Oh, The Glow

So I hear some pregnant women experience this amazing phenomenon where their skin literally glows. Me? Well, I’m more of a ‘still puking at 24 weeks’ kind of woman. This glow people speak of? I wish I had it and since I’m not one of the fortunate ones, I’ve learned how to fake it…and you can, too.

My skin isn’t necessarily dry, but ever since I can remember I’ve had eczema and it hasn’t gotten better with age. It’s not noticeable or really that irritating, but it does mean that without constant lotion application, I’m uncomfortable. When I first got pregnant with Jack, I started using a cream marketed to pregnant women for stretch mark prevention. A few weeks into my pregnancy I looked at the label and noticed one of the first ingredients was hydrogenated oil, followed by a list of things I cannot remember, spell, or pronounce. I wouldn’t want to eat anything with hydrogenated oil in it, so why would I want to rub it all over my skin? I also began to notice that a lot of lotions are made with alcohol and artificial scents. Alcohol dries your skin out more than it moisturizes it and artificial scents contain phthalates – known carcinogens. My solution? Grape seed oil.

Grape seed oil is exactly what it’s called – oil made from crushed grape seeds. It’s loaded with vitamin E, antioxidants, and essential omega fatty acids. I’ve found it to be extremely effective and versatile when it comes to replacing a few of my beauty products and achieving the glow that I covet so badly.

Here’s why I love it:

  • As far as oils go, it’s relatively inexpensive and a little goes a long way – an entire bottle lasts months.
  • It’s odorless. A lot of oils have a pungent smell and while they’re not necessarily bad, they can get overwhelming after using it several times a day.
  • It’s all-natural. No chemicals, alcohols, or artificial scents. Just oil from crushed grape seeds.

Here are a few ways I use it:

  • Keep it in a spray bottle in your shower. Use it to shave your legs and as a moisturizer before you get out of the shower. The spray bottle is the easiest, most efficient way I’ve found to store it for uses like these. I’m also convinced it’s the reason I’ve remained stretch mark free through three pregnancies!
  • Replace your eye makeup remover with it. Eye makeup remover can be expensive and is loaded with chemicals – there’s a reason it burns when it gets in your eyes. Bonus? The vitamin E in the oil is great for fine lines around your eyes and reducing the look of age spots.
  • Rub a dime sized amount between your hands and apply to the ends of your dry, styled hair. It keeps fly-a-ways down and smoothes any split ends.
  • Mix one part oil with two parts of organic brown sugar for an all-natural body scrub and exfoliant – a great way to unwind and reduce stress in the bath at night.
  • Before you get in the shower, whip an avocado half with a couple of tablespoons of grape seed oil and apply to damp hair. At the end of your shower, rinse it out with shampoo. I do this at least once a week, but there’s no harm in doing it more often.
  • Lastly, the glow. Grape seed oil, honey, and beet juice make a great, natural lip and cheek stain. This one takes some time, but it also makes a great gift and shower favor. Juice half of a beet, or blend and strain it, mix it with two tablespoons of oil and four tablespoons of honey. The honey leaves a nice scent and sheen on your cheekbones and gives it a great texture; the oil allows for the stain to be blended into skin perfectly.

So there you have it, my secrets for faking the glow if you’re not one of the lucky ones. Now, back to that grilled cheese dipped in guacamole I just made. Does that count as a weird craving?


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