The key to making an effective, germ-busting hand sanitizer is to stick to a 2:1 proportion of alcohol to aloe vera. This keeps the alcohol content around 60 percent. This is the minimum amount needed to kill most germs, according to the CDC
Hand sanitizer Recipe:
3/4 cup of isopropyl or rubbing alcohol (99 percent)
1/4 cup of aloe vera gel (to help keep your hands smooth and to counteract the harshness of alcohol) Aloe Max 100
Option: 10 drops of essential oil
Pour all ingredients into a bowl, ideally one with a pouring spout like a glass measuring container.
Mix with a spoon and then beat with a whisk to turn the sanitizer into a gel.
Pour the ingredients into an empty bottle for easy use, and label it “hand sanitizer.”
Hand sanitizer is a handy on-the-go way to help prevent the spread of germs when soap and water isn’t available. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can help keep you safe and reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus.
If you’re active on social media, we’re sure you’ve seen people talking about self-care. Influencers everywhere are posting photos of themselves traveling or at the spa with the hashtag #selfcare. It’s super trendy. But what does self-care even mean?
For us, self-care is all about taking time out of your day to focus on things that contribute to your happiness and wellbeing. It’s not something you do one time and considers it a done deal, it’s the continuous effort to make sure your needs are taken care of. You do not need a huge, international vacation to practice self-care. The simplest things like walking your dog could be considered self-care.
We’re making self-care a priority in 2019 and want you to join us on our journey.
We’ve compiled a list of 31 activities (in no particular order) you can do in January that will jumpstart 2019 and set you up to have an amazing year.
This is an on-going series we plan to regularly post about on our blog and on our Instagram. Make sure to check back every month to get your updated list and let us know how your journey is going.
Create a vision board with your goals for 2019
Clean out & organize your closet
Wake up 20 minutes earlier
Make your bed every morning
Drink fruit infused water
Make a happiness list
Go for a daily walk
Apply sunscreen every day
Clean out your skincare collection
Strike a power pose
Read a book, magazine or your favorite blog
Subscribe to a podcast
Try a new recipe
Watch a TED Talk
Set an intention for your day, every day
Enjoy a sunset
Visit a local market
Skip the coffee, drink tea
Spend time outdoors
Meditate 5-10 minutes daily
Unplug at a decent hour
Compliment 3 people
Take yourself out on a date
Try a new restaurant
Focus on breathing
Have a dance party
Use a face mask
Let us know in the comments below or on Instagram if you’re participating in our monthly challenge. Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter and follow Key West Aloe and join the conversation on Facebook and Instagram.
There are literally not enough hours in the day to get everything done on your tidy task list. Because of this, sometimes our skin care routines can be pushed to the bottom of the list and sometimes forgotten altogether. Our neglected skin can become dry, dull and clogged with yesterday’s makeup if we don’t take a few minutes out of our day to practice good skin care.
Take back your skin care routine by investing in products with ingredients that do all the work for you while you sleep. The below six ingredients are proven to help you get a perfect beauty sleep and wake up flawless!
Every day our skin has to fight against harmful environmental factors including the damaging UVA & UVB rays, wind, makeup, pollution and much more. To help counteract these damaging factors, you should invest in nighttime skin care products with an Aloe Vera base. Aloe is naturally age-defying, moisturizing and can help the skin fight against harmful free radicals. Aloe Vera also acts as a cosmetically active carrier enhancing the performance of other cosmetic ingredients making your skin care products more effective in treating your skin concerns.
As we get older, our skin starts to lose the ability to retain moisture resulting in less firm and plump skin. Hyaluronic acid is the perfect skin care ingredient to fight this phenomenon. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, something that retains moisture like a sponge. When used in skin care, Hyaluronic acid draws moisture from the air allowing it to be absorbed by the skin. Once absorbed, the skin may regain elasticity and look and feel softer. When shopping for a nighttime product with hyaluronic acid, look for a rich cream that can give you a maximum moisture boost.
Retinol, more commonly known as vitamin A, is an antioxidant that diminished the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by encouraging healthy cell growth and exfoliation to help skin appear younger. It also enhances collagen production, helping erase the fine lines and wrinkles we all get from aging. This ingredient is best used at night because the sun can break the product down.
If you’re like us, you’ve tried ever beauty trick in the book including the cucumber over the eyes trick. While this does work wonders for your eyes, sleeping with cucumbers on your eyes is harder than it looks. Luckily, there are products out there with cucumber as the main ingredient that can give you the same results. Cucumbers are rich in vitamin C and folic acid. The vitamin C will stimulate new cell growth while the folic acid will protect your skin from environmental toxins that can make eyes appear tired. Popping on a skin care product will cucumber at night will make it look like you got the full 8-hours of sleep you intended to get instead of the 4 your actually got.
Plant-based squalane is an amazing moisturizing ingredient to use at night. Our bodies naturally produce a form of squalane and know exactly how to handle this ingredient so instead of looking like a greasy mess we can have better skin elasticity by increasing the skins moisture retention and nutrients.
AHAs & BHAs are a nonabrasive group of naturally occurring acids found in various foods that are good for exfoliation. AHAs, great for thickened, sun-damaged skin, will dissolve the surface of the skin uncovering a smoother complexion. On the other hand, BHAs can penetrate into pores, exfoliating the dead skin cells that are built up inside the pore helping reduce the occurrence of blackheads and whiteheads.
If you have a new skin concern or are just looking for an additional boost consider adding a face mask to your skin care routine. Face masks are quick, affordable and easy to use. With such a wide variety of face mask to choose from, there is a mask that will fit your specific needs.
Not sure where to start? Check out our guide below to become a mask-a-holic.
Types of Mask
There are 4 types of facial masks: clay masks, cream masks, sheet masks, and gel masks. Each mask works for a certain type of skin and addresses specific skin concerns.
Clay masks are facial masks that contain skin-purifying clay and other great ingredients that can help minimize blemishes and unclog pores. While clay masks can be used on all skin types, people with normal to oily skin will benefit most from a clay mask. Clay masks can help detoxify the skin, tighten pores, boost circulation, reduce inflammation and evens skin tone. Popular clays used in these masks include kaolin clay, bentonite clay, fuller’s earth clay, french green clay, and rassoul clay.
If you’re feeling a little dry and dehydrated, this is the mask for you. Cream masks are made with replenishing oils and moisturizers to help normal to dry skin bounce back.
Sheet Masks are amazing for all skin types and are fun to use. Depending on the formula you pick up, your mask can help bring back life to dry skin or can help fight the battle against wrinkles. The best part about sheet masks, no rinsing required. In fact, to get the most out of your mask, we suggest rubbing the leftover mask directly onto your skin.
Like the cream mask, the gel mask is formulated to hydrate and nourish the skin. The coolness of the gel is perfect for sensitive skin types but works on normal to dry skin types as well.
Target Your Main Concern
For When You’re Feeling Greasy
… try a mask with kaolin clay as the main ingredient. The clay will naturally absorb the excesses oil and sebum on the skin and within the pores. Compliment the kaolin clay with a moisturizing ingredient like Aloe Vera to help balance the drying effects clay can have on the skin.
… try a mask with hyaluronic acid as a key ingredient. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant that draws moisture from the air. It can be absorbed by the skin and once absorbed the skin may regain elasticity and look softer.
… try a mask with bentonite clay as the main ingredient. Like kaolin clay, bentonite clay is super absorbent and acts as a magnet drawing out impurities in your pores. It’s also can help reduce swelling and soothe inflammation.
If you already have an established skin care routine, adding a face mask will be an easy addition. Once you’ve selected what type of mask and which ingredients to use, everything else will fall into place.
Start with a cleanser
Following the directions on your particular mask, apply the face mask smoothing in on in an upward motion.
Wait the required amount of time.
Rinse (unless you are using a sheet mask). Use lukewarm water and do not scrub, gently pat the mask away.
Moisturize and seal in all of the mask goodness.
Now you know almost everything there is about face masks. What mask should you use based on your skin type? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook or Instagram! Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter to get more tips and tricks.
Have you heard the saying “Long Hair, Don’t Care.” According to a source (ehm… Urban Dictionary), this saying can be traced back to the late 60s early 70s when people grew their hair in support of the hippie movement.
We want to put a 2018 spin on this and change the phrase to “Long Hair, Because We Care” because long, healthy hair doesn’t happen by accident. It takes time and attention to develop luscious hair like your favorite celebrity. With these 7 Tips, we can help you get Instagram worthy hair.
Start with the scalp
A clean, healthy scalp makes for healthy hair. When washing your hair, make sure to focus the cleansing shampoo on your scalp then let the shampoo wash over the rest of your hair. We also like to spend some extra time massaging the scalp with our fingertips. This massage is a great stress reliever and will encourage hair growth.
Try conditioner first
Pick up a shampoo bottle and read the instructions, we can almost guarantee it says “Shampoo then conditioner.” Today, we say forget those instructions, including ours, and condition your hair before shampooing. Even the most moisturizing shampoos can strip your hair of necessary oils, by using conditioner first you give your hair an extra boost of moisture so when you’re shampooing you are still left with some softness.
Finish with a shot of cold
Warm showers are nice. The heat can relax your muscles and make your skin feel soft. It can also be doing more harm to your hair than good. Warm water opens up the hair cuticle making it easier for moisture to escape resulting in dry, brittle hair. So if you can, avoid hot water when washing your hair. Does this mean you always have to take cold showers when washing your hair? No, when you’re one with your entire routine, spend a few minutes under a cool steam. This will close your cuticles, making it easier for your hair to maintain moisture while reducing the chance of split ends.
Don’t be afraid of a few snips
One thing we’ve noticed is people who are trying to grow their hair always brag about how long it’s been since their last cut. But why? A regular trim is the best way to grow your hair. Getting rid of and preventing split ends will mean your hair can grow longer, faster.
Not all products are created equal
Like your skin, there are different types of hair. Some people have fine straight hair and others have thick curly hair. The most important thing you can do on your healthy hair journey is figuring out what type of hair you have and what products and ingredients work best for your hair. On a basic level, Aloe Vera is perfect for almost every hair type because it’s super nourishing and help strengthen your hair but it may not be enough. Maybe you need a product with extra protein or maybe you need a different textured product. You won’t know until you try so we suggest experimenting with your hair products.
Pro Tip: We like to do a mud mask treatment on our hair to help draw out impurities and moisturize the hair. Believe it or not, we use our Marine Mud Mask for this treatment.
Drop the heat
We’re sure we don’t have to tell you how damaging heat can be for your hair. The high temperatures make your hair look good after styling but underneath you’re just hurting your hair. Do yourself a favor and ditch the hot tools. If, for whatever reason, you can’t, make sure to use a heat protectant and a leave-in conditioner to help add moisture back into your abused hair shaft.
It doesn’t matter how much work you put into your hair on the outside if you’re not taking care of your hair from the inside. Make sure to eat the right food and stay hydrated to promote healthy hair growth. Snacks like eggs, sweet potatoes, avocados, and almonds can put you on the right path to healthy hair. A multi-purpose vitamin couldn’t hurt either.
It’s time to say goodbye to dry, brittle hair and say hello to healthy locks. Start with these tips and create a healthy hair routine that fits your needs. Then, share with us in the comments below your #1 hair tip – we’re always happy to learn new tricks.
The first day of summer is June 21st. The countdown to the best season of the year is finally complete and we couldn’t be happier!
There are so many reasons we love summer. Endless beach days, delicious fruits and vegetables are in season and of course, we have a beautiful sun-kissed glow all season. What more could you ask for?
Now, before we go crazy with our summer obsession, we need to talk about our beauty regimen. Like any season change, our skin care habits should change too. We’ve rounded up a list of Summer Beauty Dos and Don’ts so you can make a seamless transition into the best season of the year!
Key West Aloe’s Summer Beauty Dos and Don’ts
✓ Do be smart about your SPF
Everyone knows that you should wear a sunscreen in the summer but that doesn’t mean they are using their SPF correctly. Make sure your sunscreen is at least an SPF 15 or higher and protect against both UVA and UVB rays (that’s called Broad Spectrum). Look for a sunscreen that’s water resistant and don’t forget to reapply. For more sunscreen tips, check out our SunSmart blog post.
Pro tip: Apply your sunscreen at least 20 minutes before going outside to get the maximum benefits.
✘ Don’t forget your scalp
You protect your body with sunscreen (see above) but what about your scalp? We assume because our scalp is covered in hair that it’s not affected by the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays, that’s a wrong assumption. Like your skin, your scalp can get sunburned. Protect it with a hat or scarf when you’re outside for long periods of time or invest in some SPF made specifically for your hair.
Pro tip: If you don’t like hats, try a protective hairstyle like a slicked back ponytail or a bun to avoid unnecessary damage.
✓ Do swap your fragrances
Did you know that sweet or floral scents can attract bugs? That’s why we suggest skipping the sweet and floral fragrances in the summer and instead opt for something a little lighter or in a musk family. Bugs are one of the only things we dislike about summer, do everything you can to avoid them.
Pro tip: prep your skin with a lotion or oil before applying your fragrance to make it last longer.
✘ Don’t skip exfoliation
We show a little more skin in the summer. Make sure you’re showing off smooth and radiant skin by exfoliating a few times a week. When you exfoliate, you are scrubbing off the dead layer of skin making what every product you put on top more effective.
Pro tip: do not exfoliate if you are sunburned… you’ll regret it later.
✓ Do pay extra attention to your hair
Summer heat can put a toll on your hair leaving it dry and brittle. Refresh your luscious locks with a pH-balancing, moisturizing shampoo and keratin enhanced strengthening conditioner. Our Aloe Vera enriched shampoos and conditioners will instantly hydrate the hair leaving it shiny and manageable.
Pro tip: try a hydrating hair mask to help keep your hair in tip-top shape.
✘ Don’t overlook hydration
Higher temps mean our bodies will get dehydrated faster. Proactively fight this by drinking water every day. A dehydrated body can make it hard to participate in fun activities like beach volleyball and can make you a little cranky which may upset your friends. In addition to water, make sure to keep your skin hydrated after long exposure to the sun. Our Aftersun products are perfect for this — the aloe in our products will moisturize your skin while helping ease any discomfort you may experience due to sunburn.
Pro tip: set an alarm on your phone to remind yourself throughout the day to drink water.
Did we miss an essential summer beauty tip? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook or Instagram! Don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter to get more tips and tricks.
Let’s talk about something that affects everyone but is hardly discussed — Skin Cancer. One of the most diagnosed cancers, skin cancer is non-discriminative. It doesn’t matter your age, race or location if you expose yourself to UV rays you have a chance of getting skin cancer. Don’t take our word for it, the Skin Cancer Foundation has all of the facts to back us up, check out their website if you want specifics.
Now that you heard the bad news, let’s talk about the good news. Skin cancer is one of the most preventable forms of cancer. With a few precautions, you can significantly decrease your chance of getting skin cancer.
Prevention is Key
While it’s pretty hard to avoid the sun (especially if you live in the sunshine state), there are a few steps you can take to reduce your risk of exposure to harmful UV sun rays.
Always wear a broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF 15 or higher. If you’re outdoors for an extended period of time, research suggests you wear a broad spectrum SPF 30 or higher that is water-resistant.
Apply your sunscreen correctly. You need at least 1 ounce of sunscreen for your entire body 30 minutes before going outside. We suggest creams because sprays can apply unevenly.
Don’t forget to reapply. Every two hours or immediately after getting wet you must put on more sunscreen.
When outside, seek the shade especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. This is when the sun can do the most damage to your skin.
Don’t forget your lips, ears, and hands. These areas are exposed to the sun too and should get proper sunscreen coverage.
Examine your body head-to-toe at least once a month and get checked out by your doctor every year.
If You Can Spot It, You Can Stop It
The only way to 100% guarantee you do not get skin cancer is to lock yourself in a windowless room and never come out. Sometimes, even when you go above and beyond with prevention techniques, you still get skin cancer. The key to a successful treatment is early detection.
The best way to identify possible cancer is to look for it. By that, we mean practicing monthly head-to-toe self-exams. The Skin Cancer Foundation has a wealth of information on self-exams like warning signs of skin cancer, what to look for and even a step by step self-exam. If detected early, almost all skin cancer is curable.
If you’re more of a visual or auditory learner, we’ve got you covered. At Key West Aloe, we believe this topic is so important that we wanted to make sure everyone knows how to prevent and detect skin cancer.
Here’s a great video that explains everything in this blog post.
Here is a print-friendly infographic you can download and share with your friends, family and office.
Together, we can help spread awareness and help save lives.
How are you going to show support for Skin Cancer Awareness Month? Let us know in the comments below or join the conversation on Facebook and Instagram. Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more skin care tips & tricks.