Homemade Night Body Oil with Natural Plant Based Oils

Hello, everyone! Hope you’re day is off to a great start.

Okay, I’m going to start doing this as a weekly thing because I love helping people. Every Friday will now become DIY Friday! I will be sharing some of my favourite and trusted recipes for get skin, wellness, and everything in between.

As a person with extremely dry skin, I really need as much moisture as possible. However, I dislike the feel of body butters because they’re pretty thick. This night body oil is jam-packed with nourishing properties like omega fatty acids and antioxidants that protect the skin barrier from dryness. It also lightens pigmentation and scars, quickens the healing process of wounds, and leaves skin smooth and insanely soft. I suggest putting it on at night because some of these oils need a little extra time to really sink into the skin. But it’s so worth it.

Below I have included two versions of the body oil-a short one and a long one. The short one is cheaper to get the ingredients because oils can get a little pricey.

So, for this body oil to work, it should be used alongside a lotion. I love this one from skinfix because it’s lightweight and crazy nourishing.

As I also hate long intros, here are my secret formulas!

Short version of Night Body Oil

  • 4 oz dark amber glass bottle

Full Ingredients List for Night Body Oil

  • 4 oz dark amber glass bottle
  • 1/2 oz Avocado oil -smooths skin, high in vitamin E
  • 1/2 oz Macadamia nut oil- locks in moisture
  • 1/2 oz Safflower oil -heals wounds, soft skin
  • 1/2 oz Tamanu oil -Heals wounds, protects skin, tones body, helps with hyperpigmentation
  • 1/2 oz Hemp seed oil -antioxidants, omega fatty acids
  • 1/4 oz Kukui nut oil -smooths skin, gives nice glow
  • 20 drops Lavender essential oil -anti-bacterial
  • 20 drops Grapefruit essential oil -anti-inflammatory, natural preservative
  • 10 drops Cypress essential oil -reduces appearance of cellulite
  • 5 drops Carrot essential oil -helps with hyperpigmentation

Don’t laugh…I know the full one is pretty extensive. But this is my secret to soft skin. The order really doesn’t matter because they’re all oils. I also like to close the bottle and gently swirl it upside down rather than shake it.

And although this oil will last you a few months, you might be wondering why or how it’s any better than store bought ones.

Well, store bought ones tend to contain fillers and preservatives and you spend a lot of money on them. With this, you have at least enough to refill your 4 oz bottle two or three times. Or you can use the rest on other places like your hair!

Side note, if you want some nice lingering scent, I suggest using a few drops of geranium essential oil because it’s beautiful and fresh smelling.

And here is what the finished product looks like. It’ll look the same despite which recipe you use.

What are your thoughts? Do you already use a body oil?

The Essential Oil You’re Missing for Healthy Skin

Happy Wednesday!

I hope you’re all doing really well. Hopefully you don’t have the winter blues! In Toronto, it plus 7 Celsius. Not Fahrenheit. It’s so insanely warm some people are wearing dresses. It’s supposed to be winter.

Anyway, if you’ve been to my blog before, you know I absolutely adore grapefruit essential oil. In this post, I’ll be explaining exactly why I love it so much as is just as essential in ones arsenal as tea tree, lavender, and frankincense.

What is Grapefruit Essential Oil?

Grapefruit oil is steam distilled and made from the peel rather than the pulp of the fruit. It has a fresh and slightly sweet tangy smell to it.

So, why is pink grapefruit essential oil one of my top essential oils? Because it’s an awesome multipurpose oil. It’s a naturally beautiful oil with an insane amount of benefits that range from clear and balance skin, uplifting moods, and cleaning.

The Benefits

Balances Oily Skin

Because this oil contains limonene, it cuts the body’s sebum creation by adding a layer of moisture.

promotes weight loss

When you’re craving some snacks, diffuse this and inhale deeply. It’ll cut down your cravings while it excite your nerves.

Lymphatic support

Remember when I said not to dry brush your delicate boobs (if you have them)? Well, I suggest using grapefruit! It naturally supports blood circulation and releases toxins caught in the body (source). It also keeps breast smooth and plump as it slows the aging process through messaging the oil into this area (must be done daily).

Reduces depression

Have you ever deeply inhaled citrus fruits? They are instantly uplifting, taking the mind back to sunny, simpler days with happy thoughts. Whenever I need a good pick me up, I tend to put this in a diffuser mixed with frankincense or just take a few good whiffs straight from the bottle.

Natural Preservative

The essential oil and extract are great for prolonging a natural / homemade product’s shelf life. Because it is so high in antioxidants and limonene and citronellol, it can also enhance the product’s effectiveness. However, they are not full preservatives so it won’t make them last more than an extra month or so.

Glossy hair

Just like your face gets glowy and sooth thanks to antioxidants, your hair does too!

boosts immune system

When inhaled, vitamin C and citrus fight throat and respiratory infections and helps the liver detox the body.

anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial

Grapefruit is high in phytochemicals (source) that reduces stress and inflammation. It also contains properties that are antimicrobial and eliminate harmful bacteria. It’s soft enough to use topically (diluted with a carrier oil like tamanu) but tough enough to be used to clean your whole house!

How I Use it

I add this to at least one of my oils per routine. So it’s mixed in with raspberry seed oil for mornings and hemp seed oil for nights. I also use this in both of my body oils and homemade cleanser. And in my all-purpose cleaner. And I diffuse it. See? I use it for everything.

I love this and this but this and this are good ones too!

Of course grapefruit has other great benefits but these are the ones I really love and mention to friends and family. They also are the reasons why I keep buying it again and again. Hopefully you enjoyed learning about this essential as much as I had fun explaining it!

What are some of your favourite essential oils? I’m dying to expand my collection!

How to Get Healthy and Strong Hair with Natural Oils

Hello, everyone!

I hope your day is going well. I know mine is off to a great start. Finally got around to refilling my bottles and getting some post started for this site. Today is all about getting your hair into top shape to fight against this dry winter weather. But, in order to do that, we gotta make your day a little worse.

Did you know that hair products contain a lot of fillers and chemicals? This could be because since hair is essentially dead, it is easy to use one moisturizing ingredient (like shea butter or coconut oil) against many chemicals like synthetics dyes and Mineral oils. Moreover, drugstore brands are notorious for using large amounts of Cyclopentasiloxane (a silicon based compound that is an endocrine disrupter and increases organ toxicity (source)). Unlike certain alcohols that help with spread-ability on the skin, within hair care products they are bad.

Garnier’s Whole Blends Argan and Camilla oil $7:

1041707, PS3, CYCLOPENTASILOXANE, DIMETHICONOL, CAMELLIA OLEIFERA SEED OIL, ARGANIA SPINOSA KERNEL OIL, TOCOPHEROL, PARFUM / FRAGRANCE, LINALOOL, ALPHA-ISOMETHYL IONONE, COUMARIN, LIMONENE, HYDROXYCITRONELLAL, CITRAL CITRONELLOL HEXYL, CINNAMAL, BENZYL ALCOHOL, BENZYL SALICYLATE, F.I.L. #D184855/1

This list was not easy to find and I can see why. The amount of crap in it is awful.

Let’s look at something a little more expensive. 

Moroccainoil Treatment Original $44

CYCLOMETHICONE, DIMETHICONE, ARGANIA SPINOSA (ARGAN) KERNEL OIL, PARFUM/FRAGRANCE, LINUM USITATISSIMUM (LINSEED) SEED EXTRACT, CI 26100 (RED 17), CI 47000 (YELLOW 11). MOT01

The first and third ingredients are silicone based. Cyclomethicone has a low hazard rating on EWG while dimethicone has a low-moderate one, contributing to organ toxicity especially in high doses (like in this!). 

Hair care is expensive, but I am very wary of store bought oils because they tend to be packed with silicones and other fillers and very little real nourishing oils. 

Now, for the better day!

There are a few great natural oils that can be used as hair oils. Like most plant based oils, they are moisturizing yet these five specifically promote hair growth, leaves hair soft and shiny, and easy to detangle.

Oleic acid: Is a monounsaturated fatty acid. Fatty acids are the main components of food fats, oils and fat deposits in animals and man. Besides the work they do inside the body, monounsaturated fats like oleic acid are less susceptible to spoilage than some other fats, which makes them useful in food preservation (source).

#1 MACADAMIA Nut oil

This oil is probably the most well known of the bunch. Macadamia nut oil is bursting with monounsaturated fatty acids that are able to spread the oil throughout the hair from root to tip. As the oil is made up mostly of oleic acid (source) This oil reduces hair loss and hair breakage as it contains palmitoleic acid which is know to slow down the aging process. Macadamia nut oil also contains omega 3 and 6 fatty acids and linoleic acid.

The Benefits:

  • Reduces hair loss and improves health of hair
  • Revitalizes skin and hair (get that nice gloss)
  • Contains antioxidants to fight free radicals
  • Locks in moisture, tames frizz and strengthens hair follicles

#2 Tamanu Oil

If you are interested in buying Tamanu oil from this site, there are two different types: one from Vietnam and one from Madagascar. The only difference is the price; they are both cold-pressed and unrefined. I buy both but usually the Vietnam one because it’s cheaper.

Tamanu oil is probably my favourite oil. It is a cure all. I also recommend this oil above all else. While I love Rosehip, Tamanu can be used for rashes, wounds, pigmentation, hydration…just everything.

The oil is composed of phospholipids and glycolipids which are known to protect skin’s moisture barrier by creating a barrier over the skin to protect it (source). It contains tons of fatty acids and soothes dry scalp because of its anti-inflammatory properties.

The Benefits:

  • Protects the skin barrier
  • Tons of anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties (great for scalp burns and wounds)
  • Quickens the healing process and smooths out split ends and frizz
  • controls acne and hyper-pigmentation

#3 Babassu

Only a few stores actually use Babassu oil in their hair care which is sad because this stuff is amazing! Babassu is obtained from the kernels of the Babassu palm found in the southern regions of Brazil. Moreover, it contains a high content of lauric and myristic acids (source of antioxidants. Good in moderation only). Babassu oil is used as a substitute for coconut Oil because of their similar properties. It is a superior emollient for both dry and oily skin, and gently moisturizes the skin without contributing to an oily sheen (source). I really enjoy using this oil mixed in with my conditioner/co-wash and letting it sit for roughly twenty minutes to soothe my hair (source).

The Benefits:

  • Treats dandruff and split ends
  • Reduces hair loss
  • Soothes acne and eczema
  • Increases hair strength
  • Balances hormones

#4 Avocado Oil

Avocado Carrier Oil contains Vitamins A, B1, B2, D, E, and Beta carotene. It is classified as monounsaturated oil and is used for topical skin application (source). Moreover, because of the large amounts of vitamins in this oil, it instantly revitalizes the hair and nourishes it throughout the day!

The Benefits:

  • Contains antioxidants which fight free radicals
  • Promotes hair growth
  • Quickens healing process of burns and wounds

#5 Broccoli Oil

I don’t think anyone knows about broccoli oil. It’s still a hidden jem. I also like putting this in my conditioner to give it a nice boost (source). Its excellent antioxidant profile makes broccoli Seed Oil an easy substitute for  silicones where the film forming activity results in a natural shine, and cuticle smoothing of the hair while preventing oxidation. This oil is light, non-greasy, and is easily absorbed into the skin (source). It also smells exactly like broccoli!

The Benefits:

  • Gives insane amounts of shine, more than any other oil
  • Known as nature’s silicone
  • Promotes hair growth and healthy hair
  • Controls frizz

Tip: I love mixing macadamia nut oil, broccoli seed oil, and babassu oil (mixed with kukui nut oil and some essential oils) into a bottle and using that as a pre-shampoo treatment. This oil mixture is great for clearing up built up grease, oil, and dirt. Also makes getting rid of dandruff a lot easier.

Nonetheless, If you have to choose just one oil, I would choose Tamanu because it’s an all around pleaser. However, specifically for hair, it would be broccoli seed oil. I just love it so much. I love broccoli.

Morning Skincare Routine | Sincerely, Debbie

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a great weekend. I finally had a weekend off, after six months (yay!) Only to be sick the whole weekend. So, what better time than this to show my daily morning skincare routine. I usually stick to the same routine all year round but cut a few steps or add in extra steps during the summer. For some reason, during the summer I tend to have several sudden breakouts probably because my skin is absolutely freaked by warm weather. The same happened when I went to Africa and Vancouver. I guess it’s just used to crappy Toronto weather.

Anyway, morning skincare routines are all about hydration and protection. This is where all those antioxidants and protection from free radicals come in handy. So, here we go:

Cleanser

For my cleanser, I use an extra gentle one. I tend to use my homemade cleanser because it’s insanely moisturizing. With it, I sometimes skip a toner all together because it’s jam packed with manuka honey, which has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also has some macadamia nut oil, hemp seed oil, and golden jojoba. Also a ton of brewed tea and some essential oils. It’s great

Glossier Milky Jelly When I’m not in the mood to use that though, I turn towards my Glossier Milky Jelly because it’s kind of awesome. It contains rose water-known to soothe skin and comfrey root extract which is used to soothe and quicken the healing process of burns and wounds. This is a very mild cleanser and I used it about a few times a week when I feel my skin really needs a break from life.

Toner(s)

Pyunkang Yul has an amazing line out and I love using their toner spray and if you haven’t heard anything about them, I suggest that you check them out first here and then buy here (because it’s cheaper). It consists of mostly Coptis Japonica Root Extract, a lovely extract that prevents moisture loss and UV sun damage. I love using this right after washing my face. One or two sprays and then done!

Make P:rem’s Hydrate Me Toner is the toner I have been missing all my life. Sadly, I bought this at the end of the summer but once I got this in the mall, my summer skin problems instantly calmed. It’s so insanely hydrating especially when I layer it three to four times. Best thing ever with apple fruit water, fennel, and arctic raspberries or Nordic berries are great for hydration and full of antioxidants.

Booster Serum and Serum

Eminence Bright Skin Booster Serum is the secret to clearing up hyper pigmentation. Now, it’s not cheap nor is it actually a serum but it boosts the products that are put on after it. I use this both morning and night right before my oils to aid in their effectiveness. Using this stuff, which is full of aloe, licorice root-great for naturally brightening the complexion, and willow bark-amazing for calming skin and reducing redness.

Vivier Canada Vitamin C+E Serum is the only real serum that I used within my skincare. But with a hefty price tag of $149 CAD I can’t say I’m going to buy it again. It contains only L-Ascorbic Acid USP (vitamin C), vitamin E, and grapefruit extract. While I do recommend it for anyone who is dealing with large amounts of pigmentation, using this day and night did wonders for my skin. I used to have awful scars because I was naive and young and this cleared them up. While I didn’t find this right away, I’m glad I eventually did because it really helped me a lot. I just finished it and I believe that now I know more about my skin to not need a vitamin C serum anymore.

Oils/Moisturizer

Oils- Oils are great. As I’ve said before, I love using rosehip and raspberry oil in the morning as a moisturizer mixed in with some grapefruit and frankincense essential oils. Rosehip is high in vitamin C and contains a natural derivative of vitamin A, while raspberry oil is a natural sunscreen. Grapefruit is great for clearing bacteria and frankincense is just all around awesome. Moisturizer-As of lately I’ve been trying out a bunch of moisturizers. Because it’s so cold out and the amount I already have on, I need to do everything on a day-by-day basis. I really like Glossier’s Priming Moisturizer and Skyn’s Cooling Daily Lotion because it has kelp in it. I love seaweed, it’s great.

Sunscreen

Etude House has one of the best international sunscreens known. And that is their Sunprise sunscreen. This is probably because it’s a calming lotion with aloe. Best part is, since a lot of people don’t like chemical sunscreens, this mineral one is such a great choice. It contains sunflower seeds and acai berries which protect the skin.

Avene Mineral Sunscreen is a sunscreen that I have a love hate relationship with. It contains their world famous thermal spring water and vitamin E. I’m not exactly sure what’s in it but during the summer, this breaks me out. I still really like it and it’s an international bestseller.

 

All right, that’s it! Comment below if you use any of these items or have in he past. Or what your morning routine looks like.

Cleansers: How to Love Your Skin | Sincerely, Debbie

Hello everyone! I hope you’re enjoying the holidays, I know I am (tons of desserts and whiskey). This is another post on what skincare is and how to build a steady, consistent regime to aid in protecting the skin barrier and keeping these cells healthy.

What are cleansers?

Cleansers contain surfectants and cleansing agents such as cocamidopropyl betaine, a mild cleansing agent derived from coconut oil that can be found in cleansers in order to dissolve makeup, oil, and dirt. They are sometimes made from great ingredients from vegtables and fruits and some that have not so great ingredients like animal fats.  

The are two types – mild and harsh. 

Mild cleansers are moisturizing, generally contain plant extracts and oils to remove bad bacteria yet leave the good ones alone. They should have soft or no scents and should not be extremely foaming. 

Some great ones that I have used are-

Cosmetics: Glossier’s Milky Jelly, Goodal’s Super Seed Enriched Cleanser, Laneige Calming Gel

Natural: Dr. Bronner’s castile soap and my own homemade recipe (coming soon!). 

Harsh Cleansers are disrupters that are laced with strong fragrances and alocohols. They dry out the skin barrier by strippping it of natural oils and good bacterias. This causes clogged pores and congested skin because the glands overproduce oils to compensate the lack of moisture. Through time, acne and hyperpigmentation will increase and so will different skin conditions like sensitivity, eczema, and acne.  

I would stear clear of: 

Anything from St. Ives

Any cleansers that say oil controlling or made for acne and foaming (unless the ingredients show mild surfactants). 

What type of cleansers should you use?

Of course everyone should use only mild ones. A cleanser should only clean and moisturize the face, not leave it dry and tight. Moreover, a cleanser can only provide so many advantages yet can completely ruin the skin so all of those crazy claims, are just that-crazy. The only cleansers that can make a difference are oil cleansers because some residue of the oils lingers on the skin. 

A specific type of cleanser for the people with acne, oily skins, etc. is not needed so long as it cleans without stripping. 

Hopefully this helps if you are unsure on the type of cleanser you should be using. Remember, harsh is never the answer.

 

How Important is a Skincare Routine?

Really important, actually.

One of the most important things the body needs is consistency. A routine that the body can conform and take from every day or every week, etc. Rarely do things work after a few times of use. Rather they take a lot of time and patience in order to see improvement, your skin especially.

Skincare routines are important as they continuously give your skin the vitamins needed in order for it to rejuvenate itself. Due to its many layers, the stable routine will slowly but steadily penetrate the layers and aid the skin.

Moreover, this is why it is essential to have both a morning and nighttime routine (even if it’s just three products each). Morning routines should be lighter and easily absorbed into the skin. It’s not fun looking like a grease ball during the day. At night, it’s all about restoring and repairing the epidermis due to free radicals, stress, and pollution.

Without a skincare routine, the percentage of bacteria and dirt clogging pores, large amounts of sebum creation, and acne–all things that suck.

Now, this doesn’t mean it’s a great idea to have a 10-step night routine (but if you’re already doing this and/or have the money to do so, then hey, go you!) It’s unnecessary because most of the products do the same things or do nothing at all.

A good skincare routine should include:

  • Cleanser 

It should be something super light and non abrasive.

  • Toner

Alcohol free toners are always best. They do not remove any of the good bacteria or strip your skin but toners should restore the skin’s natural PH. I love this hydrating toner from Make P:rem, a lovely Korean brand. 

  • Moisturizer

Lock in moisture and aid in protecting your skin. This doesn’t always have to be a cream, I really enjoy using oils on my face.