I recently saw an ad from a local spa about their “pumpkin spice spa experience for Fall.” That included a pumpkin spice face mask treatment with ingredients like pumpkin, honey, and healing clays.
I’m not one to spend $125 to have someone else paint pumpkin on my face. But I thought this would be a fun recipe to recreate and do at home with my daughters. We’d made homemade facial masks and spa treatments before so I wanted to try a pumpkin face mask! Especially right now when it seems that pumpkin spice has taken over everything.
It’s all the scents of fall in a DIY resurfacing, purifying pumpkin enzyme mask.
Pumpkin Spice … On Your Face
Packed with beta-carotene (vitamin A), with a little vitamin C and zinc thrown in there, pumpkin is great for the skin. It also has enzymes and antioxidants for glowing skin. Here’s what the research has to say on pumpkin and skin health.
- Pumpkin fruit extract helps with contact dermatitis and calms inflammation.
- It’s an antioxidant to help with aging skin and fight free radical damage
- Helps prevent sun damage
- Has AHA (alpha hydroxy acids) and enzymes to exfoliate.
- Helps with breakouts and oily skin.
- Stimulates collagen production for skin repair and helps prevent fine lines.
- Improves skin tone and dullness
Scientists have found beta-carotene absorbs well into the skin. Especially if it comes from whole foods instead of isolated chemicals. I figured it was worth a try and pumpkins are inexpensive when in season.
A Pumpkin Imposter
This recipe works with fresh or canned pumpkin puree. The FDA is pretty lax with what they consider canned pumpkin though. Pumpkin and other winter squash fall under the botanical term Cucurbita pepo so that can of pumpkin could have butternut squash in it. The vitamin content and skincare benefits are still similar though.
You could probably use the Halloween Jack-o-lantern pumpkins. However, the smaller pie pumpkins can be easier to work with.
Add Healing Clays
Clay is naturally soothing and helps exfoliate and remove dead skin cells. I used bentonite clay but any clay that is safe for skin use will work. Rhassoul, kaolin, or French green clay should all work. Do a little research and see which clay is best for your skin type.
Bentonite clay is especially good at detoxifying the skin and pulling out impurities. It can be a little drying on already dry skin, but the pumpkin in this recipe helps hydrate. If you have extra clay on hand, it is also great for doing a hair or armpit detox.
Raw honey is soothing and nourishing to the skin. It even makes a great facial cleanser on its own. I added it to my pumpkin facial since it helps soften and brighten skin. This wonder ingredient is widely used for its antimicrobial and wound healing properties. Be sure to opt for raw or Manuka honey though for the benefits.
My skin feels so soft after using this mask!
Plus Cinnamon for Antioxidants
Cinnamon is high in antioxidants and adds a wonderful scent. It also feels slightly warming as it stimulates blood flow to the skin’s outer layers. A little goes a long way so I’ve only used a small amount in this recipe.
A 2017 study found that combining cinnamon and honey together fights acne-causing bacteria.
NOTE: If you have sensitive skin (or are using this on children), do a skin patch test on your inner arm first. If it’s too warming then you can easily omit the cinnamon. Cumin has a similar scent and is also excellent for skin health.
Healthy Pumpkin Skincare Options
Too busy to make it but still want pumpkin skin benefits? Here are a few healthier products to try. They’re free of sulfates, parabens, and all the other yucky stuff.
Incredible Pumpkin Peel – MyChelle
Pumpkin Enzyme Exfoliating Face Mask – Earthly Garden
Superfood Skin Glow Mask – Model Off Duty
Pumpkin Spice Face Mask
- Mix all of the ingredients in a small bowl.
- Apply a thin layer to the face in a gentle, circular motion.
- Leave the mask on for 5 minutes, then wash off with a warm, wet washcloth.
- This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled for a larger batch, but a little goes a long way. This was enough for me and two of my daughters to use.
- Shelf Life and Storage: I recommend using your pumpkin mask right away. It’ll last a few days in the fridge though.
Pumpkin Spice- Not On Your Face:
Not into putting pumpkin on your face but love the taste? Here are some of my other favorite ways to use pumpkin. This is a great way to use up some of the leftover pumpkin puree from the face mask recipe!
What’s your favorite way to use pumpkin? Leave a comment and let me know!