My Simplicity: Raw Honey and Coconut Oil

My Simplicity: Raw Honey and Coconut Oil

Disclaimer: everyone’s skin is different, so what works for me might not work for you and that’s ok! I have a friend who tried raw honey as a cleanser and it made her face really itchy, but oils work just fine. Sometimes it takes a while to figure out just what’s right for you!

Last week I shared with whoever was reading the change in my makeup routine. It was sweet to read some of the comments from my friends on Facebook about how they are happy with how they look as well. It’s nice to look in the mirror and not hate what you see! I’ve had several conversations over the last few weeks about what I use to wash my face. Back when I was making Beard Sauce, I would use a variation of the beardly recipe to use for my own skin, which ended up turning into Broad Sauce. Sidenote: Beard Sauce was a beard oil I created because Daniel has had a huge beard for a decade, and the oil took away the itch and the dandruff. It also made it look good and smell nice too. It was an all natural product with no synthetic ingredients, and I also created a female version for a total body oil cleanse. It was a magical product. Due to buying a house, finding out we were pregnant and me planning on started to informally home school Abe, we decided to close up the Beard/Broad Sauce shop. Ending the business was a hard/sad decision, but if it was going to continue to grow, it would have required way more out of me than I was willing to give. However, it was a fantastic experience and so much fun!

I’ve been oil cleansing for over two years now, and I don’t think I can ever go back to store bought facial cleansers. I’ve used all kinds of variations and recipes to clean my face and hydrate my skin, but if I’m feeling lazy and don’t really want to pull out the beakers and syringes, I just spoon a blob of coconut oil in a little dish and use that to wash my face.

Recently, I’ve read several things on washing your face with raw honey. It seemed like a great idea, and I’m always looking for something new to try. You do have to be careful, though, about what you try on your face. I read this one thing about using coffee grounds on your face, but after a little more research, it turned out to be more harmful than helpful, as coffee grounds are too rough and can cut your skin.

I use regular and raw honey for all kinds of things in the kitchen, and I’ve never had any kind of reaction to it. In fact, local honey has always helped me with my allergies. The stuff, especially in its raw form, is filled with antiviral, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties, and is also considered a superfood. The “grit” in raw honey didn’t seem too harsh, but more like the feel of sugar.

I decided to try it out about a month ago. I put a small amount of organic raw honey (Trader Joe’s Brand) in a tiny bowl and took it into the bathroom. I ran the water so that it would get warm, but didn’t wet my face. I rubbed the honey onto my face the same as one would use a regular cleanser. and it was thick and exfoliating. I had to quickly dab my hand under the water to dilute the honey a little bit so it would spread better. Ladies- this simple process felt so good. After washing my face for a minute, I rinsed off the honey with just my hands and the warm water, and then pat-dried my face with a towel. I could tell immediately that my face felt tighter and very smooth, but not at all dry. I looked in the mirror and noticed my skin seemed just a smidgen lighter as well.

So far, raw honey leaves my face feeling better than anything I’ve ever used before. I’ve been cleansing with it for about a month now, alternating with the coconut oil every now and then (especially if I have the honey bee foundation and mascara on), because the coconut oil is way better at makeup removal than the honey is. I also don’t wash my face everyday, for two reasons: 1) I’m lazy and 2) it’s not necessary if you’re not stripping your face of its natural oils with store bought cleanser. Before I started using natural methods to cleanse, my face would get SO OILY only a mere few hours after I’d washed and pampered it. I found out several years ago that the reason that was happening was because the cleansers I was buying off of the Walmart shelves were not only removing bacteria (in a harsh way), but they were also stripping my skin of its natural properties, leaving it to overcompensate by producing more oil, hence the oily skin. Now that I’ve been over two years strong using oils and now raw honey, my face just doesn’t get oily anymore. I mean, it would require me going at least 4 days without washing to start showing signs of oily-ness. But I typically don’t wait that long to wash my face anyway.

So, that’s my current face cleansing routine. It’s cheaper, as a jar of organic raw honey from Trader Joe’s is only $5.99. It runs you about the same as a bottle of cleanser, but you blow through that cleanser way faster than you do the jar of honey. I don’t have to buy any moisturizers to make up for the post-wash dry skin, and I don’t have to buy astringent and oil blotting wipes to take away the oily-ness. My routine is so much more simple than it used to be, and in a life that is constantly bombarded by complexities and more stuff, I like all of the simplicity I can get.


My Simplicity: Lemon Water

Lemon and Water

 In college, when I attended Palm Beach Atlantic University while living with my two bests, my first class of the day during fall semester was Spiritual Formation. I know the name of that class sounds funny, but it was honestly one of the best/most memorable classes I took. The main book we used for the entire semester was Richard J. Foster’s The Celebration of Discipline. He split our class up into small groups that we would meet with at the beginning of each week to discuss what we learned from the chapter we were supposed to read and practice the week before. It was odd, having to do that for a grade… but I discovered a new facet of faith that I do believe was a part of the beginning of my sanctification process.

My favorite chapter ended up being the one on the discipline of simplicity. At first, I dreaded the thought of reading through that and remember fearing what it would require me to do. But, after a day of unplugging my life so to speak, I discovered a peace and tranquility that I’d not quite felt before. I didn’t use my phone or watch tv that day, and I didn’t eat out. I made food at home, didn’t fill my time with plans, and spent the evening sitting on an abandoned life guard tower at the beach by my house. I read, wrote, prayed and listened to the waves crash onto the beach.

I felt like I could breathe.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take that “homework” and really implement it into my life. It’s taken years to slowly discover what makes life more simple and find the courage to apply it. But that chapter on simplicity has stuck with me ever since.

Several of you reading know my battle with self-image and comfort eating. It was a back and forth fight for so long, and sometimes it rears its head. I’ve gone from mantra to mantra, diet to eating plan, always trying to fix the symptom and not the issue.

As my beliefs about my worth have been changing and being made whole over the last year or so, the need to have some elaborate eating or exercising lifestyle has left me.

Right before I got pregnant, I had begun to struggle again, as I felt physically yucky all of the time and wanted out of my skin. Life was a bit chaotic at that time, as we were I’m the process of buying a house during the holidays. Cooking healthy meals wasn’t a priority. Instead of hopping on pinterest to find the latest diet craze (like I’ve done so many times before), I googled “drinking water”. I knew at that time, I wasn’t drinking enough water and wanted to be encouraged to do better at that.

Just more water intake, that’s all I wanted to try.

I stumbled over some articles on drinking fresh squeezed lemon in a glass of water every morning, and the exhaustive list of benefits that it provides for the overall health of the average human being was enlightening. So, I decided to start there. I was going to drink lemon water every morning when I woke up, along with two more glasses of water before breakfast, and I was going to keep surrendering my image and worth in prayer.

The benefits of a glass of lemon water


1 full glass of water with squeezed juice from half a lemon (or a whole one, if it’s small).

After less than a week, I noticed an overall change in the way I felt. Choosing to start my day with water and lemon made me more aware of how dehydrated I had become, and how good it felt to start my morning waking up my body by hydrating it. I became more aware of what I was putting in my body, and was more intentional about getting at least 64 ounces of water a day. Cravings for certain things disappeared, and my regular bouts of fatigue were gone. After  several weeks, it hit me that my migraines and body aches were completely gone. I dropped 5 pounds in a few weeks, but didn’t know it until I discovered I was pregnant and weighed myself. I also noticed that my eyesight improved, and haven’t needed to wear my reading glasses in a long time.

I know this sounds really weird, but it felt like my cells were being nourished.

Obviously, I’m not able to show normal results over an 8 month period, because I’ve been pregnant for most of it. But I decided to carry on this new discipline into my pregnancy, and I think it’s helped in a lot of ways. Pregnancy comes with a lot of physical discomfort, but a glass of lemon water actually aids in the aches and pains. I still drink one glass of it when I wake up, and will often drink another glass later on in the day when the afternoon fatigue hits.

This may be one of the first disciplines/habits I’ve started that I’ve actually stuck with. It’s just a part of my every day life, I don’t even think about it anymore (unless we are out of lemons, and then I take notice). It was a simple choice paired with the understanding that no action is going to change my heart, and it is working. If nothing else, my body is hydrated and my migraines and aches are either at a minimum or non-existent. I know that there’s more good stuff going on inside my body as a result of the awesome junk that’s in lemons, (read about the benefits and myths over at the Wellness Mama Blog), but I don’t really care to focus on those. I feel better. It’s made my existence more simple; freed up some physical energy to spend on living life.

If this is something you want to try, I think that’s great, but ask yourself some questions first:

1) What is my motivation for doing this?
2) Do I believe that I’m enough?
3) Am I surrendered to the fact that disciplines HELP us navigate the heart issues, but do not ultimately cure them? If not, what do I need to surrender?

Now, go drink some water :)