March 03, 2010

DIY Beauty: Artichoke Tea Face Mask

I wasn't planning to put up another DIY post this week but I have to rave about this mask created by yours truly.

See, I am having my period and am feeling absolutely miserable due a mixture of hormones and the blues (I am returning to Malaysia to work next week so Mr. A. and I are going to be separated for quite a while). On top of that, I spent most of last week having late nights drinking and talking with ex-university mates. I fully expected my skin to be shot to hell this week. It was already showing signs of a nightmare: dry patches, pimples, clogged pores and, worse yet, the beginnings of cystic acne.

But my skin has never looked better (except for a few scars, that is).

Thank goodness for artichoke tea.

After examining my face and sighing for the 100th time last Friday, I pottered into the kitchen to see what I had on hand.

Yoghurt? Ooh, great. I always had great results with yoghurt. What next? Honey! Honey isn't bad too. I like honey. Bee pollen? I have been experimenting with it off and on but it doesn't seem to do much. Green tea? Hmm... Wait, that's too drying so forget it.

Then my eyes lit on a packet of artichoke tea.

A couple of months ago, my parents sent me several boxes of Vietnamese artichoke tea (picture of brand on left. It comes from the Dalat region) with a note that the tea was great for strengthening the liver and the gall bladder. I ended up keeping it for the days when I had indigestion, constipation or felt sluggish. A cup of artichoke tea usually put me back on track after a few hours.

It was easy. All I did was to tear open the packet, shake out the loose tea into a bowl and pour about a tablespoon or two of hot water into the bowl. While the tea was brewing, I went to wash my face.

Once I was done, I added a teaspoon of yoghurt into the bowl and mixed it all up. The mixture was a bit runny though so I shook some bee pollen into the mix to thicken it (omit the bee pollen if you don't have it. Some corn flour would work too, I think). Then I applied it on my face, concentrating on the areas with congested pores and existing scars. As the mixture was still a bit drippy, I layered some tissue paper on top just to keep everything on.

I washed my face 15 minutes later and was surprised. My skin looked brighter and the red areas seemed calmer. I have never had such obvious results from a DIY mask before.

After 4 days of daily use, my skin looks great. The dreaded cystic acne has disappeared, my dry patches are gone and my scars have healed rapidly. I don't even have to use a moisturiser afterwards unless it's night time.

There are only a few drawbacks to this mask though. First, it's rather messy and looks like shit (no other way to describe it. Mr. A told me to go sit in a corner until I washed it off). Second, artichoke tea isn't easy to come by. Third, it takes quite a while to wash off if you add bee pollen to this. I use up quite a bit of toner and cotton wiping the yellow residue off.

Give this a shot if you can get your hands on some artichoke tea. The results are well worth the mess and the trouble.

Now, excuse me while I take another look in mirror.


Kahani said...

Wow, it does sound amazing. Bring a sachet or two back for me? Pick up a packet of sheet face masks when you're here that'll solve the consistency / drippy problem. =)

On the other hand, it's a touch scary that you wander into your kitchen and start randomly slapping stuff on your face!

Eli said...

No fear, I'll bring back a few sachets. Does Daiso sell sheet masks? Have been having problems finding them here, tsk tsk.

Necessity is the mother of invention! Goulash would have never came about then.

All Women Stalker said...

Wow, this is really interesting. I didn't know this could work. Thanks!