The cost of skin care products is always increasing, at least the cost of those that actually might do what they claim to do. You can use natural things to give your skin a tonic and prevent aging signs. If you have a garden or window box, you should consider planting some herbs which can benefit you and your skin.
Borage is a herb that is good in cookery, good for your general health, and for skin care. It contains Omega-6 fatty acids which come in the form of linoleic acid (LA), which the body converts to Gamma-Linoleic-Acid (GLA) and this helps reduce stress levels and there is medical evidence which suggests that it can help in breast cancer cases and may prevent it. In other words, borage oil is a good source of natural medicine for the body, as GLA helps the brain function and is good for sexual and general health.
As far as skin treatments go, you can boil fresh borage leaves and flowers and put your face over the steam (wrap a towel around your head and the pot of borage that has been boiled and removed from the heat source). This steam treatment will revitalize dry sensitive skin and act as a natural toner. Your skin will feel really fresh after this borage steam treatment. The leaves can also be boiled and then leave the water to cool and use as eyewash, or put on cotton wool and place this over tired eyes to rejuvenate them. Use this as you would freshly cut slices of cucumber.
Aloe vera is another plant which is often used in Pakistan and India to keep the skin young-looking and to prevent the formation of wrinkles. The plant isn’t very attractive, but you can cook with it and use it as natural medicine. If you cut away the outer green parts of the leaves to get at the gel inside you can use that on your face as a cleanser or moisturizer.
If you eat persimmons (Sharon fruit) you are not supposed to eat the peel, but don’t throw it away, as you can put it on your face and use it as a face mask. It brightens the complexion and smooths out wrinkles. When eaten, these fruit and the phytochemicals contained in it produce proanthocyandine which it is believed will protect the skin cells from the ravages of the aging process.
Another fruit which you can use for your face is pomelo, the fruit that looks like a grapefruit but which is red inside, or perhaps white. This stimulates production of collagen in the body which helps bind the skin cells together and so goes some way to prevent wrinkles and smooth the existing facial lines.
If you use these natural foods you are not only improving your skin and your looks, but also providing your body with a healthier diet. These items are good for your general and sexual health and Omega-6 and -3 stimulate serotonin which will lift your mood and make you feel happier as well as healthier.
Lynne Evans has lived in Pakistan for four years and worked there as an English and social studies coordinator in an English-medium private school. She has written short stories, has a novel awaiting publication, and has also helped to produce text books for students of English. Lynne has also worked as a writer, proofreader and editor for Hillside Press, Athens, Greece, as well as for Pearson and Macmillan (London) and has traveled widely, both for work and for pleasure. She is currently back in Europe and still traveling.
Photo. Quang Le