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Beauty Chemistry: Homemade Face Masks

face-masks-2
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Gentle Moisturizing Banana Avocado Mask
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Gentle Moisturizing Banana Avocado Mask

Anti-Inflammatory Honey Spice Mask
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Anti-Inflammatory Honey Spice Mask

Exfoliating Yogurt Lemon Mask
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Exfoliating Yogurt Lemon Mask

face-masks-2
Gentle Moisturizing Banana Avocado Mask

Gentle Moisturizing Banana Avocado Mask

Anti-Inflammatory Honey Spice Mask

Anti-Inflammatory Honey Spice Mask

Exfoliating Yogurt Lemon Mask

Exfoliating Yogurt Lemon Mask

face-masks-2
Gentle Moisturizing Banana Avocado Mask
Anti-Inflammatory Honey Spice Mask
Exfoliating Yogurt Lemon Mask
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What if I told you that you could make great face masks in the privacy of your kitchenette? What if I told you it was really, really easy? What if I told you it could cost...$FREE.99?!

If any of the above excites you, then you've come to the right article! I'm a big fan of low investment at-home masks, so none of these take more than a minute or two for prep, and the most complicated one has three ingredients. I'd be surprised if you even have to go to the grocery store. So put on some Enya, grab a mixing bowl and spoon/fork/whatever, and get ready to sp aaahhhhhh:

Recipe 1: Gentle Moisturizing Banana Avocado Mask

I've never taken a trip to Banana Island (since it sounds like the sort of place they don't sell Cheetos) but I do like to mash 'em up with an avocado before I head out on Friday nights—they're both super hydrating without the high acid content that makes a lot of other fruit masks possible irritants.

Here's my “process,” if you can even call it that: take a medium-sized banana and half an avocado, put them in a bowl, squish them together with a fork, mix 'til you have a good, even blend, then smooth on your face and relax for around 20 minutes. The only tricky parts are A) not scaring loved ones, and B) not dripping a bunch on the carpet.

Recipe 2: Anti-Inflammatory Honey Spice Mask

Honey is great. It's antimicrobial, it's a humectant, and it's delicious. Therefore, a honey mask is clearly superior to most (if not all) other homemade masks. And of all the honey-based masks, my very favorite involves adding a little cinnamon and nutmeg to act as anti-inflammatories and also make the entire concoction smell like a hot toddy...or maybe some other, unboozy thing? I dunno. Generally, if something reeks of heated cocktail, I'm on board. I just have to assume that you, dear reader, are similarly dispositioned.

Anyway, what you do is take about a quarter cup of honey (extra points if you use raw Manuka honey, which can even be classified as a medical-grade antimicrobial agent) and half a teaspoon each of cinnamon and nutmeg. Then give everything a good stir, scoop the mix out, pat it on your face, and wait about 15 minutes. Then wash with warm (not hot) water so the honey dissolves and you're done! Skin officially de-bacteria'd, softened up, and hopefully less red, too.

Recipe 3: Exfoliating Yogurt Lemon Mask

Yogurt has lactic acid and hydrating lipids, and lemon has citric acid. Put 'em together and you have a gentle exfoliator that moisturizes, too. Just get a cup of full fat, unsweetened yogurt, squeeze in a lemon slice, and apply a nice, thick layer. Depending on how much exfoliation you want (and how long you can stand to lie around with yogurt on your face), you can leave it on for 5–15 minutes.

—Lacey Gattis

Photos by Lacey Gattis.