This is a collection of DIY beauty recipes. Some can be made with items found in your kitchen cupboard, while others require more complicated ingredients. Please check back often for updates, as I am always in the market for at-home skin care secrets!
- Homemade Tend Skin
- Vitamin C Serum
- Homemade Cleansing Oil
- Homemade Skinceuticals B5 Serum
- Simple 2-Ingredient Moisturizer
- Healing Raw Honey Mask
- ½ cup rubbing alcohol (70% kind)
- 1 teaspoon witch hazel
- 20 uncoated aspirin
- Clean, empty bottle
- Throw everything together in a clean bottle and wait for the aspirin to dissolve.
- Shake well before each use.
- This homemade Tend Skin should last for around a week. If it starts to smell like vinegar, throw it out and make a new batch because the aspirin has probably gone bad.
- ½ teaspoon l-ascorbic acid powder
- 3½ teaspoon distilled water (bottled water is fine, should be at room temperature)
- 1½ teaspoon propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin
- 1 amber or dark blue glass bottle
- Make sure your glass bottle is sterile by boiling it in some hot water. You can also sterilize it with some rubbing alcohol.
- Wait for the bottle to cool and dry completely.
- Add the l-ascorbic acid to the bottle.
- Add the distilled water.
- Swish around the bottle or use a stirrer until all the l-ascorbic acid is dissolved.
- Add the propylene glycol or glycerin (must be vegetable glycerin, however you can use Monistat Anti-Chafing gel if your skin is fine with silicones)
- Mix well (cap the bottle and keep shaking until everything is blended or use a stirrer) and use up as early as possible.
- The above recipe is more accurate if measured out by proportion/weight, but for convenience, the amounts are listed in teaspoons.
- You want to use a dark bottle because it prevents the l-ascorbic powder from oxidizing. L-ascorbic powder is destabilized when it reacts with light and/or heat, so store your homemade C serum in a cool, dark place.
- Mix well and use up the C serum as early as possible because l-ascorbic acid is highly unstable. Make a new batch every few days because as time goes on, the l-ascorbic acid grows less potent.
- You can also make this serum with just water. However, without the propylene glycol or glycerin content, it will oxidize very quickly. If you make it with just water, you have to make a new batch every day.
- Make sure the l-ascorbic acid you buy is 100% with no additional ingredients. You can buy powder or crystals (from the vitamin section in your local health food store), but I like to use powder because it dissolves faster. Sometimes Vitamin C will just list "ascorbic acid" as its ingredient. If this is the case, call the company to see whether or not it's l-ascorbic acid. Also, make sure there are no unnecessary ingredients in the Vitamin C capsules you buy (such as sweeteners, rose hip oils, etc).
- If you find this percentage of vitamin C to be too irritating, you can always add less l-ascorbic acid. If it's not strong enough, you can add more, but don't go over 20%.
A homemade cleansing oil is extremely flexible. You can use whatever oils you what in whatever concentration depending on your skin's needs. This is great for removing makeup, sunscreen, and other waterproof products.
- ~90% oil(s) of your choice
- ~5-15% emulsifier (Cromollient SCE or Peg-7)
- Empty, clean, and dry bottle
- Make sure the bottle is completely dry.
- Add the oil to the bottle
- Add the emulsifier to the bottle
- Shake or mix together evenly.
- For the oil component, you can use 100% grapeseed oil or 1/3 jojoba oil, 1/3 grapeseed oil, and 1/3 sunflower oil. If you want to use different oils, you have to experiment around to see which proportions you like best. I like to use plain jojoba oil with a few drops of tea tree oil because it’s less messy and complicated to make. You can even preserve it by adding a few drops of vitamin E oil.
- First start out at a 10% concentration for the emulsifier to see how well the oil rinses clean. If it is too drying for your skin, drop the emulsifier proportion down to 5%. If you feel it doesn't clean enough, up the percentage to 15%.
- For which oils to use, any of the below will work:
These are generally safe for acne-prones, but everyone's skin is different so it's hard to say. You'll just have to experiment to see what your skin will ultimately like.
- Mineral oil
- Safflower Oil
- Sunflower Oil
- Jojoba Oil
- Grapeseed Oil
- Rose Hip Oil
- Food grade oil is safe or safer than cosmetic grade oil, so if you find cold-pressed versions of some of the above oils in your grocery aisle, it's just as good as an oil you purchase from a cosmetic company.
SkinCeuticals Hydrating B5 Gel is a very popular serum that adds a boost of hydration to your skin. You can make your own at-home version for a fraction of the cost.
- 3/8 teaspoon hyaluronic acid powder
- 1/4 teaspoon Vitamin B5 powder
- 2 tablespoons distilled water
- 1-2 drops liquid preservative (optional)
- 1 glass bottle
To make the serum, mix everything together inside the bottle. You can add more or less water depending on how thick or liquidy you want the serum to be.
- If you don’t add a preservative, make sure you use this up in about a week or two so it stays fresh.
If you feel like every moisturizer is breaking you out, you can try this simple 2 ingredient moisturizer for hydration without the fuss.
- 100% Vegetable Glycerin
- Water (distilled or bottled water)
To make this simple moisturizer, buy some glycerin from your local drugstore and add a few drops of it to some water. Mix well, either in your palm or in a bowl of some sort, and apply to your skin.
- If the moisturizer is too sticky, use more water. If it isn't moisturizing enough, add some more glycerin. Whatever you do, don't use glycerin straight up on your skin because it may actually burn or irritate it.
- You can either make a bottle of this stuff to last you one week or make this concoction everyday.
- You can also add other ingredients, such as aloe vera gel or rose water, to make the moisturizer more nourishing.
- Since there are no preservatives, it's best to make a fresh batch every week.
A raw honey mask helps soothe irritated skin. Regular honey is not the same as raw honey.
Warning: If you are allergic to bees, do not use this mask.
- 1 teaspoon Raw Honey
- 1/2 teaspoon Aloe Vera Gel (optional)
- Aztec Indian Healing Mask or any sort of clay powder (optional)
- To make the raw honey mask, mix everything together in a non-metal bowl. If you are using just raw honey, it'll be pretty thick and difficult to spread on your skin without tugging, but if you add a few drops of water to the honey or dampen your face a bit before applying (avoiding the eye area), the mixture will spread better. Use more honey if 1 teaspoon isn't enough.
- You can pretty much add anything you want to a raw honey mask, but I am partial to aloe vera for its healing and soothing properties. (If you are adding aloe vera, it will make the honey much more watery.)
- If you are using the mask for the first time, only leave it on your skin for 10 minutes. Some people experience slight redness if the mask is left on too long. If the mask burns or makes your skin tingle, wash it off immediately! You may have really sensitive skin or your skin may just not agree with raw honey. Before putting the mask all over your face, you could also try a raw honey spot test on a small part of your skin to see how your skin reacts.
- Generally, you want to leave the mask on your skin for 20-30 minutes and then rinse with water. It won't dry up like other masks, but will stay very sticky. During the mask, make sure you keep your hair away from your face.
- If the mask starts to drip off, you may have applied it unevenly or used too much honey. Use once or twice a week.
- I started with a 10 minute raw honey mask and it didn't do much for my skin. Now I leave it on for 45 minutes and sometimes overnight. If you use the mask overnight, be prepared to wake up to a sticky mess. The honey could travel into your hair, down your neck, into your ears, and onto your pillow case and bed sheet as you sleep. To prevent this from happening, here's what I do:
Diluting the honey really prevents it from traveling all over the place while you sleep.
- First, I leave the mask on my skin for 45 minutes.
- Then, I dampen the mask with some water and rub the honey into my skin.
- I add more water to "rinse" off some of the honey but not all of it. You want a thin, diluted layer on your skin so that it feels sticky but not goopy.
- Spread out the length of a towel over your pillow and a second one on your bed sheet.
- Go to sleep (preferably on your back).
- Wake up and rinse skin with water.
- I used to think raw honey was just regular honey, so I never bothered to spend extra money for it (around $7 at your health food store), but it is different. It's not the same as "unfiltered" honey either. Raw honey is opaque and has brown bits and pieces inside of it.
- I've used both regular honey and raw honey and while regular honey is not bad, raw honey is especially good at soothing irritated skin. It is also a humectant and can help keep your skin moisturized when it's feeling shoddy. It's also a great treatment for burns, so you can pretty much use it anywhere on your body.
- I find that after a raw honey mask, my skin is softer and less red. My skin doesn't feel moisturized if I wash off all of the honey, but if I leave on a thin, diluted layer, my skin is no longer dry.