The weather has finally starting acting like summer this past week. While I love the heat, my pores have decided to open the flood gates, leaving my skin with breakouts, blotchy-ness and enough grease to start my own McDonald's (bleh!).
Nature does not dissapoint, for even though my pores are going through a teenage rebellion in this heat, these warmer months also provide a ready aresenal of healing herbs to help calm things down. On Living Life Granola's Facebook page, I had given a heads up to start saving your strawberry leaves in the coming weeks. Strawberry leaves are an excellent gentle astringent for combination and oily skin. It helps to rid the skin of excess oil without over-drying, which is so important, especially for skin that has to deal with breakouts and wrinkles (thanks Irony, love ya, too). To dry the strawberry leaves, just leave the clean leaves on a tea towel for two to three days until they are completely dry. Store in an airtight container or sandwich bag.
In addition to the strawberry leaves, there is also calendula, which is known for its healing qualities, rosemary as an antiseptic, chamomile as an anti-inflammatory and sage as a disinfectant & astringent agent. All of these wonderful herbs are then cold steeped in witch hazel, which itself is also a gentle astringent, to completely de-grease and refresh the skin- all without over-drying!
Most of the herbs were bought from Whole Food's bulk section. Mountain Rose Herbs online is also a great source for all kinds of herbs. If you are lucky enough to have any of these plants growing in your back yard, use them! Just up the amount of fresh herbs to one tablespoon.
Healing Herbal Toner
By: Living Life Granola
1 16oz bottle of witch hazel
2 tsp dried strawberry leaves
1 tsp dried sage
1 tsp dried calendula flowers
1 tsp dried chamomile flowers
1 tsp dried peppermint leaves
1 tsp dried rosemary
*Use organic ingredients whenever possible.
Pour the witch hazel into a glass jar with a tight fitting lid. Add in all the herbs and shake well.
Store in a dark cabinet for two weeks, shaking everyday (or whenever you remember).
After two weeks, strain back into the witch hazel bottle. Apply with a cotton ball, shaking the bottle before use. The toner will last for a year.
This toner has been a life saver for me in the summer but it is also great after workouts or anytime you will be breaking a sweat. You can even pore a little into a small glass spray bottle for a little refresher through the day, as well. So no more hiding under layers of powdered foundation to help soak up all that excess oil (You're choking your skin!). This toner will give you the glow without the shine!
Linked with the Homemade Mondays and Simply Natural Saturday blog series.