Olive Complexion: Go Green

Your grandma probably washed her face with soap, slathered on some Pond’s cold cream and called it a day. Facial beauty routines have since become considerably more complex – and involve considerably more cash outlay and plastic packaging. We often fall for clever copywriting and pretty boxes, the results of which come flying out every time the over-stuffed bathroom cabinet is opened. But you might not need all those moisturizers and serums and toners and scrubs. (Don’t try to ditch your SPF though, you still need that to ward off the cancer death rays.) If you’re looking to simplify your beauty routine (and reduce your carbon footprint), try simple olive oil.

Used for centuries by dewy complexioned Mediterranean women, olive oil is a great cleanser and contains antioxidants to fight aging and promote smooth skin. If your skin is oily, don’t fret. Use castor oil (it contains high doses of ricinoleic acid to prevent the growth of bacteria that causes acne) for the blemish prone areas, and olive oil everywhere else. Try this time-tested routine for a natural glow:

1. Massage oil into dry skin.
2. Rinse a clean washcloth in hot water and press to your face, letting the steam open pores.
3. Repeat.
4. Wipe away oil with washcloth and finish with a splash of cold water to close the pores.
5. If your skin is flaky, rub a bit of olive oil on the dry patches. Blot excess with a tissue.

You can buy the olive oil in bulk and pour into your own glass containers, lessening all that landfill-bound packaging (and the strain on your bank account).

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