January and February often feel like the longest months of the year. We are in full winter; the days are short, the nights are long and if the cold of outdoors isn’t drying our skin, then the dry air from our heating systems certainly is.
This is the time of year when skin conditions seem to be exacerbated. Chapping is a common occurrence for the skiers in the family. For those with eczema or psoriasis, relief from the itching is as a mirage in the distance.
One of the easiest treatments for the skin is to apply moisturizers. One must always remember that this should include internal moisturizing as well as topical applications. Consumption of essential fatty acids on a daily basis can go a long way to improving any skin condition. Alternating between fish, flax and evening primrose oils through a three month cycle can provide the body with a nice mix of oils that will address the various nutritional requirements of your skin.
Another treatment to consider is to prepare a nice facial scrub of oatmeal, almonds and healing herbs to provide a topical source of support for the skin. Herbs to consider would include: Calendula petals, lavender, rosemary and pepper.
A tried and true recipe is: ½ cup oatmeal ground, ½ cup ground almonds, ¼ cup dried calendula petals, ¼ cup dried lavender flours, 4 Tbsp dried rosemary leaves and a ¼ tsp cayenne pepper. Make a paste and apply to the face in a circular motion. Use the scrub to envigorate the blood flow while also encouraging the absorption of the healing properties of the herbs and the natural oils of the almonds and oatmeal. Store unused scrub in the refrigerator to keep the oils fresh.
Nutritional supplements to consider for healthy skin may include: zinc and vitamins C and E.
A wonderfully supportive soup to prepare for chapped skin is found in the books of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Soak overnight 1 large white fungus, ¼ cup dried goji berries and 1/8 cup rock sugar. The next day, using the same water bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for another 2 hours. Strain and drink 1 cup of the broth every day for 1 week.
Enjoy the skin you’re in this winter.