at home exfoliating skin

Having glowing, smooth skin doesn’t have to cost an arm + a leg. And you don’t have to run out to your nearest boutique to get it. By simply reaching into your kitchen pantry, you can achieve radiant, silky soft skin.

In this post, we will share with you 3 pantry staples that you can use to easily + effective exfoliate your skin as well as 3 DIY recipes to try.

But first, let’s talk about what exfoliating does + why it is important.

What is Exfoliating?

Exfoliation refers to the removal of the dead skin cells on the skin’s surface. Exfoliation can be performed mechanically, by using abrasive scrubs on the skin or chemically, by using scrubs that contain special kinds of acids that dissolve + remove the dead skin cells without scrubbing.

Why is Exfoliating is Important?

As we age, the process of cell regeneration slows down. This means that the body is slower to shed skin cells + generate new ones. When old skin cells start to pile up on the surface of the skin, it can leave skin looking dull, rough, + dry. Furthermore, the build-up of dead skin cells can result in excess oil + clogged pores, leading to blemishes + acne.

Proper exfoliation removes the barrier of dead skin cells clogging the skin + uncovers fresh new cells below. This opens the way for moisturizing products to penetrate more deeply into the skin, which makes them more effective. In short, a regular exfoliating routine will leave your skin looking fresh and healthy.

How Does Exfoliation Benefit Your Skin?

Exfoliating can improve the appearance of your skin in several ways.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, exfoliation can leave your skin looking brighter + improve the effectiveness of topical skin care products by enhancing absorption.
2. Regular exfoliation can also help prevent clogged pores, resulting in fewer breakouts.
3. Long-term exfoliating can increase collagen production. Collagen is key to glowing, vibrant skin. The protein also promotes skin elasticity, minimizing the appearance of fine lines + related sagging.

Now, let’s talk about how to exfoliate at home + our 3 simple ingredients.

DIY Exfoliating Oatmeal Mask Scrub

Oatmeal – Oatmeal is more than just a cereal that helps lower high cholesterol. Oatmeal contains avenanthramides, antioxidant + anti-inflammatory compounds that soothe itchy, dry and irritated skin. Oatmeal is also great for acne-prone skin because it may absorb oil from the skin’s surface.

Exfoliating Oatmeal Scrub for Face + Body

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons oatmeal flakes
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Directions: Mix together oats, lemon juice and honey. Apply to face. Rinse with warm water.


DIY Exfoliating Sugar Scrub

Sugar – Sugar is one of the best natural beauty ingredients to exfoliate your skin. Sugar scrubs are mild + one of the most versatile + affordable ingredients to use in a scrub. Any sugar will work…white sugar, cane sugar, coconut sugar, brown sugar, pineapple sugar. If it’s sugar, use it! We love to use sugar scrubs not only on our face + body but also as delicate (+ delicious) lip scrub. Bonus: The oil in the scrub works as a moisturizer.

Exfoliating Sugar Scrub for Face + Body

Ingredients
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 coconut oil (you can also use olive, grapeseed, or avocado oil)
1/2 t vanilla or almond extract (optional)

Directions: Mix together sugar + coconut oil. Apply to skin + rinse off. Store in airtight container for up to 2 weeks.


Himalayan Sea Salt Scrub

Salt- Salt is full of minerals that help reduce inflammation, improve circulation, improve skin texture + tighten the skin at the same time as exfoliating off dead skin cells. The mineral content is also therapeutic + relaxing. You can use table salt, kosher salt, coarse salt or, our personal favorite, Himalayan sea salt. Note: Salt scrubs are more abrasive than oatmeal or sugar so please scrub gently.

Exfoliating + Brightening Salt Scrub

Ingredients
3/4 cup salt
1/4 coconut oil (you can also use olive, grapeseed, or avocado oil)
1 Tablespoon lemon zest (optional)

  1. Directions: Mix together salt + coconut oil. Apply to gently to skin + rinse off. Store in airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Steam inhalation for cold and congestion

With a history of use that dates back at least 3,500 years—the first historical mention of this therapy was found on an ancient Egyptian papyrus scroll—steam inhalation is a long-standing home remedy for colds and sinus issues.

When you’re sick, sessions of inhaling steam from a vaporizer device or a bowl of hot water may help loosen up mucus in the lungs and sinuses, help with congestion, ease a sore throat, + improve voice hoarseness.

Medicinal Properties of Steam Inhalation

Primarily, the medicinal effect of this at-home therapy is to ease the symptoms of illnesses that cause congestion, runny nose, and sore throat, such as the common cold, sinus infection, croup, bronchiolitis, bronchitis, seasonal allergies.

Key Benefits for Cold + Sinus Issues

  1. As a sleep aid: Ensuring that you get enough sleep is essential for combatting colds + sinus infections. Your body needs rest as it fights the illness. Steam inhalation at night can be instrumental in getting you relaxed and ready for bed.
  2. Treat hoarseness: Your voice gets hoarse + haggard when your vocal cords are irritated. This can happen due to respiratory illness, exposure to smoke, too much singing, or loud talking. The steam enters these structures, rehydrating them + improving their mobility and function.
  3. Ease sore throat: The clinical evidence is mixed on whether steam inhalation actually relieves sore throat. However, it’s a long-standing technique to ease the pain and swelling caused by the inflammation of tissues in the throat.
  4. Manage  congestion: Inhaling steam may also help with congestion as it can loosen mucus in the lungs, throat, + sinuses. Getting rid of that mucus helps ease pressure + makes breathing easier.
  5. Rehydrate nasal passages: Dry + irritated sinuses, especially nasal passages, can also accompany common colds + other respiratory infections. In addition to discomfort, they can lead to bloody noses. Sessions of inhalation bring moisture to these areas, which helps relieve symptoms.

Steam inhalation for cold + congestion

Simple Steam Inhalation Recipe
(using herbs often found in your kitchen pantry)

1-2 Tablespoons for thyme, rosemary, basil, eucalyptus and/or peppermint
1-2 quarts boiling water
large bowl
towel for tenting

  • Add your selected herbs to the bowl + top with boiling water
  • Allow water to cool for 2-3 minutes
  • Then tent your head with the towel and lower your face over the bowl. DO NOT COME INTO CONTACT WITH THE WATER!
  • With your head covered, deeply breathe in the steam. Alternate between breathing through your nose + breathing through your mouth.
  • Steam for 10-15 minutes + repeat as often as desired.
  • You can also use these same ingredients to turn your bath tub into a vapor tub. 😍
Exfoliating Coffee Sugar Scrub

3 Ingredient Exfoliating Coffee Sugar Scrub

Does your coffee smell so good that you just want to bathe in it? While that might not be the best thing for your skin, there is a way you can treat yourself to some coffee-scented goodness while also improving your skin’s appearance.

Coffee’s Skin Benefits

The sand-like texture of coffee grounds makes it a perfect exfoliant + a handy ingredient for homemade scrubs. The texture of the grounds also works to gently remove dead skin cells + helps to rejuvenate and boost circulation. (Hello, youthful, glowing, silky-smooth skin!) Coffee can also plump + tighten, helping to temporarily reduce the appearance of cellulite.

Make Your Own Exfoliating Coffee Sugar Scrub

Getting the delicious benefits of a coffee sugar scrub doesn’t require visiting your local handmade skincare shops (aka Pantry Products). You can make a simple-but-effective scrub using a handful of ingredients found in your very own kitchen pantry.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup ground coffee (Fresh are best, but dry used grounds will work, too)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (you can use cane sugar too)
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil or olive oil

Optional add-ins: 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Or both! 1 teaspoon orange peel or 1 teaspoon cocoa powder. OR BOTH! 😀

Tip: Choose fine grounds, as the coarse kind can be too harsh for sensitive or delicate skin.

Instructions

  1. Mix together 1/2 cup fresh ground coffee and 1/2 cup brown sugar.
  2. Add 1/2 cup coconut oil into the coffee mixture and 1 tsp. vanilla extract.
  3. Mix until well combined.

Exfoliating Coffee Sugar Scrub

How to Use A Body Scrub

I recommend using a body scrub in the shower first thing before you wash with soap because there will be a slight residue left on your body that you will need to wash/rinse off.

Take about a tablespoon at a time in your palms + rub in circular motions onto your skin. Use about 3-4 tablespoons each time to exfoliate your entire body. Rinse off + wash body as usual.

If you want to exfoliate your face, please be sure to apply the scrub gently + avoid your eye areas.

It’s also makes a delicious lip scrub for those chapped winter lips.

 

Cherry Skin Care

Homemade Cherry Facial Masks

Have you eaten your fill of cherries + don’t know what to do with the last few stragglers?

Why not use them to pamper yourself + your skin? With a few simple ingredients from your kitchen pantry + a handful of cherries, your skin can have a summertime glow.

What’s So Good About Cherries?

Aside from being delicious + nutritious  to eat, cherries have anti-inflammatory properties which make them an excellent ingredient for a wide range of skin conditions. Skin inflammation can cause redness, breakouts, + can make irritate skin issues like rosacea and dermatitis. Using cherries in a regular skincare routine can help to reduce redness + keep skin healthy.

Here are some easy-peasy recipes you can try at home. Just remember to remove the pits first. 😉

Redness Relief Cherry Face Mask

  • 5 mashed cherries
  • 1 teaspoon organic honey
  • 3 drops of lemon juice

Mix ingredients together. Apply paste to face and neck for 15-20 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

You Glow Girl Berry Mask

  • 5 cherries
  • 3 strawberries
  • 1 teaspoon rose water

Mash ingredients together. Apply to face and neck for 5-10 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

Cherries n Cream Exfoliating Scrub

  • 5 mashed cherries
  • 2-3 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons coarse sugar

Mix ingredients together. Apply to face and neck in gentle circular motions. Rinse with warm water.

Calming Cherry Oatmeal Mask

  • 1 tablespoon instant oatmeal
  • 2 tablespoons cherry juice

Mix ingredients and apply to skin for 5 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

Did you try any or all of these masks? What did you think? Tell us in the comments.

Melt and Pour Bar Soap Recipe
If you are interested in crafting your own soap, but a little nervous about the process involved in making it from scratch, melt + pour soap could be the perfect craft for you! You literally melt down the soap base, add whatever scents, botanicals and/or spices you want, pour the mixture into a mold + let it harden. In about an hour, you’ll have fresh bars of soap. Simple, huh?
To get your started on your melt + pour adventures, I am sharing with you one of my favorite recipes: Lavender + Oatmeal Bar Soap.
Featuring lavender + vanilla essential oils and flakes of oatmeal, this soap smells + feels wonderful on the skin. Here’s how you make it:
  • 1/2 lb. natural melt + pour soap base
  • 2 tablespoons dried lavender
  • 2 tablespoons oatmeal
  • 10 drops lavender essential oil
  • 10 drops vanilla essential oil or vanilla extract
  • Soap mold – can be bought or you can use muffin tins or small paper cups
  • Spray bottle filled with rubbing alcohol

Lavender Oatmeal Melt Pour Soap

  • Sprinkle a small amount of the lavender + oatmeal into the bottom of each soap mold. These will end up on the top of the soap when finished.
  • Cut the soap base into small cubes + place it into a microwave-safe bowl or a small pan for melting.
    • This can be done in the microwave or on a stove top.
    • To melt in the microwave, heat at 30-second intervals until soap is melted. Allow the melted soap to cool a little as heat can cause the essential oils to burn off.
    • Add the essential oils to the soap. You can add as little or as much as you like. Start with about 10 drops of each, stir, and then smell.
    • Spray the bottom of the mold with rubbing alcohol. This will help to remove any air bubbles that could become trapped.
  • Add the remaining lavender + oatmeal to the bowl and mix well.
  • Gently pour the soap mixture into your molds.
  • Spray the top of the soap with the alcohol + allow to harden for 1 hour.
  • Gently remove from mold + store in airtight container until you’re ready to use.
    Lavender Oatmeal Melt Pour Soap
Use this recipe as a guide for trying out other types of bar soap scents + ingredients. Here are some ideas:
  • Dried Lemon Peel + Rosemary
  • Peppermint + Orange Peel
  • Coffee + Coconut Extract
  • Lemongrass + Lime Peel
Not interested in making your own soap? No problem! We have you covered with our collection of cold process natural bar soaps + shampoo bar.
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Leave a note in the comments telling us what you thought of this recipe + if you ventured out to make any other scent combinations.

xo, Michelle

Pumpkin Spice DIY Skincare

Hey everyone! Pantry boss lady, Michelle here with another installment of our wellness blog! This week, we are feeling full of fall spirit so what better to talk about than pumpkin + spice!? As an October baby (shout out to my fellow Libras!), fall, with all its scents, flavors, colors, + traditions, has always been my favorite time of year. I love finding new ways to celebrate + harness the bounty of the season. Hence Pantry’s cornucopia of autumn-inspired products including my favorite among all favorites, our Force Field Rollerball Remedy.

Apart from being delicious, pumpkin + fall spices are also crazy good for you/your skin.  Join us on a virtual stroll through fall to discover the benefits as well as find a couple pumpkin spicy beauty recipes you can make at home.

PUMPKIN

Thanks to high levels of beta carotene + vitamin C and E, pumpkin protects your skin against UV damage, free radicals, + premature wrinkles and sagging. As if that’s not reason enough, studies have shown that the yellow-orange pigments, called carotenoids, lend a natural glow to the skin. Pumpkin is also a natural exfoliant that helps slough off old skin cells + supports the regeneration of new ones. The fruit enzymes, alpha hydroxy acid, and vitamin A (aka ‘retinoids’) in pumpkin break down the “glue” holding old, dead skin cells on your face, and allows them to fall away naturally. When you’re done, you’re left with a bright, clean, refreshed skin surface!

AND SPICE… 

CLOVE

Not only is clove an aphrodisiac (hubba hubba!) but it can also work wonders on your skin. It’s anti-bacterial + anti-fungal properties make it a powerful tool in the treatment of breakouts. Since clove is a highly potent antioxidant, it helps in maintaining the collagen level of the skin which prevents premature aging.  Bonus: the above-mentioned antibacterial properties also means that clove can help to promote oral health + it has been used to treat oral problems since ancient times. This is why it was a must-have ingredient for our Tooth Powder. Please note: clove oil is very strong! Always dilute clove oil with a carrier oil to prevent burns. 

Cinnamon Clove Skincare

CINNAMON

The anti-fungal, antioxidant +  antibacterial properties of cinnamon make it one of the best spices to spice up your skincare. It improves blood flow to the surface of the skin, resulting in a hydrated skin while helping to fight against acne + skin blemishes. Bonus: it makes a great lip plumper! Add a couple drops of cinnamon oil to any carrier oil for a lip boost or pick up a tube of our Spiced Chai Lip Balm.

GINGER

With 40 antioxidant properties, what can’t you do with this invigorating spice? Rub fresh ginger directly onto your face to ease inflammation, boost skin tone + fight blemishes. Pair it with honey + lemon juice to improve elasticity, clean up breakouts, and brighten skin tone. (Just be careful around your eyes.) Want a little more invigoration? Grab a pouch of our Warming Chai Milk Bath to boost your circulation, moisturize your skin, + treat your senses to a bouquet of seasonal scents. 

NUTMEG

Nutmeg is considered a wonder spice for good reason. It eliminates irritation + inflammation on your skin by smoothing out its appearance + promoting hydration. For those with acne scarring, nutmeg can help soften the appearance of scars as well as sun spots. It is highly recommended for individuals with dry skin as it aids in exfoliation + moisturization but it also helps those with oily skin due to its antiseptic, antiviral, and antibacterial elements. These elements help to reduce excess oil production + the clogged pores it brings. And, if that wasn’t enough, it also works wonders as a toner. Win, win, win! Feeling nutty for nutmeg? Our Autumn Spice Body Polish is just the thing for you! This sweet + spicy combination works to exfoliate + moisturize dry skin while smoothing out imperfections. 

TURMERIC

Also known as the golden root, turmeric is a must-have spice in your wellness regimen! It contains antioxidants + anti-inflammatory components that help beat back breakouts + break up clogged pores so your skin can glow. Another one of the major benefits of turmeric for your skin is its ability to boost collagen production + speed up the body’s ability to form new, healthy tissue. It also blocks elastase, an enzyme that attacks your skin’s ability to produce elastin. If elastin production slows down, fine lines, wrinkles and sagging are more likely to appear. Luckily, turmeric is full of antioxidants that mop up these skin-damaging molecules and dial down the potential effects of environmental damage. And speaking of environmental damage, turmeric is also beneficial in the battle against hyperpigmentation. Since it inhibits the production of melanin, the pigment responsible for dark spots and other kinds of hyperpigmentation, using turmeric regularly on your skin can fade away discoloration to give skin a more even-toned appearance!

Now that you’ve read up on the benefits of these autumnal superstars, let’s bust open those pantries + mix up some skin care treats!

Pumpkin Spice Skincare

DIY Pumpkin-Turmeric Face Mask

Ingredients

2 tablespoons canned pumpkin puree

1 teaspoon coconut oil, melted

½ teaspoon turmeric

1 tablespoon oats, ground

Instructions

In a small bowl, mix puree, coconut oil, and turmeric. In a blender or food processor, pulverize oats into a fine powder + sprinkle into pumpkin mixture. Apply to face + neck and leave on for 20 minutes. Before rinsing, gently work product into face in circular motions. Rinse and moisturize. 


Pumpkin Hair Mask

Pumpkin Hair Mask

This hair mask recipe from the blog Naturally Curly is simple-yet-effective…a maybe a little delicious. 😉 Coconut oil paired with moisturizing honey + pumpkin is sure to bring even the driest hair back from the dead.

Ingredients

1/4 pumpkin purée

2 tbsp. unrefined coconut oil

2 tbsp. honey

Instructions

Mix together + coat your locks starting at the roots. Rinse + wash as usual. Repeat as needed but no more than once a week. You don’t want to turn into The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!


Nutmeg Cinnamon Exfoliator
Nutmeg + Cinnamon Exfoliator

Ingredients

1/2 Tbsp ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 Tbsp whole milk or yogurt

Instructions

Combine the spice +  milk/yogurt into small bowl, stir well. Starting with a clean face, massage the mixture lightly over your face in small circles, always moving upwards. If you’re brave and don’t mind getting a little messy, do this on your decolletage, as well. It would make for a very glowing, soft neck and chest. After you’ve exfoliated for 5-10 minutes, rinse well with warm water and pat dry.

This week’s Quarantine Beauty Routine Recipes are for healing your feet and sunburned shoulders after spending hours walking in the sun protesting. Here’s what you’ll need:⁠

“Pep in your step” – Peppermint Foot Scrub:⁠
• 1-2 cups sugar or epsom salt⁠
• 1/2 cup coconut oil, grapeseed oil, or olive oil⁠
• 10 drops peppermint essential oil or fresh peppermint⁠

Mix all your ingredients together and pour into a jar. (If you are using fresh peppermint, you may want to grind it up first.) You can use more or less sugar until you’re happy with the consistency. Using more sugar will result in a more firm scrub. Store for up to 6 months. Use once a week in a foot bath or prior to showering.

Healing Aloe Lotion:⁠
• 1/4 cup coconut oil⁠
• 1/4 cup almond oil or other carrier oil⁠
• 1/4 cup aloe vera gel or 1 medium sized aloe leaf⁠
• 5 drops lavender and frankincense essential oil (optional)⁠

If you are using fresh aloe vera, cut and clean it first. Blend into a gel. Combine your aloe vera gel with the almond oil and coconut oil. and blend using a hand mixer for 8-10 minutes. This will make the lotion airy and light. Once it is light and buttery, add any essential oils you are using. Store for 3-4 months in the fridge and reapply as necessary.

Want to follow along with our Social Media Manager, Taylor, and our General Manager, Jessica, as they demonstrate how easy it is to make these products? Watch our IGTV/ Live Quarantine Beauty Routine here: https://www.instagram.com/tv/CBW3-qkJ8ZM/?hl=en

No time to DIY? We’ve got you covered.

If you’re in need of some muscle + feet TLC, whether it be from protesting or your day-to-day routine, Pantry’s Peppermint Foot Salve and Arnica Muscle Salve pair perfectly with these Quarantine Beauty Routine Recipes and promise to soften and repair those barking dogs.

Spent too much time in the sun? Our Cooling After-Sun Spray is the ideal treat for sun-scorched body. Blended with organic Aloe Vera gel, organic coconut oil, and cooling peppermint & eucalyptus essential oils, this spritz works to soothe and replenish your skin while cooling the sensation of long days basking in the summer sun.

A DIY banana face mask your skin will love you for – SheKnows

This Beauty Routine Recipe uses a few simple ingredients from your kitchen Pantry and can be adapted for several different skin-types (and pairs perfectly with our new beauty tools!)

Banana Face Mask for acne:⁠
• 2 Tbsp. mashed banana⁠
• 1 Tbsp. baking soda⁠
• 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice⁠
Mix all ingredients and apply to face and let sit for 10-15 minutes. Repeat twice weekly.⁠

Banana Face Mask for wrinkles:⁠
• 2 Tbsp mashed banana⁠
• 1 Tbsp yogurt⁠
• 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice⁠
Mix all ingredients and apply to face. Let sit for 20-30 minutes. Repeat 3-4 times per week.⁠

Banana Face Mask for Brightening Skin⁠
• 2 Tbsp mashed banana⁠
• 1 Tbsp honey⁠
• 1 Tsp fresh lemon juice (optional)⁠
Mix all ingredients and apply to face. Let sit for 20-30 minutes. Repeat twice weekly.⁠

Facial steams can deeply cleanse your skin, promote collagen production (anti-aging!), remove toxins, rid blackheads and whiteheads, hydrate the skin, prevent sinus problems, and much more, making them the perfect product to make for our Quarantine Beauty Routine Series! ?

When creating your tea steam medley, the options are endless! We’ve listed 3 recipes below, but you can use any combination of teas and herbs you prefer.

• Lemon Peel and Chamomile Tea: The citric acid found in lemon peels helps to cleanse and brighten skin. Chamomile is known as a lightening + relaxation agent. Use this facial steam before bedtime, or any other time you need to relax.
• Basil and Black Tea: Basil has skin-soothing and calming properties, + also reduces inflammation, making it a great choice to reduce puffiness. Black tea is an astringent, helping to fight oily and dirty skin. It’s also a good source of antioxidants, which help reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
• Green Tea, Chamomile Tea, and Lemon Slices: Green tea has the same astringent and antioxidant powers as black tea, but comes with an invigorating and energizing boost. For an added boost, add in a few drops of rose and jasmine essential oils for help evening skin tone, smoothing skin, and anti-aging.

Step 1: Prep your skin. Remove all makeup and tie your hair away from the face.

Step 2: Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a saucepan.

Step 3: Once your water is boiling, add your ingredients and remove from heat.

Step 4: The fun part! Cover your head with a towel and lean over your pot. Keep a safe distance—the steam should not hurt your skin. Your steam sesh can last anywhere between 15 and 30 minutes.

This Quarantine Beauty Routine is all about Hand Masks.

Hand masks work just like face masks. They infuse and trap moisture, nutrients, or other benefits into the skin. Here are two separate recipes for keeping your hands nourished:

Potato Hand Mask:
– 1 small potato, peeled
– 1 Tbsp olive oil
Place the small potato in a medium pot and cover with water. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Allow the potato to boil for 5-10 minutes, or until you can easily pierce it with a fork. Remove and drain. Allow the potato to cool and mash it with a fork in a small bowl. Add in the olive oil to form a thick paste. Apply the mask to your hands in a circular motion and allot it to sit for 15+ minutes. Rinse off, pat dry, and follow up with a hand cream.

Avocado Hand Mask:
– 1/2 avocado
– 1 egg white
– 2 Tbsp of oats
– 1 Tbsp lemon juice
Mix all ingredients in a bowl, forming a thick paste. Apply the mask and allow it to sit for 20+ minutes.Rinse off, pat dry, and follow up with a hand cream.

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