Velvety soft, light, smooth…. simply wonderful this eye salve! I don’t think it will magically erase the fine wrinkles around my eyes – I guess those are just part of life experience and laughter – but for sure the thin and tender skin around my eyes feels more nourished, and less dry, thus automatically seeming less wrinkly. What I do know for sure is that lightly tapping this salve on around my eyes is in itself a rewarding experience. And sometimes I also love using it for my entire face. Your skin will look a bit oily right when you apply the cream, but it quickly absorbs. And should you worry about oiliness, you can always use this cream solely in the evening.
The recipe I used is from Pins and Procrascination. There are other recipes using coffee for example, so in case that speaks to you more than green tea, you’ll find a collection of other eye creme recipes on this pin board of mine.
The only alteration in the recipe I made is using apricot kernel instead of almond oil. Here it is:
- 2 Tbsp almond oil (I used apricot kernel oil instead)
- 1Tbsp shea butter
- ¾ tsp beeswax
- 1 bag green tea (I used about 1 ½ tsp organic loose green tea)
- 1-2 drops vitamin e oil
- 5 drops peppermint (I used 2)
How to: Before starting, make sure that all the tools, pots and jars you use are sterilized, I put them in boiling water for 10 minutes, and in the meantime make sure the countertop is also super clean.
Melt apricot kernel oil, shea butter and beeswax. In order to preserve the oils qualities it is important to never let oils get too hot. The best way is to use a double boiler, but you can also put the oils in a heat proof glass jar or measuring cup and put in a pot or pan filled with water reaching to about half the hight of the jar, having the stove on low. Once everything is melted, add the green tea and let simmer on low for 20 minutes. Then drain with cheese cloth, mix in peppermint oil and pour into a 2oz container. Let it cool for several hours and then enjoy!
Gently apply under and around your eyes with your ring finger just lightly tapping. The ring finger is our weakest finger, helping to be gentle on the delicate skin around your eyes. Also don’t apply all the way up to the rim of your eye and the eye lashes, it might clog pores and then cause puffy eyes – not good! But don’t worry, all of the skin around your eyes will get some of the wonderful salve, since it will simply soak it up from where you applied it.
In terms of shelf life I personally feel good to use this salve for 6 month to up to a year, especially since I sterilized the tools and containers and because the salve contains no water. Of course if the salve starts to smell weird or in any way changes consistency I would always discard it immediately.
Shelf life is a tricky subject, and probably everyone is different about it and I only speak for myself here, based on what I have read so far, and what my own sense about it is. There are quite divergent opinions about this topic, as with so many things… Also a big thing to consider is the climate you live in: the hotter and more humid the shorter the shelf life, and the more important to keep it in the fridge. In general dark cool places are the best.
About the ingredients:
Apricot kernel oil: I chose this oil for its fine texture and because it easily absorbs into the skin. This oil is especially recommended for softening the tender skin around your eyes. I also read that it is wonderful and in some ways most effective if used just as a pure oil.
Shea butter: This butter just wonderfully softens skin, and leaves it radiant and nourished, just like in my all time favorite body butter. I use organic, unrefined butter, which has a nutty scent, combining quite nicely with the grassy-earthy scent of the green tea.
Green tea: is said to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that might help slowing down the process of wrinkle-production. If you want to read more, I found this short article about what green tea can and cannot do, which seems quite well researched to me.
Beeswax: helps to thicken the salve and also adds a protective layer to keep out environmental influences as well has retaining the moisture of the skin. If you want to read more, here is a really interesting article.
Peppermint essential oil: the menthol contained in peppermint has a refreshing effect. The original recipe for this eye cream says to add 5 drops. I used 2 because i did not want to risk having too much of a peppermint scent or have it sting my eyes. But with 2 drops it is hardly noticeable so next time I will use 5 drops. Peppermint essential oil is also said to balance oily skin and nourish dull skin. You’ll find more information here.
I hope you’ll fare well and enjoy your own creativity till next time! I’m planning to write about my favorite books on herbs and skin care.