If you’ve ever dreamed of face-planting into a rich, chocolate-y dessert, then have I got a treat for you today. That’s right, I’m suggesting you smear chocolate “pudding” all over your face, on purpose. Clear some space on your schedule, friends, it’s time for a chocolate spa day!
The inspiration for this creamy cacao face mask came to me months ago, when I started seeing raw chocolate clay masks from companies like Vered Organic Botanicals and Thesis. While I appreciate companies like theirs who offer a beautiful array of organic, cruelty-free, natural skin care and cosmetics, sometimes the prices are a bit steep. For example, the Vered Cacao Vanilla Beauty Mask runs at about $68. I believe everyone should be able to pamper themselves with natural, cruelty-free skin treatments and masks (that’s why I love DIY! And part of the reason I started this blog). When I saw how simple the ingredients were for some of these chocolate face masks, I thought, I can do that! And so can you! For a lot less moolah.
And Why Do We Want To Smear Chocolate on Our Faces?
Good question, very good question. I’m so glad you asked 😉 Well, for one thing, it smells absolutely amazing. It’s probably almost worth trying for that reason alone. I wouldn’t recommend actually eating it though, so try to refrain from stretching your tongue to lick it off your face. Here are some other good reasons for coating your face in chocolate beauty “pudding”:
- Cacao is rich in antioxidants called flavenoids, which are great for stimulating blood circulation in the skin, smoothing fine lines, and giving you a rosy glow
- All those antioxidants help restore cell functioning and fight free radical damage and repair skin cells
- Potent antioxidants may also improve collagen and elastin production, revealing firmer, “bouncier” skin
- Cacao is also a potent anti-inflammatory, and can help soothe redness and reduce blemishes
- That amazing, intoxicating chocolate scent may actually help reduce sugar cravings. According to researchers, just smelling cacao activates the same neurotransmitters in the brain that are stimulated when you eat it.
After using this mask a several times, over the course of a couple weeks, I noticed an immediate rosy hue, smoother skin, and a dewy complexion. I’m a believer, folks.
Go Ahead… Eat Some, Too
I’m a big proponent of enhancing our beauty from the inside out, with the foods we eat. Chocolate is no exception. While I recommend trying cacao topically for a fun skin treat, I would also suggest making raw cacao part of your regular diet. This superfood has many benefits to the skin and hair, here are some (1):
- Score a gorgeous complexion. A 2006 study in the Journal of Nutrition showed that women who drank 326 mg of cacao a day had better skin hydration, texture, microcirculation, and oxygen saturation than those who did not.
- The sulfur content of cacao make it a great food for shiny hair and strong nails
- Protect your skin and prevent sunburn. Those who eat cacao on the reg can expose their skin to sunlight twice as long without burning, and may decrease their risk of skin cancer. Thank you flavenoids!
- The healthy fats in raw cacao also help keep skin plump, hydrated, and youthful
- Check out this resource for more amazing health benefits of raw cacao, I love this list: http://dailysuperfoodlove.com/2852/21-fantastic-benefits-of-cacao/
I’ve included some other great natural skin boosting ingredients in this mask, to really pump up the power of the raw cacao. You can certainly experiment with other add-ins to make this your own (see all of my suggestions below).
Now, for your beauty assignment:
- Step 1. Make some of my superfood cacao bark to nibble on
- Step2. Whip up this raw cacao super antioxidant face mask
- Step 3: Find a quiet place to relax, breathe in the happy-brain aroma, and pamper away!
The confused stares from your significant other, roommate, or family members are well worth the benefits. Hooray for chocolate! 🙂
Raw Cacao Super Antioxidant Face Mask (basic recipe)
- 1 Tbsp raw cacao powder
- 2 tsp clay, I used moroccan red clay (good for all skin types, including sensitive skin)
- 1/2 tsp oil, I used jojoba oil
- 1/4 tsp maca root powder, optional
- 1 small mug of steeped and cooled green tea (don’t dump it all in at once, just add a splash at a time until you get a smooth paste)
Mix dry ingredients. Add oil and then add cooled green tea 1 tsp at a time until a creamy, pudding like consistency is reached. Apply in a thick layer over face and relax for 10-15 minutes. Use an old facecloth (the mask will stain fabric) to remove the mask by holding the cloth under hot running water, squeezing out the water and holding the cloth close to your face, to give it some good steam and warming it up. Careful, not too hot, you don’t want to scald your face. Then, use warm water to wet the cloth and gently wipe the mask off. Follow with a cool water rinse, pat dry, and apply a few drops your favorite facial oil (I like jojoba). Bask in your gorgeous new glow!
Switch up the clay depending on your skin type, or desired results:
- moroccan red – can rebalance and smooth flaky, wrinkled, dry skin
- french green – very cleansing and can be drying, for oily skin types only
- white kaolin – balancing. good for most skin types, including sensitive skin
- bentonite clay – great at absorbing impurities, good for acne, safe for all skin types
Switch up the oil, instead of jojoba oil:
- Try avocado oil, coconut oil, or olive oil for more moisture
- Hemp seed oil for oily, acne prone skin
- Rose hip oil or argan oil for anti-aging benefits
Switch up the liquid, instead of tea use:
- diluted apple cider vinegar (for example, 1 tbsp acv + 1/4 cup water)
- coconut milk
- coconut water
For a more moisturizing mask:
You can also try mixing a tablespoon of avocado with the dry ingredients and adding a little of the green tea to thin the mixture.
1.Benefits of Cacao: http://dailysuperfoodlove.com/2852/21-fantastic-benefits-of-cacao/
2.Facial Clay Guide: http://craftbits.com/project/facial-clay/