Facial steams are one of easiest, proven, and least-expensive beauty treatments that can be used as part of your skin care routine. If you toss in some herbs, you can take advantage of their natural healing properties. You don’t even have to leave your home and purchase special products; look no further than your kitchen pantry or your home garden for a few beneficial herbs.
Benefits of Herbal Facial Steams
- Relax and unclog pores
- Hydrate and soften skin
- Eliminate toxins
- Stimulate circulation and oxygen
- Add fragrance for sensory relaxation
Common Herbs for Facial Steams
- General Herbs for General Cleansing: lemon balm, lavender leaves and flowers, applemint, chamomile, spearmint, rose petals, and chervil
- Dry skin: chamomile, parsley, lemon verbena, borage, lady’s mantle, sweet violet, and fennel
- Normal to Oily skin: sage, yarrow, calendula flowers, horsetail, rosemary, and thyme
How to Use a Facial Steam
As far as how much to use of each herb, there are no strict measurements and herbal steams have as many different formulas as there are herb lovers. In general, you’ll want to use a little more if you’re using fresh herbs as compared to dried ones. I loosely scoop up 3 tablespoons of each dried herb that I want to put into the steam bath. If I’m using herbs fresh from the garden, I’ll grab a handful of each. The rest is pretty much like making herbal tea from scratch — for your face.
1. Pull your hair back and away from your face and secure it. Wash your face with a clean and gentle cleanser. Have a bath towel on hand to drape over your head later.
2. Place the herbs into a large ceramic or glass bowl. Have a lid or towel (large enough to cover the entire bowl) handy.
3. In a teapot or cooking pot boil 6 cups of water and pour it into the bowl over the herbs. Cover the bowl immediately to keep the herb oils confined.
4. Let the herbs steep in the boiling water for 3-5 minutes.
5. Place the bowl on the counter or low table where you can sit comfortably over the bowl. Drape the bath towel over your head to create a tent that captures the steam.
Keep your face about 8-12 inches over the steaming water for 5-10 minutes. If you keep extra boiling water on the stove, you can refresh your herbal facial steam if the water is cooling faster than you’d like.
*For skin that’s inflamed or severely broken out with blemishes, seek a doctor’s guidance before performing any beauty treatment.
Herbs by Alice Henneman
Photo of lavender by blmurch
Photo of rose petals by Carly & Art