I’m squeezing this post in a little bit late but I didn’t want you to miss a fun little recipe my sister and I tried out for an eye mask from the book Natural Beauty by Susan Curtis, Fran Johnson, and Pat Thomas. This book is one of my favorite reference books for natural beauty information and recipes. My sister and I decided to try their recipe for their cooling eye mask that uses the calendula tincture I just made. This eye mask recipe is supposed to cool, tone, and smooth puffy lines around your eyes.
2 tsp witch hazel
1 tsp aloe vera juice
1 tsp glycerin
1 tsp calendula tincture
First of all, we didn’t use store bought aloe juice because we have several large aloe plants in the garden. Milking an aloe leaf for its juice is surprisingly challenging! We split the leaf in half and scored the flesh and then squeezed the viscous juice which, being viscous, hung from the leaf in a slimy glop that refused to actually fall into the teacup. We resorted to scraping the juice off with the measuring spoon which proved equally difficult. There are worse things for your hands to be completely covered with than fresh aloe leaf juice. I don’t regret it.
Next we poured the rest of the ingredients in the tea cup and gave it a really good stir. This eye mask is that easy to put together. Once it seemed about as mixed as it would ever get, we applied the mask generously to the area under our eyes (being careful not to get it IN our eyes) and to our brow bones.
The instructions say to let it sit for five minutes. Being very thorough people, my sister and I waited for ten and just to make the experience extra zen, we practiced breathing slowly and deeply. It was a lovely warm late morning so we did all of this on my front porch looking out at the garden.
Then we removed gently, as instructed, with a cotton pad.
Was it cooling? Kind of. Was it toning? Maybe. Did it smooth puffy lines? Not even a tiny bit. I’ll tell you what it DID do, though. For the rest of the day the skin under my eyes felt really soft and hydrated. As a middle aged person with “mature” skin that’s a plus in my book. I really didn’t experience the astringent qualities of the mask that do the toning and it’s my suspicion that that’s because of the glycerine. If I do this eye mask again I’ll leave out the glycerin. Aloe, witch hazel, and calendula tincture without glycerin would feel more cooling and toning. However, if you want to try this and the skin under your eyes is especially sensitive, you may want to leave it in. That’s your call.
What was really nice about making this recipe is that my sister and I sat down together and took care of our faces while hanging out. I firmly believe that half of the benefit of doing spa treatments is that you stop rushing around, you stop fretting, and you feel more peaceful. This is an incredibly important act of self care, the little things we do every day that feed our body in some way while slowing us down and helping us be mindful.
Go ahead and give this cooling eye mask a try and see what you think.