I love lemons!! They’re one of my favorite flavors used in cooking, dressings, and desserts; but did you know there are other uses for lemons?
A quick Google search and you’re bombarded with multiple uses of this citrus zinger from household to beauty. How can lemons be used for beauty you ask? Lemons are great for skincare as a brightener, clarifier and exfoliator! They have a natural antibacterial property from the antioxidant L-ascorbic acid and work brilliantly to help cure and prevent future breakouts. That same citrus acid acts as a natural exfoliate to the skin adding an additional benefit. Using lemons on my own skin has resulted in a smoother complexion over time.
My daughter Jenna is eleven years old now and beginning to experience occasional breakouts on and around her nose. We’ve experimented using lemons to clear those impurities with outstanding results! We used a little lemon juice in the evening after washing her face and saw noticeable improvement by morning! I love that the techniques we’re using are simple and easy to follow and something she can do on her own. Her favorite is the lemon/honey mask (see below). Finding a skincare solution for her void of chemicals and environmental estrogens is a win for Mom and at my daughter’s young age, a great option as she begins her journey with beauty regimes. Plus, lemons are cost effective and readily available at your local supermarket. Extra bonus if you have a lemon tree growing in your backyard!!
Here are a few ways we add lemons into our skincare regime that work well for us, hopefully you’ll experience similar benefits too. It’s not necessary to use all three at once, you can pick and choose based on the condition of your own skin and as something extra you can add to your regime a few times a week. We’ll use the facial scrub when we want a bit of a deeper cleaning, the facial mask once a week, and the lemon blemish treatment a couple times a week or as needed. It’s not something that’s needed every single day.
Facial Scrub: Lemon + SeaSalt (could substitute granulated sugar)
Simply cut a lemon in half and remove any seeds. Sprinkle sea salt over the surface of the lemon, give the lemon a small squeeze and apply to skin. Using circular motions, move the lemon scrub across the forehead, cheeks, nose and chin. You may even want to use it under the jawline and down the neck. Give the lemon a small squeeze throughout the application to release the juice as you continue in circular motions along the skin. Feel free to apply additional sea salt or sugar as necessary until all surface area of the skin is covered. Be aware that any abrasions on the skin may result in a slight sting from the acidic lemon juice, approach those areas with caution or dilute the juice based on your tolerance. Avoid the delicate eye area and be careful not to drip lemon juice into the eyes when applying to the forehead. When finished, rinse well with cool water and pat the skin dry with a clean, fluffy towel.
Facial Mask: Lemon + Honey = A fantastic healing, clarifying mask
This one is our favorite! What’s better than mixing the bright, citrus smell of lemons with the deliciousness of sweet, gooey honey? Not only is this facial mask jam packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, it’s messy, fun and admittedly tasty if the products melt across your lips! I knew honey was good for a sore throat or cough and great to add to hot tea, but the effectiveness of its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties when applied to the skin- cool, huh? When you shop for honey, you’ll notice some are lighter and others are darker. In general, the darker the honey, the higher its antibacterial and antioxidant power. You can choose a raw honey or my favorite, Manuka Honey.
A quick search for Manuka Honey on Web M.D brings us a little more insight on its power as a healing treatment:
“Manuka honey is made in New Zealand from the nectar of Leptospermum scoparium. It’s the basis of Medihoney, which the FDA approved in 2007 for use in treating wounds and skin ulcers. It works very well to stimulate healing, says wound care specialist Frank Bongiorno, MD, of Ann Arbor, Mich.”
Slice a lemon in half, remove the seeds and set aside. Next, begin applying honey to your face in thin layers until all desired areas are covered. Be aware that honey melts when heated, so it’s common for the honey to begin to run down your face once sitting on your skin for a few minutes. This is why its important to use thin layers when applying. If you apply a heavy layer, layers will melt and drip off your face- clump, clump! If you do plan to use more honey, plan to use your mask while in the bathtub, that way it won’t matter if the honey drips and it will be an added benefit to your bathwater. Take your 1/2 lemon and gently massage the honey in circular motions all around your face. You’ll want to mind the eye area to avoid getting lemon juice in the eyes. When finished, discard the lemon and allow the mask to stay on your skin 5-1o minutes. Rinse well with warm water until skin is smooth and pat dry with a clean, fluffy towel. As an extra bonus, the mixture of lemon and honey also make for a great moisturizer so don’t be surprised if your notice softer skin afterward.
Blemish Treatment: 1/2 a lemon + scrub, scrub, scrub!
Lemon juice can be used on your skin to fight acne. As a natural antibacterial, lemon juice can fight the bacteria that causes acne. Apply the lemon juice directly to the skin by slicing the lemon in 1/2 and removing the seeds. It creates an easy applicator to apply to the skin in circular motions and just give the lemon a little squeeze to apply more. Leave the juice on the skin at least 30 minutes but overnight is preferred! Wash your face in the morning with cool water and pat dry with a clean, fluffy towel. I swear you’ll see a difference in the morning and a noticeable improvement within two nights of treatment. If you are sensitive to the full power of the lemon juice, it can be diluted for application. Of course, as with any use of lemon, avoid getting the juice into your eyes.
I’ve been interested in using natural products in my skincare regime for four years now. I wash my face with natural oils and use apple cider vinegar and lavender solution as my toner. My skin responds so well and stays clear and supple. Its nice to have some natural options available with so many overwhelming selections of products filled with toxins and environmental estrogens.. Especially when sharing beauty secrets with my daughters now, it’s important to make them aware of ingredients that are in the products they are using. I love that I can now share them with you too! I’d love to hear from you on how they worked out.
Tips and Warnings for Using Lemon Juice on Skin
It’s important to be informed: here are some tips and warnings for using lemon juice on your skin:
- Lemon juice may produce stinging due to the citric acid in the juice. Dilute the lemon juice with water if you cannot tolerate the burning and stinging. Adjust as tolerated.
- If your skin is already dry, applying lemon juice can actually make that condition worse. If you do have dry skin, be sure to use a good moisturizer or natural oil after applying lemon juice to your skin.
- Be sure to consult your healthcare provider if you are using any other topical skin treatments. Lemon juice may interfere with other medications you are using on your skin.
- When using lemon juice on the skin, be sure to stay out of the sun and protect your skin with sunscreen when outside. Using lemon juice on the skin could make your skin more prone to sunburn and the resulting damage that can occur.
If you get the lemon juice inside your eyes, it will sting! Avoid this occurrence! If contact occurs, flush eyes with cool water.