It’s strawberry season — so stock up, and create a vitamin-packed face mask that will gently exfoliate, help fight free radicals, and is so clean you can eat it. Jennifer Ann Safara Perry, founder of Yonkers-based skincare line Sacred Seeds (www.sacredseeds4u.com), offers a homemade recipe for an anti-inflammatory mask, that she says is good for all skin types, and will “nourish, control oil production on the skin’s surface, lighten acne scars and age spots, and help skin retain elasticity.”
Perry suggests always using fresh, organic ingredients in masks to optimize benefits and eliminate toxins (Her Sacred Seeds line focuses on natural and plant-based ingredients). Best part about this strawberry mask is the simple ingredients and no waste (what’s left you can eat!).
• 3 strawberries
• 1 Tbsp raw honey (processed honey may irritate skin)
• 1 Tbsp whole oats
• 1 Tbsp oil: jojoba, grapeseed, extra-virgin olive, sweet almond, coconut, hempseed, sunflower, rosehip seed, argan, avocado, Tamanu, or evening primrose oil
• 8 drops lemon juice for dry skin or up to 1 tsp for oily or acne-prone skin
• 1 Tbsp brown sugar
• 1 Tbsp bentonite clay
In a bowl, mash the strawberries with a fork, or use a food processor or blender. The riper the fruit, the easier it is to mash into a pulp. Grind the oats in a spice grinder or food processor, or use them whole. Add in the honey and any optional ingredients, and stir until the ingredients are well mixed. Before you apply the mask to your face, test a small portion on your inner elbow or wrist.
Apply liberally on face and under chin. Avoid your eyes, eyebrows, hairline, and nostrils. Leave on for 15 minutes. Rinse gently with warm water; then, splash your face with cold water to close your pores. Pat your face dry with a clean towel.
Any unused portion of the mask (using original ingredients) can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week or tossed it in a smoothie.