Making balms and mixtures from herbs and natural oils can be as rewarding as it is fun. But with spring in the air, I decided to step it up a notch and plant a window garden to grow my own supply of skin-nourishing ingredients.
Here’s a breakdown of 6 herbs that are as delicious on your skin as they are in your tummy!
Lavender is well known in the skincare world for its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties. It can relieve itching and symptoms of eczema, and is full of youth-inducing antioxidants.
Lavender loves heat and sunlight. Make sure you have well drained soil and you may need to add some compost or natural fertilizer to promote flower growth.
Culinary tip: The little purple flowers add beautiful color and a floral aroma to salads or baked goods.
This antimicrobial and soothing herb is an essential ingredient in innumerable skin and hair care products (not to mention oral hygiene). It’s also one of the world’s easiest plants to grow. Just give it enough light and water and you’ll have 6 inch high stalks in no time.
Culinary tip: Use mint to cool down your beverages in the hot weather. Just add a few sprigs to water, lemonade, or muddle into mojitos!
Rosemary is a natural antiseptic, so it’s perfect for cleansing both skin and hair. It’s also full of nutrients and antioxidants that keep your skin looking young, and has even been found to improve memory! It’s an extremely hearty plant, but needs well drained soil. Trim it regularly if planting indoors to keep the stalks from getting too woody.
Culinary tip: Make some rosemary infused olive oil for dipping bread into, or sprinkle over chicken before roasting.
Rich in phenols which help cleanse the skin of acne causing bacteria, thyme is an underutilized ingredient in natural skincare. Its delicate fragrance will also brighten the air inside your home. Plant thyme in full sun and well drained soil.
Culinary tip: Chop fresh thyme with garlic to use as a meat rub to spice up your grilling game this summer.
Chamomile’s soothing and anti-inflammatory properties make it great for treatment of eczema and use on sensitive skin in general. It likes lots of sun and is drought tolerant.
Culinary tip: Okay so this is so obvious I probably don’t have to say it… but dry out the chamomile for a homemade cup of chamomile infused tea, and I guarantee it will be almost unrecognizable compared to the store bought variety.
Sage is packed with antioxidants, helping to reduce the appearance of age spots, while promoting the growth of collagen and elastin to keep skin tight and plump. It likes medium to full sun and well drained soil.
Culinary tip: Sautée sage in butter over low heat to drizzle over pasta, gnocchi, or fish.