Soothing Oatmeal Facial
The end of the winter season is the perfect time for an oatmeal face mask treatment. Icy cold winds and freezing temperatures have caused havoc to our skin stripping it of vital lipids. If you feel the cold like me, you will have had the central heating cranked up and there is little moisture left in the air making your skin feel dry and tight.( A good tip is to put a small bowl of water beneath your radiator to increase humidity!) As we move from freezing cold outside to warm and toasty inside, we can increase the skins sensitivity leading to impairment of the skins natural barrier function.
Ancient Egyptians were among the first to realize the soothing properties of oats and today we know that “Colloidal oatmeal” is the best form to use on the skin. Colloidal oatmeal is finely milled oats suspended in a liquid or gel. This allows it to be applied to the skin and be absorbed easily. I find it interesting to think that hundreds of years ago they were aware of the benefits of using oats but did not have the scientific proof of it.
Dermatologists recommend the use of colloidal oats for those with sensitive skin types including those who suffer from eczema or rosacea. Oats are excellent moisturizers with skin healing, anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties…… therefore able to treat a wide range of skin problems ranging from extreme dryness to acne.
There are so many reasons why oatmeal face mask treatments are so widely used in skincare. I have decided to highlight a few with a little information about each.
Combats Dryness The polysaccharides found in oats (it’s what makes it go gloopy) leave a fine film on the skin which creates a barrier preventing dull, dry flaky skin. The anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties help with the itchiness often caused by dry skin.
Cleansing Oats are full of natural cleansers called saponins, that will gently help to remove dirt and oil from the skin.
Acne Treatment Oats can aid in treating acne by absorbing the excess oil on the skins surface. The zinc content in oats reduces inflammation and kills the acne causing bacteria.
Protective and Skin Repair Oats are full of proteins and lipids which help build the skins natural barrier. The beta gluten activates your skins own immune system by activating its own healing system…. basically, it is telling the skin to do what it ideally should be doing anyway!This makes oats an ideal treatment for those skins that need help to heal, for instance sunburn, irritation or rashes.
Moisturizing Along with what we have already mentioned, the beta glutens and the high fat content helps keep the skin beautifully moisturized as they penetrate deep into the skin.
Ph balancing So we all know our skin is slightly acidic right?? If the ph balance of the skin is imbalanced, it can cause all sorts of trouble. If you are suffering from a dry itchy skin, your skin has probably become near neutral and if you suffer from eczma, you are probably in the alkaline range!
Anti oxidants Full of natural vitamin E, Caffeic acid and much more. Our skin is going to age but the more we can help slow it down the better.
Anti Irritant and Soothing An ingredient in oats act like anti histamine and help prevent the itchiness often caused by dry irritated skin. In olden times, you would have been put in a bath of oats if you were suffering any skin irritation to the body.
In my organic oatmeal treatment, a gauze mask infused with chamomile is placed over the face and neck. The oatmeal is then mixed and placed over the gauze and kept moist with steam for 10-15 minutes. The mask is then removed with hot steamed towels leaving your skin soothed, hydrated and nourished.