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If you’ve ever felt the rush of fulfillment when you cook using your own vegetables, wait till you try garnishing your meals with home-grown herbs.

Herbs are a great way to add flavor and an appetizing aroma to your meals but the high price of them on the market makes them seem like they’re not really a necessity. Luckily, with a little effort, you can start growing herbs on your own.

Since herbs are fairly small, it’ll be better to start growing them out of pots so you can manage them easily. Fertilizer is important for when you’re growing them and it can help retain nutritional balance in your soil which can grow healthy herbs.

To know if your soil is lacking any essential minerals, you can collect samples and have it tested. The test will determine what nutrients it contains, and what it doesn’t so you can get the right fertilizer. Remember to use an organic fertilizer that won’t cause any damage to your plants’ or your health.

Once you’ve prepped your soil, you’re ready to put it into pots and begin growing, but you need to pick which herbs you want to grow.

Two factors will determine what herbs you should grow; how easy it is to grow a certain herb and what your personal preferences are. (Of course, you’ll want to grow herbs that you actually intend to use.) For convenience, I’ll be naming herbs that you can find in almost every kitchen.

Parsley

You can grow this versatile herb by sowing them in warm soil. The soil can be either in a pot on a window or in a bed when the soil feels warm. These seeds can take some time to finally germinate so you can speed it up a notch by putting them in water and leaving them overnight before you plant them. Grow them in damp soil and place the pot in a sunny place.

Rosemary

This is the ultimate beginner’s herb because of how simple it is to grow, not to mention how good it tastes. Since it grows with hard leaves, it doesn’t lose water too quickly, which means you shouldn’t keep the soil too moist either.

Other than that, the soil doesn’t need much prepping and you don’t need to make special arrangements with regards to sun or shade, because rosemary isn’t picky.

Oregano

If cooking Italian is your specialty, then you need an Oregano plant right away. This delicious herb prefers light and warm soil, as well as lots of sunshine.

Sow them in a pot with warm soil, and pinch out the parts which grow vertically when the shoot has a height of 10 centimeters because it helps in stimulating growth.

Coriander

This herb is fairly popular in Asian cuisine and now you can grow it at home in pots. The seeds will take a few weeks until they germinate while the plants don’t last very long, so you’ll need to add more seeds often so you have a consistent supply. If you want the best-tasting coriander, then keep your plants healthy and harvest it often.

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Here’s How To Deal With Your Oily Summer Skin

Even if you don’t have oily skin year-round, summertime can bring out the grease monster in all of us. In an ideal world, you could stay in the A.C. all day and night, but when you do have to venture into the heat, use these tips and tricks to keep the shine at bay.

Use an acne cleanser

Switching to an acne-controlling cleanser in the summer helps minimize oil production. Even if pimples aren’t your problem, a face wash with salicylic acid can help your oily summer skin.

Use sunblock to help control oil

Sunscreen is important for preventing skin damage and health problems, of course, but did you know it also controls oil production? Use an oil-free, mineral-based sunscreen in place of moisturizer in the morning.

Go (more) bare

It’s important to lighten up your skin care and makeup routine in the summer. Whatever you usually use to moisturize your face at night, go a step lighter – no creams, please!

If you usually wear a full face of makeup, try a simple tinted moisturizer instead of foundation. Mineral foundation can also help matte-ify the skin.

Blot it all away

Use blotting papers with translucent powder for best results. Ideally, you want papers that absorb oil without stripping too much moisture from your skin.

Scrub, scrub, scrub

Exfoliate once a week to fully cleanse your pores. Clean pores produce less oil. Voila!

Use a gentle scrub, a DIY scrub like sugar, or a skin cleansing brush like the Clarisonic.

However, be careful not to over-exfoliate! Stripping your skin of all moisture just encourages your skin to produce more oil to make up for the loss. Don’t be too rough on your skin, and don’t exfoliate or wash too often. Once a week is enough.

Avoid certain foods

Sometimes folk remedies are actually legit. Certain foods and drinks cause you to sweat more, like hard liquor and spicy foods. Go easy on the cocktails, and avoid super-hot foods. Instead, opt for foods that are high in vitamin A, like carrots or spinach. These foods actually help slow oil production.

Embrace the shine

Let’s face it – a little bit of summer shine is inevitable during this time of year. Luckily, shine is in right now. It’s not shiny, it’s “dewy”! When all your tricks are failing you and you’re feeling oily, try to embrace it rather than criticize yourself for something that’s totally natural.


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