Whether you like to flash a little cleavage every day, or save it for special occasions, it is important to look after your delicate décolletage to keep it in tip top condition.
You should regularly moisturise the thin skin to keep it hydrated, and always wear sunscreen to prevent long-term damage. We have a whole section reviewing various commercial bust creams, but many people prefer homemade beauty treatments – so here’s what you can do for your gals, just using the ingredients in your store cupboard.
A recent media scandal linked the popular preservative parabens to breast cancer – while nothing proved conclusive, it makes you stop and think about what you are using. Any substance put directly onto the skin is quickly absorbed into the body, so you might not want shop-bought products with a rainbow of artificial colours, unnatural aromas and chemical preservatives going straight into your system. By making skin care products yourself, not only will you know all the ingredients, but you can tailor it to your specific needs, at a fraction of the cost.
Exfoliation removes dead skin cells, revealing a balanced, fresh and smooth layer underneath. As well as improving the skin’s texture, exfoliating removes excess oil and increases the skin’s ability to absorb a moisturiser – something that your thin chest skin desperately needs. Sugar may not be good for the waistline or teeth, but is heaven-sent for silky soft skin. It is a gentle exfoliant, a natural humectant (actively drawing moisture to the skin for hydration), and is rich in glycolic acid, which repairs aged or sun-damaged skin.
Apply your scrub weekly, in a bath or shower, with gentle pressure in an upward circular motion. Do not apply direct to the nipples and be careful in case the surface you are standing on becomes slippery. Allow your skin to absorb the scrub’s nutrients and goodness for a few minutes, then rinse thoroughly – do not leave any residue as the sugar can cause irritation, and even a yeast infection, if it remains in the fold under your breast.
Sugar scrubs have three basic ingredients in a 2:1 ratio; two parts sugar to one part carrier oil, with a few drops of essential oil to enhance your mood. Simply mix the ingredients in a glass bowl, store in an airtight container and use within a month.
For a soft vanilla scrub that’s good enough to eat, mix one cup of fine sugar with half a cup of almond oil, one tablespoon of honey, one teaspoon of vitamin E oil and half a teaspoon of vanilla.
If you’re sunburnt, try a soothing aloe vera scrub, by mixing two cups of fine sugar, one cup of calendula oil, two tablespoons of aloe vera gel and one teaspoon of chamomile essential oil.
Or, for seriously smooth skin, use the ground oats sensitive scrub: mix two teaspoons of brown sugar, two tablespoons of ground oats, one teaspoon of almond oil and two tablespoons of aloe vera – the oatmeal is nourishing and adds additional gentle exfoliation, but makes this more of a paste.
Masks are thicker mixes which you can apply to your breasts once a week, but need to be left for around fifteen minutes to allow the nutrients to be absorbed. Make it part of your skin care routine as a really nourishing treat for dry papery skin.
Puree or mash an apple or banana, and mix with one tablespoon of soft butter, cream or yoghurt and one teaspoon of honey for a rich nourishing mask.
A hydrating mask can be made from two tablespoons of yoghurt or sour cream mixed with one egg yolk and a few drops of vitamin E oil.
To help tighten your skin and preserve elasticity, mix two tablespoons of bio-yoghurt, one tablespoon of ground oats and a squeeze of lemon juice into a paste.
You can also make your own massage oils by mixing a base carrier oil with essential oils to get your own unique recipe. Massaging your breasts two to three times per week, not only replenishes much needed moisture to the skin, but also increases circulation to the area and gets you familiar with the feel of your boobs, so that you know when something changes.
To help reduce fine lines and creases, melt shea butter and mix it with equal parts of olive oil, almond oil and coconut oil.
For a zesty way to reduce age spots and sun damage, mix two teaspoons of orange juice with one teaspoon each of lemon juice and almond oil. You can also make this into a bust mask by adding a whisked egg white.
To firm and tighten the skin, mix one tablespoon each of grapeseed oil and olive oil, and add a few drops of rosewood essential oil.
As you are designing your own skin care products, you can mix and match the ingredients to suit you. For breast scrubs, you should always use fine sugar, so that’s it’s not too abrasive – fine white sugar remains free-flowing and will soak up more oil, while the light or dark brown sugar contains more moisture and should be used sparingly, otherwise it will become more of a paste than a scrub. Other natural exfoliants include ground oatmeal, strawberry seeds, and apricot kernel for sensitive skin.
Good carrier oils for scrubs and massage oils include grapeseed oil (not too greasy, high levels of vitamin E and antioxidants to nourish, firm and tighten the skin), jojoba oil (also rich in vitamin E, antioxidants and similar to your body’s natural oils to moisturise extremely dry skin) and macadamia nut oil (a light oil which contains key acids to delay the skin’s deterioration and remove signs of ageing).
Always buy high grade essential oils for use on the skin – not perfume or fragrance oil – and always mix with a carrier oil, rather than applying direct to the skin. Add a few drops of essential oils such as rosewood, sandalwood, geranium, jasmine or lavender, to help brighten the skin and fight the signs of ageing.
by Lucy Ellis
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