Cup Of Tea Isolated by Petr Kratochvil

   Honestly, I never really knew what a toner was for, except that you applied it after you washed your face. So, I came across some recipes on Youtube, decided to learn more about it, and in no time I prepared my own toner from ingredients I already had.
   After I tried my home made green tea and apple cider vinegar toner, I looked at the cotton ball and was amazed at the dirt/make-up my face wash hadn't removed!
   Green tea is not only beneficial to drink but is also good for your skin when applied. It reduces inflammation, helps reduce signs of aging, contains vitamin E and antioxidants, which can help repair sun damaged skin.


   Apple cider vinegar maintains the normal pH of your skin, reduces redness and reduces acne via lactic and malic acids.

   I was going to add a few drops of tea tree oil but I couldn't find my bottle so for now this is what I'm using:

I filled a 3 oz travel bottle with:
1 oz cooled, brewed green tea (I only had some with lemon flavoring)
                                                          Almost 1 oz with apple cider vinegar
                                                          And the rest with filtered water.

   I've been using this for almost a week and the biggest difference I've noticed is the glow of my face. I think my skin looks more even with less redness and I look more awake. My acne is healing, but most of it is hormonal, so it will probably come back in a couple weeks. :/
   But hopefully, the acne will be less inflamed using this toner. After the toner, I've been using the Garnier Moisture Renewal gel and spf daytime moisturizers.

For more specific recipes, search on Youtube. There are a lot of combinations of ingredients for different purposes.
internet memes - Expectations... Reality
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   I love cinnamon in oatmeal, in deserts, in ethnic foods, and... in my coffee! Just a dash adds a whole new flavor to your brew. Most of the time I add it when I buy a cup at coffee shops but you can add it at any time.

   Why should you consider adding a dash of cinnamon to your cup' o jo? Cinnamon has some great health benefits. Cinnamon lowers blood sugar which contributes to overall balanced blood sugar levels. This in turn regulates your appetite because when you have spikes/dips in blood sugar your appetite spikes as well!

   Added to balanced caloric nutrition over the course of a day will reduce your cravings and your appetite for too much food in one sitting. Cinnamon also slows down the amount of time food passes from your stomach into your small intestines, increasing the amount of time you feel satisfied.

   Cinnamon also:
- improves in brain function
- prevents & treats diarrhea in conjunction with other ingredients
- increases alertness
- reduces your risk for yeast infections
- relieves some arthritis pain
- can reduce ulcers
- can prevent type II diabetes (along with other measures)
- is a natural anti-bacterial (in food & your body)
- is a natural anti-coagulant
- is one of the many spices that can prevent cancer
- may inhibit growth of cancer cells
- contains important minerals such as iron and magnesium

   As you've read down below, I used a Turmeric mask for my acne flare up. The night after that I used another mask, but with less ingredients for a better paste. It was thicker (but it looked like a thinner film on my face) and easier to apply.
   Last night, I used a more discreet method because Brennan and I have a guest and I didn't want them asking me what the hell was on my face!
   I sprinkled about 1/8 tsp Turmeric in the palm of my hand and then added just enough olive oil to saturate the powder (about 1/8 tsp). Then I used this as a cleansing oil before my usual face wash. I massaged this into my face after splashing my face with warm water to open my pores.

   I left it on while I did some other stuff in the bathroom: painted my toenails, cleaned the counter of any residue (It stains everything so be careful!), scooped the kitty litter, and got ready to take my shower.

   In the shower I washed my face with a gentle cleanser twice, once to initially massage the mask off and another quick wash to get the rest of the color and leftover oil off your face.

   I used Basis Face Wash to remove this mask. I usually use this after any face mask because it's gentle, simple and moisture preserving.

   I really liked this method of using Turmeric in your cleansing oil. I read about someone doing this and had to give it a try. I will still use Turmeric masks because they have other beneficial ingredients and it stays on your face longer, but now I have another use for it.

   Give it a try! Using olive oil and/or turmeric is beneficial for all skin types even if you don't have acne. Comment down below if you have any questions.

   My skin has been horribly broken out the past few weeks! I should have turned to DIY masks/treatments a while ago but I just haven't gotten around to it. Tonight I'm preparing a mask for my face, neck and broken out arms with turmeric, egg white, flour, olive oil, and honey. I'm also preparing a hair mask with the extra egg yolk.

I used approximately:
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 egg white
2 tsp whole wheat flour
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp honey

Add the dry ingredients slowly to form a paste and add more flour if you need to. You can refrigerate leftovers for another use.
Below are two of the articles I've read this week that I thought you might like to know about. Enjoy!

4 Scary Reasons to Make Your Own Skincare Products:  http://www.care2.com/greenliving/4-scary-reasons-to-make-your-own-skincare-products.html 
51 Fantastic Uses for Baking Soda: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/51-fantastic-uses-for-baking-soda.html

   When I went to pick up some tea tree oil for my oil mixture, supplements were on sale buy one get one free, so I picked up some tumeric capsules. I've been learning about all of the health benefits tumeric (active ingredient is curcumin), like relieving inflammation, reducing pain, preventing strokes, lowering risk for certain cancers,  is an antioxidant, and aids in skin health. 

   I thought, why not see if it does anything for me, especially since I often suffer from headaches, terrible periods and inflammation in my knees and my bad hip (I know, I know, I'm young...lol. I blame my gymnastics and dancing past.) Plus, I got to try it out for free because of the sale.

   Tumeric can also reduce acne and improve the condition of skin when used in face masks. A tradtional Indian skin mask called peeti is used on a bride preparing for her wedding to give her a smooth, soft and glowing complexion. To read more about face masks with tumeric and watch a tutorial to make your own tumeric face mask go to: http://www.dhukai.com/how-to-get-clear-acne-free-dark-circle-free-skin/

And to read more about the health benefits of tumeric, both as a spice in food and as a supplement, go to: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/turmeric-more-than-just-a-stainmaker.html

  Please make sure to check if any prescription medications you are taking may have any interactions with tumeric. Tumeric can increase bleeding risk if you are taking a blood thinner because it is a natural anti-coagulant.

   I've been taking the supplement for two days now and I'll let you know if I see any improvement in my acne and my overall complexion.

   I've made some changes to the Health & Beauty Home page and I wanted to share them here, just in case you missed them. Below is an introduction to a new component of my blog: natural and alternative cosmetics. I'm really excited about this new direction and I hope you are, too! 

Expressions of Beauty

    I've always been fascinated with ancient beautification rituals and hygiene methods that were used by the likes of the Romans, Greeks and Egyptians. Many of our modern cosmetics were inspired by and evolved from the beauty recipes of those vibrant and healthy civilizations. 
   For individuals with sensitive skin, searching for a cure for acne or dry skin can often leave them feeling discouraged, their wallets empty and their skin no better or worse of than it was before. But there is a wonderful world of beauty recipes for skin, hair, and nails that still exists today that many people don't know much about. 
   Whether you want to use all natural products, reduce your budget, experiment, or just incorporate a couple alternative methods into your routine, there is a DIY natural beauty recipe out there for you!
    We've all heard about face masks with food items such as cucumbers, strawberries and yogurt but there is so much more that simple, natural ingredients can do for our bodies! 
    In my Health & Beauty blog, I want to share the fascinating information about natural cosmetics that can be made in your own home that really work! Not only do I share my experiences and opinions but also provide links to other sources of information so that you can form your own opinion and decide what is best for you. Aren't you a little bit curious? 
   The cosmetics industry often falls short of their purpose, using cheaper or "filler" ingredients to reduce production costs and increase profit. They make exaggerated and unrealistic claims in advertising that the typical person may not be able to achieve with their products and often use experimental ingredients, making the consumer a human guinea pig. Often times a cosmetic might produce results at first, but fall short of their long term claims, causing us to have to go back to the store to find another product...   
   Many people with sensitive skin have to take extra precautions to avoid certain chemicals contained in many hygiene products, some of which can irritate all skin types when used too often. While all hygiene care is trial and error to some degree, we live in a culture that lives and breaths to find the next miracle treatment without the cosmetic industry's full honesty on the science behind their money making products. 
   Also, there are plenty of cosmetic products that are overpriced and even unnecessary because they contain very effective ingredients such as essential oils and plant extracts (of course combined with additives) that can be used on their own or mixed with other simple ingredients to produce the same results (if not, better!). But if those companies were completely honest with the public, they would risk many people not buying it from them. *Gasp!*

   I hope I've piqued your interest and I'm excited to share the age old beauty "secrets" I've learned with you.

Timeline of a Craving


Also, here is a humorous compilation of illustrations I found today.

   So, last night's hair setting didn't work out as well as the last time. This time I obviously hadn't slept long enough for all of the sock curls to dry, and even after using a hair dryer on them, they still were more straight than I needed. The pin-curls were completely dry, but the method I used to style them did not turn out as expected.
Lol, it wasn't that bad.
   Basically, I wasn't creating an exact finger wave look, but I was doing something similar in order to incorporate my bangs into the whole look and to create soft curls/waves. Unfortunately, when I brushed the curls I was not able to tame down the frizziness like these two lovely ladies did. I'll definately try doing it again though.

   I think it was either that I didn't use the right type of product along with my hair being damp or that I didn't spend enough time brushing them into shape. 


   So, I ended up puting my hair in a side pony tail, but then the hair that had been sock-curled was practically straight along side the pin-curls. I took that out and used my handy-dandy much loved hairigami to make a bun.

The nice thing about the way my hair was, was the amount of volume it added to my bun. This isn't a very good picture of it, but my camera died before I could take another.

Off, I went to school.