Mother’s Day is only a few days away, and if you need a Mother’s Day gift that is frugal yet thoughtful, give your loved one a homemade natural facial using ingredients you might already have around the house!
Ingredients and Supplies
- Castor oil (or another expeller oil)
- Brown sugar
- Olive oil (or another carrier oil)
- 2-3 mask ingredients (e.g. pureed avocado or cucumber,
lemon juice, plain yogurt, honey, milk, egg, herbs)
- 3-5 washcloths
- 1-2 towels
- 2-3 small bowls and spoons
- A comfortable place to lie down
- Relaxing music or nature sounds
- 1-2 soft blankets
First mix up the scrub and mask and set up your facial area.
To make a facial scrub: Put 2 tbsp. brown sugar in a bowl and add small amounts of olive oil while stirring, until the mixture is paste-like. It should rub easily without dripping or crumbling.
To make a facial mask: Combine the ingredients you have chosen in a bowl until well mixed. You can make a mask with ingredients found in your kitchen–some common ideas are peeled pureed avocado or cucumber, lemon juice, plain yogurt, honey, milk, or egg. I wouldn’t use all these at the same time, but experiment with a few—you can even add herbs like spearmint, lavender, or chamomile to the mask. If you know your loved ones’ skin care needs (e.g. dry skin, sensitive skin), check out this site, Natural Skin Care Ingredients, to tailor the mask to her needs. Make sure you consider her allergies, if she has any.
Set up a comfortable place for your loved one to lie down, where you can easily reach her face. It’s easiest to sit at the head of wherever she is lying (e.g. a reclined chair or a bed). Have blankets to cover her body, and place a soft towel where her head will rest (to protect the chair or bed from drips). Play some soft music or nature sounds nearby.
Prepare your other supplies—if the sink is not close to the facial area, get at least two washcloths wet with very hot water, squeeze a bit, and wrap in tinfoil immediately. Wet 2-3 other washcloths with warm water and place in a bowl. Place all the prepped washcloths, scrub, mask, castor oil, and towels on a table where you can reach them easily during the facial.
One additional consideration: If you have young children, consider your loved one’s need for peace and quiet—if she would find it more relaxing without the noises and interruptions of small children, try to find someone to watch them during the facial. Older children may be able to assist you or perform the facial themselves.
After you have prepped, help your loved one prepare for her facial. Encourage her to dress comfortably in a tank top or bra that can have the straps pulled down onto her arms, or to go without a top (she will be covered by a blanket up to her chest). Lie her down on the chair or bed, with her head on the towel, and cover her up to the top of her chest with blankets. Ask her if she is comfortable, and adjust accordingly. Once you have begun the facial, it is best to not talk and let your loved one rest and be pampered.
Begin the facial by cleansing her face. The most natural way I’ve found to do this is with castor oil, and a wet, hot washcloth. Just rub a drop or two of castor oil (a little goes a long way) into her face (avoid the eyelids and lips). Then, place a hot wet washcloth (either from the sink or out of the tinfoil) on her face and let it steam her pores; be sure to ask her if it’s an okay temperature—if it’s too hot, remove it and let it cool just a bit, then replace it on her face. If the cloth is not hot enough, re-wet it with hot water. It may be helpful to wrap the washcloth around her mouth rather than covering her lips, so she can breathe easier. Once the washcloth has cooled to room temperature (usually 3-5 minutes), remove the washcloth and massage her face, gently rubbing the castor oil into her skin (do not add more oil, just rub the oil already on her face). The castor oil helps to release and expel dirt and bad stuff from her pores; the steam treatment helps this process along by opening the pores. Reapply a hot, wet washcloth to steam her skin at least once more. I find this steam treatment very relaxing, so I tend to re-wet the washcloth and steam at least two or three times. Make sure you wipe her face off gently one last time when you are done steaming.
Now, apply the brown sugar facial scrub. Gently massage the paste onto her face. The brown sugar will exfoliate her skin, and the olive oil is moisturizing. Take your time with this, but don’t rub too hard—slow and gentle movements are best. When you are done, wash off the scrub with a clean wet washcloth.
Then apply the prepped mask. Gently apply the mask mixture to her face (avoid the eye area and lips), then let it sit for 10-20 minutes. Turn up the music or nature sounds, and let her enjoy the peace. You can also use this time to apply a few drops of olive oil to your hands and give her a nice shoulder and upper chest rub (or consider a foot rub, if your loved one prefers that). Wipe off any massaged areas gently with warm wet washcloths. Then use a cold (but not ice cold) wet washcloth to wipe off the mask; the cold water will close up her pores and refresh her face. Dry her face by gently patting a soft towel on her skin.
If you used a drying ingredient in the mask (e.g. lemon juice, egg, milk) and her face feels a bit dry, then you may want to finish her facial by massaging another drop of olive oil into her face. When you are finished with the facial, quietly let her know that you are done and she can relax there as long as she likes. Clean up the facial supplies, and when she is finished resting, get her a glass of water to drink and wish her a Happy Mother’s Day!
Article by Kathie Smith
Kathie Smith is a professional doula, childbirth educator-in-training, and has a master's degree in educational psychology. She is the only female in her household so far, with a husband and two boys who keep life interesting. Kathie enjoys reading and writing about parenting, education, birth, and early childhood. She is also an avid scrapbooker and crochet fanatic.
Kathie has written 3 awesome articles for Natural Family Today.
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