Antioxidant Packed Pumpkin Seed Facial Mask

Part of living a healthier lifestyle is constantly learning new things. The last couple of weeks I took some time to do research, basically to take things to the next level with wellness and skincare. I've been pretty happy where I've been in 2016, but there's always something new to learn. Especially as I grow older I'm realizing that what may have been working before needs an upgrade. It's always good to take a step back and reassess what's working and what isn't.

I'm turning 37 next week, which in a lot of ways feels really odd. I still feel like like I'm 25 and could use another 10 years or so before I have to "grow up". Yet here I am three years away from 40! How did this happen?

Regardless, I'm feeling pretty good so I guess in the end, it doesn't really matter. The only thing that really matters is to continue to learn how to keep feeling good. I guess my aim or goal is to always feel young at heart despite getting older. To not let age get in the way of what I still want to do with my life.

So what does that have to do with pumpkin seeds? So much! I've been focusing these last couple of weeks on individual powerhouse ingredients that come packed with antioxidants and nutrients and how to implement them into my daily, weekly and monthly rituals. 

I'm somewhat a creature of habit. I have the ingredients that have worked great for me over the years that I've really depended on and that I will continue to use, but now I'm excited to invite more and more into my repertoire. Including pumpkin seeds!

What's in Pumpkin Seeds?

I've been using raw pumpkin seeds for years in my salads and smoothies for their chewy texture and nutty flavor that pairs well with both sweet and savory foods. And of course, the cherry on top is that they're healthy.

Raw pumpkin seeds have a wide range of minerals and antioxidants including magnesium, zinc, omega fats, vitamins A, E and K, B vitamins, copper and iron. They're also high in potassium and have anti-fungal and anti-viral properties.

This is the first time I've used pumpkin seeds in a skincare recipe. I thought they would work well in a facial mask given their high content of minerals and vitamins.

I also decided to soak the pumpkin seeds to help increase mineral absorption as well as enzyme and antioxidant levels (next time I will actually sprout them for maximum absorption, more info about that in the link). Basically I just left them in filtered water overnight, rinsed them off and created a paste out of them.

The Result of a Raw Pumpkin Seed Mask

I decided to mix a pumpkin seed paste with honey and bentonite clay powder. I like mixing a bit of clay and honey into more active ingredients to create masks. The bentonite clay is great for stimulating blood circulation and pulling out dirt and oil, while the honey softens skin.

This trio really left my skin feeling super soft. It was a relaxing and gentle mask. Because there were still bits and pieces of the seeds in the paste (very soft though because they had been soaked), it could also be used as a gentle scrub.

The great thing about this mask is that you can use the left over pumpkin seed paste (without the clay) as a smoothie addition for extra nutrients. Win win!

How to make the Antioxidant Packed Pumpkin Seed Facial Mask

Ingredients: 

Directions:

  1. Place the raw pumpkin seeds in a cup or bowl and cover them in water. Let them soak for about 8 hours or overnight. Rinse them before using.
  2. Place the seeds in a blender (a high speed blender works best if you have one!) with about 1/2 cup of water to make the paste. Blend on high speed until the consistency is like a paste.
  3. Mix 1/4 tablespoon of pumpkin seed paste with the honey and clay. You can use the left over pumpkin seed paste in your smoothies over the next couple of days.
  4. Apply the mask to your face and neck. Leave on until dry. Wash face as usual.

Notes: If you have sensitive skin, you may want to try a test patch of the bentonite clay before using it in the mask. Some people have reactions from it, although this has never happened to me. But if your skin easily reacts to products I definitely recommend testing it first. French green clay can also be used instead.


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