Sometimes it’s fun to pamper ourselves a little with an at home spa type of experience. I used to buy these facial mask things from the grocery store and use them every few weeks. Then one day I looked at the ingredients and was horrified. So much crap in them that I was putting on my skin! I still enjoy the ritual every so often, but now I use more DIY things. This Clarifying hyssop facial mask recipe from over on Crunchy Betty looks pretty great.
The Quick and Dirty on Hyssop
Hyssop. (I just wanted to type that gorgeous word again.)
But here’s a quick overview:
- Hyssop, which has for centuries been considered a “holy herb,” is a flowering evergreen shrub that’s in the mint family.
- You can make tea and tinctures out of it (although refrain from ingesting the essential oil, and avoid it if you’re pregnant or have seizure disorders), the occasional use of which could help with inflammatory issues, coughs and colds, and circulation.
- If you’re plagued by evil spirits, hyssop has been known to banish those meanies forever. It’s been used since the dawn of demons to consecrate and purify holy places, though science may show it had more to do with hyssop’s natural antiseptic ability to prevent diseases and treat chest ailments. Tomato, tomahto.
- When it comes to skin care, hyssop is astringent and antiseptic, making it a perfect natural treatment for problematically pimply skin – and it has superb healing properties (in part due to its ability to rev circulation), so it’s great not only for wrinkles and pimples, but it makes an excellent addition to a poultice for itchy skin ailments and bug bites.
- Oh, it’s also historically known to be an aphrodisiac when mixed with ginger, thyme, and pepper. (Ahem. Men, I didn’t chase you off with that “asking for directions” comment, did I?)
Simple and Gentle Purifying Hyssop Facial Mask
You will want to use this mask if:
- You have issues with oily or acneic skin; or
- You have aging skin; or
- You have skin.
It’s really very gentle, and incredibly simple (only 3 ingredients), and it’s a wonderful way to introduce yourself to hyssop. When you crush or grind the leaves/flowers, stop for a moment and inhale. Take it all in. Breathe the hyssop deep, and consider all the moments, throughout history, men and women have smelled that same smell and have walked away feeling purified, centered, cleansed.
The first time I made this mask, I used water. But upon mixing it up, something seemed like it wasn’t quite as harmonized as it needed to be. Immediately, I knew it needed milk instead, so this is what we’re using.
Nonetheless, you are welcome to use water instead of milk, and you won’t miss out on anything (except some extra enzyme exfoliating and fatty acid nourishing action that milk brings).
Purifying Hyssop Facial Mask
- 2 tsp dried hyssop
- 2 tbsp full-fat (preferably lightly pasteurized and non-homogenized) milk (or water, almond milk, or coconut milk)
- Approximately 1 tsp french green clay (or clay of your choice)
Grind the hyssop into a powder using a mortar and pestle, spice grinder, or food processor. Heat the milk until just before it boils, and combine with the hyssop. Steep for at least 5 minutes or more (the longer you steep, the stronger it will be). Quickly stir in the clay until you have a consistency that just coats the spoon, but allows for pouring off otherwise. Apply to clean (no makeup) skin in a thin layer. Allow it to dry for 10 minutes (or until completely dry). Rinse well with warm water. Pat dry. Moisturize. Look alive.
Looks simple and easy. Do you have any DIY spa like self care practices you use? Tell us about them in the comments!