Less Coffee for your Cup, More for Glowing Skin…
I love coffee. I should say… I love good coffee. Real freshly brewed coffee, with a splash of steamed (non-dairy because I’m allergic) milk, is my favourite. Coffee is one of my favourite vices. Some days it seems like the singular most important part of my morning, after having a shower. Unfortunately, drinking coffee in the excess of which I enjoy it the most is not entirely beneficial to my health or my skin. I know this; I’ve known it for years.
The last time I tried to give up coffee I succeeded only until one friend invited me out to chat at a coffee shop and ordered the sexiest latte I had ever seen. The smell alone sent me over the edge. It was 3 months, 2 days after my coffee fast had begun. I had switched to green tea. But the tea was only effective if combined with steamed milk and a little bit of Splenda (I was steering clear of refined sugars too). Coffee addiction isn’t just about caffeine after all; it’s the psychological attachment that is the hardest to shake. But when you’re trying to be healthy, and seek after that natural healthy glow, coffee addiction is something that really must be dealt with. Despite my love of the flavour of good coffee and the warmth, taste, and perfect texture of a good “cup o’ joe”, I have noticed that when I drink too much coffee on a regular basis my energy actually depletes at a rapid pace, I get sick more often and my skin appears duller. Seeing as I have a condition which affects my energy levels and immunity anyway I decided that limiting anything that could cause me to feel and look tired was a definite necessity. I used to go to the spa to help deal with this – and it was there they reminded me that too much coffee could cause problems with energy levels.
But is coffee really all bad? Well, no. It turns out coffee is good in moderation (hooray!). One cup a day is actually beneficial which means you don’t have to give it up altogether (nor do I!). It has antioxidants that can be good for your skin and allegedly can help reduce cancer. One great alternative use for coffee is in skincare. It has been known to reduce redness, even-out your skin tone, and increase skin firmness, helping you look younger and certainly not tired. But that’s if the coffee is used as part of skincare regime, not drunk in large quantities. For a coffee lover, knowing that I can cut down on my unadulterated addiction to coffee but still benefit from its sweet smell and better-for-me qualities is a happy revelation.
I’ve decided to cut down on my intake of coffee, and as I did four years ago, switch it up with green teas and fruit smoothies instead to get my hydration up and give my immune system a better chance – not to mention hydration helps my skin from looking dull. A quick recipe I discovered for a great, exfoliating coffee mask is below. If you aren’t in the mood to try a somewhat messy face mask on your own, a facial as part of a spa break can be a great way to try one out, and let someone else deal with the mess!
For those who’d like to try it at home, here’s how it works:
- 3 tablespoons of used finely ground coffee (grab the leftover from your daily cup)
- 1 small glass of milk (if you have an allergy soy, goat, or hemp milk work just as well as cow’s)
- Put the used coffee into a bowl. Slowly pour in the milk of your choice while stirring regularly, keep stirring until it achieves a think pasty texture. Avoid stirring too much, or the paste will be too diluted. If mixture becomes too runny, simply add more coffee.
- When ready, apply the paste onto your face and neck and smooth it all over your face. Avoid eyes and lips.
- Slowly massage the mixture to your skin, and then allow yourself to relax for around 20 minutes. You’ll feel your skin tighten as the mask dries.
- Wash off the mask with warm water. While washing, massage the paste to your skin. This will provide further exfoliation, and it feels good! Be gentle with this if you have sensitive skin.
- Pat your face dry with a towel and apply a good moisturizer while your skin is still damp. This will help seal in moisture.
This is a guest post by K Newey. Her favourite type of coffee comes from Canada and a coffee shop in Los Angeles. She recommends spa vouchers for friends and coffee lovers alike who need a little extra caffeine-free time spent taking care of their bodies and souls.
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