Written By: Lorenza Gil-Kabande
Ever since I was young I watched my grandma put on her face and eye creams, but had no idea why. I questioned why she spent so much money on eye creams and why she put them in a certain way. I also didn’t understand why she always told me to put sunscreen on under my makeup. I did it anyway, because “grandma knows best” and I wouldn't dare contradict that. I dove into why she took so much care of her skin and wanted me to create that same habit at a young age. I then found out that skincare goes way beyond making your skin look flawless.
There are a lot of popular misconceptions about what skin care is and what it entails. The most common topics include sunscreen and smooth skin; While they may be right, there is a deeper purpose as to why we should wear sunscreen, and why you should take care of your skin in order to make it look good. It all goes back to preventative care and it isn’t just about creams… it also includes the responsible actions you take to protecting yourself.
Choosing to wear sunscreen not only protects you from getting a nasty tan but it also blocks the sun’s harmful UV rays, thus preventing early signs of aging and melanoma. Other than wearing sunscreen and reapplying, preventative care also demands that your actions complement the sunscreen. Some examples of things you can do are wear hats, sunglasses, staying in the shade, and limiting your UV ray exposure. Another common mistake that many people do not realize they are making is tanning- whether it is on a tanning bed or outside. Any form of UV ray exposure is harmful and can lead to serious consequences, even at a young age. While all these actions may seem small at the time, the benefits are long-term and your skin will thank you for taking care of it.
Josh Blaylock, also known as @mancrediblebeauty on Instagram, has amazing skin care tips and product reviews from a male point of view. As someone who is devoted to skincare, I took into account some of his skin care tips and product recommendations. For example, he has tips on how to properly apply eye cream, because what a lot of people don’t know is that the under-eye area is very sensitive and pulling it too much can cause early signs of wrinkles. His other posts feature products that include SPF, which can be incorporated into your daily routines such as a primer or an acne-prone skin sunblock. From using products with SPF to using face masks, he has a wide variety of recommendations for skin care that work and are more natural.
I enjoy taking care of my skin, and one way I like to keep my skin refreshed is with face masks. A natural mask I like to make at home is the Matcha Green Tea and Honey mask, which gives me that natural glow I so desperately yearn for. The only two ingredients involved are matcha powder and natural honey, but the outcome is spectacular! Another positive thing about this homemade face mask is that it is pretty easy to avoid a disaster or a screw up while making it. If you aren’t familiar with matcha, it’s a “powdered tea” that has a greater source of nutrients (compared to regular green tea), due to the way the plant is harvested. Some benefits of matcha green tea include the treatment of inflammation, treating all skin types, diminishing the signs of aging, and improving your overall complexion. The second ingredient, raw honey, also has many benefits for the skin such as being a moisturizer, brightener, acne fighter, lightener, and is even useful on sunburns! Making the face mask is not complicated nor is all that time consuming; I recommend making extra for future use! Simply mix one part honey and one part matcha powder and mix until you create a thick paste. Despite how much you want to make, you still combine the two ingredients in equal parts. Leave it on for about 15 to 20 minutes and rinse with warm water. You’ll immediately feel your face thanking you for trying this mask out!
For those of you who still want the benefits of an all-natural mask but don’t have the time to make them, I urge you all to check out Lush products! Their products range from grooming products to shampoos and conditioners, face masks, and all the way to make up! The products are all natural-based and handmade by real people who care about what goes into each product. In addition to their large variety of products, each face mask serves its own purpose. For example, to exfoliate my skin, I buy the ‘Mask of Magnaminty’ because it has fresh ingredients that deeply cleanse my skin leaving it smooth and refreshed. Another product I love from Lush is the ‘Cup O’ Coffee’ because of the invigorating smell of coffee and cocoa, stimulates my skin and leaves it feeling super smooth and glowy. One of the last products that one of my friends swears by is the ‘Dirty’ shaving cream. He claims that it gives him a fresh, close shave and that it’s so gentle that it can be used on your body or face. Whether you decide to try out the products I recommended or choose to find the product that benefits you most, I highly believe that the more natural a product is the more benefits you will receive.
Skin care isn’t just about making yourself look flawless now- it’s about maintaining healthy skin throughout the years. Pay attention to what is in each product you buy and monitor what you do to your skin because even though some products give you immediate results, they can be harmful to you in the long-run. My grandma has always said, “It doesn’t matter how much money you spend on treatments and creams- if you don’t take care of your skin the right way, the damages you make will outweigh the benefits.” Please make sure to take care of your body- it’s the only one you get.