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Wrinkles, fine lines and other changes in the skin are unwelcome reminders of the aging process, leading many people to reach for expensive beauty products in a bid to improve their skin’s appearance. However, some ingredients found in skincare products link to chronic health conditions, hormone disruption and even some cancers. If you’re looking for safer, and cheaper, alternatives to shop-bought products, try these three natural skincare essentials for younger-looking skin.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is often praised for its versatility, as it can be used for many different culinary, health and beauty purposes. When it comes to skincare, coconut oil is an excellent moisturizer that can also be used to treat minor skin problems and irritations, as it contains anti-fungal and antibacterial properties.

Coconut oil is also great for drawing impurities from the skin. Try applying a thin layer of coconut oil to your skin and leaving on for at least an hour, as this will help to pull dirt from deep within the pores. In addition, coconut oil can be used to remove makeup, including waterproof mascara.

Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is an astringent that helps to purify and tone the skin. It can be used to replace both cleanser and toner, as the astringent properties clean the skin thoroughly and leave it feeling refreshed. Witch hazel is also a great treatment for acne, spots and other skin blemishes.

Witch hazel is one of the most effective treatments for dark circles and bags around the eyes, as it helps to brighten and tighten the delicate eye area. To shrink eye bags and reduce dark circles, pour a little witch hazel onto a cotton pad and dab gently around the eyes.

Honey

Honey contains powerful antiseptic properties that help to treat skin infections and repair damaged skin cells. Honey also soothes, softens and moisturizes the skin, making it ideal for use as a weekly face mask.

For a softening face mask, apply a thin layer of honey to your skin and leave on for at least half an hour. If you prefer a thicker face mask, try mixing a little oatmeal into the honey. Cleanse and rinse thoroughly to remove all traces of the mask.

Shop-bought skincare products can be expensive and often contain harmful chemicals and ingredients that can cause health problems. Using natural products, such as coconut oil, witch hazel and honey, is a safer way to take care of your skin.

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The Pros and Cons of Off-The-Grid Living

With rising economic and political instability, more individuals who are looking for an alternative way of life are finding it in off-the-grid living. The idea of cutting links with centralized utility systems, and most of the world, appeals to many. Homes on wheels, secluded homes and trailers in the middle of nowhere are becoming more common in different parts of the world. Anyone considering living off the grid, however, would be wise to first weigh its pros and cons.

Pros

A good number of people around the world are embracing this way of life because of various advantages that it presents.

1. Save on Energy Costs

Off-the-grid living requires you to find alternative energy sources such as solar or wind. You can use wood for cooking and heating if plenty is available on your property. You can spend an afternoon chopping firewood on your property and stock up a pile for winter.

2. No Utility Grid Dependency

This kind of lifestyle will grant you the freedom from depending on utility grid. The grid isn’t always dependable, and natural occurrences such as earthquakes, heavy rains and bad weather might affect services. When you have no dependency on the utility grid, your home will always be lit up. Everything will be running smoothly when there is an area blackout due to a great storm that knocks down power lines.

3. Countless Home Design Options

The notion that off-the-grid homes are always smaller is false. The truth is that you can build any kind of home that your heart desires on your off-grid property. You have countless design options, which will also be energy efficient and comfortable. You can also incorporate the modern designs for your home.

4. Exposure to Environmental Options

When you adopt this way of life, you will get valuable knowledge about your environment. You will learn to manage alternative energy systems, live more simply and learn numerous conservation options. The environmental knowledge you gain from living this life is more effective because it is practical. Compared to that which is acquired by reading books, the hands-on knowledge is simply priceless.

5. Kids Will Benefit

When you have kids and adopt the off-the-grid life, you are giving them a great opportunity to learn vital life skills that many in their generation will lack. They will learn how to accomplish more with less, appreciate nature and treat the environment with a lot of respect.

Cons

The cons of off-grid living are not many. The problems will mostly be there during the period that you are setting up and adjusting to the life.

1. High Start-up Costs

In the end you will save a lot of money, but the initial start-up costs of building the home, installing the alternative energy systems, starting a farm (if you are into it) and so on can be quite high.

2. The Requirements Challenge
Remember, not all the alternative energy options work for all lands or on already-built homes. Most of them require the right home, land or location. If you are counting on wind energy, for example, and your off-grid property isn’t at a windy location, you will have to reconsider your energy options. You might at times be forced to make adjustments in the structure of your home to accommodate your needs, or simply look elsewhere.

3. Not Easy at the Beginning

Initially, going off the grid will not be easy, and you will have to work extra hard to get everything running smoothly. You will also have to forget some comforts that you have been used to, and learn to appreciate the simple things in life the hard way. Think about chopping a mountain of firewood on a hot afternoon, weeding the garden, milking the cow for your kitchen milk, painting your house, building that chicken coop or having a next-door neighbor who is miles away.

Off-the-grid living is not for everyone, but if you feel that you would love this kind of life far away from “civilization,” then it is better to be well aware of the pros and cons that come with it.


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