We often write about the wonderful food and medicinal plants that you can find in organic gardens such as the Heritage Garden at Roche Caiman. But did you know that within your garden you can find plants that can pamper the body too?
Take the humble Avocado for example. Very popular in vegetarian cuisine and in salads, the Avocado is rich in healthy fats (that help our body absorb and use nutrients), vitamins and minerals. But the Avocado also has plenty of benefits for skin and is widely used in beauty treatments such as facials and masks. A well known beauty secret to hydrate and nourish both hair and skin, is simply to combine mashed ripened Avocado with a natural oil, such as coconut or olive oil, into a mask that is applied onto hair and skin. Avocado oil is also said to be an excellent natural sunscreen and treatment for sunburns.
The Coconut palm, the tree of life, is a good source of ingredients for skin and hair pampering. The oil from mature nuts has been used for hundreds of years for skin and hair. To deep condition your hair, liberally apply Coconut oil for an hour and then shampoo and rinse. Rub oil on your scalp to soothe dryness. For the face, Coconut oil can be used as a cleanser, a scrub, in a mask and as moisturiser. To make a scrub, mix Coconut oil with brown sugar to gently exfoliate your skin. Use it as lip balm for dry and chapped lips.
The Lemon is also any natural beauty lover’s friend. Lemons have been used for centuries for both hair and skin. Lemon juice is used to even out skin tone and to clear dark spots, especially those left behind by acne. Some women simply rub lemon over their spots. But to make a nice exfoliator combine lemon juice, with olive oil and brown sugar.
Many essential oils are anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. Lemongrass (Sitronnel) and Cinnamon (Kannel) are some of the ones that can be found locally. They are widely used in aromatherapy. For a soothing bath, place some stems of Lemongrass in a mesh bag then let the bag soak in the water with you as you bathe.
But apart from cleaning the body, so to speak, there are several plants that are useful for your home cleaning as well. Lemon juice for a example is widely used for the fresh and wonderful scent it leaves behind after cleaning. But did you also know it can be used to control mould and mildew on surfaces?
Simply boiling and simmering Cinnamon sticks and letting the steam fill your kitchen area can provide a quick air freshener.
What are some of your natural beauty secrets?