Cristin McDonnell has studied Ayurvedic medicine and brings her interest in healing to our work here at Harms Vineyards and Lavender Fields. This is one of a series of her blogs on healing.
I tend to get very excited about all of the healing properties and health benefits of lavender, that I take the cosmetic benefits for granted. I recently reviewed some of the cosmetic benefits and was surprised to find that I can easily replace some of my skin care products with a lavender hydrosol.
Most readers are more familiar with lavender as an essential oil, but the lavender product that should get just as much recognition for its beauty benefits is the lavender hydrosol/ facial mist. (See What is a hydrosol?)
My favorite use of the lavender hydrosol is as a daily make up remover and cleanser. I spray the hydrosol on my face and then wipe my face with a towel or tissue. Another option is to put the hydrosol on cotton ball and gently wipe away makeup. Even after washing my face with a gentle soap, I can still see some of the day’s toxins coming off of my face with the hydrosol. I also spray a Q-tip and gently wipe away eye make-up.
The added benefit is not just cleansing, but the regenerative effects lavender hydrosol has on damaged or fragile skin. It can also be added to facial masks for a non-drying deep cleanse. If you don’t want to add it to the mixture of your facial mask, mist your face with the lavender hydrosol before you apply the mask.
You can use a fine mist of the hydrosol to set your makeup. It is great for combatting excess dryness on the face and neck and can be used before and after shaving. Spraying the hydrosol before shaving helps with achieving a closer shave, reducing inflammation and ingrown hairs.
In Ayurveda classes, we always used sesame oil or coconut oil for massage. The skin is the largest organ. The rule of thumb for Ayurvedic massage: if you can’t digest something orally, than your skin should not be expected to. Whatever you put on your skin topically will be absorb into the blood stream. Lavender oil is natural and safe to apply to the skin, especially when you are buying a product that is organic/biodynamic. Applying lavender as a beauty treatment is not only going to benefit you cosmetically, but it is also safe.
Source: Catty, Suzanne. Hydrosols: The Next Aromatherapy. Healing Arts Press, 2001. Print.