I often will use papaya in face masks as it is a natural exfoliator for skin. This fruit is full of enzymes which are great for the digestive system as well as for brightening your complexion and help improve dull skin. I always wondered, though, as I threw away all those seeds...what if they are just as powerful as the surrounding fruit, and I'm wasting a bunch of a good thing? So I did some research...
It turns out that papaya seeds have incredibly strong antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects on our digestive system AND on our skin. Hence, this simply, yet incredibly effective, healing face mask...
Papaya Seed Face Mask:
Papaya seeds from one papaya
4 chunks of the papaya fruit
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup plain yogurt
Blend all ingredient in blender until smooth (the papaya seeds will remain a little grainy). Apply to face in circular motions to stimulate circulation. Once your face is covered in the mask, let it dry for 20 minutes. Remove with cool water in circular motions.
Disclaimer: The first time I used a mask with papaya seeds, my face stung a little. It wasn't too bad, but it was enough for me to experiment to make the perfect papaya seed face mask. The yogurt and honey really balance out the potency of the papaya seeds. The yogurt especially is soothing in case you have sensitive skin like me and react to the papaya seeds.
Papaya Seeds: Papaya seeds have intense detoxifying properties. They are also antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. When you rub the ground papaya seeds into your skin, it will give you that extra exfoliating factors to really brighten your skin. When taken internally, papaya seeds can help with liver detoxification, help prevent and treat food poisoning, and is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory in the gut. Studies have also shown evidence that papaya seeds can help treat E coli, Salmonella, Staph and other dangerous bacterial infections. Unfortunately, the seeds are not very tasty, so if you are thinking of using them in a smoothie--beware, the taste might be too much to handle.
Papaya Fruit: The fruit of the papaya contains antioxidants and vitamin A. The papain in papaya is naturally exfoliating and helps to remove dead skin cells. Because of this, papaya also helps fade scars and blemishes, as well as unclog pores and prevent breakouts.
Honey: Raw, unrefined, uncooked honey is one of the most convenient and effective natural ingredients you can use for your skin. Honey is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. It moisturizes, brightens and softens skin giving it an otherworldly glow. The list of benefits raw honey has on skin is a mile long so I won't list everything here, but, I can tell you that for the past two months I have been washing my face with raw honey every morning and my skin has never looked better. I use raw, uncooked Manuka honey from Trader Joes. Manuka honey has more antibacterial properties than most other honey because it is made by bees who pollinate tea tree flowers. You can get it online here.
Yogurt: For face masks I use regular, Trader Joes Greek Style Plain Yogurt. I don't use non-fat and I don't use European style (it's too runny). Using yogurt with regular fat content is a lot better for your skin than non-fat yogurt. Let me just go ahead and list just some of the ingredients in yogurt that are great for skin: zinc, lactic acid, calcium and B vitamins. Zinc is anti-inflammatory, has mild astringent properties and helps to regulate oil which are all great for acneic or inflamed skin. Lactic acid is a natural exfoliant. It smooths rough skin and helps hydrate skin. It also helps prevent premature aging and discoloration. The calcium helps facilitate cell turnover. B vitamins helps skin to glow.