Basil is one of the most popular herbs grown in home gardens, especially here in the Midwest where I live. This herb is at its best when used fresh in bruschetta or a caprese salad, but it also freezes well when made into pesto. According to the American Society for Nutrition, it’s a great source of vitamin K and beta-carotene, making this fragrant addition as nutritious as it is delicious.
Beyond being a versatile ingredient in a variety of recipes, many people use this super herb in skin care. From breakouts, to warts, to bee stings, the herb has a history of treating a number of skin irritations and imperfections. It is always best to check with your doctor before trying any home remedies, of course, especially f you are pregnant or nursing. You can also look through Sher’s guide when choosing natural products for skin care during pregnancy.
Here’s a list of some of basil’s popular uses when it comes to skin.
Who hasn’t struggled with acne? Although this frustrating condition affects teenagers especially, its also an issue for many adults. Over-the-counter acne treatments can be full of harsh chemicals that dry out your skin. Basil, on the other hand, contains antibacterial elements that have been known to eliminate acne by the International Journal of Cosmetic Science.
You can easily try your own skin treatment from the comfort of your home. Start by boiling 1/2 cup of the plant’s leaves in 1 cup of water for 10 minutes. Let the mixture cool, then dip a cotton ball or swab into the mixture and dab it onto the blemished area of your skin. Leave the mixture on for 10 minutes before washing your face with warm water.
This popular ingredient has also been used as a gentle way to remove warts from your skin. When I noticed a wart on my finger last summer, I wanted an easy home remedy to treat the breakout right away. I stumbled upon the green herb as a natural treatment and, because I already had a plethora of the herb growing in my garden, was able to instantly begin treating my skin. After a week of applying crushed leaves from the plant, secured with a bandage, the wart was gone thanks to a virus-killing compound found in the versatile herb.
Healing Bee Stings
As spring flowers start to pop up, bees come to harvest, making stings more common. Lucky for us, basil can be used to treat bee stings and bug bites. Place a few drops of the juice from the herb’s leaves onto the swollen area and see if it helps to relieve the pain.
Improving Skin Tone
Not all its benefits are purely conditional; I’ve also used this versatile herb to brighten my complexion. The dried variety can be rubbed on the face to exfoliate the skin, leaving it with a healthy glow. Being so fresh, it is also great as a toner and disinfectant. Combine newly crushed leaves from the plant with a few drops of lemon juice to make your own refreshing toner, which is especially beneficial to people with oily skin.
What are some of your favorite home remedies? Let us know on Twitter, tagging your post #GoodMatters!
This article was brought to you by Tom’s of Maine. The views and opinions expressed by the author do not reflect the position of Tom’s of Maine.