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Wednesday Wants: Clear Skin

So all of you probably know that my wedding is coming up in August which means I have to start thinking of clearing up my skin . . . now!  As a biologist and avid outdoorer (yeah that’s a word as of now), I haven’t taken great care of my skin which means that I have premature wrinkles and sun spots galore (the harsh Arizona sun just isn’t kind to teenagers that neglect to put on sunscreen religiously).  But a couple of years back I found this aspirin-lemon mask and I just LOVE it.  I wasn’t sure if it actually was doing anything for my skin so I decided to try a little experiment (typical biologist right?) and took some “before” and “after” photos of the mask.

I didn’t alter the pictures or have makeup on so you get to see my redness and flaws in all their glory ;)

OK so I LOOK friendlier on the left because I’m smiling but I feel like my SKIN looks much nicer on the right after the mask.

I don’t know if I’m just looking for changes but to me it looks like the mask significantly helped reduce the redness (which makes sense because aspirin is an anti-inflammatory medication) and even out my skin tone.  Yay! I don’t know, am I crazy? or do you see it too?  So here’s my routine for this mini-facial at home.

  1. steam face for 10 minutes (I do this over a gently boiling pot of hot water with a towel over my head)
  2. mix 6 uncoated aspirin with about 1 tsp of lemon juice mixed into a paste (I squeeze lemon onto the pills drop by drop until I have a slightly runny paste) – if you don’t have enough paste just add more aspirin and lemon juice until you’re satisfied.

    add aspirin and some lemon and you’re done!

  3. apply paste to face evenly (it will burn a bit)
  4. wait about 10 minutes then remove the face mask by dipping a cotton round in some baking soda and some water and use the little pad as an exfoliator (or just use wet finger tips and the aspirin left on your face)
  5. moisturize with 100% argan oil

You’re skin feels so smooth afterwards.  So here’s the science behind it.  Aspirin contains acetylsalicylic acid (an anti-inflammatory) which breaks down to salicylic acid (phenolic acid and a beta hydroxy acid – recognize those from your fancy facial lotions?) and acts like a chemical peel.  The lemon juice has Vitamin C (and is acidic to boot) which helps minimize sun damage and reduce those pesky sun spots.  So in brief, this is one of those homemade masks that probably does actually help with redness and reduction of sunspots as the ingredients target those exact maladies.

I’ll be doing this at least 3 times a week until my wedding but I’ve read online that people do it everyday.  I imagine it just depends on the sensitivity of your skin but I’m loving it so far.


P.S. Maybe I’ll continue the experiment and keep a weekly photo journal of my skins progress :)

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