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6 min read

As you will know from this blog, I am all about DIY-ing my own skin care (duh), and I love that the ingredients I use can be easily identified and pronounced. I can see them individually, feel them, smell them sometimes even taste them! Skincare doesn’t need to be complicated or overwhelming, routines don’t need to be intricate or precise, today I am going to share some of my go-to skin care ingredients, tips and tricks and show you how simplifying your skincare routine can actually benefit your skin.

Maybe you’re like me and you long for a more conscious, simplistic and slower paced life AND skin care routine?

Our lives can often get so busy, and skin care can seem really complicated that we can neglect looking after our skin altogether and I believe that that has a direct effect on both our physical and our mental well-beings. Self care is SO important, and it’s one of the reasons Green and Bare was created and why the self care movement is on the rise today.

There’s beauty in simplicity

Green and Bare was born out of necessity. I needed to take better care of myself.

After working for a friend for a few months in his soap and candle supplies store, I grew fond of the many raw ingredients he stocked, I was fascinated with what you could easily make at home. I loved exploring the different ingredients and discovering what they could do for my skin. I loved the formulating process and the anticipated excitement in creating a final product.

All of this exploration made me realise that nature has provided us with all we need to take care of our skin. Sure it may not come in a fancy bottle or be advertised in high gloss magazines, but it’s beauty is in its simplicity. I discovered that I could use just three base ingredients that are highly concentrated and last longer if I just mixed what I needed when I needed them.

Why you should simplify your skin care

When a product contains both water and oil (so think creams and lotions) they require additional ingredients like fatty acids, fatty alcohols, water and preservatives. These ingredients do nothing for the skin, they’re merely there to create the cream itself. When you start to add them all up, it can be shocking to learn just how many preservatives, fillers and binders we’re slapping on our faces each and every day! When you create your own skincare at home using raw ingredients and simply mixing them together as you need them you can avoid putting unnecessary additives on your skin. Here are some more benefits when you choose to simplify your skin care:

  • 100% organic – anything that contains water can’t be 100% organic, as water cannot be organically certified.
  • Reduces packaging and transportation – by reusing bottles and jars at home we are putting less into landfills.
  • More product for your purchase – you get more when it’s in raw form because the ingredient alone is more concentrated and packed with nutrient-rich ingredients.
  • Extended shelf life – a lot of skin care companies, although advertised to be paraben free, are still using other synthetic preservatives to extend the shelf life.
  • You can customise it to suit your skin – why use water when you can use floral waters or aloe vera juice, you can customise your skin care to suit your own individual needs.
  • Reduces the need for water – some skin care products can contain up to 70% water, shampoos can consist of as much as 90%!

As you can see there are a lot of pros to consider here. I believe skin care should also be fun, I don’t get a lot of fun from squeezing something out of a bottle personally, but that’s just me. Instead I opt for a practice that brings together the simple joys of getting your hands dirty, drawing closer to nature, being creative and exploring lots of fun and exciting natural ingredients that creation has to offer, and you can experience that too!

Here’s how you can simplify your skin care routine using just these three simple ingredients:

use oils to clean and nourish

Plant oils such as Apricot Kernel, Jojoba and Rosehip all harbour beneficial nutrients such as phytosterols, vitamins, carotenoids and squalane. When oils are applied topically they fill up small spaces between the epidermal cells, so your skin looks and feels smoother, healthier, and softer. They also protect the skin, prevent moisture loss all while still allowing the skin to breathe naturally.

Golden Jojoba Oil

How To Use Plant Oils in Skin Care:

  • As a Cleanser First dampen your skin with water or a floral water. Using a pea-sized amount of oil (you can use slightly more if you have dry skin) in your palm, rub your hands together and then rub into your face, neck, and décolletage. then simply wipe off with a warm muslin cloth. Some people like to follow this step with a traditional cleanser to remove any further oil, but I like the soft supple feeling of the oil that remains on my skin.
  • As A Hair Mask: Warm up some Argan or Virgin Coconut and generously apply it to your hair starting at the roots and working your way to the ends, wrap your hair in a towel for at least 30 minutes (the longer the better) and shampoo and condition as normal.
  • An Eyelash Serum: Using a cotton wool tip, gently apply a small amount of Castor Oil to the lash line, leave overnight and wash off in the morning for longer, stronger lashes. Do this each night and you’ll start to notice some results after just a few months.
  • As A Body Oil: Apply your favourite plant oil on your body after a shower or bath while you are still wet, this traps in moisture and leaves skin feeling supple and smooth.
  • As A Face Mask Ingredient: Mix your favourite plant oil (and water if you like) into your dry clay mask for an extra smooth buttery face mask.

use floral waters to hydrate and tone

Floral waters, also called floral hydrosols are subtle, herbaceous, and fresh, they’re also incredibly hydrating making them an essential part of my everyday skincare routine. I’ve got dry/combination skin and it craves constant hydration, hydration that oil can’t offer. Whilst oils are wonderful at preventing moisture loss, they can’t add any moisture to the skin because they don’t contain any.

Lavender Floral Water

How To Use Floral Water in Skin Care:

  • To Control Oil: Mist over a clean face morning and night to control excess sebum.
  • As a Toner: Use as a non-irritating, non-drying toner to maintain the skin’s pH balance.
  • A Face Mask Ingredient: Mix your favourite floral water into your dry clay mask instead of water. Not only does it bring a sensual aromatic component to your mask, but it will also soothe and tone your skin.
  • As a Spritzer: Mist directly on your skin after a shower to rehydrate skin.

 Related: Why You Need To Add Rosewater To Your Skin Care Armoury

use clays to exfoliate and detox

Clay, we play in it as kids, and there’s a reason why we are so drawn to it! When combined with floral waters and/or oils, clays naturally draw out toxins and bind to impurities as it dries, whilst nourishing the skin with many beneficial minerals. Clays make for a wonderful exfoliator, gently removing dead skin cells and improving blood circulation. What draws me to clay so much is its simplicity, mix it with water to make mud, then use that mud on your skin. It’s the most unequivocal example of a natural ingredient and I’ve fallen in love with its an understated beauty.

nude clay face mask texture

How To Use Clays in Skin Care:

  • As a Face Mask: Face masks are simple to create at home and they make for a luxurious self care exercise. Mix together your favourite floral hydrosol and or plant oil into your favourite dry clay powder.
  • As a Body Mask: In a glass bowl, mix together 50:50 water and clay until you achieve a nice paste consistency, apply to the areas on your body, leave on for 10-15 minutes and rinse off in the shower.
  • As a Foot Soak: Fill a plastic tub (not metal) half way full with warm water. Add a half cup of clay and whisk it around until it’s fully dissolved. Submerge your feet, and relax for 15-30 minutes. Some of the clay may settle at the bottom so just give it a quick stir with your feet.

purple clay mask texture

When skin care products become over-complicated it can cause adverse side effects on our skin, and to try and isolate what ingredient is causing that reaction can be really tedious and difficult. When you decide to simplify your skin care routine, you gain back that control. Our skin doesn’t need layer upon layer of ingredients, less is more. Let’s make an effort to go back to basics, and that my friend basically boils down to these three essentials; a cleanser, a moisturiser and an exfoliant. That’s it.

How are you going to try and simplify your skin care routine? By using less products, opting for multi-purpose products or perhaps trying your hand at DIY? Let me know in the comments below, and if you have any questions for me ask away I am more than happy to help!

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