If you're one of the growing number of people concerned about the chemicals we use in our beauty care products, add whey to your list of natural alternatives!
When you open a tub of plain yogurt with active live cultures, you'll see a yellowish liquid at the top. You can either stir it back into the yogurt or wash your face with it! The liquid is called whey, and not only is it nourishing for your body, it also does wonders for your skin and hair.
Whey is the liquid portion of milk after the solids have been strained out. It is a complete protein with all of the vital amino acids.
If you make your own lacto-fermented dairy products such as yogurt or kefir, you're one step away from gaining this vital nutrient-dense food. Simply strain the yogurt or kefir through cheesecloth and watch the whey drip into the bowl. (See our Month Six Food Challenge for step-by-step instructions on making whey.)
Whey contains lactic acid, which is one of the alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) found in many expensive beauty products. AHAs help remove the dead surface-layer skin cells, revealing newer, younger-looking cells. In addition, with its probiotic qualities, whey helps restore the skin's beneficial flora.
Below are five ways to incorporate whey into your personal care regimen.
- Shaving lotion. Blend equal parts whey and aloe vera leaf gel. Strain through a cloth or fine strainer. Rub on and shave.
- Bathing. Add whey to bath water for a relaxing, soothing bath.
- Face wash. Add whey to warm water and use to wash your face.
- Shampoo. Use warm whey to wash hair for 1 minute. Rinse and repeat. For extra dandruff treatment, leave on for 10 minutes before rinsing.
- Face mask. Combine equal parts honey and whey. Warm on stovetop. Add enough rose water or distilled water to bring to desired consistency. Apply on clean skin and leave on for 30 minutes. Rinse with warm water. (Whey can be added to any favorite mask recipe.)
As you pamper yourself, mix the juice of 2 lemons with 4 cups whey, add some honey if desired, and enjoy a refreshing, nourishing drink!