I recently ran a Natural Beauty Workshop where we were learning about natural oils amongst other things as part of our day together. We were talking about what to do when our skin is screaming out for some help for example when you have had too much sun (aren’t we all feeling it after our recent 2 days of heatwave!), or when you react badly to a product or food you have eaten and your skin breaks out in protest.
Well, I was telling my Goodness Gals that only several weeks ago I tried a new spf face cream in readiness for the summer and my skin did not like it at all. I puffed up like a hamster and a rash that was flaming hot and anything but pretty covered my face for the best part of a week, I kid you not, I cancelled two days of my diary as I looked really too horrid to go out.
In order to help my skin recover I was drawn to the most natural product I could find in the house, which as it turned out was some olive oil, made in the age old way of pressing the olives in the village where my family has a home in Tuscany. I figured that I needed to make sure that what ever I put on my face was 100% what it said on the bottle.
I can’t describe to you how much my skin thanked me for this glorious green nectar. After gently patting warm palms coated with olive oil onto my face for the best part of a week within three days my skin was so much improved and I was back on track, it really was that quick. Anyway it got me to thinking that maybe you guys would like a bit of the load down on this most humble of ingredients and what goodness it can bring to your skin too.
This kitchen staple has been used on the body since ancient times when it was first extracted and processed. Olive Oil is natural hypoallergenic, packed with strong anti-ageing antioxidants including a high proportion of Vitamin E and K which help to repair and renew the skin. It also contains flavonoids, carotenoids and hydrating squalene which is a very similar fat composition to our own skin sebum and that makes it easy for our skin to absorb, helping to improve its moisture content. It is particularly good for dry skin but is actually good to use in moderation if you have oily skin to balance excess sebum production as well.
Cold press, extra virgin olive oil being the purest and lease processed is the best form of this oil as it contains the highest level of polyphenols which have an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticoagulant effect on the body. It is said that olive oil is one of the healthiest oils in the world, particularly as very few people have an allergy to it when applied topically.
- This oil helps fade acne scars and brightens skin.
- Repairs and helps the skin to regenerate making it ideal for anti-ageing.
- It helps exfoliate and de-clog skin pores.
- Olive Oil penetrates deep into the skin for thorough cleansing and nourishing.
A word of warning when buying Olive Oil, it really is so worth going for the best quality first press extra virgin olive oil you can afford and make sure that it is a lovely dark olive green colour anything paler will not be first press and may be refined.
Here are a few ways to use Olive Oil for Natural Beauty:-
- To make your own natural exfoliator mix 1/2 to 1 tsp of fine sea salt or 2 tsps baking soda with 1 tsp olive oil for a simple face exfoliator.
- For a body scrub, mix the olive oil with sugar and you could even add in a few essential oils too. The beauty of this body scrub is that there will be no need to moisturise after your shower as the olive oil will have sunk in to your skin already. The down side is that your shower may need a rinse to make sure there is no slippery oil lurking around for you to slip on.
- It is said that you can shave with olive oil, but I haven’t tried it !
- It is great to run through the end of dry hair or directly rubbed into elbows, feet and brittle nails.
- Use it as a cleansing oil to clean the face – working with the idea that “like dissolves like” it is wonderful for gently removing oil from our skin. Check out my blog post about oil cleansing.
- As mentioned above for skin nourishment, you can warm a 1/2 a teaspoon of the oil up in the palm of your hand and then directly pat onto the face, so simple, easy and effective.
Honestly once you get using Olive Oil you will wonder how you ever get on without it as part of your beauty routine. Have a great weekend and do let me know how you get on with some of my natural beauty suggestions. xo