When your skin is soft and glowing, you feel on top of the world. You feel beautiful and exquisite; poised and powerful. You feel as though you can take on that extra-long line at the grocery store or confidently wear that bikini hiding in the back of your closet. Smooth, healthy skin brings forward a new kind of meaning for a woman – especially a mother.
However, feeling these emotions can be unlikely if your skin is blowing up and your hair is falling out in chunks during or after pregnancy.
I was lucky to not have horrible skin most of my life – up until the second trimester hit. Unlike most people, my second trimester was when Hell broke loose: my back handed me over pain like no other, I was put on disability from work, my ankles started looking like swollen sausages, and my skin started acting plain ol’ weird. I didn’t know how to handle to breakouts I was experiencing around my hairline and jaw since I had never really had acne before. Not only did I feel as though the skin on my face was acting up, the skin on my arms and belly was also being impacted by my hormones.
This didn’t stop once my twins were born.
I learned that experimenting with different products, including DIY products, can be the secret trick to solving those darn skin struggles. Believe it or not, coffee grounds have been a huge help when it comes to exfoliation and skin softness. The texture of coffee grounds truly hits all those pesky pores and brightens up your skin in a way many other products do not.
Family Friend Turned “Skin Psychologist”
Laurie Donnell, a friend of the family, always had a passion for creating cold-process soaps, scrubs, creams, and bath bombs. Once she began gifting us some of her creations, I realized how wonderful her coffee scrubs and soaps truly were for my skin. I grew intrigued by how she came about crafting these soaps and why it was important to her. Below is our discussion regarding her craft:
Why did you decide to begin creating cold-process soaps?
“I started researching information about some more natural products to use because one of my sons has some sensitivity and auto-immune triggers. The more I read, the more intrigued I became. I am a medical technologist specializing in clinical chemistry. I also have a passion for art and the self-healing. My research led me to the creative science of cold-process soap making. The best of both worlds for me.”
What ingredients go into the soap bar and why did you decide to include coffee?
“Fun fact: When commercial soap is manufactured, glycerin that is produced during the process is removed to be added to lotions and creams. Not so in handmade cold process soaps! We leave in the great stuff, and don't add the "bad" such as phthalates that are in most commercial body products. You may want to do your own research into phenols and phthalates.
Cold-process soap uses the same basic ingredients: oils or fats, a base (sodium hydroxide ), and water. By replacing the water with brewed coffee, and saving the grounds for the scrub, a delicious bar of soap is always ready by my kitchen sink to clean my hands after a creative session.
In this bar, the secret ingredient for one of the fats is cocoa butter.”
Do you plan to start your own business or prefer to share through gifts and knowledge?
“I don't have a true business creating soap. At this point in my life, my "real" job is intense and time consuming. I love to supply family and friends with love in a bar of soap. I have done a few sales for shower favors, and a couple of baskets for fundraising. This has allowed me to buy more supplies for future crafting.”
To find more information on the exact step-by-step guide for cold-process soaps, search Pinterest for recipes and follow the above details to include brewed coffee and coffee grounds.*
Jennifer Aline is a coffee addict, mama of twins, and a passionate freelance writer and author. She writes for Moms.com on a regular basis and has had articles in publications such as the NY Daily News, NY Post, and In Good Health Newspaper. Aline received her Bachelor’s Degree in Child and Family Studies from Keuka College and worked in the Human Services field before her two little girls entered her life. Aline now focuses primarily on writing, teaching aerial arts classes in the evenings, and caring for her twin daughters – all while continuously chugging coffee, of course.
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