The all-too-familiar summer dilemma: We can’t wait to bask in the warm sun, but we’re in no rush to swap out our full coverage loungewear with the skin-baring attire this season calls for. The confidence-boosting solution that will diminish everything from stretch marks to spider veins — effortlessly? Infusing your everyday personal-care products with a natural anti-aging remedy will target beauty arghs!
Read on for the affordable “recipes” that will have you ready to rip off your sweats and throw on a swimsuit!
Fade Stretch Marks
We can’t erase them completely, but adding rosehip seed oil to your body lotion can help make the scars left behind by pregnancy and weight fluctuations barely noticeable, says New York City dermatologist Michele Green, MD. “The oil’s vitamin A penetrates skin and stimulates collagen production to repair skin from deep within, where scarring occurred,” says Dr. Green. Plus, the oil’s vitamin E hydrates and plumps skin to further fill in and mask the striations.
To do: Mix four drops of rosehip seed oil like Heritage Store Rosehip Seed Oil, (Buy on HeritageStore.com, $13.99) with a palmful of body lotion. Rub onto stretch marks. Repeat daily for results in four weeks.
Smooth a Crepey Chest
Easy to mask with sweaters during the cold months, it’s hard to keep a crepey chest undercover come summer. Enter: Grapeseed oil, a fantastic anti-aging remedy. Add it to your facial moisturizer and slather it on your chest in the weeks leading up to summer, says Miami-based dermatologist Lucy Chen, MD. The oil’s abundant flavonoids and linoleic acid increase collagen synthesis to smooth out wrinkles. “And its fatty acids absorb and lock moisture into skin for a youthful, skin-plumping effect.” Bonus — it works just as well on facial creases!
To do: Add one teaspoon of grapeseed oil like Maple Holistics Store Grapeseed Oil (Buy on Amazon, $9.95) to a quarter-size amount of moisturizer. Massage onto face and chest. Repeat twice a day for a noticeable difference in three weeks.
Flatten Belly Bulges
The season’s body-revealing attire can be a harsh reminder of the belly bloat and bulges that our sweats kept hidden all winter. To shrink them, mix seaweed powder into a face and body mask. The algae’s iodine speeds the production of fat-burning enzymes to minimize bulges while boosting circulation to expel excess water and toxins for a slimmer-looking stomach.
To do: Mix 1⁄2 tablespoon of seaweed powder like XPRS Nutra Organic Kelp Powder (Buy on Amazon, $9.99) and one tablespoon of a face and body mask. Apply to the stomach; rinse after 15 minutes. Use twice a week for results in three weeks.
Boost a Saggy Bust
Gravity, aging, and loose skin are all reasons the bosom droops over time — and that sagging is in full focus when donning a swimsuit. But adding acai berry powder as an anti-aging remedy to your face serum can help “lift” them up! The berry’s antioxidants mend damaged cells to improve skin’s elasticity, says dermatologist Michele Green, MD. It’s also rich in vitamin C, which encourages the production of skin-firming collagen and elastin to reduce sagging.
To do: Mix 1⁄4 teaspoon of acai berry powder (Buy on Nuts.com, $9.99) with four drops of any skincare serum. Apply to breasts and let sit for 20 minutes, then rinse. Use three times a week for results in 30 days.
Soften ‘Chicken Skin’
Those pesky red upper-arm bumps (caused by an overproduction of keratin that clogs hair follicles) can make us self-conscious when donning sleeveless tops and swimsuits. Thankfully, Dr. Green says adding some brown sugar to your body wash works as a great anti-aging remedy and makes it a cinch to buff away the bumps. “The pantry staple’s fine granules gently rub against the bumps to help unclog follicles while its glycolic acid loosens and dissolves excess keratin.” An added perk? All the exfoliation helps buff away dry, dead skin cells so arms appear instantly smoother.
To do: Combine 1⁄2 tablespoon of brown sugar with a palmful of body wash. Massage the mixture onto damp upper-arm skin for two minutes, then rinse. Use twice a week to see a noticeable difference within three weeks.
Eliminate Spider Veins
Purple, weblike leg veins keeping you from slipping into a pretty sundress? Simply add horse chestnut extract to aloe vera gel. The plant’s aescin strengthens vein walls to stop leaking while increasing circulation to promote healthy blood flow and prevent blood from pooling.
To do: Mix five drops of horse chestnut extract like Herb Pharm Horse Chestnut Extract (Buy on Herb-Pharm.com, $15.50) and one tablespoon of aloe vera gel. Rub onto veins twice a day to see results within four weeks.
Erase Age Spots
The freckles of our youth were considered cute, but the bigger brown spots we’ve acquired on our face, chest and hands from years of sun exposure are more aging than adorable. To the rescue: Dermatologist Michele Green, MD, suggests combining ginger with jojoba oil. The spice’s compound gingerol has lightening abilities that help break down built-up melanin (skin’s pigment) to fade discoloration, says Dr. Green. “Ginger also contains powerful antioxidants that protect skin from the sun’s intense UV rays to prevent new spots from forming over time.”
To do: Mix 1⁄2 teaspoon of powdered ginger with two teaspoons of jojoba oil. Apply onto spots and let sit for 15 minutes, then rinse. Use three times a week to see more eventoned skin in 30 days.
No matter how flattering your new swimsuit or halter top may be, blemishes on the back or shoulders can sap its shine. The simple solution: Add turmeric into your body wash. The exotic spice is an anti-aging remedy packed with antioxidants and antibacterial properties that help mend skin and clear up blemishes, says dermatologist Lucy Chen, MD. What’s more, tumeric’s curcuminoid, an anti-inflammatory compound, soothes redness, eases irritation and speeds skin healing.
To do: Combine one teaspoon of turmeric with a palmful of body wash. Massage the mixture onto damp, blemish-laden skin while showering. Let sit for two minutes, then rinse. Repeat three times a week for a blemish-free back within two weeks.
Ninety percent of women have cellulite, but knowing you aren’t alone doesn’t make showcasing it any easier. To nix dimply skin in time for swimsuit season, add bentonite clay to your body wash. The clay’s negative ionic charge bonds with and removes the positively charged toxins in the body that can make cellulite more prominent. And the massage-like motions of rubbing the mix on skin stimulates the lymphatic system to further flush out trapped toxins and excess fluids so skin looks smoother, stat.
To do: In a nonmetal bowl, mix 1⁄4 cup of bentonite clay like Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay (Buy on Amazon, $9.98) with 1⁄4 cup of body wash. In the shower, rub on celluliteprone areas for 1 minute. Let sit for five minutes; rinse. Repeat three times a week for results in three weeks.
A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.
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