You see my back in the picture up there? I'm proud to say that this is the first summer in a long ass time that I WANT TO EXPOSE MY BACK. Which is a good thing because low back cuts are so adorable and you can find them all over the place right now. Plus when you're a skinny flat chested girl, the low back is a much cuter look then a low front. Just throwing that out there!
Do you suffer from body acne or BACNE in any way? Acne on your back, chest, arms, neck, or even stomach? If you do then I feel your pain, and it is SO EMBARRASSING! Well today I'm going to give you a natural beauty tip to fix that! Doing ballet and working out a lot means that I end up sweating A LOT. But I gave up using standard soaps on my body over a year ago and I will never turn back. At first it seemed kind of weird, I'll fully admit that, and I felt like I wasn't really getting clean. But ridding my life of any and all chemicals had to include my body wash and all skincare. I also switched to natural deodorant which I'll post about another month, and like I said no more body wash!! I bought a body brush for dry brushing and I still have it but honestly I never really got into the whole practice of dry brushing. I'd always technically want to do it right before I shower which is usually right after I workout meaning that I'm all sweaty... I think brushing your own sweat into your skin sounds like the perfect recipe for a breakout. But that's just me. I could be entirely wrong but as far as I know your skin is supposed to be dry when you DRY brush! So while I haven't given up on it and I fully trust in the benefits of the practice, I can't personally vouch for it.
I actually came upon this topical bacne remedy I'm sharing with you today by accident. Of course what you eat and your hormonal health is going to mostly be the basis of body acne and acne in general but topically there are things you can do to help the situation! Acne on your body sucks! And since summer is here it's time to bare it all again. Whenever the weather warms up I start to worry about having to show my back, arms, and chest because of the acne I'm prone to in those areas. Ironically besides a few pimples here and there it has not even crossed my mind this summer! So what's the secret you ask?? TAKE BATHS. Not just any baths but I have a specific formula for your bath that with consistence and patience should bring you beautiful results. Yay right!? You ready for this?
Moving on to the AU NATURAL BEAUTY TIP OF THE MONTH!
Acne Killing Bath Soak
I first started soaking in this bath mixture every night to heal my blistered ballet feet and sore muscles when I got back into dancing. This bath is great for all that and detoxing too but I was pleasantly surprised when I noticed that my body acne was clearing up as well! You will literally want to do this soak every night. Like I said I don't "wash" my body anymore but I try to do this soak every night to keep my skin clear which is especially important during the summer months but really year round. If you happen to be in a rush and don't have time for a bath one day, I have a quick acne killing shower solution posted below as well. But first on to the bath instructions! Step number 1 is to make a "bath bomb" by putting baking soda in your tub and pouring apple cider vinegar over it. It will foam and be glorious. I usually use about 2 heaping TBS of each, sometimes more if I'm feeling crazy. Don't use the nice braggs brand of ACV here, just get any standard cheap ACV from the grocery store! Next you'll want to throw in at least a cup of epsom salts and also some standard sea salt. In fact if you don't have the baking soda/ACV on hand for your bath bomb, you can just give yourself a nice hot salts bath every night and you should see some drastic improvement with your skin! Draw the bath with water pretty much as hot as you can tolerate and soak in it for AT LEAST 20 minutes. I like to take a book in the bath, light candles, add some essential oils for relaxing smells, and sit for an hour or more sometimes! Sit back, get comfy, and relax! I also recommend buying a bath pillow and a bath table or stand of sorts.The longer you soak the better so don't be shy! There are so many amazing things you're soaking up while just sitting. Now for some more information on each of these ingredients.
You can find epsom salt pretty much anywhere. I'm personally not picky about the quality but I know that some people are. I think many people have taken epsom salt baths for one reason or another throughout their lives but I'll list some fun facts according to saltworks.us about why soaking in an epsom salt bath is amazing for you!
- Eases stress and relaxes the body-Stress drains the body of magnesium and increases levels of adrenaline. When dissolved in warm water, Epsom salt is absorbed through the skin and replenishes the level of magnesium in the body. The magnesium helps to produce serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical within the brain that creates a feeling of calm and relaxation. Research shows that magnesium also increases energy and stamina by encouraging the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the energy packets made in the cells. Experts believe that bathing with Epsom salt at least three times a week helps you to look better, feel better and gain more energy. Magnesium ions also relax and reduce irritability by lowering the effects of adrenaline. They create a relaxed feeling, improve sleep and concentration, and help muscles and nerves to function properly.
- Relieves pain and muscle cramps- An Epsom salt bath is known to ease pain and relieve inflammation, making it beneficial in the treatment of sore muscles, bronchial asthma and migraine headaches. In addition, it has been known to heal cuts and reduce soreness from childbirth. Mix a thick paste of Epsom salt with hot water and apply to get soothing comfort. It softens skin and will even neutralize foot odor.
- Helps muscles and nerves function properly-Studies show that Epsom salt can help regulate electrolytes in your body, ensuring proper functioning of the muscles, nerves and enzymes. Magnesium is also known to be critical in the proper use of calcium, which serves as a main conductor of the electric impulses in your body.
- Helps prevent hardening of arteries and blood clots-Epsom salt is believed to improve heart health and help prevent heart disease and strokes by improving blood circulation, protecting the elasticity of arteries, preventing blood clots and reducing the risk of sudden heart attack deaths.
- Makes insulin more effective-Proper magnesium and sulfate levels increase the effectiveness of insulin in the body, and can help to lower the risk or severity of diabetes. *AHEM IF YOU HAVE PCOS THIS SHOULD BE REASON ENOUGH TO TRY THIS OUT*
- Eliminates toxins from the body-The sulfates in Epsom salt help flush toxins and heavy metals from the cells, easing muscle pain and helping the body to eliminate harmful substances. Your skin is a highly porous membrane and adding the right minerals to your bathwater triggers a process called reverse osmosis, which actually pulls salt out of your body, and harmful toxins along with it.
- It can also help with - Athlete’s Foot, Remove splinters, Treat toenail fungus, Soothe sprains and bruises, Ease discomfort of Gout
There are actually about a million more uses for epsom salt but here I'm focusing on it's benefits and how that pertains to this beauty tip. As you can see there are so many reasons to go buy some epsom salt right now! And there's really no excuse not to take an epsom salt bath. Plus it's even cheap. I <3 this stuff! Okay moving on...
Have you ever noticed that while away at the beach your skin looks beautiful? Of course that's partially because of the relaxing carefree environment, the exfoliation of the sand, and the sun BUT a huge factor is the ocean water AKA sea salt water. As in water with salt from the sea. Yeah. I'm sorry I don't know why I'm being so awkward today, let's learn more about why this stuff is great from healthbenefitsofwater.com!
- Sea salt helps the body remove toxins and by-products of metabolism through the lymph system. – This is important because it helps eliminate fluid that is trapped around the ankles, thighs and knees.
- Immersing in warm salted water brings relaxation to the muscles and the entire body.
- Seawater and mineral mud are known for anti-aging, anti-wrinkles, deep cleansing and whitening effect. Circulation is accelerated as is the process of natural skin regeneration. The result is healthy skin that is silky soft. * In the ancient Greece, saltwater bathing was regarded by numerous physicians, including Hippocrates, as a therapy for chronic inflammatory skin conditions (ACNE, PSORIASIS, ECZEMA).
- Dead Sea salt has proven healing properties due to its high concentrations of sodium chlorides, calcium, sodium and potassium. It is considered to be extremely efficient for the treatment of different skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema, as well as for alleviating joint or arthritis pain.
- Taking a sea salt bath is often the solution for treating many health discomforts. Whether done by the sea, or in the peace of your own bathroom, bathing in salt water is effective in eliminating toxins, relaxing and rejuvenating the skin, while balancing the body’s energies.
- A study on the mental changes caused by Thalassotherapy also showed positive psychological effects.
- Brine waters are also believed to help certain children’s diseases, including respiratory infections and enuresis (involuntary urination).
So as you can see, sea salt is pretty bad ass! I see no reason not to add it to your bathtub or shower scrub (you'll see the details on the shower scrub below)!
BAKING SODA & ACV BATH BOMB
Okay while these two ingredients separately have benefits, I'm putting them together because we're looking at them as a unit. Now if you happen to only have one of these on hand that's no problem, throw it in the bath, it won't hurt that's for sure! Let's look at the benefits of adding this awesome bath bomb to your tub from marksdailyapple.com everydayhealth.com and medhealth.net.
- A lukewarm (36 ºC) bath full of carbonated water boosted the performance of competitive swimmers when taken before a workout. Subsequent lactic acid threshold was higher, heart rate took longer to become elevated, and muscles were more efficient after a carbonated bath. Swimmers who took a regular bath at the same temperature enjoyed none of the same benefits.
- Using apple cider vinegar externally helps promote blood circulation in the skin and can prevent bacteria and regulate pH levels
- The malic acid in apple cider vinegar makes it antibacterial, and the amino acids help balance hydration in the skin to calm irritation.
- Apple cider vinegar makes hair soft and shiny because it removes shampoo residue
- Use baking soda to detoxify and alkalize your body. It is natural, safe and inexpensive. People who eat a Western-style diet consisting of sugar, red meat, cheese and other refined foods have a high acid consumption, which baking soda baths can neutralize. You can also detox your body from alcohol, caffeine, nicotine and medications.
- Use baking soda with your sitz bath to relieve pain from hemorrhoids, vaginal yeast infection, anal fissure, and other discomforts in the genital or buttock area.
- Baking soda soothes irritated skin, relieves itching and reduces burning sensation.Baking soda is a good substitute for commercial products used for bathing. It does not contain fragrances and chemicals, it is colorless and odorless, and it does not leave residues in the bath tub. It makes bath water alkaline and leaves the skin feeling silky.
Speaking specifically of Mark's Daily Apple and his amazing website, he has a great article that everyone should read about improving your bath HERE. Remember to make the bath as hot as possible and get your detox on! There are about a million other options for baths out there but I say if all else fails at least take a bath with one or more of these ingredients in it! If you're only going to use only one of them though make sure you put in 1-4 cups of whichever ingredient you so choose. If you're using all 4 them they can be used in the smaller amounts described above in my experience.
One last important note and as promised above - instructions for the busy body! If you don't have time for a bath after a workout or whenever it is that you personally bathe, at least rinse off with warm water. I sometimes take 1/2 cup of epsom salt into the shower and give myself a rub down of sorts. I wet my skin then LIGHTLY scrub the epsom salts on. OR I fill the rest of the cup of salt with water and pour/rub that into my skin. Either method I use, I let the salt sit and soak in for a few minutes - this stings a lot of the time - then I rinse it all off and voila! A quick solution for not being able to accommodate for bath time but still needing to get clean and not be grimy. Rinsing off is good too. Don't hate on the rinse off game.
Okay well my brain is a little fried and all kinds of kooky tonight in case you haven't noticed from this scatterbrained post, but I HAD to make sure that I actually got this tip out there this month! I am not a very good/consistent blog owner. I promise I'll try to be better. But seriously in the mean time find me on Facebook and like my page! Friend me on there too, I love connecting and talking with people! Find me on Instagram and follow me! I post on those platforms ALL THE TIME and I can be very wordy over there which I think is why I hesitate to write a lot of blog posts. I already put myself out there in a big public way every day. Sometimes the response is great and other times it's very 'meh'. But I'll say it time and time again that I'm humbled and amazed by the following I've gained. I really never thought that things would even take off as much as they have right now but here I am and I thank each and everyone of you for your part in this journey.
Let me know if you try the baths, how you like em and how your skin reacts! You can always email me especially if you have skincare/wellness issues you'd like some guidance with at email@example.com.
May you be BACNE FREE this summer! Woohoo!!