Bouncing between various foreign locations over the summer left my skin in a mess when I came back to school this year. Unsure of whether the differences in my skin were due to changes in water, my own skin products or the climate, I took to trying some natural remedies. With much thanks to my roommate, who tried new facials with me every night, I’ve compiled a list of our favorites. An added bonus: all of these ingredients are already in your pantry.
Banana Face Mask
End result: opens pores and tightens skin
Take: 1/2 Banana; 2 tablespoons Honey; Juice of 1/3 lemon
Simply as mash up the banana, mixing in the honey and lemon juice. Apply the mixture to a clean face and neck and leave for 20 minutes. Rinse. Adapted from this recipe. This facemask is a bit soupy, so add more honey for an extra sticky texture.
Green Tea Face Mask
End result: cool, refreshing feeling. Requires nightly use for an extended period of time for best results. Green Tea is known as a natural cure for acne scars.
Take: Green Tea (at least 2 tea bags); Tablespoon of granulated sugar; ½ Tablespoon of Lemon Juice
Green tea is heralded as a natural remedy for problem and sensitive skin. Make a cup of tea with twice the amount of tea you’d normally use. Let the tea cool for an hour (if you’re looking for something to do in the meantime, try out one of our cocktail recipes below!) If, after an hour, the tea is still warm, place it in the fridge until it has cooled. Mix in the sugar and lemon juice once cooled and dab onto your face using a face cloth and leave on for 15 minutes. Wash off and moisturize.
Contemplative Cucumber Mask
End result: skin is moisturized and revived
Take: 1/3 cucumber; 1 tablespoon honey; 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
Start by cutting the cucumber in half and scooping out the seeds. Grate the cucumber with the skin still on. It’s best to do this is in slow strips, starting with the skin side. (We found by grating it with quick strokes too much juice came out of the cucumber making the facial impossible to apply). Add in the yogurt and honey. It will still be a bit soupy so it’s best applied by a friend while you relax with a good book on the couch for 20 minutes. Adapted from this recipe.
Classic Porridge Mask
End result: sticks well and exfoliates. Best for oily skin.
Take: 1/4 cup (2 ounces) ground porridge; ½ cup (4 ounces) water; 1 tsp honey
Pour the porridge and water into a microwaveable bowl and microwave for 2 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes and stir in honey. Apply to face after cleaning with lukewarm water. Leave on for 15 minutes and rinse with tepid water. Recipe makes 2.
If you’re looking for more professional products close to home, The Body Shop offers a range of tea tree products and facial oil that are known to help with acne problems. The Fairmont also offers Terrific Tuesdays for students (50% off!)