Making a DIY face mask is hardly a new idea. Women have been concocting their own skin care products, including refreshing and therapeutic masks, since Cleopatra’s time.
Back then, it made perfect sense to draw whatever they needed from the plants and flowers growing around them. Today, with a renewed interest in going green and protecting our earth, as well as providing ourselves with the safest and most effective skin care products, there is a renewed interest in making your own face masks.
Unfortunately, you can’t avoid damage to your skin nor can you dodge the regular effects of aging. Your skin is exposed to many potential threats every day and they can take a toll. Of course, nothing takes a greater toll than time. As we age, our skin loses its elasticity and tone, leaving it sagging, wrinkled and creased. Skin care products can help to replenish and rejuvenate the skin. Whether you use a store bought or homemade face mask, you can promote healing and help your skin to look younger.
As you are probably aware, most commercial made products contain a range of ingredients, some natural and some synthetic, carefully combined in a lab and touted as providing the exact care that your skin needs. While this may be true, no matter how careful those scientists are with their work there is going to be some loss of effectiveness as the individual ingredients are processed for inclusion in the final product. Even masks that tout themselves as “all natural” won’t necessarily contain the same levels of skin enhancing natural substances that you’d find in a DIY face mask.
DYI Face Masks vs. Store Bought – What’s the Difference?
So how can you, as a consumer and an individual who is concerned about the health of your skin, decide which is the right way to go when it comes to face masks?
Here are some facts at a glance to help you choose between a homemade face mask and a store bought mask:
DIY masks – The good part about making your own mask is that it’s extremely easy to find quality ingredients. Just look in your refrigerator and pantry and you’re likely to already have any number of natural products that have proven skin protection qualities. A DIY face mask can contain everything from avocados, almonds and bananas, to eggs, parsley and yogurt. All of these foods contain various vitamins and other nutrients that can help to slough off dead skin, remove built up toxins and even fight the effects of acne.
Some of the most popular ingredients for a homemade face mask include cucumber, known for its healing and refreshing properties and also used to lighten the skin, and honey and Aloe Vera, both of which are natural humectants, which makes them ideal for moisturizing. Honey is also particularly advantageous for face masks as it has powerful antimicrobial, antibacterial and antioxidant properties.
A few drops of essential oils like lavender can also boost a mask’s antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. Oatmeal is excellent for sloughing off dead skin, which makes it another great addition to facial scrubs and masks.
Because you likely have many of these ingredients on hand, a DIY face mask can be very economical, costing you just pennies to complete. Even if you have to buy ingredients to make your mask, it can still be far less expensive than choosing a store bought mask.
Of course, doing it yourself is not without its drawbacks…it can be time consuming and you may want to carefully consider whether it will be something you use often enough to be worth the effort. You’ll also want to ask yourself if you’ll really benefit from going this route before you put the time in to make a mask.
Store bought masks – Of course there are many options available on the shelves of your pharmacy or grocery store, many for under $25 while some of the higher end products can top out at over $30. Names like Garnier, Olay and Biore all have a variety of facial masks and skin care products designed to help fight the effects of aging, improve skin tone, protect and heal acne prone skin and restore and moisturize dry and damaged skin.
All great promises, and many of these are quite reliable products but do they really do a better job than a homemade face mask could? The answer may surprise you.
There are many very effective products on the market, and the main advantage to store bought items is that they are already formulated, so the work is done for you. You simply have to read and carefully follow the instructions on the package, which can be much less time consuming than going with a DIY face mask. Also, it is possible to find specific formulas designed for your type of skin or your individual issue, whether it’s aging skin, acne or sun damage.
On the negative side, many of these masks include chemicals and other synthetic ingredients that may do more damage than good. Even if they do contain natural ingredients, the manufacturing process can often degrade those ingredients so that the final product doesn’t contain the full content of nutrients and other beneficial substances. This is where you can begin to see the advantages of a homemade face mask. Since you create it yourself, you can control exactly how much of each ingredient you include and how much healing power you really get.
Some Popular Home Made Face Masks
There are many different recipes for a DIY face mask. Here are just a few of the most popular that you can try at home:
Vinegar Mask – this is a quick and easy homemade face mask that has been around since ancient Greece. Simply combine ¼ cup cider vinegar with ¼ cup water, gently apply to your face and let it dry. The vinegar helps to cleanse and tighten your skin for a more youthful, healthy look.
Milk Mask – another old standard, milk has been used for generations for its refreshing and rejuvenating qualities. To make your DIY face mask, combine ¼ cup powdered milk with enough water to form a thick paste. Thoroughly coat your face with the mixture, allow it to air dry and then rinse it off with warm water. Your face will feel clean, fresh and healthier than ever.
Oatmeal Mask – oats are one of the best ingredients for any homemade face mask. That’s because they have extraordinary healing properties that can soothe dry and irritated skin. To make your mask, combine ½ cup hot, but not boiling, water and 1/3 cup oatmeal. After the water and oatmeal settle for two or three minutes, mix in 2 tablespoons plain yogurt, 2 tablespoons honey and 1 small egg white. Apply a thin layer to your face and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes and then rinse with warm water.
Mayonnaise Mask – perhaps one of the easiest and most affordable masks of all, this DIY face mask is probably already waiting in your refrigerator right now! Simply spread any whole-egg mayonnaise over your face and leave it on for 20 minutes. Then just wipe it off and rinse with cool water. It is guaranteed to leave your face feeling cleaner and smoother.
Lemon Mask – the citric acid in lemons works great for exfoliating and moisturizing, making them a perfect choice for a homemade face mask. Just mix the juice from 1 lemon and ¼ cup olive or sweet almond oil, apply to your face and rinse.
Egg Mask – another extremely affordable DIY face mask option is the egg mask. Not only are eggs effective for skin care, they are also quite versatile. You can use eggs whether your have extremely dry skin, normal or oily skin. For dry skin, separate the egg and beat the yolk. For oily skin, use the egg white, with a bit of honey or lemon added. For normal skin you can use the entire egg. In each case, apply the beaten egg, wait 30 minutes and rinse. Every type of skin will feel refreshed and replenished.
DIY Face Masks – Summary
While there can certainly be advantages to using store bought products from established brands that you know and trust you need to tread carefully. Remember, you only have one skin so it behooves you to do everything you can to protect it. Your skin can take a terrible beating on a regular basis, with exposure to a number of irritants as well as the damaging rays of the sun.
All of this can leave it looking, dry, wrinkled, red, scaly or oily and masks can be a great way to combat this damage. Before you reach for that pricey store bought mask, though, you should consider using a homemade face mask instead.
For half the cost and with relatively little effort, you can make a safe and effective DIY face mask with all the goodness of natural ingredients. As long as you proceed carefully, research which ingredients are best for your skin and find an effective recipe, you can make your own face mask and discover the natural secrets that women have been enjoying for thousands of years.
It’s an easy way to get the protection and care you want for your skin without risking exposure to chemicals or synthetic ingredients. You avoid processed foods because you don’t want to put anything into your body that isn’t good for you, so why not treat your skin the same way? By making your own masks, you can control exactly what you are putting on your skin so you know you are only getting the very best nature has to offer. That’s real peace of mind and it’s worth the extra effort to help keep your skin looking young and healthy at any age.