By Jennifer, Founder of Beautifully Alive
Like many other seeds, quinoa has become a sweeping dietary sensation over the last few years, both because of the innumerable nutritious properties it offers to our bodies and the variety of ways it can be prepared. It is essentially the new superfood, in that it contains essential nutrients including fiber, calcium, iron, zinc, and a number of B vitamins and antioxidants. Quinoa is also a surprisingly good source of protein as it contains all nine essential amino acids and bonus it’s naturally gluten free.
Everyone can agree that this tiny seed has a huge collection of health benefits and would be a fantastic addition to your daily diet. But did you know that the benefits of quinoa are not only limited to its consumption? It also does wonders for both your skin and hair when applied topically, and thanks to the variety of quinoa products offered by GoGo Quinoa, you don’t have to go on a wild hunt for quinoa-based beauty products once you’re done here. Read on to learn more about the different benefits of using quinoa on your skin, and to find out how to make a few of your very own beauty treatments at home!
Quinoa’s rich vitamin content makes it a fantastic natural ingredient for treating skin troubles. Quinoa is rich in vitamins B1, B3 and B6 which can help soothe inflammation and skin irritation associated with acne and rosacea. According to Prevention.com, collagen supplements are currently all the rage for keeping skin smooth and healthy looking – because as collagen (a structural protein) begins to break down that’s when skin aging can start to show. Luckily, “studies show that when quinoa is applied topically, it inhibits an enzyme called matrix metalloproteinase, which breaks down collagen and elastin, [an elastic protein that helps maintain firm skin]”. Also, a study published in 2015 by the International Journal of Cosmetic Sciences shows evidence that “quinoa phytochemicals may play a role in the treatment and prevention of skin aging”. The journal also found that when applied topically quinoa could inhibit an enzyme called tyrosinase that causes pigmentation thus helping to reduce brown spots, brightening skin. Simply put, scrubbing down regularly with quinoa can help keep your skin looking its best.
So instead of dishing out loads of money on commercial anti-aging products, why not start with quinoa, a recipe for a face mask is coming up in this article!
Quinoa is also surprisingly one of the best natural exfoliants out there, and of course comes with the benefit of being good for you – no harsh cleansers or drying chemicals necessary. The cooked seed is sheltered in a soft husk that is strong enough to scrub away excess oils, dead skin cells which can clogged pores, but is at the same time gentle enough to not tear or damage surface skin cells.
So, enough with all the good news about this amazing seed – let’s move on to how you can add quinoa to your beauty routine!
If you’re after a DIY quinoa beauty recipe specifically with anti-aging and skin brightening properties, then try out this soothing face mask after a long day for uplifted and glowing skin in the morning!
Quinoa Flour Face Mask
¼ cup of quinoa flour
¼ cup of almond or coconut milk
2 teaspoons of plain almond or coconut yogurt
For this face mask, you’ll want to warm the milk in a clean saucepan over low heat. You don’t want any simmering, or barely even any steam – we just want the milk warm enough to stir in the quinoa flour until it’s mostly dissolved and thoroughly mixed. Photos by GoGo Quinoa
Remove from heat, let cool about ten minutes, and then stir in your plain yogurt until you get a smooth but thick consistency. Be sure that it’s cooled before applying and leave on for up to ten minutes before rinsing with warm water and patting dry.
The quinoa in this recipe helps to fight skin ageing while the almond or coconut milk will provide plenty of natural moisture. This recipe will give you enough product for at least two masks (depending on how liberally you like to apply them). Store unused portions in an airtight container and refrigerate up to two days. Use this mask regularly as a relatively cheap solution for fighting off unwanted changes!
Now, if you’re looking for a new full-body scrub and want to test just how good an exfoliator quinoa is, try whipping up a batch of this super simple body scrub!
Quinoa Body Scrub
½ cup of quinoa
1 cup of almond or coconut milk
¼ cup of arrowroot powder
1 tsp of agave syrup
Cook quinoa according to package directions, allow it to cool until it’s lukewarm. Stir in the arrowroot powder and agave syrup. Massage the scrub into your skin (in the shower to prevent a mess!) and rinse with warm water for a soothing exfoliation. This recipe makes enough for two light, full-body scrubs, and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two days. Use twice a week for soft, nurtured skin all over!
Here’s a recipe to make your own foot scrub at home, which features GoGo Quinoa Andean pink salt sourced from Bolivia, for extra deep exfoliation. When you have a few minutes to spare (because that’s just how long it takes to make and use), give it a try for soft, smooth and moisturized feet!
Exfoliating Foot Scrub
2 tsp of quinoa flour
½ cup of Andean pink salt
4 tbsp of raw coconut oil
This recipe is as simple as it gets – just combine the ingredients above and you’re all set! Apply liberally and massage into feet with clean fingertips, rinse gently, and pat dry with a clean towel to lock in moisture. Store left overs in a clean, airtight container. This recipe will keep for longer than the other recipes – but we recommend using up each batch within a week to prevent any bacteria growth.
To recap, we now know that quinoa is incredibly good for your skin and super easy to incorporate into DIY beauty treatments. It’s also a very convenient beauty ingredient to use when pampering yourself at home, especially if you already love it as a part of your diet. It saves you money, it takes little to no time to use, and it’s chemical-free compared to most exfoliating or anti-ageing products you’d buy at the store. So, are you ready to make quinoa part of your beauty routine?
About the author
Jennifer is the beauty and brains behind Beautifully Alive! She loves eating healthy and trying new recipes. The self-proclaimed Zumba Queen has a passion for beauty products and loves reading new books. She’s always down for a DIY project!