Winter can be so beautiful; snow is coating the trees, holiday lights are lit up on every street, and there are contagious smiles and laughter from almost everyone you pass by. But winter wreaks havoc on our skin. Wind and cold temperatures combined with poor skincare habits lead to dry, cracked skin, breakouts and even excess oil. Luckily, we have a solution. Here are all the steps you need to master the perfect DIY facial. So slip on your PJs, pop in a few movies and relax knowing your skincare woes are on their way out.
The first step to an amazing facial is making sure your skin is clean. First, pull your hair back into a ponytail or put on a headband to keep your hair out of your face. Then, remove any makeup you’re wearing and wash your hands. Hands laden with bacteria are not too helpful when it comes to cleansing your face. Then, gently wash your face like you normally do with your favorite cleanser and warm water. We recommend that you don’t scrub too vigorously and also use a foaming or gel cleanser as opposed to an exfoliating one, because the next step in your facial is to exfoliate your skin.
This step is important, but if you’ve already exfoliated in the past three days, forgo this step and move on to #3. Exfoliating too often can lead to broken blood vessels, which leads to redness. It can also cause more breakouts because you’re constantly sloughing off skin cells and disrupting your skin’s natural balance. But if you haven’t exfoliated in a while, give it a go. You can use a spinning brush, like Clarisonic. To exfoliate with a brush, rinse your face with warm water and then use your brush for 30-60 seconds. Let the brush do the work while you guide it around your face. Another option is to use your favorite store-bought face scrub or a homemade scrub. Pinterest is the best place to find DIY scrubs galore. One of our favorite recipes mixes ground coffee and melted coconut oil for rejuvenated and glowing skin. To exfoliate with a scrub, gently dampen your skin with a wash cloth and massage into your skin for around 30 seconds, then rinse with warm water. Pat dry with a clean towel.
Steaming and warming your face increases circulation and it helps the active ingredients in your cleansers and scrubs to sink deeper into your skin. There are two simple ways to steam at home, without constructing a sauna in your living room. One option is to soak a towel in hot water for a bit and wring it out, until it’s hot but not dripping with water, then place it on your face for 5-10 minutes. Another steaming option is to drape a towel over your head and stand over a steaming pot of water for 10 minutes. Be careful with both of these methods—water that’s too hot can damage your skin, so check the temperature before you put it near your face.
This is the part you’ve been waiting for! If you have a store-bought face mask that doesn’t irritate your skin, use that. But you can also try something new by making your own mask out of ingredients you probably have laying around your kitchen. Since it’s winter, we recommend finding a recipe that will moisturize, soothe and brighten your skin. Try mixing 1 cup of dry oats, 1/2 cup of water, and 1/4 cup of organic honey for a perfect winter mask. You can also put the oats in a food processor beforehand so the mask isn’t as lumpy. Rub the mixture on your face and leave it on for 10-15 minutes. Or if you want more of a creamy, soothing facial mask, mix 2 teaspoons of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling), 1/2 teaspoon of organic honey, and 1/2 teaspoon of organic milk together. Leave this on your face for about 10 minutes then gently wash away with warm water.
The last step in your luxurious DIY facial is to moisturize. Using a moisturizer is so important, even if you have oily skin. If you don’t moisturize, your skin has to produce more oil to try and hydrate itself, leading to the appearance of shine and more breakouts. After you rinse off your face mask, apply a little bit of your usual moisturizer all over your face. There’s no specific type you have to use, but if you’re going out during the day, make sure your lotion has sun protection included.
Now all you need to do is look at yourself in the mirror and relish in your beautiful skin. Girl, LOOK AT YOU. You’re glowing! We think you should do this more often. #treatyoself