Articles - Gourmet Pleasures:

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The shelves in pharmacies and department stores are groaning under the load of lotions, creams and masks, all of which claim to make us look younger, fresher and prettier. Even when the ingredients are listed on the label, do most of us really know what we’re putting on our skin and hair? Making your own cosmetics is a real alternative. The ingredients are readily available, it doesn’t take much time and it will save you money. But the really big benefit, especially if you use untreated, organic ingredients from a pharmacy or healthfood store, is that you know exactly what’s in your cosmetic jars.


Clear skin in 30 minutes

People who have a tendency to oily and pimply skin are advised to use a face mask made of white medicinal clay (betonite), strong sage tea and a mix of dried herbs, such as lavender, horsetail, rosemary, marigold, tormentil or hamamelis. Powdered verbena could be substituted for the herb mix. Mix a spoonful of the medicinal clay with sage tea to a thick cream, then stir in a teaspoonful of herbs or verbena powder. Use your hands to spread the mask gently over your face, which should be free of make-up. Leave it on for 15 to 30 minutes. Wash the mask off with the remaining lukewarm sage tea. Wait a couple of hours before applying any other creams – the skin needs to be exposed to the air.


Make your own shampoo

No woman is going to say she wouldn’t want to have thick, glossy hair, but many hair products which promise just this depend heavily on silicones for their effect. The silicones leave a film on the hair, and because they are not biologically decomposed, more and more silicone residues build up on your hair and scalp. If you want to ban chemicals from your head and hair, try making your own shampoo. Take an egg yolk, 80 g full-fat quark and one tablespoon of honey. Mix them all together well with a few drops of rosemary oil and 12 drops of any aromatic oil that you particularly like. Massage the mixture into your freshly washed hair and scalp. You can intensify the effect by wrapping your head in ordinary plastic film or cling film. After 30 minutes wash the mixture out very thoroughly using lukewarm water.


Magic mix for wrinkles

Honey is widely used in natural cosmetics. For example in anti-wrinkle cream. To make the cream, melt two teaspoons of beeswax in a bowl over hot water. At the same time, heat three teaspoons linden blossom water with a teaspoon of honey. Once the beeswax has melted, stir in three teaspoons shea butter until it has also melted. When both mixtures are hot but not boiling, add the honey mixture drop by drop to the beeswax mix. When the mixture is homogenous, take it off the stove and let it cool. Finally, stir in two drops myrrh oil and three drops jasmine oil and fill it into a glass jar.


Pick-me-up for eyes

Teabags are a quick cure for tired, red eyes. Take plain teabags, pour over boiling water, let the bags cool in the tea and then lay them for ten minutes on your closed eyes.


Author: Joli Bertram

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