With summer finally here I'm sure we can all agree we want a natural glow without the need of makeup. No ones wants to deal with the melting of makeup while hiking or laying out by the pool. I have put together some of my favorite ways in giving me a natural summer glow without any harmful skin care ingredients.
Achieve your healthy natural glow
with oil, sunless fruit derived self tanners, supplements & learn which harmful skin care ingredients are actually aging us!
This summer get a gorgeous sun kissed look without exposing yourself to UV rays and toxic chemicals by incorporating sea buckthorn berry oil into your skincare routine. This oil will stain your skin in a healthy way and nourish it at the same time. Bright orange and full of beta-carotene as well as other powerful antioxidants and nourishing omegas, this oil can give a bit of a bronzing effect when diluted and applied topically as a moisturizer. Adding a few drops of sea buckthorn berry oil to a few ounces of jojoba oil and shake well to blend. It’s intensely pigmented and will stain if not properly diluted.
Shimmered skin: Give yourself a glistening glow for when your at the beach, wearing a halter top or fav. party dress. Add a pinch your favorite powdered bronzer to either coconut oil, olive oil, or grapeseed oil. Now you'll really feel like a mermaid at the beach!
A fun & easy way to achieve the best skin ever is to challenge yourself by drinking a gallon of water a day (if you're not a big water drinker, start with 1/2 a gallon for a week). By having a daily goal like this you'll notice you eat less & skin will look and feel more hydrated within a week. Fruits and greens contain powerful antioxidants that help protect the skin from cellular damage caused by free radicals, so it's important to get your 5 a day. I try drinking matcha tea everyday. If you do, I promise you'll have the best skin ever! I searched for a brand I trusted and Breakaway Matcha is who I discovered. They have everything you want to know about the powerful tea & how to prepare. Seriously, educate yourself on this stuff, it's one of the best anti-aging, immune boosting, cognitive enhancer, medicines on our planet. The company "Breakaway Matcha" has a sample box that lets you choose from 4 different matcha blends.
By incorporating more homemade juices you'll notice less flaws, redness and acne. Juicing is beneficial for the skin because it gives the body liquid nutrients that's easily absorbed & it's loaded with antioxidants which keep our skin young. Having carrots, spinach and papaya in your juice will give your body beta-carotenes, which give your skin a slight orange appearance that results in a healthy glow. Remember to make your juices with lots of Kale, cucumber and celery. Celery & cucumber juice have the hydration & vitamins that are crucial for skin nourishment. If you choose to add fruit I try to use only 1-2 sweet fruits to stay away from any sugar overload. I've made this mistake by to much beet juice and I felt nauseous for a couple hours. Learn from my mistake! I've attached some juice recipes to incorporate in your journey to better skin. The juicer I use is "Aicok Juicer Slow Masticating extractor" which is a cold press juicer and juices at a low speed. It's important to choose a low speed juicer because high speed has been shown to kill some of the nutrients. It's also vital to drink your juice within an hour of making it to get the most alive nutrients possible. Avoid sugar, dairy & gluten if your having skin problems. Especially toxic vegetable oil. Safes oils: Coconut, Olive, flax, avocado... For more advice on diet read my blog- "Reasons for imperfect skin." & "Enhance beauty through diet"
Vitamins & supplements:
Vitamin C: is one of the best vitamins for our skin's health. It helps to boost the collagen production in your skin and prevents discoloration of the skin. If you want flaw less, soft and glowing skin, then Vitamin C is key.
Vitamin E is anti-inflammatory and important for healthy cell turnover and UV protection. Studies have shown that vitamin E protects better when it’s combined with vitamin C, and subjects who took both had lower amounts of DNA damage after UV exposure.
Zinc: In 2013, Turkish researchers found that people with acne tend to have lower zinc levels than those without, and studies have shown that the mineral is almost as effective as antibiotics in killing acne bacteria. It reduces the inflammatory response in acne-prone skin, and it’s a powerful antioxidant. Look for zinc picolinate and zinc methionine, which are more easily absorbed by the body.
Vitamin A: reduces sebum production and maintains protective tissue. It’s often used to treat acne, psoriasis or eczema.
L-lysine: Anti-viral & hormone balancing. Prevents pimples & cold sores. Organic Olivia on you-tube claims it's helped her have great skin, she's amazing at telling her story, check her video out "how I cured my acne" if you haven't already.
Omega-3 fatty acids—support collagen production, which helps fill in any lines on your face. They also help reduce symptoms of rosacea and eczema, regulate your skin’s moisture balance and improve the overall appearance of your skin.
Evening Primrose supplements: Rich in (omega-6) fatty acids, including linoleic acid. Many of us have low levels of linoleic acid which results in tired, dry and/or oily skin.
The problem with self tanners
Along with the gross smell, annoying streaks, orange tone & weird looking hands most self tanner sprays and creams contain an active ingredient called dihydroxyacetone, also referred to as DHA, many companies now use erythrulose and claim to be DHA free, but essentially it's the same thing! DHA has been know to cause some serious damage to our skin as listed below:
Oxidative stress: The reaction triggered by DHA generates free radicals (Free radicals are highly reactive chemical byproducts that attack cell structures and degrade collagen and elastin fibers. They're linked to premature aging, wrinkles and sagging skin!
Accelerated sun damage: The oxidative stress gets even worse if you go out in the sun after applying DHA. One study found: "In DHA-treated skin, more than 180 percent additional radicals were generated during sun exposure with respect to untreated skin."
DNA damage: DHA has also been found to induce DNA damage. A scary quote from this study: "The genotoxic capacity of DHA raises a question about the long-term clinical consequences of treatment of the skin with this commonly used compound."
Less vitamin D production: The use of DHA can inhibit the body's production of vitamin D (see this study).
Contact dermatitis: Regular application of DHA can lead to irritation and inflammation, a.k.a. contact dermatitis (see this study).
Well, if you look closer at those ingredients lists, you'll see the active ingredient erythrulose. And guess what? It's essentially the same thing as DHA!
Important information: Many company's claim there product is DHA free by changing the ingredient name to erythrulose. It's essentially the same thing as DHA, so beware!
All of these concerns also apply to spray tans—which are actually even riskier than lotions. Regular inhalation of DHA can harm the respiratory system and even promote certain cancers
DHA is a harmful ingredient and has the potential to cause genetic alterations and DNA damage. For a completely natural, vegan and DHA-free self-tanner, try HAUT cosmetics carmel tan. (Yes, it’s pricey but unfortunately I have not found a more affordable DHA-free option out there, let me know if you have!) The active tanning agent is a natural sugar that berries produce, which has a similar chemical reaction on skin as DHA and creates golden buildable color that doesn’t look orange or streaky.
How to care for your skin this summer
Sun damage is a serious thing and so is harmful chemicals in our sunscreen, moisturizers & makeup. Protecting our skin from sun damage & making sure to only apply ingredients that are good for our skin is extremely important when we care about aging & looking our best. Just like knowing the ingredients in your food, its just as important to know the ingredients in your skin care products. Your skin is porous, it absorbs 60-70% of whatever you put on it. Choosing a toxic/chemical free sunscreen is a must have item for your summer activities.
A study published in the American Journal of Public Health looked into the skin’s absorption rates of chemicals found in drinking water. It showed that the skin absorbed an average of 64% of total contaminant dosage. Other studies found the face to be several times more permeable than broad body surfaces and an absorption rate of 100% for underarms and genitalia.
When choosing to wear sunscreen
Dangers of traditional sunscreens & when you truly need to apply it:
Crazy fact, but since the introduction of sunscreens began, skin cancer rates have actually risen! Many sunscreens contain toxic ingredients that in many cases can actually promote skin cancer growth and free radical production in the body. We really don't need to be slathering on the sunscreen everyday unless we know we're going to be out in the sun all day. With many of us working indoors with minimal sun exposure, we really should be more concerned with getting our daily dose of Vitamin D that our body gets through the sun. The Vitamin D that comes from sunlight is crucial for proper immune function & keeps are skin healthy. I recommend to my clients that if they know they'll be getting longer than 20 minutes of sun exposure then sunscreen is a good idea, but with moderate sun exposure it's really not necessary. The true harm that comes from sun exposure is when we are at the point of burning our skin. Everyday I try to get at least 10 minutes of unprotected sun exposure daily for the benefits of natural Vitamin D. When choosing a sunscreen be aware of the toxic ingredients that are in many brands.
Ingredients to look out for in your sunscreens:
Mineral ingredients are what you want to use. These typically include ingredients like zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, which create a physical barrier to protect the skin from the sun. Chemical ingredients in sunscreens should be avoided because they've been linked to disrupting hormones and skin allergies. You especially want to avoid these chemical ingredients on your children. These ingredient chemicals include oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate. Stop wasting money & time with sunscreens and moisturizers that have many chemicals, preservatives & artificial fragrances. There's so many natural skin care products made from mother nature's perfect foods, clays, minerals, oils & essential oils.
Safe Sunscreens to buy
*Badger natural mineral sunscreen cream is my personal favorite, it's completely natural & organically certified. A tube runs about $15 & they have a huge variety of different sunscreens to choose from, from baby to daily wear & sport/active wear. My personal choice is the tinted sheer, it gives you a nice tint along with the protection you need from the harmful rays. It's made with my favorite ingredients such as beeswax & sunflower oil. They have a sunscreen that is made with clear zinc oxide, so it doesn't leave that annoying white film on your skin.
Natural oils & body butter that contain SPF
Did you know these natural oils & butters actually have sun protecting properties. These are great for everyday wear, if you're having a full day in the sun, I suggest wearing a stronger sun screen.
The individual ingredients are considered low SPF and generally quoted at these levels:
Almond Oil- SPF 5
Coconut oil– SPF 4-6
Zinc Oxide SPF 2-20 depending on how much is used
Red Raspberry Seed Oil SPF 25-50
Carrot Seed Oil – SPF 35-40
Shea butter– SPF 4-6
Homemade Sunscreen Recipe
½ cup almond or olive oil
¼ cup coconut oil
¼ cup beeswax
2 Tablespoons Zinc Oxide (this is a non-nano version. Be careful not to inhale the powder).
Up to 1 teaspoon Red raspberry seed oil– optional
Up to 1 teaspoon Carrot seed oil– optional
2 tablespoons Shea butter- optional
Optional: Essential oils or vanilla Extract or other natural extracts to suit your preference (Do not use citrus essential oils as they increase sun sensitivity)
Homemade Sunscreen Instructions
Combine all ingredients except zinc oxide in a large glass jar. Fill a medium saucepan with a couple inches of water & place over medium heat. Place jar in saucepan and let melt, stir mixture occasionally. When completely melted stir in zinc oxide. Stir a few times as it cools to make sure sic oxide is incorporated. Store in room temperature.
This sunscreen is not waterproof and will need to be reapplied after sweating or swimming.
Make sure not to inhale the zinc oxide use a mask if necessary!
Add more beeswax to make thicker sunscreen, less to make smooth sunscreen
I recommend coconut or vanilla extract or lavender essential oils for fragrance
I prefer to store in a small canning jar and apply like a body butter. It will be thicker, especially if you use coconut oil in the recipe.
Remove the Zinc Oxide and this makes an excellent lotion recipe!