By now I’ve gotten pretty used to the quirks of my body. My perma-pruny fingertips, for instance, or mismatched eyebrows… But my skin has a mind of its own. Even when I do the things it likes (oil cleansing; twice daily toning; mild moisturizer) it still occasionally gives me grief, especially when I’m stressed or sleep-deprived. When this happens, I turn to this soothing, nourishing DIY oatmeal mask to save my skin.
A quick note: you will often hear that blemish-prone skin needs clarifying masks to deep cleanse the pores and get rid of excess oil. I also used to turn to those masks, but didn’t feel that it helped much. In fact, those masks made my skin dryer–which led to uneven texture and excess oil production, not clean, smooth skin. When your skin is breaking out, it is inflamed–quite possibly due to excess dryness as much as counteracting oiliness. Trying to “dry out” a blemish will actually make it even more inflamed and unable to heal. Instead, you need calming ingredients that nourish and hydrate your skin, so that it can heal faster.
Oatmeal is one of the few natural ingredients to have FDA-approved skin benefits. It has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, and healthy vitamins, minerals, and lipids. Oatmeal is also well-known gentle cleanser and effective moisturizer. Banana on the other hand adds additional hydration and antibacterial powers.
DIY Oatmeal Mask for Blemish-Prone Skin
Cook 1/4 cup rolled oats with about 1/2 cup of water until they’re done. Place in a bowl and cool completely. Add about 1/4 medium banana, and mash and mix well. Wash your face and pat dry. Lie down (spread a towel below your head if needed) and apply on your face. Leave on for about 15 minutes, and rinse with warm water. Finish with toner and cotton round.
Some other favorite ways to use oatmeal for beauty:
Take an oatmeal bath. Add a cup of plain uncooked oatmeal to your bath for extra dose of moisture and gentle cleansing.
Exfoliate your hands and feet with a blend of oatmeal and a bit of coconut oil at your next DIY Mani/pedi.
Have an oatmeal brunch! Skin glows from within, so a healthy, antioxidant-filled breakfast like this oatmeal breakfast or oatmeal smoothie will get you pretty in no time.
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Photo: Peaceful Dumpling; Ivana Vasilik via Flickr