Hydrating DIY Coconut Oil Foot Scrub

Shannon Smyth
#DIY hydrating coconut oil foot scrub #scrub #bathandbody Feet are always in need of some restoration and hydration no matter the season. Whether you’ve had a long day at the office, you’re suffering from dry flip-flop feet, or you’re trying to break in a new pair of heels, there is nothing a DIY at-home foot scrub can’t fix. Try the below recipe for a luxurious, at-home foot treatment from celebrity manicurist and owner of As "U" Wish Nail Spa, Skyy Hadley and your feet will feel good as new in no time! Skyy Hadley’s Recipe for the Ultimate Hydrating Coconut Scrub: · Begin by muddling a few fresh mint leaves in an empty jar to release their natural essential oils. This will help you relax while providing hydration. · Warm up some coconut oil and pour into the jar until it is halfway full. · Add 2 tablespoons of honey and mix in 1 tablespoon of sugar until the sugar is completely immersed in the oil mixture. · Take a couple spoonfuls of the scrub and work into your legs and feet to fully exfoliate, sloughing away dead skin and smoothing out calluses, cracked heels and rough spots. · The coconut oil will provide a great amount of moisture, leaving skin feeling smooth and supple. · Also, be sure to rub on toe nail beds and in between toes to prevent nail infections and fungus (as coconut oil contains anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties). · Repeat 1-2 times per week for a moisturizing and revitalizing at-home spa treatment. Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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Winter Skin Care DIY

Shannon Smyth
DIY Skin Care Recipes via @agirlsgottaspa #skincare #beauty #DIY From your head to your toes, winter conditions are no fun for your skin. Not only does dry skin look unhealthy, it can be really uncomfortable, too. Did you know that everything you need to save your skin from winter is as close as your pantry or refrigerator? Below are some excellent DIY skin care recipes from Dr. Susan Stuart a board certified dermatologist from La Jolla, California. Avocado Mask An avocado mask is perfect for dry skin that may become very irritated in the winter. It is easy to make: mash the flesh of avocado with a fork, add a touch of extra-virgin olive oil, and apply this smooth, fragrant mixture onto your face. “This nourishing mask will supply your skin with a whole range of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and softening agents to fight winter dryness,” says Dr. Stuart. We've also included avocado in our DIY Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment and DIY Avocado Hair & Face Mask. Avocado Oil can be found in A Girl's Gotta Spa! Energizing Citrus Salt Scrub, too. Sweet Almond Body Scrub Almonds are packed full of nutrients like vitamin E, magnesium, and healthy monounsaturated fats. These compounds make them nourishing to your body inside and out. Try this recipe to exfoliate and moisturize your skin. -1 cup brown sugar -1/2 cup almond oil -2 tsp honey -1 tsp pure vanilla extract Mix all ingredients together in a shatter-proof bowl. In the shower or tub, massage the scrub into your skin in circular motions (after washing your skin with soap), concentrating on rough or dry areas of the skin. Rinse with warm water, allowing the residual layer of almond oil to remain on the skin. Pat dry. Chocolate Face Mask Once regarded as a bane to our health, new research has shown that dark chocolate is healthy—and not just to eat. Compounds found in chocolate can actually benefit the skin when applied topically. -1/3 cup cocoa powder -1/4 cup honey -2 Tbsp cream or plain yogurt or sour cream -3 tsp oats (old-fashioned or quick-cooking) Place all ingredients into a blender, and blend until smooth. Apply to clean, dry skin and leave on for 15-20 minutes. Rinse with warm water. Pat dry. (I still eat a lot of dark chocolate, though.) Apple Vinegar Foot Soak -1 part apple vinegar -2 parts water Mix ingredients and soak for 30 minutes for hydrating new-like feet. Don't worry about the smell, as it will do wonders for cracked, rough, smelly feet! Static hair Coconut oil Rub a small amount of coconut oil between the palms of your hand and lightly pat down the top of your head. "Just the tiny bit of moisture will tame fly-aways and hydrate tresses without leaving hair greasy looking," says Dr. Stuart. Rough elbows and heels -Fresh figs -Hardened coconut oil (optional if you choose to make a more aggressive scrub). -Sugar Take ripe figs and mash or blend then in a bowl. Add coconut oil. This mixture will gently exfoliate, as the fig seeds will lightly clean and remove dead skin. According to Dr. Stuart, "Coconut oil is highly nutritious and moisturizing. Make sure the coconut oil is not melted. Place in fridge if you have to solidify, because if you are like me and prefer more exfoliation, add some sugar to this and create a dry scrub. Once this touches your skin, the coconut oil and sugar will melt." Apply while you're in the bath tub or shower and be careful as it may cause a slippery surface. Vanilla Lip Scrub -2 parts sugar -1 part olive oil -vanilla extract to taste This scrub will get rid of rough, dead skin on and around the lips. No one wants chapped lips where you can see the lines under your lip color, so this scrub is perfect! Also see our DIY Lip Scrub recipe. Loved these DIY skin care recipes? Please share them on Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter! Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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Healthy Recipes for Glowing Skin

Shannon Smyth
2 delicious recipes from @thebeautybean1 Recipe for Radiance book via @agirlsgottaspa. #beauty #skincare We all know that nutritious foods are good for our overall health, but did you know that it can also help you achieve glowing skin? Fellow beauty blogger, Alexis Wolfer of The Beauty Bean, has written a book complete with DIY beauty treatments, as well as recipes that will be your true Recipe for Radiance. Alexis was gracious enough to share two, simply delicious recipes, which should serve as the perfect appetizer to wet your palate for more from her book! Age-Reversing Wine Mask Good for: All skin types In much the same way that red wine is anti-aging from the inside out, the antioxidants in red wine (including resveratrol) make it a great anti-aging skincare treatment when applied topically. Mixed with egg whites to tighten fine lines and retinol-rich egg yolks, this mask takes happy hour to a whole new level—albeit, one in which you may not want to leave your house. 1 egg 1 egg yolk 3 tablespoons red wine Whisk all ingredients together until well combined. Use a pastry brush to apply a thin layer to your face, neck and décolleté, avoiding your eye area. Let dry before washing off with warm water and a washcloth. Roasted Watermelon Gazpacho #recipe from @thebeautybean1 via @agirlsgottaspa #skincare #food Roasted Watermelon Gazpacho Vegetarian, vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free, nut-free Lycopene, found in cooked tomatoes and watermelon, helps defend against sun damage—and might even help both prevent and treat skin cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. Keep this gazpacho in your refrigerator all summer long for a skin-healing soup that’s as refreshing as it is healing. Serves 2 to 4 3 vine tomatoes, chopped 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 3 cups watermelon, seeded 1 clove garlic 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice 1/4 cup roasted almonds 1/2 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika 1 medium cucumber, peeled and divided Salt, to taste Cayenne pepper (optional) 2 tablespoons diced sweet onion On medium heat, sauté tomatoes in the oil until fork-tender. Transfer to a blender. Add watermelon, garlic, lime juice, almonds, paprika, and half of the cucumber. Blend until smooth. Add salt to taste and cayenne pepper, if desired. Refrigerate until chilled and ready to serve. Stir in the diced onion. Thinly slice the remaining cucumber. Top the soup with the cucumber slices. If you try either of these recipes, I'd love to know! And don't forget to grab Alexis' book Recipe For Radiance: Discover Beauty's Best Kept Secrets in Your Kitchen on Amazon! Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle tooShannon on G+ *Disclosure

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DIY Coconut Coffee Foot Scrub

Shannon Smyth
DIY Coconut Coffee Foot Scrub Recipe via @agirlsgottaspa #beauty #bathandbody #DIY Carolyn Doe, spa director at The Umstead Hotel and Spa (Cary, N.C.) has whipped up a DIY Coconut Coffee Foot Scrub recipe to soothe weary feet at home. The rich blend of antioxidant-filled coffee and moisture-locking coconut oil, combined with the refreshing scent of vanilla extract, is a perfect combination of natural ingredients to remove and repair rough skin. Coconut Coffee Foot Scrub Recipe
  • 1 cup     Virgin Coconut Oil
  • ½ cup    Favorite Ground Coffee
  • 1-2 tsp  Vanilla Extract
  Method: Blend ingredients together. Prepare a tub of warm soapy water and soak feet for 10 minutes. While soaking, apply 1 teaspoon of the scrub to feet in a circular motion to exfoliate the dead skin away. Rinse feet in warm water and pat dry.  (Mixture can also be used as a body scrub in the shower, but take care as it can make for a slippery surface.) Store leftovers for later use in an air-tight container at room temperature. Not only is this scrub invigorating, your feet will feel incredibly soft and pampered. Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle tooShannon on G+

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DIY Cooling Cucumber Mask

Gail Lewis
DIY Cooling Cucumber Mask #beauty via @agirlsgottaspa During my two month stay in Bali, a significant amount of time was spent at Amo Spa in Seminyak.  I enjoyed the most amazing spa treatments that I've every experienced and though I have only been back in the US for a week, I am going through serious Amo Spa treatments withdrawal.  I figured the best cure for my withdrawal symptoms was to try to recreate one of my favorite Amo Spa moments at home. One of the many things I loved about Amo Spa was the little luxuries that they took the time to incorporate into their treatments.  One such luxury was the cucumber mask that was always applied to my face during a facial, massage and body scrub.  The cucumber mask consisted of thinly sliced cucumbers sliced lengthwise (not rounds) and left in the refrigerator to cool, then applied directly to the face.  In hot and humid Bali, this cucumber mask was an absolute dream. Cucumbers just so happen to be amazing for the skin.   Cucumbers contain vitamin C, an antioxidant, as well as plenty of vitamin K, also an antioxidant, which fights dark circles under the eyes.  Pantothenic acid, or vitamin B-5, is another compound found in cucumbers that helps your skin retain moisture.  The vitamin A, or retinol, in cucumbers fights dark spots and freckles because it helps control your skin's production of melanin.  Cucumbers are a source of silica, which, as a precursor to collagen, can help fight wrinkles, in addition they have high water content and a cooling quality, making them appropriate to help soothe mild burns, particularly sunburn. They can also reduce swelling and relieve minor skin irritations. Now back in LA where summer is in full swing, the cucumber mask feels just as amazing especially after a day at the beach.  To recreate the Amo Spa mask, I bought some organic cucumbers from Whole Foods, sliced them thinly, placed them in a bowl and left the slices in the fridge overnight.  I then applied the very cool slices to my face the following evening.  I plan on adding some face serum or lemon juice to the slices at some point to mix it up a bit.  This mask is super easy, has amazing benefits and is perfect for your skin during summer.

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DIY Body Mask and Scrub Balinese Inspired

Gail Lewis

#DIY Body Mask and Scrub - Balinese inspired! #Bali #Beauty

A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of visiting a coffee plantation in the Kintamani region of Bali thanks to my fiancé's obsession with the Luwak Coffee that is produced in this region.  The plantation we visited not only produced Luwak Coffee, but also produced ginger, turmeric and a host of other spices, fruits and vegetables. At some point in the tour I mentioned to our guide that my sister and I have been using coffee grounds as a scrub for a few years now and it is still one of my favorite DIY body scrubs.  Our guide in turn told me that a lot of the women in that area also use coffee grounds as a scrub as well, but they combine it with ginger powder, turmeric powder and coconut oil for paste/scrub that is great for your skin.   According to our guide, the ginger powder warms up your skin leaving it glowing and radiant, the turmeric powder has a host of skin benefits including skin brightening and stretch mark reduction and the coconut oil moisturizes your skin leaving it soft and supple. I would advise combining the coffee grounds, turmeric and ginger powder and coconut oil with a bit of water to form more of a paste that you can let sit on your skin for around 20 minutes or so.  Then use a bit of water to moisten the paste and exfoliate your skin.  This DIY mask/scrub is super easy to create and you may actually have all of the ingredients that you need in your pantry at this very second.  I will warn that things can get bit messy with this mask/scrub so definitely do this in the shower and be prepared to spend a couple of minutes rinsing out your shower/tub. Messiness aside this mask/scrub is definitely worth the effort for the soft, glowing, moisturized skin that you'll have afterwards! Leave a comment if you give it a try! Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! for more beauty reviews! Watch our reviews on YouTube. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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DIY Yogurt Face Mask

Gail Lewis
#DIY Yogurt Facial Masks #skincare Yogurt tends to be one of the most versatile foods that I consume on a daily basis.  I will have it with granola and fruits for breakfast, as a post workout snack with a few almonds, in a shake or on its own.  For me it's easy, fast, nutritious, healthy and filling. After all, it is considered a super food, especially if you consume plain unsweetened yogurt. Yogurt also has some amazing skin benefits when used topically. Yogurt contains nutrients such as Lactic Acid, Zinc B Vitamins and Calcium.  Lactic Acid smoothes and exfoliates skin, moisturizes dry skin and is beneficial in preventing wrinkles and reducing existing wrinkles.  Zinc contains anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation caused by acne. It also helps to tighten tissue and reduces the size of acne and pimples. Zinc also regulates oil production and prevents oily skin and breakouts.  B Vitamins are essential for cell growth and regeneration.  They also protect skin cells from free radical damage.  Calcium is an amazing anti-oxidant that helps to heal skin and also facilitates skin renewal. Plain yogurt can be used in DIY Facials in a variety of ways.  It can be applied on its own to your face to help even out skin tone, fade dark spots over time and tighten the skin around pores therefore minimizing their appearance (you can never truly shrink pores.)  Just apply plain yogurt to your face and décolleté, leave on for about 20 minutes then rinse with cool water. Yogurt can also be combined with honey and oatmeal for a soothing face mask.  The honey is rich in antioxidants which prevent free radical damage, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, while softening and moisturizing skin.  The oatmeal exfoliates skin and removes excess sebum and dirt from deep within skin pores.  Just combine equal parts plain yogurt, raw honey and oatmeal and mix to form a paste, then apply to skin and leave on for about 20-30 minutes then rinse with cool water. Another amazing DIY face mask can be created by combining yogurt with honey and lemons.  This mask is especially great for acne prone skin because of the antibacterial and antifungal properties found in yogurt.  Combined with the lemons, it also helps to fade dark spots and acne scars and the honey soothes your skin.  If your skin has been a bit dry and irritated due to the severe weather most of the nation has been experiencing, just combine plain yogurt with raw honey in equal parts and apply to your face.  Honey is a natural humectant that retains water to help keep skin soft and moisturized. It is also an antimicrobial agent and is gentle enough for use on sensitive skin. Plain yogurt can be combined with a ton of other ingredients to create different face masks customized for whatever skin conditions you may be experiencing.  It truly is an amazing and versatile skin and body super food! If you found these DIY beauty tips helpful, please be sure to Like, Share and Pin this post! Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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DIY Lip Care Treatments

Gail Lewis

DIY Lip Treatments #skincare #DIY

My lips are one of those areas of my face that I will admit gets neglected. I wear a protective lip balm to keep them hydrated, but when it comes to pampering them I am neglectful.  Lately I have been making it a beauty priority to give my lips their very own spa time.  I exfoliate them, apply a lip mask and hydrate them the same way I do with the rest of my face.  I've realized that it is actually extremely easy to whip up lip care treatments with a lot of the items in my refrigerator for soft, plump, hydrated lips.  A great lip scrub can be created by combining coconut or olive oil, with honey, brown sugar and lemon juice.  Just mix together to form a paste then apply with your fingers in a circular motion.  I also like to let this scrub sit on my lips for a few minutes before rinsing with warm water.  A great moisturizing lip mask can be made by simply mixing equal parts honey with equal parts lemon juice.  The lemon juice works as a gentle exfoliant while the honey is extremely moisturizing (don't apply if you have any cuts though, as it may sting.)   If your lips are really dry and feeling irritated, apply one of my all time favorite spa product to your lips...cucumber.  Yes the same cucumber found in infused spa water and it's coolness used to depuff eyes.  Just gently rub a slice of cucumber over your lips until they are saturated with the cucumber juice then let sit for a bout 20 minutes before rinsing with cool water.  These lip treatments are fast, easy and effective, but I would recommend doing test patches before since some people are highly sensitive to lemon juice as well as raw honey.  Your lips are going to feel softer, smoother and kissable in no time! Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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Lemongrass Facial Steam

Gail Lewis

Benefits & How To: Lemongrass Facial Steam #skincare #DIYbeauty

Whenever I have any type of a skin concern I can always count on my friends for advice. Advice, that sometimes can be great, sometimes not so good and a lot of times just plain weird. The last bit of skin care advice I received from my best friend was actually one of the great ones and one that I have been practicing weekly. My best friend Sam mentioned that her mom uses lemongrass whenever she steams her face for skin that's clear, toned, glowing and looks almost poreless. Apparently her mom has been doing this for years and it is something that was passed down from the other women in her family in her native Cambodia. Lemongrass is an anti-microbial and anti-bacterial herb. This means it will help limit bacterial or microbial growth on the skin. It can help ward off skin infections as well as lessen skin issues caused by bacterial infections. Benefits of a lemongrass facial steam. #skincare Lemongrass is also fungicidal, which means it helps cure fungus infections on the skin. The herb acts as an astringent, which constricts the skin and helps to minimize the appearance of pores, limit the secretions of sebum and provides a temporary skin-firming treatment. Her mom has apparently been unto something for decades and I could not wait to hop on the lemongrass train. Just use a facial steamer, adding a few lemongrass leaves to the water, for approximately 30 minutes. If you don't have a facial steamer, simply boil a pot of water and add the leaves. Pour the water into a large bowl and use a towel to cover your head to trap in the steam. After trying this myself once a week, my face both looked and felt clean and clear, my pores definitely looked minimized and my skin was positively glowing and supple. Benefits of a lemongrass facial steam. #skincare This lemongrass steam is honestly one of the easiest and most inexpensive beauty treatments that I've ever performed on myself, not to mention one of the most effective. If you found this beauty tip helpful, please be sure to Like it, Pin it and Share with friends! Also check out our posts on 5 Ways to Minimize Pores and How to Remove Blackheads. Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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Beauty Benefits of Red Wine

Gail Lewis
Beauty Benefits of Red Wine Normally the last thing I consider doing with red wine is applying it to my skin, I mean that just sounds like a complete waste of a good glass...or bottle of wine.  But little did I know that this entire time I could've been drinking and having a spa experience at the same time for under $20. I've been aware of the fact that consuming red wine in moderation can protect my heart and can also protect my body from various diseases caused by inflammation thanks to resveratrol, the antioxidant in red wine that has anti-inflammatory properties, but was completely unaware that I can also apply wine to my face, straight from the bottle for beautiful, glowing skin. I guess there IS a reason why red wine facials have gained a cult-like following in spas worldwide.  Combined with the right ingredients, red wine can be used in a facial masque, facial scrub and facial toner. One of the many and easiest DIY Red Wine Facial Masque, combines raw organic honey, Greek yogurt and red wine to help fight blemishes and redness, moisturize and provide anti-aging benefits.  Raw cacao powder can also be added to this masque for an additional dose of antioxidants and anti-aging properties.  Yogurt can be replaced with egg whites for a face masque that helps to lighten dark spots. If you're looking to battle oily skin, red wine can be combined with Greek yogurt and tea tree essential oil and applied to the skin for about 20 minutes. For exfoliating, red wine can be combined with oatmeal to create a paste.  Just massage into your face and rinse. As a facial toner, either soak cotton balls in red wine and apply directly to your face or transfer some red wine to a mini spray bottle and spritz directly unto your skin, then massage it in with your fingertips.  A red wine toner will help to keep the skin clear, smooth and soft. With my new knowledge of all of these amazing benefits of red wine, having the girls over for wine now has a whole new meaning...I'll drink to that! How have you incorporated red wine into your beauty routine? If you found these beauty tips helpful, please be sure to Like it, Pin it and Share with friends! Subscribe to A Girl’s Gotta Spa! Watch our reviews on YouTube, see our pins on Pinterest and check us out on Instagram and G+. Got a Kindle? We’re on Kindle too!

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