From Russia With Love - The Beauty Benefits Of Vodka You Need To Know About.
From Russia With Love: the James Bond starrer had pretty much everything: thrilling, high stakes fight scenes, elaborate action sequences, stunning opulence, the leading ladies of the Bond Girl variety, and of course, plenty of sophisticated tech gadgets, courtesy of Q.
Y’know, if you think about it, there’s really not much I’ve got in common with Britain’s most famous secret agent, the one and only 007.
I don’t have a Walther PPK, a super spy status or a sleek and shiny Aston Martin (not that I know of).
But something we’re both a fan of?
While Bond’s drink of choice may be a martini (shaken, not stirred) - when it comes to Russia, I’d opt for the pure concoction.
Not just for the sensation of having your throat on fire (seriously, it’s insane), but rather for the numerous beauty benefits this alcoholic beverage possesses.
I know, I know, it sounds weird to think of vodka as something other than Friday Night shots, but hear me out: vodka is a beauty godsend.
Reason numero uno - this crystalline liquid makes for a brilliant antiseptic when applied topically, due to the strong disinfectant properties it has.
Still, never splash raw vodka on your skin.
Always dilute it with water to soften the harsh alcohol content, making it a much milder yet effective solution.
If you’re thinking more along the lines of Bond Girl- level skin, vodka can help you out there too, by tightening the uppermost layer of skin on your face, drawing out impurities and nipping acne in the bud.
But it’s important to remember that vodka can be dehydrating, both when used internally and topically.
So if you’d pair a shot with a glass of water for the inside, you’d go for a moisturizing product for the outside.
For example, if you decide to try out a combo of vodka + water as an all-natural toner, be sure to follow up with a nourishing cold cream or even a few drops of honey for its humectants, moisture-wicking qualities.
Something else Russian women like to incorporate as part of their beauty routines is icing.
No, they don’t slather confectionary cream all over their faces (although that does sound awesome); rather, they use ice cubes over the skin of their face, neck, and hands.
The science behind it calls upon the cooling and firming attributes of the icy water, in convenient pop-out-and-use form.
Using ice brings down the redness and angry inflammation caused by irritated skin, whether that’s been brought about by a nasty case of sunburn, an acne flare-up, or simply because you’ve tried out a new product that does not seem to agree with your skin.
Here’s an easy recipe you can trial on mornings that you wake up with puffy eyes, dull skin and an overall tired complexion:
Blend together 2-3 tablespoons of vodka with some freshly brewed mint tea and a cup of mineral water.
Pour this mixture into an ice cube tray and pop it in the freezer for a couple of hours.
Once defrosted, you can either use the cubes as is, or if you’re a little more sensitive and don’t fancy the idea of your face being subjected to the freezing cold cubes, all you have to do is wrap them in a thin towel or a slightly thick handkerchief.
Then you gently run the vodka-infused cubes over your face, carefully around the eye area, neck, décolletage and collarbones.
If your hands look a little blah, slide the cube over your cuticles, nail beds and palms.
This recipe helps to smoothen out the skin, plump it out and lend it a firming effect, sans any scary needles, Botox and the like.
Face looks better?
Now let’s tackle the hair.
I’ve had days where my hair looks like a cross between a particularly furry rug and Bellatrix Lestrange.
It feels like dry grass, looks like it too, and could probably catch on fire at any moment.
Times like these when beanies and cute headscarves don’t cut it, all I want to do is put on a paper bag over my head and call it a day.
Thankfully, I don’t have to resort to grabbing a brown lunch bag anymore, ever since I’ve found the wondrous, magical ritual of washing your hair with vodka.
Not unfiltered vodka, mind you.
It’d most likely trickle down my face and into my mouth and I’d be drunk all day.
No, what you’ve gotta do is whip up a marvelously transformative hair masque + rinse like so:
Take equal parts rosewater and mineral water.
Add in a dollop of pure honey (Manuka is the best, but if you can’t get your hands on a jar, raw honey will do in a pinch).
To this mixture, add in two tablespoons of vodka.
Mix up the ingredients vigorously until the final product resembles a light, slightly frothy liquid.
Then flip your head and work the mixture through your hair, focusing on the roots, tips and any split ends, if you have them.
Cover your head with a shower cap and leave it on for 1-2 hours.
Then when it’s time to wash the mask out, prepare a simple combo of one tablespoon of vodka to one teaspoon of lavender essence, dissolved in a cup of warm water.
After washing the mask out, rinse out your hair with this brew, taking care to not get any in your eyes.
Once you’ve finished washing out both the masque and the hair rinse, shampoo and condition your hair as usual (using only mild products) and air dry it.
You’ll be left with healthy hair, glossy strands that shine brightly and to to top it off, the fragrance of the lavender and rosewater gives your tresses an enchanting scent.
There you have it; lots of compelling reasons to stock up on a bottle (or two) of vodka. I mean, if it’s gonna make you look and feel better, it’s worth it, eh?
And if you prefer to drink your alcohol instead of apply it (no judgment), that’s cool too.
Vodka’s got a myriad of health benefits to its name, like helping out with relaxation and relief, encouraging circulation and tons more.
Whether you’re keen to immediately add it to your beauty routine or gently ease yourself into it, the best and safest baby step you can take is to add a few drops to your deep conditioner- wash and rinse as normal, and air dry your hair- you won’t believe the texture!
So, what say, Miss Bond?
Planning to give any of these recipes a try?