If you want a new method or technique for taking your skin care routine to the next level without spending too much money, look no further than steaming. Facial steaming is one of those DIY treatments you can do without spending more than a dollar. With so many benefits of steaming face, it would be stupid of you not to try it at least once. If you like it, great. If not, well, at least you tried.
Steaming is a simple self-care practice that is a wonderful addition to any skincare routine. You can use it with just plain old water, or add some herbs and essential oils for even greater benefits of steaming face. With that in mind, why should you do it? Well, look at the benefits first.
What are the main benefits of steaming face?
Cleansing your face
Steaming is a process in which hot steam flow is directed at your face. We know that hot can open up your pores, and that is exactly what steaming does. But in addition to opening up your pores, steaming also loosens any buildup of dirt, oils, and other impurities on the surface of the skin. This allows you to do deep cleanse of the skin.
Steaming combines warm steam and increase of perspiration. This potent combination dilates the blood vessels and increases circulation. Any boost of blood flow you can get is welcomed, as it helps nourish your skin from within. Improved circulation also means more oxygen to your skin, which helps to get a healthier glow.
You might think that steaming can dry your skin, as you lose fluids. You sweat during a steam session, and that means fluids are leaving your body. But the opposite is true. Steaming actually helps hydration, as it increases oil production of your skin. That means your natural moisturizing treatment works in full steam, pun intended.
Helps get rid of acne
If you have ever been to a professional acne treatment in a beauty salon, you’ve gone through a steaming process. And the reason is simple. Steaming helps release acne-causing bacteria and cells. The process of steaming will open up your pores, and cleanse all of the impurities like bacteria, dead skin cells, and similar that can clog pores and contribute to acne.
Improved absorption of creams and lotions
One reason why you want to add steam to your skin care routine is to make sure your creams, lotions, and other products are better absorbed. That makes your cream that much more effective. Facial steaming can help any skin type. Once your pores are open, a moisturizing mask will penetrate deeper into the skin and do wonders for your skin.
Calm your skin
Among the underrated benefits of steaming face is that this process helps you calm and soothe your skin. Steaming connects you to your breath and helps with any inflammation and irritation of your skin. And not to mention, steaming helps you relax, and soothe your mind as well.
Promote collagen and elastin production
We talked previously about how steaming improves circulation and increases blood flow. Thanks to this increased blood flow, your skin can produce more collagen and elastin. These two compounds are crucial for firmer, and younger-looking skin.
Helps with sinus congestion
Not only that steaming helps with your skin care, but it also takes care of other lingering issues. For example, if you have sinus congestion, common cold, or any other problem with your breathing, steaming can help you. Steaming relieves sinus congestion and allows you to breathe easily. And if you have headaches caused by sinus congestion, they will be gone as well.
Affordable and accessible
Last, but not least, one of the biggest reasons why you should steam your face is because it is affordable and accessible. Simply put, there is no other treatment that is as cheap as steaming, and produces even half of the benefits of steaming. You can do this spa-like treatment at your home easily.
How to steam at home
There are generally two ways you can steam your face at home. The first one is using warm towels, and the other is steaming over a bowl of hot water.
Method 1 – Warm towels
- Start by filling a sink or bowl with hot water. Soak your towel inside
- Secure your hair so that it is off your face. Cleanse your face and neck with a mild and exfoliating cleanser, so that steaming can produce maximum results
- After soaking the towel for a few minutes, wring out the excess water, yet the towel remains damp
- Lie down, or lean back in a chair. Place the towel on your face, making sure corners meet in the center of the forehead
- Relax for five minutes with the towel on your face. Rinse, and then apply a moisturizing cream/lotion
Method 2 – Steam over a bowl of water
- Start by cleansing your face
- Bring 6 cups of water to boil in a bowl or pot
- Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, and then put aside. If you use essential oils, add them now
- Have a seat, drape your towel over your head and the pot, and hold your face 6 inches above the water for 5 to 10 minutes
How to add essential oils?
Essential oils are a great addition to any steam treatment. There are a lot of essential oils on the market, and all of them have specific purposes. For example, tea tree oil has antibacterial properties, eucalyptus is great for those with breathing problems, lavender can calm your face and help with insomnia, while chamomile soothes irritated skin. With that in mind, here are a couple of ideas which essential oils to add to your steaming treatment.
- If you have dry, mature, sensitive, or inflamed skin, go with calendula, chamomile, geranium, lavender, and rose essential oils
- For those with oily and congested skin, the best options include cypress, eucalyptus, geranium, peppermint, lavender, rosemary, sage, and tea tree oil
How often to steam your face?
Now that we know the benefits of steaming face, the logical question is how often to do it? Naturally, we always want to reap benefits as often as possible. But sometimes, doing something too often can lead to more harm than good.
With that in mind, how often do you exfoliate your face? Or how often do you apply a facial mask? You do not do that on a daily basis, right? Well, it is the same thing with steaming as well.
If you want to get the maximum benefits of steaming, you should aim for one steam session per week. That is more than enough to cleanse your skin and utilize all other benefits we talked about previously.