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You Are What You Eat: An Edible Body Care Workshop

January 6, 2014

Did you know that 75% of things applied topically to your skin enter directly into your bloodstream? This eye-opening fact kickstarted Nicole Beuglet’s “You Are What You Eat: An Edible Body Care Workshop” at Hart House, University of Toronto on December 4th, 2013.

The workshop informed participants about the problems associated with toxic chemicals commonly used in body care products and their effects on the environment and our personal health. The second part of the workshop focused on how to use food and common ingredients found in the kitchen to make home-made cosmetics and body care items. The workshop concluded with a hands-on activity where we made two different seasonal sugar scrubs that participants got to take home!

IMG_3737Gingerbread and Chocolate Mint sugar scrubs! They leave the skin feeling exfoliated and smelling amazing!

We can use a broad range of ingredients from the kitchen to cleanse, exfoliate and moisturize our skin and hair. Imagine using up that banana that’s just a bit too overripe to eat to help soothe skin irritation or redness! This workshop was extremely empowering, giving participants the tools to think outside the box, be a chef and resourcefully combine ingredients to create natural, safe and edible body care items that work for each individual. Many herbs and edible flowers that can be grown yourself are excellent additions to many of the recipes you will find below.

This workshop inspires us to question how we think of and define body care products, how our ideas of them have been formed, and what lies underneath hesitations we may feel in using food on our bodies. “Lather doesn’t mean clean”, Nicole said, which really resonated with me. What kinds of products do you use on your body? Have any recipes to share?

You can find the slide presentation and handouts from the workshop below:

Raw Ingredients Chart

Edible Cosmetics Recipes

Edible Cosmetics Workshop

The Raw Ingredients Chart is a handy quick reference tool that outlines the therapeutic effects of various food ingredients. For example, want to know what ingredients are great for cleansing or exfoliating? Check the chart and combine ingredients to create solutions that work for you.

The Edible Cosmetics Recipes includes recipes and instructions for Facial Steams, Infused Herbal Oils, Hair Mask, Lip Balm, Sugar Scrub, Moisturizing Face Mask, Green Tea Toner, Shiny Hair Elixer, Dandruff Scalp Treatment, and Frizzy Hair Styling Cream.

Enjoy some more photos from the workshop!

IMG_3723Nicole guides the group through the steps of making a sugar scrub using organic sugar, grape seed oil, spices and herbs!

IMG_3720Stirring the spices in with the sugar – a bit like baking!

IMG_3724

Grape seed oil acts as a softener and moisturizer in this recipe

IMG_3726

Participants test the sugar scrub to see how it feels on their skin and if they like the overall smell. Adjustments can always be made!

For more information check out these links:

http://davidsuzuki.org/issues/health/science/toxics/faqs-about-chemicals-cosmetics/

http://environmentaldefence.ca/blog/taking-stock-how-cosmetics-industry-ranks-toxic-chemicals

Thanks to Nicole Beuglet for facilitating this workshop and providing so many wonderful resources!

A special thanks to TD Friends of the Environment for their support of Dig In! Campus Agriculture’s Fall & Winter Workshop Series.

We look forward to holding more exciting workshops in the new year, so stay tuned!

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