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  1. Spring is an important seasonal shift when it comes to beauty. It is when we look at swapping out our heavy skincare routine that we have been hiding under all winter for something lighter and fresher. 

    It is also a really good opportunity to look at your skincare and beauty routine and see where you can make some big changes in terms of swapping commercially produced products for more natural and even some homemade products.

    Let’s take a look at how you can naturalise your beauty routine for the spring. Your skin, your purse, and the environment will thank you for it!

     

    Image courtesy of Pixabay CC0 License

    Coconut oil

    In recent years coconut has experienced somewhat of a renaissance, with people using it for all sorts of things, cooking being just one of them. 

    Coconut oil can work wonders for both your hair and skin. Suffering from dry, damaged hair, maybe from using hair dyes, pollution, and heated tools? Pop some coconut oil on it. Coat  the ends in it and leave it for an hour two, or even overnight if you can before washing out as normal. A study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Science found that coconut oil was the only oil that reduced protein loss when used as a pre-wash or post-wash product. This held true for both damaged and undamaged hair. Due to its low molecular weight, it is able to penetrate the hair shaft and prevent hair damage. 

    It is also a great moisturiser for dry skin and conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. Pure cold-pressed, organic, non-GMO coconut oil is an excellent massage oil that can be used for all types of skin, including dry skin.

    DIY Face Masks

    Get rid of all those pots and tubs of face masks that have no doubt gone out of date since you last used them, and head down to your fridge and kitchen pantry instead. You do not need to spend a fortune on commercially produced face masks that come packaged in plastic containers - it is really easy to make your own with simple store cupboard and fridge ingredients. Even better, you can tailor them exactly to your skin type and skin problems. There are plenty of beauty mask recipes online, so find one that suits your skin and have a go at making your own. 

    One thing that is important to remember when making your own face masks, or indeed any other homemade beauty product is that it does not always turn out pretty. Sure, you see all these lovely looking ones on social media, but the reality is that they quite often look a little grey in color, a little sludgy and your bathroom sink ends up covered. However, when you see the difference that it can make to your skin - and your bank account - you suddenly won’t be quite as bothered!

    Cleansers

    Cleansing is a vital part of a skincare routine. Whether you wear a full face of makeup every day or prefer to go au naturel, cleansing is one of the things you should not even consider skipping. It removes not just makeup, but the grime that attaches itself to your skin all through the day. It is also really easy to naturalize as well. 

    You can make a really simple and effective cleanser using honey, aloe, and oil. You don’t need to use this in the morning; just in the evening. Massage the mixture of ingredients onto a damp face and then use a soft, wet face cloth to remove the product. The product will loosen all the grime and dirt and makeup, and the use of the cloth will remove it all. 

    Toner

    A toner helps to calm, hydrate, balance the pH of the skin and regulates oil production. , There are a couple of different ways to apply a toner. You can either spritz it onto the skin and use your fingers to gently ‘press’ it into the skin or apply using a cotton pad. 

    Apple cider vinegar makes for an excellent natural toner for oily or congested skin. The downside is that it does not smell particularly lovely and it does stick around for a while, particularly if you sweat. However, it is a great product for balancing the skin and feels refreshing too. Make sure that you do dilute the apple cider vinegar with water before applying it to the skin. 

    Cool it down

    We know how lovely it is to jump into a scalding hot shower or deep hot bubble bath after a long day at work. It’s comforting, it is relaxing and it feels SO good. However, as good as it feels, it really is not great for our skin, our energy bills, or the planet! 

    Hot water strips your skin of natural oils, which are needed to lock in moisture and lead to dry itchy skin, as well as drying out your hair and making it brittle.

    In an ideal world, your shower should be five minutes long to get the best out of it for your skin. The first three minutes of your shower should be warm - not hot - and the last two should be as cold as you can tolerate. This has the following benefits:

    • It improves your circulation: Warmer water causes the blood vessels just under the skin to dilate, and the cold water restricts them. Switching between warm and cold improves circulation and helps to bring oxygen to the skin, leading to a healthy glow and complexion.

    • The warm water opens up your pores, allowing dirt and grime to escape, and then the cold blast afterward closes them back up, stopping any further dirt to clog them up and lead to spots and pimples.

    • It makes your hair look shiny and healthy. The cold water will close up the hair follicles and lie them flat, making them look glossy and full of life. It also helps to strengthen your hair.

    It doesn’t take a lot of effort or money to naturalise your beauty routine. In fact, it can even save time and money. Why don’t you try naturalising just one step of your beauty routine this spring and see the difference it can make?

    Until next time

    Zoe

    x

  2. Sometimes we find ourselves in situations where our lifestyle choices can hinder our lives’ journey. The choices we make in terms of our health and wellbeing can affect us differently. Sometimes these habits develop without us even realising. Maybe it’s our circumstances that dictate it. Or simply we just have made a wrong decision and then decide not to make the change. However, developing healthier habits can be beneficial to our well-being and how we feel on a day-to-day basis. With that in mind, here are some of the easiest ways you could do it.

    lifestyle-choices

    Does your diet need looking at?

    The first thing to think about would be whether or not you have the right diet in place. We can all be guilty of reaching for those convenience foods when life is busy or just choosing to eat things that are not particularly good for us. This is when the diet can go out of the window. But it shouldn’t be about losing weight, and it should be more about having the right balance with the food you eat and getting the proper nutrients and vitamins from your diet to give your body precisely what it needs to function. There is a lot of information online about how to have a balanced diet and the right foods to be eating. 

    Do you have a vice you want to give up? 

    We all have vices and bad habits that we want to rid ourselves of now and again. Smoking is one of them, and while it can be a tricky thing to give up, there are some great methods out there to help you do it. You might want to consider a healthier habit and switch to vaping instead. You can see more about that online. Or perhaps speak with a doctor to see what other methods are available. Some even go cold turkey, but it can take a lot of willpower and determination to see it through. Alcohol is another vice that we can all be a little reliant on at times. Reaching for that drink too often and knowing that you perhaps need the glass rather than enjoying it. Getting rid of the temptation is a good place to start with alcohol, and keeping a good stock of non-alcoholic drinks that you want can help you make the switch. 

    How often do you exercise?

    When was the last time you exercised? Probably not for a while if you are starting to question your lifestyle. Exercising forms a big part of a general healthy lifestyle, and so you may want to consider how often and when you decide to exercise and be more active. It isn’t about joining a gym and trying out grueling aerobic classes or sweating away on a treadmill. Being active could mean a brisk walk. It could mean a run in the park, an at-home workout you follow on YouTube or even simple yoga positions in the garden. It is all about making a choice. 

    There are many healthy habits you might want to change up. Drinking more water, taking better care of yourself and your mindset. Often just starting on this quest can have a knock-on effect in other areas of your life. 

    The simplest way to make a change is to start today and give it your wholehearted committment.  If you need support to hold you accountable, get your loved ones involved or join a support group.  

    If you are not sure what bad habits you have that you would like to change, take a pen and a piece of paper and have a good think about your everyday routine.  You could look at areas such as diet, exercise, how much time you spend on your mobile phone or social media, whether you spend to much time worrying about the future etc.  Then be practical and set yourself a realistic, achievable goal, such as only going on Facebook for 1hr a day or going for a walk twice a week.

    They say that it takes anywhere between 18 to 265 days to form a new habit and an average of 66 days for a new behaviour to become automatic.  So why not start something new today that moves you in the direction of onwards and upwards improvement in your life?  

    Until next time

    Zoe

    x