5 Foods to Put on Your Face

August 21, 2014

papaya skin mask vegan


Aloha! I'm writing to you from Kauai, Hawaii, where I was partly raised on an organic tree farm (mac nuts, cocos, citrus, and Surinam cherries galore—to see photos, join my Instagram: @ruby_roth). 

Besides some dabs of essential oils and rose water, I've worn nothing on my face for a week—not even a lick of mascara. But I have put some food on my face.

Never do I use any big name-brand skincare products, especially being that to purchase said items, one must often enter a drugstore, which is one of the places that makes me feel like the world has already ended.

The second I set foot under the fluorescent lights, my eye-brain is flooded with the idea that every shelf, every lighter, every package and stick of gum—basically every tangible surface inside the store will eventually end up in a landfill, or worse.

My avoidance of the drugstore is why, at our house, we are constantly running out of toilet paper.

Anyway, I'm off the plastic-upon-chemical face washes, eye creams, moisturizers, and especially commercially-produced exfoliating scrubs, whose perfectly-round polyethylene microbeads make up a portion of the masses of tiny plastic fragments (called "nurdles") in our ocean—and are perfectly bite-sized for all kinds of sea creatures, who gobble them up by the belly-full. (#ThatsWhyWeDontEatAnimals) 

So besides essential oil blends by boutique labels like Living Libations and Persephenie, my skincare repertoire sometime includes bits and pieces of food I use in the kitchen. Step one—eat the food. Step two, put the food on your face. 

Pretty much any raw plant food has benefits when placed directly on our skin—but here are just five I routinely dab on myself when I'min the kitchen (and btw, kids LOVE this food-on-the-face game).

5 Foods to Put on Your Face

1. Papaya: When I'm done eating one, I rip up the peel and lay them all over my face, gently rubbing them in. Rinse after you've "soaked." Papaya is known for its antioxidants, vitamin A, and especially its powerful enzyme papain, which "digests" and breaks down build up and toxins, leaving your face aglow. 

2. Avocado: The bright yellow-green insides of a freshly ripe avo really do glisten and always make me think, "you are what you eat—and what you put on your skin."  I take a pinkie-fingernail scrape of avocado and rub it onto the tops of my hands, the apples of my cheeks, or whatever else I want glistening.

3. Citrus peel: Before I toss the peel of an orange or grapefruit, I rub the insides of the peel on my face and neck. They have a cooling and cleansing effect (citrus is antibacterial), and in my mind, must be as good a practice as the vitamin C serum aestheticians are always praising. Go to the source! Rinse when you feel like it. 

4. Aloe: Aloe is so easy to grow (the leaves regenerate when you cut their ends), I highly suggest having a few plants. Even a very small, thin slice gives you enough goo to spread a layer across your whole face. Seriously, try the gel on your forehead before you go to a party. You can leave it on all night. As it dries, it pulls the skin amazingly taut! It's temporary, but highly satisfying. And of course, aloe gel is known to be nutrient dense and soothing to all kinds of skin issues. 

5. Coconut Oil: There are about 1 bajillion home uses for coco oil, but its healthy fat and vitamin E content is simply good all around for dryness, peeling, cracking, and all kinds of skin disorders. When I add coco oil to any of my recipes, I rub any excess into my cuticles, nails, and elbows.

Now gather your little ones, cover your face in food, take a pic, and tag me on Instagram: @ruby_roth

What food do you put on your face? Leave a comment below!