Wash (and more)
Mix a tiny pinch of bicarb with your honey and use as above for a more vigorous exfoliating wash.
Use the wonderful oil cleansing method. Paradoxically, oil dissolves oil. This method of cleaning the skin uses healthy natural oils to dissolve and remove any griminess on the skin that has become trapped in the skin’s own oil, causing blockages in the pores:
- Bicarb (baking soda) makes a superb everyday face wash that leaves the skin super clean, and helps clear up acne and treat eczema. You can use it in two ways:
- Thoroughly dissolve a pinch of bicarb in a quarter cup of warm water and wash you face with this.
- Or, for gentle exfoliation, moisten a pinch of bicarb in your hands to form a paste, then rub gently all over a wet face and rinse. Don’t exfoliate every day.
- Tone (see below) to restore your skin’s pH and prevent drying after washing with bicarb.
- Lemon juice diluted with water (50:50) is a good face wash and toner, especially for oily skin. It also lightens blemishes.
- Mix about half a teaspoon each of bicarb and lemon juice for a refreshing fizzy face wash.
- Remove eye make-up with coconut oil. Simply sweep a tiny amount of oil over the skin of your eye area, then wipe away with a soft cloth, tissue or cotton pad.
- My favourite face wash: use a small amount of honey to cleanse, detoxify, nourish, balance, treat acne and irritated skin, and lightly moisturise your face. Here is how:
- Make sure that your hair is out of the way.
- Warm the honey (about half a teaspoon) by rubbing it between your hands for a few seconds.
- Apply the honey to your face, massaging it gently all over.
- Leave it there for at least 2 minutes, or much longer for a deeper treatment.
- Rinse off with warm water. (It washes away very easily.)
Combine the benefits of honey and natural oils by adding half a teaspoon of honey to your oil and following the instructions for the oil cleansing method above.
- First rinse your face with warm water.
- Use about a tablespoon of a cold-pressed vegetable oil of your choice. (Both olive and coconut oil will be fine, but the traditional oil used in this method is castor oil, which is particularly cleansing. Dilute the castor oil with a lighter oil such as olive oil, using less castor oil for drier skin and more for oily skin.)
- Warm the oil between your hands and then smooth it over your face.
- Massage the oil all over your face moving upwards in circles, for at least 2 minutes.
- Allow the oil to sit on your face for another 30 seconds.
- Wet a washcloth with very warm water and place this over your face to warm and soften the oil, the gently begin to wipe it away.
- Rinse your cloth in very warm water and repeat the step above a few times until all the oil is rinsed away.
- You should only need to use this method at bed-time. A simple rinse with water in the morning will suffice.
- Use apple cider vinegar or 3% (10 volume) hydrogen peroxide as an astringent (toner) and acne treatment.
- Dilute with water (start with half of each and adjust to suit you).
- Moisten a piece of cotton wool with either and wipe gently over face to clean and tone pores and eliminate bacteria.
- Or spray skin lightly using a bottle with a fine spray nozzle (keeping your eyes closed).
- Instead of using water, you can dilute your vinegar with a herbal infusion (tea) or hydrosol of your choice (try rosewater or Rooibos tea), or use these alone as a toner.
- As mentioned above, lemon juice diluted with water is also a good toner.
- Infuse plain or apple cider vinegar with herbs to create a toner suited to your skin. Here are some examples:
- Dry or aging skin: infuse vinegar with rose petals.
- All skin types, especially sensitive skin: infuse vinegar with Lavender. You can use flowers or leaves.
- Oily skin: infuse vinegar with Rosemary.
- In all cases, simply fill a jar or bottle with the fresh herb of your choice, top up with vinegar and allow to infuse for a week or more, then strain.
- Dilute your infusion with water to a strength to suit your skin (start with 50:50) and use to tone and balance your skin.
Moisturise, heal and protect
- Olive oil and coconut oil both make good face moisturisers and relieve chapped lips. Coconut oil is particularly pleasant to use on the face. However, some people find that it clogs their pores. If this is a problem for you, try olive, hemp, jojoba, or another cold-pressed vegetable oil of your choice.
- Apply a very small amount and rub in gently in circular sweeps.
- All these oils are anti-aging, healing and nourish and protect the skin from the damaging effects of pollution and radiation. (See the olive oil  and coconut oil  pages for more details about the benefits of these oils.)
- In cool weather, coconut oil can become quite hard. Make a wonderful soft moisturising mousse for face, hands and body as follows:
- Blend a cup of coconut oil with a quarter cup (or more) of olive oil.
- Optional: add a few drops of lavender, geranium, rose or another essential oil  of your choice.
- Optional: add some aloe vera or aloe ferox gel for less oily feel and a host of other benefits.
- Optional: add a teaspoon of honey for anti-bacterial and healing properties.
- This mousse can be stored in the fridge in warm weather to maintain a buttery consistency. It is also a great hand and body moisturiser.