin types and helps in controlling excess oil produced by skin. It is a humectant and helps in Rose water is supposed to help with hyper pigmentation also over time.

***Juicy Chemistry Sale is going on and you can get both of this for 360 Rs each instead of the original 450 Rs price.***

Blend it Raw Apothecary Orange Blossom Water

This is no longer available in the website of the brand. But they do have many other unique hydrosols like Basil, Eucalyptus, Rosemary to name a few. Unlike JC face mists, this hydrosol is packed in a transparent bottle. But the latest products are all sold in amber bottles by the brand.

Orange blossom water barely have any fragrance and it smells not at all like orange peel if that is what you expect. It is a skin clarifier and contributes to clear skin as per the brand.

The sprayer of this face mist is better than the JC bottles.

Let me tell you how. (Not sure if the new packaging also has similar sprayer for Blend it Raw Apothecary)

Keep the bottle at a small distance away from the face, almost at the centre.

Now spritz once.

The orange water covers the entire face in just one spritz. The water particles are very fine and hence it just wets the face without excess water dripping down.

You need multiple spritz, in the case of JC bottles as the coverage is lesser and also more product comes out of the nozzle.

NOTE : I store all my face mists in the refrigerator. The added coolness is beneficial for skin and also it keeps these natural waters to stay fresh longer.

Hope you liked the post. Do leave your comments and subscribe to the blog.

 

Ecofriendly, safe baby and toddler care products

A mom knows what is best for her kid and I feel it’s not a good practice to give unsolicited advice in this matter. Many of you from my insta family has asked me to write about baby care products and so even though I have not much personal experience with this, I shall list out some helpful products that I came across in my research.  This is an assorted list of all things that are helpful for parents. Also these might make great gifts.

Kolkol Ergonomic Baby Carriers:

Let me quote the brand:

Ergonomic baby carriers let you carry your baby in a position similar to how you would hold them in your arms. This means the utmost comfort for you and your baby. It promotes bonding and helps breastfeed anywhere. It helps the parent handle everyday chores while taking care of the baby. There are many studies that show carried babies sleep, feed and grow better, and significantly cry lesser.

And with Kolkol you can carry your babies hands free. Their ring sling cloth carriers looks very simple and comfy for the babies and the buckle carriers can be used for toddlers.

Also their ring slings are on sale now.

Check them out : Kolkol

Cloth Diaper:

If you are someone who is conscious of the environment and would like to reduce the non-biodegradable waste generated from household, you can checkout this alternative to regular baby diaper.

In India there are many brands selling cloth diapers : Bumberry, Easyfeel, Superbottoms, Bumpadum to name a few.

Also Qtrove has a Bath and Health section for babies and many reusable cloth diapers from some of the above mentioned brands are featured here.

You can also join this FB group called Clothdiaperingindia, to get answers for your queries.

Safe wooden toys:

PC: Varnam Craft Collective

Majority of the toddler toys in the market are made from plastic. In a matter of months most of these toys will end up in waste bins and ultimately in land fills. Also many of these toys are coated with toxic paints including lead and can be harmful for kids. So why not switch to eco-friendly ones. I am listing down some options you can look into.

  1. Varnam Craft Collective  : Varnam brings a modern twist to the traditional Channapatna toy craft. They also have a variety of home decor and accessories collection that looks as good as showpiece items. They have two stores in Bangalore and they can be spotted in exhibitions as well. I have come across their stalls many times in exhibitions and they even have some quirky printed kids wewar in their collection.
  2. Shumee : This brand was started by the mom, Meeta to fill the gap of not having trust worthy safe toys in India. Their site also features Children’s books.
  3. Onlywood : An Indian brand that claims to make toys that are safe with no sharp edges, decorated with vegetable colors that is NON-TOXIC and LEAD FREE.
  4. Funwoodgames : Their toys are made from ivory wood and they support Indian cottage industries and rural artists. This brand offers free home delivery as well.

Cleansing and nourishing products for kids:

Eventhough there are many natural and ethical brands in India selling baby care products, do understand that natural products can also cause adverse reactions on skin, if the ingredient doesn’t suit your babies skin type. So my suggestion would be:

  1. Use minimal to no products on your baby. Regular oil bathing should be enough for the baby’s skin.
  2. If you do want to use any soap/cream/powder on your baby, either seek advice from the doctor or make sure you are buying from a trusted brand.
  3. All the trusted natural skin care formulators are always open for clearing any doubts. So talk to them and go as per their expert suggestions.
  4. Choose products with minimal ingredients with no synthetic colorants or fragrance.

I have only included very few trusted brands here. All these brands are 100% transparent about the ingredients and you can hence choose the products that would suit your toddler.

Krya : I have reviewed many Krya skincare products before and they are a brand completely based on Ayurveda (in its truest sense and not like brands that claim to be ayurvedic for namesake). They have separate line of products for babies and toddlers. Even separate cleansing powders for boys and girls. They have added elaborate description of everything you need to know here.

For toddlers they have anti lice products as well. Find the details of toddler care products here.

Juicy Chemistry : A regular reader of my blog will be familiar with almost all the products of JC so far. So this certified organic brand also has products for kids. I gifted the baby shampoo, soap and diaper balm from this range to my baby niece. I wanted to buy the mosquito repellent cream as well but on checking with the brand, they did not recommended it for babies. Check out their kids range here.

MamaEarth : This brand caters products for Mamas, Papas and babies. How cool is that? They are the first MadeSafe Certified Brand in Asia and the products undergoes dermatological tests. Some of the interesting products are  natural toothpaste, teas for expecting moms and organic bamboo based baby wipes. They do use a synthetic but safe preservative in their product. You can check out their website.

Toddler fashion:

Kids clothes from most brands are more expensive than adult clothes these days 🙁 . In our family we love using pre-owned clothes for babies and toddlers. Aunts and cousins circulate the clothes which are in good condition, to the next generation. Kids grow out of their clothes very fast and I feel these sustainable practices should be encouraged. All my clothes as a kid was stitched by my mom from cloth scrapes and were really beautiful. No she did not do any stitching before or after that. I guess kids clothes are relatively easy to stitch.

But incase you are looking forward to twinning with your kid on a special occasion, The Khadi Cult and Indieproject offers some colorful, quirky prints.

Read and grow:

I just had to write about books even though it is not exactly in context with this blog post. My love for books happened because of my grandpa. He used to take me religiously to kids library and then to public library as my reading matured. He would sign up for plans from DC books. On paying a small amount every month, we can take books for double the total amount at the end of the year. These days many of us live away from family and there might not be a grandpa around. But parents should find time to read to the kids and later introduce them to amazing books.

The Irrelevant Project:

I need a separate blog post to write about the amazing work, this awesome group of people does. They simply aim at bringing the stereotypes and biases surrounding gender/class/caste/religion etc, to light. Sometimes our opinions are strongly based on prejudices that are imbibed in us from our childhood and we don’t even realize it most of the time.

PC: The Irrelevant Project

Currently they have 5 books in store that are for ages 6 and above (I say 6 and ‘above’ because even though these are illustrated and written for easy understanding of children, the topics they talk about are relevant, current and applicable to all age groups.)

The books cover topics like body positivity, gender stereotypes, diversity, bullying and consent to name a few.

The books are available in Amazon.

PC: The Irrelevant Project

You should definitely follow their Insta account. The posts explains schema, gendered language, priming etc in a very simple and easy to understand manner.

Public Libraries:

Do take your kids to old book shops, public libraries or Just books atleast once or twice every month. It would help them to get to know the book loving community around and also develop reading into a habit than a hobby.

So that’s all for now. Let me know if you liked this post and found it helpful. Also do comment your go to brands for kids, so that it is helpful for others as well.

Juicy Chemistry Coffee, Chocolate and Macaroot hydrating mask review

If you are my insta follower, you would have already seen a video review of the product in my insta live. Also I had posted about the, ongoing 25%  off sale in Juicy Chemistry website. So this is the best time to hoard your favourites from the brand. Do check out all my JC product reviews before you choose the products.

Juicy Chemistry Coffee, Chocolate and Maca root hydrating mask

Quick review :

This is more of a scrub than a mask and is suitable for all skin types. As a scrubby face mask this will be apt for normal-dry skin types. The coarse, grainy texture of the coffee and sugar mix makes it unsuitable for sensitive skin types, as a face mask.

The ingredient list is impressive and has many skin loving butters and oils. The fragrance is prominently of coffee and orange essential oil and this smells delicious. The fragrance adds to the spa experience one gets, while using the product.

The organic cane sugar and coffee particles sloughs away the dry and dead skin and the shea, cocoa butters and almond, olive, coconut, jojoba and vit E oils helps in moisturizing the skin. Coffee also helps in reducing tan and cellulite.

The product should be applied to wet skin and massaged well. Since the product has a lot of moisture rich ingredients, it doesn’t flake off from body on applying to wet skin. Leaving it on as a mask for extra time, improves the effect fn the ingredients on skin.

I have used it as a face mask as well and it didn’t cause any break outs. But the experience with scrubby particles on face is not that great. So I will stick with using it as a scrub.

Will I repurchase this:

No. Eventhough it is a good product, Iam not a coffee fan and JC offers some other variants that I like better. I prefer the fragrance of the Orange,Cinnamon Sugar scrub as I find it very relaxing. Also for dry skin types I would recommend the Rose, Almond Shea body scrub, which is mild and very fragrant.

You might also be interested in:

My favorites and not so favorites from Juicy Chemistry

Juicy Chemistry Rose Sandalwood Mask

Juicy Chemistry citrus and sage foot scrub

Juicy Chemistry Hazelnut & Vanilla Latte Soap

Spicy Apple Pie anyone???

 

A complete guide to India’s truly natural skincare brands – 1

Many of you must be interested in switching to natural/organic skincare and beauty products, but could be hesitant. One reason is that, the popular ones we all know of are mostly luxury brands (like Forest Essentials & Kama Ayurveda), which are obviously very expensive. Also sometimes people blindly buys products from brands claiming to be natural/organic, when in reality they might just have a very small percentage of natural ingredients and thereby end up having a bad experience. Sometimes even the most popular brands we know hides majority of their ingredients under the name ‘base’, eg: Biotique.

Handmade natural skincare products are safe and are multitasking ones. For eg: a handmade soap made with natural ingredients can be used as a hair, body and face cleanser.  Would you dare to use your shampoo as a face cleanser otherwise?

There are many Indian natural skincare brands that sells quality products at affordable prices. These brands are transparent about the ingredients used and gives all the ingredient info in the label. Here is the list of few such natural Indian skincare brands, that I have already introduced you through the different posts.

1. Juicy Chemistry

The first time I tried JC products was three years back when they had just the fb handle and some amazing products. Now they have grown to be a very popular organic certified brand with a store in Coimbatore and products extensively available through online sites.

The brand is started by a husband wife duo, Pritesh and Megha Asher. The products are pure and made of high quality ingredients and has 0% chemicals/preservatives. All their products smell amazing because of the exquisite combination of essential oils. So eventhough you might feel this is not very pocket friendly, let me tell you, it is worth the price.

Products I recommend:  Body scrubs, body butters, soaps, face mists.

Read my reviews :

Juicy Chemistry citrus and sage foot scrub

Decadent body scrubs for all skin types

Juicy Chemistry Rose Sandalwood Mask

Juicy Chemistry Hazelnut & Vanilla Latte Soap

My favorites and not so favorites from Juicy Chemistry

Spicy Apple Pie anyone???

Juicy Chemistry : Choco-Vanila Body Butter – Now discontinued

2. Gia bath and body works

This is the first natural skincare brand I tried. I wouldn’t call all products completely natural as some of them contains fragrances and safe food colors. The brand is run by Gayatri based on Mumbai. She takes into account customer suggestions and even customizes perfumes. Her soaps are a work of art and looks edible. The fragrances are so good that your bathroom will smell amazing.

Products I recommend: Chocolate creme silk soap, cup cake soaps, oats based face cleansers in various flavours.

Read my reviews :

Pomegranate facial cleanser from Gia 

Daily cleansing method for soft and glowing skin

A divine chocolate soap you will fall in love with

Butter Cream Whipped Soaps

My favorite hair cleanser from Gia

Mintensity Foot soak
3. Zofla

This is one of my recent finds. I have used just one product from this brand, which is the rose water face mist. Unlike many commonly available brands like Dabur that sells chemical solution in the name of rose water (check out the ingredient list next time you feel like buying this : Aqua, Fragrance, Rose Oil, Propylene Glycol, Propyl Paraben, Methyl Paraben, Bronopol.), this rose water is made by steam distillation of organic Kannauj rose petals.

The product comes in a plastic spray bottle and can be just sprayed on to your skin for a boost of hydration, freshness and can be also used to mix your face packs or to calm skin inflammations. I bought this from amazon and it costs only 160Rs for 100ml.
4. Greenberry Organics

Started by a Mom-son duo, this brand is the first ECOCERT certified brand in India. I have used their most popular product, MUDASH 3 In 1 Face Mask, Scrub and Cleanser. The particles are a bit too gritty and hence suitable best as a body scrub. The brand also offers many more skin, body and hair care products.

Read myreview : Best Skincare Finds : Multitasking products for all skin types

5. Blend It Raw Apothecary

Incase you wish to whip up your own skincare recipes or if you are an essential oil junkie, this is the best brand to buy all the flower powders, clays, oils, face mists and what not. I would always recommend getting the ingredients and making products like face mask, scrub, lipbalms, body butters on your own; because then you really know what goes into the product and also these are much cost effective but equally good. The brand is the brain child of my fellow blogger and skincare enthusiast Aarushi, based in Delhi.

Read my review : Dandruff free silky hair and soft supple skin with simple DIY skincare recipes
6. Krya

With roots strongly based on Ayurveda, Krya adhers strictly to the age old textual methods of product preparation. This is a lifestyle brand and apart from skin and hair care products, this brand has baby care and home care products as well that are 100% herbal, vegan & cruelty-free.

Preethi Sukumaran, one of the founders, always finds time to respond to customer queries. She prescribes a holistic approach where she suggests changes to lifestyle and food habits. She also posts videos in the Krya blog addressing the lifestyle issues of urban life and ayurvedic way of living.

Products I recommend: Hair oil and hair wash powder, hair color, detergent.

Read my review: 

Summer hair care with natural hair wash powders : Featuring Krya and JivaVrksa

All natural and safe home care products
7. Burst of Happyness

Baed on Pune and run by Shreya Sharan Pawar, this brand was started as a result of her quest to find remedy to the allergies brought about by chemical based skincare products. The brand offers vegan soaps, shampoo bars, serums and many more body care products.

Product I recommend: Natural deodorants in lavender and rose scents.

Read my review: All natural and vegan deodorant
8. Cape Of Good Hope

Manisha creates beautiful art in soaps. Her soaps looks so pretty and smells amazing as well. The last product she sent me was a geode soap customized with ingredients that are harmonious with my zodiac. She also customizes products based on customer needs.

Products I recommend: Let Manisha know your skin concerns and leave the rest to her. My favorites are the Rose wine scrub and Green tea soap.

Read my reviews:

CGH Pepper soap review and a little surprise

Take time to smell the roses

Teas Please from Cape of Good soap

Cape of Good Soap : Rosewood and Mint soap

9. Junaili

Can a product so simple and pure that it is a raw material in itself, be as effective as the skin care concoctions with many exotic ingredients?

Junaili carries the purity of the Uttarakhand mountains and mist. This himalayan apothecary run by a family, uses just one raw material : Apricot.

The cold pressed apricot oil is customized into hair, face and body oils and the kernals are processed into scrubs.

Read my review: http://flavoursofbeauty.com/junaili-apricot-body-scrub-simple-and-pure/
10. Ancient Ayurveda

This Kerala based brand works with Prajwala, the world’s largest anti-human-trafficking shelter based in India, to empower women. Wood ash soaps are their specialty and these soaps oozes of ayurvedic tailas. The soaps are so soft and melts easily.

Read my review: Ancient Ayurveda Woodash Soaps

11. Amara Organix

This Chennai based brand is by the lovely lady, Mehar. You name it and they have it, a wide range of skin care, bath and body products and exotic soaps that caters to all kinds of skin care needs.

Recommended: Handmade soaps,  Brightening Face mask

Read my review: Moisturizers and face masks curated for summers : Introducing The Skin Pantry and Amara Organix

Hope you liked this post. I have not included any luxury brands in this feature. I will be consolidating more products and introduce you to more authentic brands in the upcoming posts.

Comment below about your favorite natural skincare brands and the recommended products.

Blend it Raw Apothecary Product Review : Dandruff free silky hair and soft supple skin with simple DIY skincare recipes

It has been a while I made a detailed blog post, eventhough those of who following me on Insta is frequently getting DIY skincare recipes and tips.So this post is a small skin and hair care DIY post. These days I am not purchasing any pre-made products from market. I rather prefer getting pure ingredients.

Why make skin care recipes with pure ingredients when you can buy products with similar ingredients?

1. You can make multiple products with these ingredients at home
2. You can create your own DIY recipes to suit your skin type
3. When you buy products with your favourite ingredients, you don’t get any information on the percentage of this ingredient in the product.You might be paying more for say just 0.5gm of the ingredient in the product.
4. Which takes me to the point, saves money.
5. You can be assured of what goes into your skincare recipes
6. More effective as ingredients are fresh and pure

7. No preservatives, chemicals or parabens that can harm your skin.

Mini review:


PC: Blenditrawapothecary

I bought a couple of ingredients from Blend It Raw Apothecary. Aarushi, beauty with brains behind this new brand, is a natural skincare blogger herself.
The brand has come up with monthly beauty boxes as well in previous months. They have oils, butters, muds and clays,floral waters and other pure powders to name a few. I bought Aloevera gel, rose petal powder, charcoal powder, orange blossom water and an essential oil blend for hair.

The products come in a box(mine didnot have brand label though), packed well. The label on each product mentions the usage and ingredients list incase of a blend. The quantity is great and will for sure last me long.

The only disappointment for me was orange blossom water because I thought it would smell differently. If you think this one smells ‘citrusy’,you are wrong. I have never used orange blossom water before and to my surprise it actually has a mild fresh green chilly smell. Basically it is made from orange blossoms as the name implies and it doesn’t smell like orange peel or like orange essential oil.The spray bottle is quite handy and a few pumps makes you feel fresh. But I still prefer rose or vetiver water over this.

So here are some DIYs for smooth and soft skin and silky hair. Can be used by all skin and hair types.

Hair mask for silky soft hair

What you need :
Tea tree oil/Peppermint oil/Elevate oil blend
Aloe vera gel

You can use pure aloe vera gel from the plant or buy this if you don’t have a plant. The aloevera gels sold in drug stores are not pure and you will see a plethora of chemical ingredients in the ingredient list. The one I bought few years back from a drug store in Thailand even has parabens.

I bought the tea tree oil from Juicy Chemistry.

Just Mix:
Mix aloevera gel with few drops of the essential oil. Say 2 drops for a table spoon of aloevera gel. The essential oils are potent and shouldn’t be used more.Mix it well to get a slightly milky mix.Now apply this to the scalp if you have an itchy scalp or to the hair and hair tips incase you have dry frizzy hair. I don’t oil my hair when I do this but you can also try this after you shampoo the hair, as a conditioning mask. Keep it for 10min and just wash it with off with water. In case you have very dry and frizzy hair, you can mix curd, egg white or few drops of almond oil with the mix.

You can use the same blend for face incase you have acne prone skin.

Benefits:

Tea tree oil is anti septic and has the ability to soothe dry flaking skin, remove dandruff and even can be used for the treatment of lice.
You can even add a few drops to your hair cleanser, tooth paste,face wash for added benefits.

Aloevera gel is a versatile ingredient that soothes, calms, hydrates, conditions and overall just makes your skin super happy.

I have an oily and itchy scalp. But after using this mask a couple of times, it stopped getting oily oily for a few days after hair wash. The mask has balanced out my scalp. Also the itching just stops the moment you apply the scalp and helps fight dandruff as well.

The Elevate blend from Blend it raw apothecary has the following ingredients:
Organic essential oils of Lavender, rosemary,ylang ylang,cedarwood and peppermint.
Price: Rs 275 for 10ml

Mask for soft supple skin:

What you need: Now this one is a versatile mask and you can add ingredients as per your skin type.

For dry skin : Aloe gel, rosepetal powder, honey/lavender essential oil/Almond oil
for very dry/flaky skin : Oats, rose petal, honey, aloevera gel
For oily skin : Aloe gel, rosepetal powder, floral waters (rose water, orange blossom water, lavender water)
For irritated/acne prone skin: Aloe gel, tea tree oil, rose petal powder, rose water
For skin brightening: Rosepetal powder, wild turmeric powder, Gram flour,sandal wood powder, floral water

Price:

Blend it raw aloegel : Rs 250 for 200g
Blend it raw rose petal powder : Rs 350 for 100g
Blend it raw orange blossom water : Rs 475 for 100ml

For my mask I used orange blossom water, rose petal powder, aloevera gel and 1 drop of lavender essential oil. Use very less essential oil or it is going to burn your skin.I love the color of this mask and it is very gentle on skin. It makes the skin soft, glowing and hydrated on regular use.

Point to remember:
Patch test these blends in your hand and wait for a while to make sure it is not causing any redness or irritation.

Hope you liked this post. Let me know if you like to read more of skin care recipes. Do SUBSCRIBE and follow us on FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM for more skin care tips.

Other posts you might like:

Summer skincare
Summer haircare
All about menstrual cups
Multimasking
Hairfree smooth skin
All about hair cleansers
How to choose skincare products that suits you

Cost effective natural lip tint with kitchen ingredients

All of you who follow my instagram page might be curious about the ‘guess what’ picture I posted yesterday. So here is what it is. It is a homemade skin balm for soft, supple and glowing skin. This can also be used as a lip and cheek tint for that natural subtle tint. This is easy to make, costs almost nothing and is very beneficial to the skin.


Ingredients needed :

1. Half of a small organic beetroot
2. Virgin coconut oil/Olive oil/ Ghee
3. Hot water in a bowl

This is a very versatile balm and you can add lemon juice, carrot juice, castor oil, honey etc in it for extra benefits.
My preparation has beetroot extract, virgin coconut oil (home made) and castor oil. I made the coconut oil at home, from left over coconut milk. Let me know if you would like the recipe.

Method to prepare the balm:

1. Grate the beetroot with a grater. You can also grind the beetroot in a foodprocessor, till there is a visible watery residue.

2. Strain the juice of grated beetroot by pressing it with a spoon.Make sure there are no bits and pieces of beetroot. Don’t add water to it. We only need the quantity we get from half a beetroot as we have to use this within 2 weeks and not let it go stale.

3. Now is the time to add virgin coconut oil/olive oil/ghee to the beet extract. Depending on your skin type and preference you can add any of these. You should add quarter to half tsp of the oil. It would be easier to add less at first and then increase the quantity depending on the consistency. Too much oil will make the tint sheer.

I transferred the beetroot juice to a small steel bowl, added quarter tsp of coconut oil (which was refrigerated and had hence solidified) and a few drops of organic castor oil from Juicy Chemistry. Castor oil is a thick oil which helps in moisturizing the dry lips. You can skip coconut oil and add olive oil or ghee instead. You can skip castor oil as well and add honey at the last step instead.

4. The balm is still a liquid. If you keep this mix in refrigerator at this point, the oil will separate and form a solid layer on top of liquid beet juice.

Inorder to make it thick and ‘balmy’, dip the smaller bowl with the mix, to a larger bowl of boiling hot water. You can boil the water and just take it out of stove for this step.It just need to be really hot. With a spoon or a whisk(makes the job easier), beat or whisk the liquid mix very fast. Now the continuous fast whisking on a hot water bath will make the mix to thicken and become the consistency we need. If liquidy you can add more coconut oil to it and repeat the process. You have to fast whisk it for atleast 15-20min for it to reach the right consistency.

Now since Iam quite lazy, I whisked it for around 10min. I got a slightly thicker consistency.

5. Once the mix cools down you can add few drops of lime juice or honey for that extra benefit. I transferred it to an empty lipbalm case. Now refrigerate the mix for it to set and solidify. Since there are no preservatives in this balm you need to refrigerate it to make it last longer.



How to use:

1. As a lipbalm : Just dab a little bit of the mix on your lips. It will give you that just smitten tint initially which oxidizes in a while to give a deeper tint.
When used regularly, this balm helps to reduce the pigmentation on lips. It also moisturizes the lips and makes it soft and supple.

2. As a face massage balm : Please do a patch test if you have sensitive skin. Take a small quantity of the balm and massage it well on cleansed face. Use circular upward motion to massage. Do this until the balm is absorbed on skin. Wipe off the excess with a warm face towel. Your skin will feel baby soft with a subtle glow. Do this regularly for lightening blemishes and dark spots.This is suitable for all skin types. I have combination skin and it did not cause any break outs. Just use a small quantity.

3. As a cheek tint : Dab a small quantity on your cheeks for that natural rosy cheeks.

4. As a lip scrub : Mix the balm with cane sugar/salt to form all natural lipscrub. Massage it gently on flaky lips to make it smooth and plump.

I used all organic ingredients as it is a face product.

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Decadent body scrubs for all skin types

Using a body scrub (or even a dry brushing technique where you use soft body brush to brush the body) is beneficial in many ways.
1. It sloughs away the dirt, grime and dead skin.
2. Buffs the skin and makes it smooth and soft.
3. Massaging the scrub on the body boosts circulation and helps in draining the lymph nodes.
4. It aids in the cell turnover that gets slowed down with age
5. Using a natural body scrub at the end of the day, is very relaxing and can even uplift your mood.

DIY body scrub

You can easily make a body scrub at home. You need to mix a scrubby/gritty ingredient like cane sugar/rock salt powder/oats/flax seed/coffee powder with a moisturizing base like olive oil,almond oil or honey. Add a few drops of essential oil like lavender,orange,rose for relaxing fragrance.

But if you are a lazy bum, you can just buy any of these amazing body scrubs listed below, based on your skin type. Make sure you don’t use much pressure while massaging the scrub as this can cause redness. Do a patch test to make sure the ingredients doesn’t cause irritation.

1. Oily skin : Vedic Line Choco Deli sugar scrub with Jamaican sugar

Price : Rs180 for 65g
Ingredients : Water, Cocoa Butter, Caramel, Cocoa Powder, Sesame Oil, Natural Granules and vitamin E.
This scrub is thick and creamy with a strong cocoa fragrance. It is brown in color with a golden shine to it. The particles are gritty and a small spatula full of product is enough for entire body. You might need to follow it up with a moisturizer as this scrub can be a bit drying. Fragrance is a bit heady.It spreads well on moist skin and is a good scrub at affordable price. Unlike other sugar scrubs, the scrubby particle doesn’t get dissolved easily on wet skin which is a plus.
Buy @ Nykaa


2.Normal skin : Junaili Apricot scrub and Juicy Chemistry Orange Cinnamon scrub


This is an amazing affordable scrub with just 1 ingredient and it ticks all the boxes for me. Read the detailed review here

Another option is the orange, cinnamon and honey sugar scrub from Juicy Chemistry. As rightly said, it smells like Christmas in a jar.It has a warm citrusy cinnamon fragrance and dry crumbly texture.Massage it directly on wet skin. The sugar gets dissolved on wet skin on massaging and hence don’t mix it with water before applying. It doesn’t dry out the skin. Read this post to know how to use it effectively for smooth skin.

Price: Rs 250 for 35g
Ingredients : Organic Demerara Sugar, Organic Cane Sugar, Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter,Natural Vitamin-,Extra Virgin Olive Oil,Jojoba Oil,Sweet Almond Oil, Wild Forest Honey, Cinnamon Essential Oil,Sweet Orange Essential Oil

3. Dry/ Sensitive skin : Juicy Chemistry Rose Almond and Shea body scrub

This is the most moisturizing body scrub I have ever used. The nourishing butters and essential oils in this one makes skin moisturized and you don’t need to follow it up with a moisturizer. Hence it is suitable for dry to normal skin types. I can’t stop raving about the amazing fragrance of this product which is a blend of almond meal and rose and geranium essential oils.

As you can see, the scrub is like a dense almond meal paste, but it still does the job well along with nourishing the skin. This gentle scrub is suited for sensitive skin as well. It is priced on the higher side though.
Price : Rs 300 for 35g
Buy here or from Nykaa.com

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Hair free smooth skin

I am not a big fan of shaving. Not because of all the ‘myths’ associated with it like, shaving can make your hair grow back thicker, shaving makes skin rough and so on. It’s just that I am okay with hairy arms and legs. And if at all I want to remove the hair, I wax them off with store bought cold wax strips or I get it done from a beauty parlour. Wax strips eventhough convenient are really messy and time consuming. I hate it when the wax blobs just stick to skin even after a bath and it has to be removed with oil or the cleaning cloth. So well I thought, why not try shaving. And looks like I am a fan. It was easy, convenient, fast and well I am left with smooth skin. So here are the 3 products you need for a smooth hairless skin.

1. A good razor : I used the Gillette Venus Razor for women
2. Shaving cream : Natural shaving cream from Indian Earthy Naturals
3. Body scrub : Sweet Orange, Honey and Cinnamon Sugar scrub from Juicy Chemistry

Why I prefer this razor over it’s other counterparts : The Gillette Venus is very easy to use and gives a smooth shave. It is affordable and available easily.You can buy it in your local stores or online at about 200 Rs (here).
This razor has 3 blades and an oval head. There is an aloe, vit E strip on the head which is an indicator of the usability of the blades. The handle has a grip and is easy to hold and move around. Also the blue padding strip at the bottom of the head helps in safe and close shave.

Navrasa Herby Organic Shaving Cream

You might have seen this shaving cream on my instagram handle in my haul post.There was a sale going on and I bought it at a discounted rate. For those who are new to the brand, Indian Earthy Naturals is an Indian organic skincare brand that makes mainly bath and body products of high quality with all natural ingredients. I bought a couple of shampoo bars and shaving cream from the brand for my husband, but well doesn’t hurt to try it out on myself. As you can see, the ingredient list has all natural skin foods like cocoa butter, shea butter and essential oils. The notes of lavender, vanilla and patchouli gives the cream a herby and mysterious scent. The cream is off-white in colour and is very thick and dense. Also this cream does not dry out the skin. Only a small quantity is needed and this tub is sure to last me very long.
Price : Rs 900
Buy here

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you are no stranger to Juicy Chemistry. As rightly named, this orange cinnamon body scrub from the brand, smells truly like Christmas in a jar. It’s warm aroma has notes of cinnamon, orange and many other skin loving oils and butters. This scrub sloughes away all the dead skin. Eventhough it is not as moisturizing as the rose shea scrub from the brand, it is gritty enough to polish the skin well. you can also use the junaili apricot scrub reviewed here.
Price : Rs250 for 35g
Buy here

HOW TO SHAVE FOR A SMOOTH SKIN

1. Wash the area to be shaved with warm water : I usually soak a wash cloth in hot water and use that to cleanse.
2. Apply a liberal amount of shaving cream on the skin and lather it well. This shaving cream has a thick creamy foam, which makes it easy for the razor to glide and have a close shave.
3. Run the razor in short strokes along the skin, on the opposite direction of hair growth. Wash the razor head after few strokes and repeat. Donot run the razor in one long stretch, as this might cause nicks and cuts on the skin. Be gentle and careful.
4. Once done with shaving, rub the sugar scrub and massage it gently on the skin. Concentrate on the bumpy areas like elbows. Wash it off.
5. Apply a natural skincare lotion or body butter and enjoy satin soft, smooth skin.

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