There are tons of factors that affect the way our skin ages. Bad habits like staying out in the sun without sunscreen or smoking can have a serious effect on the appearance of our skin.
As we grow older, we experience the loss of elastin, which makes our skin supple, as well as the loss of subcutaneous support, the layer between our skin and muscles that keeps our skin looking smooth. Our skin becomes more fragile and transparent and needs to be treated with care. The worst habit that is the most damaging to our skin is sun exposure without protection as the UV rays damages the elastin in our skin, which is a process that is generally irreversible.
Noticing your first wrinkle or sign of age-related skin damage can be a traumatizing experience. For many, this experience immediately precedes their first dermatologist appointment, or the first time that they drop a serious wad of cash on makeup and skincare products at a skincare boutique.
While there’s nothing better than proactive habits to protect your skin from age and sun related damage, there are things that you can do to help heal your skin after the damage is done. There are many basic kitchen and pantry ingredients that make excellent face masks, and many of them bring lots of benefits without a high price point. Keep in mind that if you’re trying a mask at home for the first time, you should always test it on your hand first, to see if there’s any type of allergic reaction before putting it on your face.
Here are some amazing face masks you can whip up today that will make your skin feel renewed, refreshed, and restored.
Lemon and Oatmeal Mask
This mask contains ½ cup of uncooked rolled oats mixed with four tablespoons of lemon juice. To apply, just mix the two ingredients together and stir. You may want to wait a few minutes to apply it to your face, so lemon juice can really saturate the oats. Once everything looks like it’s incorporated completely, apply it to your face and neck, and let it sit for between five and 10 minutes.
Oatmeal is extremely moisturizing, and lemon juice can help brighten the skin and reduce the appearance of sun damage, age spots, and acne scars. This mask is very mild and can be used up to twice a week.
This mask is one of the simplest out there — all you need is a single egg. Crack the egg into a bowl and beat until combined. Apply it to your face with a damp washcloth or brush and wash it off after it dries. The protein in the egg has a ton of anti-aging benefits, and the large amount of potassium also helps to preserve moisture — a major boon to dull, dry skin.
Eggs contain riboflavin, also known as Vitamin B2, which can help protect your skin from the effects of environmental stress. Unless you’re allergic to egg, there should be nothing in this mask to irritate your skin, so feel free to use it as frequently as you wish.
Avocado and Honey Mask
Adding moisture to our skin is a key part of mitigating the signs of aging. This mask, which is made of two ingredients that are both moisturizing to our skin and extremely delicious to eat, is really easy to make. Just mix half of a ripe avocado with one tablespoon of honey, and mash until the mixture is completely uniform in texture. This mask is on the thicker side, so it should be easy to apply to the face. You can even warm the honey in the microwave if you want to ensure it penetrates deeply into pores (this is especially enjoyable in the winter). The fat in the avocado helps moisturize the skin, and the honey is a humectant, which helps ensure the moisture is absorbed.
Oatmeal, Milk, and Clay Mask
While it may be a little more complicated to find the ingredients for this mask, the purifying effect that it has on skin makes it totally worth it. This mask is made of one teaspoon of facial-quality clay or mud, mixed with one teaspoon oat flour, ½ tablespoon powdered milk, one teaspoon of each honey and olive oil, and a drop of essential oil for scent. Mix those ingredients together, then add enough water to achieve a paste consistency.
Clay is full of minerals and can help our skin detox, while milk nourishes skin. The honey and olive oil are both extremely moisturizing. This mask will bring you amazing benefits when used once a week.
Banana and Apricot Mask
This sweet and fruity mask smells as delicious as it is beneficial for your skin. Start by pitting and skinning an apricot, then peeling a banana and cutting it in half. Mash half of the banana with the apricot until it forms a paste, using up to one tablespoon of water to blend it together. Apply it to your face and leave it on for at least 20 minutes.
Each of these fruits is rich in vitamins, including A, B, and C, which can help heal damaged skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Vitamins C and B also help improve skin elasticity, which is critical as we age.
Cocoa-Coconut and Yogurt Mask
This mask is also made of delicious ingredients, and helps exfoliate and moisturize our skin. Mix up one teaspoon virgin coconut oil with one teaspoon unflavored Greek yogurt, then add ¼ teaspoon cocoa powder. Stir these ingredients together and use your fingers to vigorously rub the mixture into your face, neck, and chest area. Leave it for 10-20 minutes, then wash it off.
The cocoa powder will help slough off dry skin from your face and neck, and the coconut oil and yogurt will help moisturize the newly refreshed skin. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to avoid using this mask more than once a week, as the scrubbing may cause irritation.
Yogurt, Avocado, and Wheat Grass Mask
This mask, which is made of intensely moisturizing ingredients, will bring tons of hydration to you skin, and feels amazing after a day in the hot sun. Mix up ¼ cup of yogurt with half of a pitted avocado, then add in two tablespoons of either oat grass or wheat grass juice. Apply to a clean face and leave on for 15 minutes before rinsing off.
The yogurt and avocado are both extremely moisturizing, while the grass juices bring tons of nutrients to the skin and help rid the body of toxins.
Probiotic Powder and Red Burdock Mask
These unique ingredients may sound complex, but when used together, they pack a powerful, anti-aging punch. Simply stir together 1/8 cup of probiotic powder with 15 drops of liquid red burdock root, which both can be found at a natural or health food store. Using three tablespoons of ionized water, make a paste, then apply it to your face in a thick layer. Leave on for 30 minutes before rinsing off. The probiotic powder hydrates skin and helps repair collagen damage.
Cream, Sugar, and Almond Mask
One of the ways that you can help your skin look younger is by gently exfoliating to remove dead skin cells. This mask is both exfoliating and hydrating. Mix three tablespoons of cream and two tablespoons of olive oil with one cup of white sugar, ½ cup of brown sugar, and ½ cup of finely ground almonds. Apply in a circular motion, then leave on for several minutes to really soak in the moisture. This makes a large amount, so you can keep it in the fridge for several weeks and use once or twice a week.
Nutmeg and Milk Mask
Another simple mask that both exfoliates and hydrates is this nutmeg and milk mask. Simply combine ½ tablespoon of nutmeg with one tablespoon of whole milk and apply to a clean face. Massage it in circles to help the process of exfoliation, then leave it on for five to 10 more minutes to soak in. Nutmeg has natural antibacterial properties, while whole milk is full of hydrating and soothing proteins. Apply a moisturizer after you rinse off the mask to seal in the hydration.