But in the end, that’s what we are – ladies. We can tackle the work just as good as any of them, but we still want to feel fresh, bright and beautiful! Being out in the sun and getting fresh air is definitely as good for the body as it is for our farm-loving souls, but our bodies can take a beating too. So hear are my “beauty tips”, to help keep you feeling your best.
Be Proactive, Not Reactive
My first tip is probably the most important. Take the time to properly protect yourself before tackling your workload. I know the garden needs tending, the chickens are squawking their loudest and we all put our children first, but it’s much better to take a few minutes to grab your work gloves and lather on some sunscreen than to worry about bleeding calluses and sunburns later. I always make sure I put sunblock before I go out, even on overcast days. Sometimes I only get my face and ears, but it’s a step on the right direction. Sunburns can cause serious damage to your skin, especially if you are getting one after another.
In my opinion, there are three things every farm girl needs for her skin: a good facial scrub, a coarse hand/foot scrub and a moisturizing lotion or body butter.
There are a lot of different scrubs out there, and it’s important to look at the ingredients. Your skin is your body’s largest organ, and all those pores soak in whatever you put on it! Look for one that isn’t loaded with chemical or additives, and avoid scrubs that contain plastic “exfoliating beads”. These do not break down and are harmful to the environment. If you have a septic system like we do, those plastic beads are a definite no-go! There are plenty of scrubs using apricot pits, sea salt and even sugar.
For a facial scrub, I recommend using a sea salt based scrub. The larger granules will exfoliate, while the natural properties of sea salt help cleanse. I like to make my own, using a blend of organic sea salt, Dead Sea salt and coconut oil. All 100% edible and safe for your body, your home and whoever else might be exploring Mommy’s basket of goodies! If you are interested, you can view my facial scrub.
Facial scrubs should be used with warm water. Avoid using hot water on your face, as it will cause your skin to dry out. Rinse first with warm water, which will open your pores and relax your skin, then use the scrub, massaging it gently in a circular motion to get all the dirt and sweat out of your pores. A final rinse with warm or cool water and a good pat day and you are done! If you use our facial scrub, the natural coconut oil will leave you feeling moisturized. Otherwise, see below for my tips on lotions and body butters.
Hands & Feet
For hands and feet, I recommend a scrub with sugar. Those finer granules will really help in softening up rough spots and scouring off grime. We offer a premade version here at Little Chick Naturals too. I love using it on my feet – it’s like getting a pedicure in far less time and without the huge cost!
For a quick pedicure: All you need is a bowl full of hot water, and 3 tablespoons of salts. Allow 2 tablespoons to dissolve into the water, then soak your feet for as long as you want. Use the third tablespoon to scrub any calluses or rough spots, then rinse and dry. The coconut oil in the scrub moisturizes and softens, giving you a nice protective coating without feeling oily and slimy!
Lotions, Body Butters & Balms
Lotions, lotions. I am the queen of lotions… Or maybe an addict? I can’t count the number of times I apply lotion daily, but it’s an important step to help protect and moisturize my skin, especially after using hot water, or working on an especially yucky project. I have tried all of the major brands, and I am not being paid to say this but I find Eucerin to be the best. I use their intensive repair lotion- it’s thick, creamy and I don’t need to use a lot. Just a tiny dot and I’m good! If you’re looking for something a little more all natural, something that can be used for all over your body, check out my Mama’s Body Butter! I have been using this since I first became pregnant with my daughter, and it’s truly amazing. I apply it once and feel moisturizer all day, and I can barely see my stretch marks anymore. For really dry skin, or if you suffer from eczema like much of my family does, check out our Calendula Salve.
Take the time to scrub your face at least once per day. Whether you use it to prepare for the day, or to help scrub up in the shower after a long day of working. It might seem like an extra steps, but your skin deserves the pampering!
Ah, the working woman’s hair! Swept into a ponytail and forgotten! Between the sun, that tight elastic band and lord knows what else ends up in your hair by the end of the day, your hair needs some love too. Using a good shampoo and conditioner is key. Let your hair air dry as often as possible – I almost never use a hair dryer, even in winter!
If your hair seems especially beat up, use this treatment to get it strong and glistening again!
Nettle Hair Rinse
You will need:
- 1/4 cup dried nettles
- 2 cup water
- A jar for storage
- Essential oil of your choice (optional)
This is super easy to make. Just bring the water to a boul, an spout over the nettle leaves. Allow them to steep for 20-30 minutes, then strain and pour mixture into the jar. Add 2-3 drops of essential oil, and allow to cool before using.
Next time you shower, rinse your hair, then rinse with the nettle mixture. Sometimes I do this before I shower, in the bathroom sink. I close the sink drain so I can make sure I really get the nettle rinse worked through my hair. Let it sit for about 15 minutes, then rinse out. Your hair will love you for it! This is a great pick-me-up I try to do once a month.
Of course, hydrating from the inside out is always on the list to keep your skin and hair looking great! Keep a water bottle with you when you’re working. I like to change it up and add different things to my bottles to flavor them – lemon, lime, mint and strawberries are my favorites! Freezing the strawberries before dropping them in will help keep your water cold, too.
And that’s really it! No list of expensive designer products, spa treatment menus or styling tips that none of us really have time for(not when you have to go sweep the floor for the third time today!). These simple tips can be worked into your daily and monthly routines, making you feel pampered, without having to do much!