( Lady Looking in the Mirror by Alfred Stevens, Belgian, 1823-1906)
In reply to a few ladies who have requested a post on looking healthy, I am today sharing some of my own health habits and products that I sometimes use. Please note that I do not use all these products all at the same time and I do not use all of them daily.
The first thing you need to know is that I am not in perfect health, I do not have a perfect weight and I cannot say I am never ill. I look at illness as a signal to slow down and rest and pray. I am not on any medication. I grew up in a happy Christian home where alcohol was never taken. This may have a bearing on my health, as well as the fact that I lived before the fast-food and junk-food era and maybe my health got a good start.
My beauty routine is not very glamorous or inspiring, so if you adopt any of these ideas into your life, you may want to put the ingredients into some attractive containers to give a feeling of luxury.
Below: I use Selsun Blue Shampoo for skin break-outs, including Rosacea. This product has an ingedient that seems to cure the redness that many pale-skinned people get, and it also is helpful with acne. When I get a break-out, I wash my face with this in the morning and evening. I know it has been effective when the itching, burning and stinging goes away after a few washings. I use this only when I am having trouble with my complexion, and I use it for several weeks, until the infection goes away. The medicated Selsun Blue variety is great for hair. It leaves it so soft and shiny, and you can let the shampoo run down over your face if you have troubled skin.
I have used Pears glycerine soap ever since I was a teenager, and it is great for all skin types. I use this most of the time, twice a day. (When my skin is normal and when not using Selsun Blue. ) Rinse all soap products off the face by splashing water on the face at least five times. I have good water, with no chlorine and no flouride.
For Roseacea (red skin with acne-like breakout) , I use a cotton ball dipped in apple cider vinegar as a toner, morning and evening after I have washed my face. If you find a need to use this, do not be alarmed if the broken-out, red areas of your face sting with the application of apple cider vinegar. That will be less of a problem as the vinegar clears up the roseacea or acne. I only use this until my face is cleared up and my skin no longer stings when the vinegar is applied. That is how I know the breakout has been healed. Apple Cider vinegar also helps rough skin patches.
This cream, below, only requires a small drop in the palm of the hand, then spread around the face withthe other hand. A bottle of it can last a long time if you are frugal. It has a silky texture.
Hot tea is something I like, but before any of may favorite hot drinks in the morning, I squeeze a wedge of fresh lemon into a cup and add warm water. I like it without sweetener but adding honey is nice if you have a sore throat or are not feeling well. I keep a bowl of lemon wedges in the fridge. Someone recently told me that it was cheaper to make lemonade from fresh lemons and honey than it was to buy bottled or frozen juice for her family.
Squeeze lemon juice into warm water at the beginning of the day, but do not use the rinds.
Below: when I need to cover up skin problems, I like this product. Since I do not use it daily, It lasts a long time. To remove makeup I sometimes use natural coconut oil from the kitchen, followed by glycerine soap. White Rain has a makeup remover foaming gel ypu can get at the Dolla store called Boutique Collection facial cleanser. It is very easy on sensitive skin.
The Vitamin C Cream is a good moisurizer and an under-makeup lotion if you wear makeup. It makes the makeup go on more smoothly and you do not need to use as much.
I do wear makeup sometimes. Merle Norman is a favorite but I also use other brands. The company also has a product that helps hide skin problems such as rosacea (a skin problem which occurs in pale skin, usually of Irish or Scottish heritage.)
The hand lotion I like the best is Camille Beckman with glycerine because it is not watery and I do not think it has alcohol in it. Just a tiny bit of it softens and takes away dryness, so a little tub of it can last a long time. To keep from using so much handlotion, I avoid detergents by using protective rubber gloves to wash dishes. Gardening gloves are essential for outdoor work and when using garden tools.
Here are two herbal teas that have some ingredients that make a body feel good. Check the ingredients listed in the boxes of herbal teas to make sure there are no artificial things that you might be adverse to.
The black tea I enjoy is a blend of Rwandan and Assam called Yorkshire Gold. It is a golden tea without the tanic acid taste or bitterness. It can be purchased separately and blended.
Black cherry juice is good for several things, and I try to drink a half a cup daily. There is no sugar in this juice. Black cherry is not the same as tart cherry.
I try to buy small sized bananas so I can eat a whole one and not have to mess with cutting one in half. These also have important nutrients.
I like to prepare a salmon dinner but I really have to have make sure it is a local product or from a place as close to home as possible, and that it has not been frozen and thawed or shipped from some strange place whose name I cannot pronounce. That makes it hard to find but I manage to get it fresh once a week. I would like it to be more.
It seems like there are a lot of products to use here, but I do not use them all daily. For example, these vitamins are so effective that I only take them every other day, and sometimes only in the evening if I notice they make me feel sleepy.
Rest, by the way, is another daily ingedient that I am including in health. Half an hour on the couch does a great deal of good. Rest revives the body and the spirit.
Like other people, I have not always slept through the night. When wakefulness ocurrs, I do not fight it or worry about it. I get up, make a cup of tea, and read. If I do not want to get up but cannot sleep, I write a novel (in my mind) and usually it is boring enough to put me to sleep.
A quiet recreation in the way of art, writing, sewing, card making, etc. can be healthful if you do not go at it like a competition.
A good body and soul cleanser is tears. Watch a movie that has moments which bring tears to your eyes. Crying is beneficial, as research has shown. When we were children and felt any kind of depression, our mothers and grandmothers would tell us to have a good cry. Today they tell you not to cry about anything (or everything) but at what price?
Now for hair care:
I used to get a very painful peeling of the skin on the ends of my fingers that would never heal. It finally was cured when I avoided any household product with sulfate, which is in a lot of detergents. Loreal has a line of non-sulfate shampoos, and this is what I use. I find it unnecessary to wash my hair more than once a week if I avoid using hair products such as setting lotions or hair sprays.
A lot of ladies want to know how I excercise. Aside from a few yawns and stretches in the mornings, I do not engage in any formal excercise. I dislike formal excercise. When I die I fully expect someone to write "she never excercised" as the cause of death, although I have never heard of lack of jogging or push ups being a cause of death.
I would rather sweep a floor, stretch upward to clean a cupboard, lean down to pull a few weeds, and hang out the laundry on the line. My mother and grandmother and great-grandmothers never exercised but I know they were more active physically in other ways than people are today. I have been to excercise classes, had excercise equipment and videos, but have not found the time spent in excercise any advantage, nor the excercise itself. It may help others, so I do not want to discourage anyone from excercising. I just do not want to do it and I do not have the patience for it. I like to get something else accomplished at the same time.
I prefer to go on a long, leisurely country walk in the summer and a short, brisk walk in winter. The subject of walking requires an entire post with beautiful paintings of flower-lined paths around the house and scenery, leaves and snow falling, spring warblers flitting about and the lovely solace of evening sunsets. Formal excercise is very limited in its sensory and spiritual experience, but a walk is so much more, as it allows the soul to acknowledge the presence of God.
For over all mental health I have found it helpful to read Philippians 4:8 and similar scriptures often, because of the barage of bad news coming from every which way these days. Apply the whatever-is-lovely passage to daily life is like rubbing a soothing salve over a wound.
I use this Zinc A and D ointment when have patches of rough skin on my face, and I use the Philippians 4:8 passage when there are rough patches in my life at home.
Of all the ingredients I have listed here, I have found that rest, studying the word of God, and prayer are the most beneficial.
For hands, the rubber gloves will protect well enough that using hand lotion all day will not be necessary. I use the Mary Kay Satin Hands kit ecery once in awhile. In a future post I may cover the problem with older ladies eho get darker spots on their hands, called age spots. Some ladies apply white vinegar with a cotton ball, or pure lemon juice, and claim it fades these spots. For all skin discolorations and breakouts, I have read that it is a reflection of the nutrients or lack of, going on inside the body. I know that white spots on nails is a lack of zinc. See your naturepath physician for more advice on the skin, hair and nails.