As we age it is typical for us to develop dry skin, but there is an simple, non-toxic way to keep our complexion soft and nourished, using something you probably already have in your kitchen cupboards: oil.
Benefits of Oil Massage:
Daily oil massage not only makes your skin soft and smooth, but also provides many other health benefits:
-Increased circulation, especially to nerve endings
-Toning of the muscles and whole physiology
-Lubrication of the joints
-Improved elimination of impurities from the body
-Increased mental alertness
-Calming of the nervous system
-Strengthening of the voice and teeth
-Increased vigor and vitality
If you tend to be cold use sesame oil or almond oil, which have warming properties. If you tend to be warm or have hot flashes, coconut oil or sunflower will help cool you down. If you need a neutral option you can mix sesame oil and sunflower oil together.
Types of Oil to Use
What we put on our body is just as important as what we put in our body. Choose food-grade (preferably organic) oils. You can use organic oils from your favorite grocery store and many natural food stores that sell oil in bulk, making them very cost effective. You can even buy them online but I suggest you get an opinion about the product or check their reviews before doing so.
We Detox Through Our Skin
Natural organic oils don’t clog your pores but they will actually help draw toxins out of your body and clean your skin.
Below are some instructions based on how I like to do my own oil massage, but find a routine that makes this an easy practice for doing the oil massage on yourself or your loved one. The more convenient something is, the more likely we are to do it.
1. First place the oil in a container that can be submerged in water without leaking, such as a plastic flip-top bottle, which you can buy at most natural food stores.
2. Ideally the oil will be heated before your apply it to your skin. Coconut oil turns liquid at 76 degrees, while most other oils are liquid at room temperature. You may either submerge the bottle of oil in hot water in your sink, or if you are taking a bath, you can submerge it in the tub as it is filling.
3. Once the oil is ready, stand in the tub or shower and drizzle it all over your body, starting with your head and working your way down. Make sure that the oil is evenly dispersed and you are completely covered from head to toe.
4. Once the oil has been applied, begin massaging yourself. This type of massage focuses less on applying pressure and removing knots, and more on dispersing the oil and redirecting the flow of energy in the body. Start by applying even pressure with your palms, using sliding stokes over long bones and circular strokes with your palms over your joints. If you are trying to relax you should massage down arms and legs, away from the torso towards the hands and feet to increase calmness and strength. If you need to energize, massage up arms and legs towards the heart to decrease sluggishness of lymph and blood.
5. Apply light pressure on sensitive areas such as the abdomen or the heart. Use more oil and spend more time where nerve endings are concentrated, such as the spine, sacrum and soles of the feet. Continue in this way until you have massaged every part of your body.
6. If you have time, fill up your bathtub and spend 10-20 minutes soaking and enjoying this special time of your day. Breathe, relax and let go. This is a time of self-nurturance. Ideally you will remain in the tub until you break a gentle sweat, which will allow the oil to work most effectively. If you do not have time for a bath, simply proceed with your regular shower routine. When you dry-off, simply pat yourself dry, allowing a slight layer of oil to remain on your skin as a protective coating.