Unlike popular beliefs, women don’t wish for materialistic things. What they really want, though, is flawless skin. Unfortunately, because of various environmental factors such as constant sun exposure and pollution, combined with our unhealthy eating habits and careless lifestyle choices, leads to skin that suffers from acne, hyperpigmentation, dullness, and in some extreme cases even inflammation.
Luckily for us, these ill effects can be managed and our skin can be brought back to normal by using just a couple of ingredients found in our kitchen: lemon and honey. Lemon and honey have a lot of healing benefits on the skin. They are easily available, both lemon and honey are less expensive than most dermatologic treatments and are mostly suitable for all skin types. But before you squeeze some lemon juice and mix it with honey, here are a few things you should note to make the most of the handy ingredients that are turning out to be the holy grail of skincare.
Lemon juice contains a very high amount of vitamin C in the form of citric acid (almost 5-6%). It is known to curb excess sebum production making it the perfect ingredient to treat acne. Lemon juice also contains alpha hydroxy acid that sloughs off dull skin cells and accelerates the production of new ones because of which it is also a natural exfoliator, especially useful in the removal of blackheads. Lemon also contains a high amount of ascorbic acid which makes it one of the strongest naturally occurring antioxidants. It can fight hyperpigmentation and scars caused by acne.
Pro Tip: For people with sensitive dry skin, lemon can cause skin irritation, redness, and excessive drying. It is always advisable to perform a patch test, on a less-sensitive area like the elbow, and only then continue with its use.
Naturally occurring honey is a humectant (an ingredient that hydrates and moisturizes). It has antimicrobial properties, soothes inflammation, and clarifies skin. Honey also has trace amounts of hydrogen peroxide that give it its skin-lightening properties. Not only is honey considered a cleanser (a little raw honey and water are considered sufficient to remove dirt from skin), it is also supposed to act as an exfoliator even though its texture is not particularly grainy. Almost every skin type can use honey but it is especially helpful for those with dry and sensitive skin, thanks to its hydrating properties.
Pro Tip: Honey can be used for fading difficult acne scars and for treating hyperpigmentation. Just dab the affected area with a little honey and expect the blemish to lighten with repeated use.
Both lemon and honey have many healing properties, especially for the skin. Amongst many, they are extremely effective in combating acne as both have anti-inflammatory properties and are great antioxidants. The side effects of lemon, which is the stronger, more potent ingredient, are balanced by the soothing qualities of honey making it the perfect recipe for treating acne-prone skin without adverse side effects. The best way to use honey and lemon in everyday skincare is by incorporating them into DIY face masks. This simple face mask recipe is best for overall skin health:
Pro tip: Although a simple honey and lemon mask is enough, several other ingredients like turmeric, baking soda, and cinnamon, can be added for targeted treatments.
Honey and lemon masks can be used for treating active pimples with the addition of a simple ingredient that is readily available in our pantries: baking soda.
Pro Tip: Baking soda helps to soothe skin inflammation. It is also an excellent exfoliant. When mixed with honey and lemon, it can effectively combat acne.
A simple honey and lemon mask, when mixed with a little organic turmeric and yogurt, can be used for fighting hyperpigmentation. It can also instantly remove dullness from the skin making it a quick go-to mask, especially during festive seasons.
Pro Tip: Turmeric is a superfood that has antioxidant properties that are associated with reducing the appearance of wrinkles, age spots, and other forms of pigmentation. Consistently using a turmeric face mask with lemon and honey will help in making the skin brighter.
Cinnamon is a naturally occurring antiseptic. Its anti-inflammatory properties are known to fight even serious skin conditions like eczema. It is also a serious exfoliator. By adding a little cinnamon to the lemon and honey mask, it can be used for treating redness and skin inflammation that is often painful.
Pro Tip: Alternatively, you can use only honey and cinnamon in a 3:1 ratio and use that as an overnight paste, or keep it for 20 minutes and wash it off with cold water. Cinnamon may irritate the skin so it is best to use it once a week.
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