by Emma Graves
One of the perks of living in Brooklyn is that we get four complete and distinct seasons, though mostly milder versions, nearly every year. Lovely as that is, it does mean that we need to take care all year round, paying attention to our homes, our wardrobes, our diet and our skin care rituals in order to gently nudge them towards what is most appropriate in consideration of the environment.
General Guidelines for Late Fall/Winter Health & Beauty
For the Skin: As the steam heat kicks on in these old NYC buildings, you may find yourself more dehydrated on the surface of your skin. Our Holistic Skin Care Specialists have compiled this list of general guidelines in response to the most common concerns we hear every year.
- Though you may think “feeling dry” means that you need more OIL in your Moisture Duo (Nourish & Replenish Oil + your Mineral Mist) the best way to remedy the situation is more MINERAL MIST (remember it is dehydration!). At night, use equal amounts of the oil and mist. Remember to count out the drops and spray the mist directly into the oil in your palm. In the morning, use an extra spray of Mist to your N&R oil in your palm before massaging into your face. Apply a few drops of NO EVIL as added protection over your nourished skin. (Confused? Stop by our shop during open hours or make an appointment to see a Holistic Skin Care Specialist or a consultation or a facial)
- In cold, dry air, use NO EVIL as a membrane protector. Apply a few drops after moisturizer to areas (cheeks, nose, etc.) most susceptible to environmental irritation (dry heat from radiators, cold wind, etc.). NO EVIL is appropriate for even the most sensitive of skin, including the corners of the eyes and up inside the nostrils.
- Exfoliate regularly with Sow Your Wild Oats. It is especially effective in the cool months to add 10 drops of NO EVIL or Cow Fart Juice to the SYWO before adding water. Always, always remember to remove with a warm, wet washcloth.
- Steam Cleaning with the Herbal Facial Steamer is the most effective way to remove and prevent blackheads and does wonders for dehydrated skin–as long as you protect the skin first with an oil and then remove it as you would an oil cleanser–with a washcloth. NO EVIL works just fine, but Nourish & Replenish or Seeds of Change is divine. Take care, boiling water and steam can burn you.
- Edith Rose Cream is a simple and lovely traditional rose distillate-based cream that can be used in the morning or before bed to deeply rehydrate the skin.
- Healthy Skin that is ready to kick it up a notch post-summer has many options. Seeds of Change (Renewal Oil) and Vita-C 10 day Berry Treatment both offer antioxidant boosts while Pumpkin Enzyme Peel uses enzymes to remove dead skin and brighten the visage.
- Regular Holistic Facials can be helpful to clear out pores that have trapped cycles of dehydration in them (we affectionately call this “dino-skin”), so that your skin is smooth once more and product can penetrate better and be more effective. Peels may be added to make extractions easier, to improve the results of phototherapy or simply for that special glow.
- In addition to being a great beauty booster for those upcoming family photos, Healing Phototherapy is a gentle transformative modality that can benefit sensitive and irritable skin as well as defensive line-related conditions.
- Apply one drop of No Evil to the lips and massage it around. (If you have open cracks or a cold sore, use Cow Fart Juice to reduce the risk of infection and prevent lingering red marks.)
- Apply Bumble Balm, Honey Balm, or Hint of Tint before going out into the cold to protect against windburn and chapped lips.
- At night, be sure to include your lips (as well as the area around and behind your ears) in your Nourishing Ritual.
- For Cellular Communication Issues (super-patchy, irritable, and flakey skin), Mist up 5-6 pumps of Instant Alchemy Mineral Mist directly into your Massage in a Bottle, or Organic Infused Coconut Oil and apply to the skin for enhanced moisture absorption. If you are low in magnesium, it may tingle a little. This is not harmful, though uncomfortable, it is helpful! Next time, use less Instant Alchemy and slowly increase the proportions of the mist.
- Apply Vitality Body Lotion immediately after you have turned off the shower while your skin is still wet in order to increase spread and absorption.
- Avoid excessively hot showers which cause trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL) and dehydrated skin. If you don’t want to give up hot showers, protect your skin by applying Massage in a Bottle or Infused Coconut Oil over your dry patches before you get in and either NO EVIL or SYWO + NO EVIL to your face before getting into the shower. Cold water rinse your feet for up to a minute to invigorate your immune system!
- Avoid dry, chapped hands and hang nails by washing with Clean & Green Hand Soap which effectively cleans and disperses dirt and germs without drying the skin or compromising the integrity of the skin’s defensive line.
- While you are nourishing or moisturizing your face, be sure to massage some into your cuticles.
- Wear gloves while washing the dishes in hot water and read the ingredients in your dish soap.
Health & Home Care
- Anti-Yucky Spray isn’t just for toilet-room smells and refreshing the air! Spray onto a cloth and wipe down your toys, door knobs and toilet seats. Also safe and effective to spray directly onto hands when soap and water are not available.
- Despite our best efforts, there will come a time when you’ve been exposed to a virus and want a little more immune protection…or when you feel it coming on: We offer an Elderberry Syrup Kit to teach you how to make this effective herbal remedy at home. Follow the directions and just add honey.
- Stuffy? Steam with our Herbal Facial Steamer (it has all kinds of antimicrobial properties) or even by adding a few drops of the Happy Vapors Essential Oil to some steamy water and building a tent. Rub Happy Vapors Chest Rub onto the chest, the bottoms of the feet (it really works) or under the nose to complete the process of herbal relief.
- Help your body DEAL WITH winter stress instead of having it show up as “bumps” on your face. Brain stressed from all night studying? Stress Bumps for Forehead Tea. Tummy stressed from all those goodies you’ve been eating? Stress Bumps for Cheeks Tea. Adrenals stressed from too much family? Stress Bumps for Chin Tea.
- Limiting exposure to endocrine disruptors? Remember the polyester and vinyl are just two of many fabrics and materials made from petroleum. Though they may be warm and keep you dry, anyone who is concerned about over-exposure may want to layer natural materials against their skin for warmth.
- Place a humidifier in your bedroom or compact desktop version at work.
- Houseplants help to clear the air and give you happy greens in the winter months. Check out Gowanus Nursery around the corner from us for an amazing selection of indoor plants.
- Eat ample amounts of abundant, non-inflammatory fats to lubricate from the inside out.
- Think seasonally: now is not the time to go raw. Cook your veggies with a little acid (vinegar is nice) to break apart the cell walls and help you get more minerals out of your food and into your body.
- Enjoy ample amounts of Inner Strength Tea for organ strength. Wonderful plant-based sources of calcium, iron and anti-oxidants.
- Need someone to work out a plan that’s right for you and help you reach your goals? Confused by all the misleading information you keep running into? Schedule a Holistic Health & Herbal Consultation.