Makers Gonna Make: DIY Natural Facial Mask for Spring

Etta + Billie Makers Gonna Make DIY Spring Facial Mask Recipe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello! I’ve been quiet for way too long but I swear I had a good reason! I’ve been cooking up something new. For most of my adult life, I’ve had a very difficult time writing. Talking on the other hand, is no big deal to me. So, rather than continuing to force myself to write (clearly, not very successfully), I’m starting a video series along with the blog to get my thoughts and fabulous recipes out there. The new series is called Makers Gonna Make (surprise, surprise), in it I’ll be featuring DIY recipes of all kinds, other tips, hopefully some maker spotlights and tours. Feedback is welcome! Check out my first video below along with an extended transcript of the video. Tell me how the mask making goes!

I’m sharing a simple spring natural facial mask recipe. With each changing season, you need to think about changing up your skincare routine. Now that we’re into spring, it’s time to undo some of the damaging effects of winter. Winter can seriously f*#%k-up your skin. The intense drop in temp (ok, not in most of CA but everywhere else) combined with increased use of heating = a moisture zapping and irritating environment for your skin. By spring, skin can be dry, flaky and red.

To combat that damage and prep for the weather change, the best thing you can do is gently exfoliate and moisturize the heck out of your skin. Contrary to popular belief, when exfoliating, the gentler, the better. Particulate exfoliators, like crushed walnut shells, can actually cause micro-tears in your skin, furthering irritation. The best way to gently exfoliate is with a soft sponge/organic cloth and/or AHA infused face wash or mask.

Alpha Hydroxy Acids are powerful, but gentle, way to exfoliate the top layer of skin, aiding cell turn over and instantly brightening complexions. AHA’s are naturally found in sour milk (kinda gross) and yogurt (thank goodness they’re is an alternative to option one), citrus fruit and apples. All make solid smoothie ingredients (obviously excluding the milk) and can be whipped together with a few other ingredients to make a mask. Yay for multi-tasking. The other important skin soothing step to getting skin back to glowing is moisture (I explain more below). Let’s get down to it!

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 tbsp full fat yogurt (thick is best)
  • 1/8-1/4 tsp lemon juice (we use Myer lemons from my friend Molly’s tree in the video) Note that lemon juice/oil can make skin more sensitive to the sun so keep that in mind when you decide to make and apply the mask (ie Sunday night, instead of Sunday morning – perfect pre-GoT)
  • 1/2 tsp local honey (why? Because it soothes skin, hydrates and can help clear up blemishes)
  • 1 strawberry or 2 blueberries (why? Because they contain a whole lotta antioxidants which help fight free radicals, i.e. they help slow down the aging process of cells – dropping serious knowledge on you guys right here)

Tools:
Small bowl, whisk, spoon, facial brush (optional) and clean hands

  1. Take a small bowl, add 1-2 strawberries/blueberries and mash
  2. Add 1/8-1/4 tsp of lemon juice and mix thoroughly
  3. Add 1 tsp of honey and mix until fully incorporated
  4. Add 1-2 tbsp yogurt
  5. Mix together with spoon or whisk until blended well

Apply to clean damp skin using facial brush or fingers, being very careful to stay away from eye area (lemon juice + eyes = a lot of expletives). Gently massage mask into face using small circular motions. Leave mask on for about 5-10 minutes (perfect time to read your favorite book, blog, magazine and maybe sip on some Rose). Rinse mask off with luke-warm water, pat skin dry, apply toner if you have it (I like plain old rose water or orange water), apply favorite serum or face oil (I’m loving Lyeska skin serum right now and of course my bath + body oil), then a light to medium weight moisturizer (I like Birdy Botanicals and Aesop). Apply mask 1-2 times a week and skin will be in lovely shape in no time.

Thanks for watching! Check back for more videos and don’t forget to follow Etta + Billie on Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat (Soap Maven)

Recipe: Antioxidant Chocolate Walnut Coconut Granola

Chocolate Coconut Walnut Granola 4Cool weather always makes me crave granola + it’s pretty awesome mixed with my favorite yogurt (Redwood Hill Farms Goat Yogurt). I decided it was time to try something new (check out the Cardamom Coconut Granola Recipe if you want something sans chocolate). I found this great recipe over at Texan Erin and tweaked a bit. I added dried berries to up the antioxidant quotient (berries + dark cocoa powder = major antioxidant boost which help fight free radicals) and coconut chips because we had a massive bag of them. It came out pretty darn good, not too sweet with a rich chocolate flavor.

Antioxidant Rich Chocolate Walnut Coconut Granola

  • 1/2 cup organic virgin coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup local honey
  • 1/2 cup best organic dark cocoa powder you can buy
  • 1/4 cup organic turbinado sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (homemade)
  • 1 cup walnuts roughly chopped
  • 4 1/2 cups organic rolled oats
  • 1 cup coconut chips (these are sweetened, up sugar if you use unsweetened coconut flakes)
  • 1/2 cup antioxidant berry mix (goji berries, cherries, raisins, cranberries)

chocolate coconut walnut granola 2

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and line a full sheet pan/baking sheet with a parchment paper.
  • Put rolled oats and walnuts into large mixing bowl.
  • In a sauce pan, gently melt the coconut oil.
  • Stir honey, cocoa powder, sugar and salt into melted coconut oil and bring to a simmer.
  • Remove from the heat and add in the vanilla extract.
  • Add the cocoa mixture to the oats and stir thoroughly, make sure oats and walnuts are coated evenly.

Rich and delicious Chocolate Coconut Walnut Granola

  • Spread granola mixture over parchment lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 15-25 minutes.
  • Take granola out of the oven and add coconut and berries.
  • Return to the oven and bake for 5 more minutes to gently roast coconut.
  • Remove granola from oven and let cool completely (1-2 hours) before storing in airtight container.
  • Enjoy!

 

Recipe: How to make Cold Brew Coffee

Cold Brew CoffeeI was excited when Alana asked me to guest blog for her. She knows I’m as passionate about coffee as she is about Etta + Billie. She also knows I don’t have a lot of time to spend doing fancy things with fancy equipment. So, when I say making your own cold brew is easy – it’s EASY. It requires no fancy equipment and it is practically no-fail. Now, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty grinds!

Why cold brew? Cold brewing gives you a wonderful, delicious cup of coffee without the bitterness and acidity that heating the grounds imparts. You’ll start to enjoy coffee for all the nuances and ‘notes’ your beans have. If you are sensitive to the acids in coffee this is a way to enjoy your favorite beverage again. If you love iced coffee it’s the way to go, incredibly convenient. I’ve even heard that some people will make an extra strong batch then add boiling water to make a hot cup. I haven’t tried it this way yet, but it’s an interesting idea.

For a basic set up you need beans, some sort of filter to put them in (like a nut milk bag, here’s the one I have; or disposable filter bags for tea), a 2 liter pitcher, and a refrigerator. I also like to use a mesh strainer to capture some of the sludge. Here’s a shot of mine.Cold Brew Coffee Setup

Today I’m using a nice dark roast from Paramo Roasters, Shadowplay. I’ll use enough beans for about 1.5 cups at a medium to coarse grind. Finer and you’ll have a lot of sludge. Here’s the beauty of all this, just about nothing you could do is wrong. You can’t really do too much or too little! If you make it too strong then you have a concentrate that you can then add water to taste.  Too little and no need to dilute, you can just drink it straight. Well, I suppose you could make it too weak, but that’s subjective.

The how:

  1. Grind your beans. (or get the shop to do it for you, even easier!)
  2. Scoop into filter bag. (use at least 1.5 cups for a 2L pitcher)
  3. Place in pitcher.
  4. Add water.
  5. Place in refrigerator overnight (or longer).
  6. In the morning remove the bag and give it a good squeeze.
  7. Set grounds aside for use around the house. (more on that later)
  8. ENJOY! – Add water, sugar, and/or milk to your preference

Cold Brew Coffee StrainedSome final notes:

If it lasts that long, cold brew will be good for up to a week-and-a-half in the refrigerator. If you run out of time the next morning and have to decide between catching the bus or straining your coffee grounds – go get that bus. Trust me, your cold brew won’t be ruined if left longer – I’ve done it, it’ll just be just more concentrated! I keep repeating myself on this, but there’s just about nothing you can do to cold brew to make a bad batch!

Some people think you should only use espresso roast. I disagree, I say use what you have on hand! This will work with just about anything. Do you have family who love you and know you love coffee but know nothing about it themselves? This could be the only way to salvage that nearly undrinkable bag of beans they gave you. Cold brew requires no special equipment. Some sort of filter bag if you want, but even then some people put the grounds straight into the pitcher and filter through a fine mesh strainer afterward. Can you get fancy equipment? Sure, but I say go lo-fi and spend the money you saved on something wonderful like Etta + Billie Ritual Roasters Coffee Soap or Mint Coffee Scrub!

What to do with all those coffee grinds:

  • Use the them in your plants. They’ll love the nitrogen, especially starter plants.
  • Use them as a natural pot scrub. Used grinds are great for scouring pots and pans. Just put a scoop on your sponge.
  • Also scrub your hands when you need a little extra power. They’re great if you’ve been chopping garlic or onions, too.

There you have it, cold brew coffee in a few easy steps.

About Dawn:Dawn at Grounds for Review

Coffee and chocolate are my two favorite food groups, the darker the better!  I can talk a lot about both, but prefer not to get overly snobby and pedantic about either. When I’m not discussing the finer points of ground cacao or coffee I am hanging out with my honey and two fantastic kiddos in the gorgeous Bay Area. You can follow my coffee adventures at Grounds for Review.