Relax and meditation
Hypericum, scientific name Hypericum perforatum, is a well-known and appreciated medicinal plant of the Clusiaceae family. Hypericum is also called St. John's Wort since its maximum flowering falls around June 24, St. John's Day. This plant is a natural remedy that can be used both internally, in fact, it is able to counteract depression, and for topical applications. In this post we will focus our attention on its cosmetic properties and on the effects of external uses of hypericum, in particul...
Slow cosmetics, yogurt and milk for a luminous and soft skin
Let’s learn to pamper our skin! There is a movement, called Slow Cosmetique, born in Belgium and that has the aim to bring back our attention to the actions we take to take care of our beauty and also to the products we apply on the skin. The idea of Slow Cosmetique is that sometimes our cosmetics really have too many ingredients, and not all of them are beneficial, in fact they are often the cause of so many problems such as acne, blackheads, wrinkles, gray and dull skin. But we can make some s...
Naturally beautiful Part 6, green, white and black tea, the liquid cosmetics
A small leaf fell in a cup of boiling water of the Chinese Emperor Shen Nung that, delighted by the incredible aroma, decided that the new drink was heaven-sent. In this way, according to the legend, green tea was born. Nowadays green tea is one of the most studied and drunk drinks all over the world. Obtained from the leaves of Camellia sinensis, it is rich in polyphenols, that are powerful antioxidants that make it so healthy. The leaves, from which green tea is obtained, aren’t oxidized durin...
Murumuru butter, a powerful cosmetic for skin and hair
Astrocaryum murumuru, simply called murumuru, is a plant native to the Brazil’s Amazon rainforest. From its seeds a butter is extracted, almost solid at room temperature, nourishing, ideal as a massaging butter and as a treatment for skin and hair. Properties of murumuru butter – The beneficial properties of this butter come from its high content in fatty acids, such as lauric acid, whose quantity is estimated around 46%, and myristic acid, about 27%. Myristic acid has antioxidant properties (...
Tea tree, the first aid always with you
Melaleuca alternifolia, also known as tea tree, is a plant belonging to the Mirtaceae family native to Australia. From the distillation of its leaves and the final brunches of the plant an amazing essential oil is obtained, used and appreciated for more than 100 years in Australia but whose renown is growing worldwide. Instead, the tea tree leaves are an ancient remedy of Australian Aborigine tradition used before the essential oil. These leaves were applied indeed as a poultice on wounds or use...
Natural cosmetics, like kings and queens Part 11, Rose infused oil worthy of the Gods of Olympus
The palace of the king of Babylon Nebuchadnezzar was decorated with roses whose petals were used to prepare a scented oil. In ancient Greece and ancient Rome, roses were the symbol of the goddess of love, Aphrodite or Venus, they represented beauty and joy and the rose infused oil was also well known. About this special and powerful beauty oil spoke Pliny and Homer, who, in the Book XXIII of the Iliad described that Aphrodite applied on Hector's body a rose infused oil to protect him from the an...
Saffron oil, gold for your beauty
Saffron is a spice obtained from the stigmas of the Crocus sativus flower that belongs to the Iridaceae family. We know saffron as a culinary ingredient but this spice, as taught by Ayurveda, the traditional Indian medicine, can also be a precious beauty ingredient. The proof is in fact the kumkumadi tailam oil, which we talked about in a previous post and whose basic ingredient is saffron. Well, we can also prepare, at home, a lotion able to capture the incredible beneficial effects of saffron ...
Burdock, scientific name Arctium lappa, is a plant belonging to the Asteraceae family whose root is used as a powerful natural remedy. The use of burdock as a medicinal plant has a great tradition, in fact already in ancient China this plant was used to treat colds while it even appears in the herbology volume The Compendium of Materia Medica written by Li Shizhen in 1578 during the Ming dynasty. Properties - Science has become very interested in burdock and, as often happens, research has con...
Natural cosmetics, like kings and queens Part 10, camellia oil
It is said that the women of the Japanese island Ooshima have always a fresh and young skin and wonderful hair. Their secret of beauty? The camellia oil, obtained though cold pressing of the seeds of the plant camellia japonica, called also common camellia, of the Theaceae family. Camellia is very appreciated for its ornamental role thanks to its flowers that bloom between January and March, characterized by an intense color from red to purple and rose. Camellia oil is an amazing product for ski...
Lavender, scientific name Lavandula officinalis, is a plant belonging to the Labiate family. It is characterized by a blue-violet inflorescence organized in spikes and by an intense aroma that makes lavender a nice ornamental plant for gardens and balconies. But lavender also has an interesting healthy action. In fact, lavender shows a diuretic, antiseptic, fluidifying, digestive but also calming action recognized by tradition but also proven by scientific studies. Lavender can be used to prepar...
Turmeric oil, the amazing oil for beauty and health
Turmeric, scientific name Curcuma longa, is a plant native to Asia. Its orange root is characterized by amazing healthy properties and can be found as a powder or whole root. Thanks to an active substance, the curcumin, the spice shows antimicrobial properties, thus resulting useful to counteract virus and bacteria, and an anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antioxidant and anticancer action. In addition to this, turmeric is also able to protect the brain from degenerative illnesses such as Alzheimer...
Safflower oil, cosmetic use
Safflower, scientific name Carthamus tinctorius, is a plant belonging to the Asteracae family and native to the East. It may be used as a substitute of saffron since these two spices are similar. From the seeds of safflower an oil with interesting healthy and cosmetic properties is obtained. In this post we will focus our attention on the benefits that safflower oil may bring to the beauty of hair and skin. Safflower oil contains indeed a high percentage of polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as l...
Today we speak about an amazing plant based oil of the ancient Ayurveda tradition, Kumkumadi Tailam, that you can easily found in herbalist’s shops and online and use to improve the skin appearance, to counteract acne and wrinkles and to attenuate eye bags and dark circles. The word kumkumadi means in Sanskrit saffron, that is also the main ingredient of this beauty lotion. Kumkumadi is prepared by leaving to brew, in boiling water, different herbs such as licorice, vetiver, red sandalwood, lotu...
Black soap, also known as African black soap, is a product originating in West Africa. On the basis of the country of origin, it may be obtained from black olives oil or coconut oil or shea butter and potash from the ash of some plants such as that belonging to the genus Platanus. The use of black soap is growing all over the world because it is considered an essential beauty cosmetic, a remedy against dark skin spots, dull skin, rashes, scars and acne. Properties – As often happens, also scie...
The Swedish bitter is a preparation obtained by maceration of various medicinal herbs and characterized by several and interesting properties and applications. Its formulation is attributed to Paracelsus, a Swiss doctor, alchemist and astrologer of the sixteenth century who called this powerful and, for that time, truly portentous product, Elixir Ad Longam Vitam, or elixir for a long life. Nowadays we know this natural remedy thanks to the well-known Austrian herbalist Maria Treben who, in her f...
Prickly pear oil
Through cold pressing of the seeds of Opuntia ficus-indica, or prickly pear, a very precious oil is obtained and used in natural cosmetics for the beauty of skin and eyes. This oil counteracts the wrinkles and is a very good choice in case of eye bags and dark circles, but it is also beneficial to treat dry skin by regenerating it and results also useful in case of acne. Prickly pear is characterized by nourishing, moisturizing and anti-aging properties thanks to the substances that it contains,...
Rose water, liquid beauty
Rose water, or rose floral water, is a product for the beauty of face, eyes and hair that is obtained during the process of distillation of rose petals to produce the essential oil. At the end of this process, in addition to the essential oil of rose, rose water is also obtained that preserves the incredible properties of this fragrant and velvety flower. For the homemade preparation instead, the infusion of the petals is used. The petals are added to the boiling water and left to rest for about...
Beauty cosmetics? Now they are supplements, Part 2 zinc and astaxanthin
Against wrinkles, acne and dull skin we can do a lot not only with face and body creams and natural remedies but also with diet and supplements. The scientists (Vollmer et al, Int J Mol Sci, Oct 2018) are focusing their attention now on the protective and repairing effects on the skin of some substances that act from the inside once they are introduced in the body through diet or supplements. In the previous post we have seen the benefits, if some precautions are used, of collagen and beta carot...
Kojic acid, cosmetic use against skin spots
Kojic acid is a substance produced by fungi belonging to the species Aspergillus oryzae, koji in Japanese. In particular, this species of fungi is responsible for the fermentation of malting rice for the production of sakè. A by-product of this process is, in fact, the kojic acid. Kojic acid is considered a healthful substance since it acts as an antioxidant, antimicrobial, antiviral, antiparasitic and antidiabetic, but it is also an important cosmetic ingredient included in the formulas of face...
Naturally beautiful Part 4, how to remove the pollution from the skin
We live in very polluted cities, especially in the cold period, due to cars and exhaust gas, heating and industrial fumes, and this can affect health but also the appearance of our skin. It has been shown that pollution, by depositing on the epidermis, can cause skin inflammation, worsen acne and oxidative stress by increasing free radicals and triggering skin aging processes (Puri et al, Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol., Jul-Aug 2017). The skin may appear dull, with spots and sensitive, in ac...
Naturally beautiful Part 3, the beauty masks of December
Nourishing and hydrating the skin, protecting and healing it with only natural ingredients, powerful sources of beauty, antioxidants and anti-aging substances that make the skin luminous and toned, this is what we hope to help you do with these posts dedicated to natural cosmetics. The articles about INCI of cosmetics allow us to understand that often the so called beauty products in fact may cause irritations, rashes, acne or wrinkles, and this effect isn’t related to the price of the cosmetic....
Sea buckthorn oil, cosmetic use
From the fruits of the sea buckthorn, scientific name Hippophae rhamnoides, it is possible to obtain, through cold pressing, an oil with interesting cosmetic properties for the beauty of the skin that becomes healthy and luminous. This oil, according to scientific studies, (Zielinska et al, Lipids Health Dis, May 2017), is rich indeed in vitamin C, group B, carotenoids, polyphenols, tocopherol or vitamin E, highly antioxidant, and unsaturated fatty acids such as palmitoleic acid, a type of omega...
Sunflower oil, cosmetic use for beauty
Through the pressing of the seeds of the sunflower plant, scientific name Helianthus annuus, you get an oil that can be used both for cooking and in cosmetics for the beauty of the skin of face, body and hands. We dedicate this post precisely to the possible applications of sunflower seed oil as a cosmetic product. This oil is a source of essential fatty acids, mainly linoleic acid and, to a lesser extent, oleic acid (Meydani et al, J Am Coll Nutr, Oct 1991). It is the high percentage of linolei...
Macadamia nut oil
In the previous post we have seen the properties of Macadamia nuts, a type of oily fruit with a taste that reminds that of coconut, an anti-inflammatory action and a protective role on the cardiovascular system. From Macadamia nuts an oil is extracted, this oil may be used both for cooking, thanks to the high content in monounsaturated fats, the good fats for the heart, and the high smoke point, around 210 °C, but also, and especially, in cosmetics. In the article of today we will speak about th...
Naturally beautiful Part 1, The Autumn Cosmetic
Autumn brings the first cold days but also the marvelous colors of nature that becomes deep red, bright orange and light yellow. But this period of the year brings also amazing ingredients to take care of your beauty in a natural way, simple but effective. And you don’t have to be worried about INCI, the label that, by law, should list all the substances used in a cosmetic product, because you have full control of all the ingredients. Let’s see how to take advantage from the gifts of Autumn in o...
Natural cosmetics, like kings and queens Part 5, beauty milk
The articles we are dedicating to INCI, the label that by law should list the ingredients of cosmetics, make us understand that behind creams, serums and lotions that we can buy in shops and that promise miracles for our skin and beauty there are often chemical substances, derived from petrol, sometimes even irritating, that clog the pores and suffocate the skin. And the skin may react by becoming dry, dehydrated and acne, blackheads but also wrinkles may occur. And what about if we try to prepa...
Inci of cosmetics, you know what you are applying on skin Part 12, the sodium lauryl sulfate
Cosmetic products are not all the same and the difference, for our health and beauty, isn’t given by the price or the best advertising, but by the ingredients that you find inside creams, serums, soaps and shampoos. Sometimes the used ingredients respect the skin and the hair, other times, and unfortunately this happens quite often, not at all and the results are irritations, dull skin, wrinkles but also acne, blackheads and, for what concerns hair, dandruff, oily scalp, hair loss and brittle ha...
Stemless carline thistle
Stemless carline thistle, also known as dwarf carline thistle, scientific name carlina acaulis, is a plant of the Asteraceae family. This remedy has tonic, draining, digestive and diuretic properties and therefore helps to counteract cellulite, improves digestion and supports the work of the liver. You can prepare a decoction in this way, bring to a boil a cup of water together with a tablespoon of carlina roots, let it simmer for a couple of minutes, filter and let it cool down, then drink a cu...
Natural cosmetics, like kings and queens Part 4, rice water
The skin is our interface with the outside world, it helps us feel consistency and temperature of what is surrounding us and it also protects us. And we must protect it, too. In the posts dedicated to the INCI of cosmetics we are learning that, unfortunately, creams, serums and lotions often contain too many ingredients and not all beneficial. Indeed, some of them are harmful, irritating and sometimes even carcinogenic as the famous formaldehyde, we dedicated a post about the topic last week. Th...
Studying the INCI, the label that, by law, should report all the ingredients used in a cosmetic formula, has made possible to observe that, unfortunately, a lot of substances contained in creams, serums, shampoos and conditioners are really useless to the skin, sometimes they are even dangerous. These ingredients are inserted in the cosmetics in order to make the products creamy, thick or to give the impression that the skin becomes smooth but, actually, they don’t bring any nourishment at all, ...
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