Natural skin care has recently skyrocketed in popularity, and I really see the appeal, no nasty ingredients added vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and it is easy to customise your own facial oils with the plethora of cheap and easy to use vegetable oils that are available. But there are some cases where people feel that a product is healthy for the skin just because it is natural. Today I am going to discuss some of the natural ingredients I see recommended to people that might actually harm their skin, because hun arsenic is natural too.
- Lemon juice.
Lemon juice is tasty and who doesn’t enjoy a fresh citrusy aroma when burning a candle, but in my opinion that is where lemon juice should stay! I have seen so many posts on Pinterest and Facebook saying that lemons are full of citric acid, which is an AHA (alpha hydroxy acid), and will give you glowing youthful skin, while some of this is true it is good to remember that lemon juice is incredibly irritating to the skin and can easily leave you with red inflamed cheeks . . . and not to mention the stinging! Rather than using lemon juice I would recommend that you use an AHA toner that contains glycolic or lactic acid as these are much gentler and are formulated to not harm or over exfoliate the skin. I have also seen many posts claiming that putting lemon juice on your hair will give it natural highlights when exposed to the sun, now this one I have actually tried and . . . it didn’t give me highlights, it did however dry out my naturally dark hair (although my SLS laden shampoo probably didn’t help) and causde me to get nasty sunburn on my face and scalp. . . to be fair I wasn’t wearing SPF. . . I was in high school don’t judge me.
- Sugar scrubs for your face.
I love a good cheap and easy sugar scrub, I love it so much I wrote my previous blog post on it and you can read it here (shameless I know) but as I stated in that post I would not recommend using a sugar scrub on your face. It’s for the body only! Sugar granules are big, really really rough and much too harsh for the delicate skin of the face. Using a sugar scrub will most likely cause micro scratches on the surface of the skin that can lead to scarring and an uneven texture not to mention the redness and irritation. To my horror I have read that people actually cut a lemon in half, sprinkle sugar on top and go to town on their faces . . . ouch.
Rather than using sugar I would highly recommend trying oat flour out, simply dump about a teaspoon of oat flour out in your palm add a bit of water to make it spreadable and gently use it to exfoliate your skin. Oats have many skin and health benefits including its skin hydrating and calming properties. Or you can use toners containing the above mentioned AHA’s in which case you probably do not need any additional exfoliation.
- Bicarbonate of soda.
Bicarbonate of soda or bicarb as I like to call it (because I’m lazy okay) is often used for cooking and cleaning purposes and, honestly I can see why people think it is a good idea to use it as an exfoliator. This fine white powder would make a great exfoliator because of how small and gentle the granules are, but the major problem is the pH of this ingredient. At a pH of 9 bicarb is super alkaline where the skin at a pH of 5.5 is acidic. The skin has a nifty little protection mechanism called the acid mantle that helps protect your skin against viruses, bacteria or any other stuff you would rather stay away from, so adding a very alkaline product to your skin disrupts your skin’s acid mantle and leaves your skin much less protected. Rather than bicarb it is probably a better idea to try oat flour or AHA as we discussed before.
- Coconut oil.
I go through coconut oil at a rapid pace I love it on my skin, hair and face. For my skin it works great, but I have super sensitive dry skin that is not prone to congestion or breakouts, people who struggle with acne or problem skin might really not do well with coconut oil. This oil has a comedogenic rating of 4 out of 5 which means it is very likely to clog your pores, luckily there are other natural oils that are much better suited for problem skins like grape seed or hemp seed oils with a very low comedogenic rating.
- Essential oils.
Essential oils are fragrant plant oils that have a multitude of benefits for the skin, body and mood. These can be a delicious add on to your natural products making them more potent and luxurious or it can be a major skin irritant that can not only lead to red and sore skin but it can also be really bad for your overall health especially when you are pregnant or breastfeeding. The major problem when people use essential oils is that the type of oil used is not suitable (i.e. citrus essential oils) or it is used undiluted or not diluted enough. I recommend that you ALWAYS DO YOUR HOMEWORK BEFORE USING ESSENTIAL OIL, NEVER USE A CONCENTRATION OF MORE THAN 3 DROPS OF ESSENTIAL OIL PER 5 ML OF CARRIER OIL , ALWAYS DO A PATCH TEST BEFORE YOU APPLY ESSENTIAL OILS TO YOUR FACE AND IF YOU ARE PREGNANT OR BREAST FEEDING ALWAYS CONSULT A DOCTOR BEFORE USING ANY ESSENTIAL OILS. Personally I have incredibly sensitive skin so I personally use my essential oils in my oil burners and stick to scent free options for my skin.
Hope this post gave you some insight on products or ingredients that may not always agree with your skin of course everyone’s skin is different and something may work for one person that does not work for the next, the key is to figure out what works for you!
Hope you enjoyed this post let me know if there are any natural products or ingredients that do not agree with you in the comment section down below.
Have a beautiful day.