We are officially in the depths of old man winter and the cold, dry air is stripping us of every bit of moisture it can. But before you run to the closest pharmacy for a new cream, lotion or moisturizer – have a look around in your pantry first. Why bother buying a pricey new product when you can find plenty of natural moisturizers right in your very own kitchen?

Here are some of my favourite natural moisturizers for glowing, happy, hydrated skin:

  •  Shea Butter is a rich source of vitamins A and F, both of which help to relieve dry skin. It’s a totally natural moisturizer that’s produced from the nuts found inside the fruit of the Shea tree. It acts as barrier from the harmful effects of the elements. Best use: Apply it like a cream and slather it all over your skin, especially the driest areas like feet, hands and elbows. 
  • Coconut oil is simply absorbed deep into the skin for great moisturizing without leaving you feeling greasy. It’s naturally full of lauric acid which supports collagen. Its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties also make it a great anti-ager. Best use: First find a raw, unrefined, virgin organic coconut oil to use. Heat it between your hands (it will quickly melt) and rub into your skin.
  • Olive oil has been use for centuries as a moisturizer. It is jam-packed with antioxidants that help strengthen the skin and it’s great at creating a natural barrier against the harmful UV rays. Best use: Add a few tablespoons of olive oil and two drops of lavender essential oil to a warm bath for a moisturizing and soothing effect.
  • Aloe is commonly used in many skin care products because it moisturizes the skin without leaving it feeling oily. It has beta-carotene and vitamins C and E which work to keep skin plumped up. Best use: Cut one leaf and gently peel to expose the aloe gel inside, apply that gel to your skin.
  • Buttermilk is rich in lactic acid, which is great at breaking down and removing dead skin cells. It also speeds up cell turnover and renewal. And guess what? New skin cells equal fresh, younger looking skin. Best use: Just dip a wash cloth into some cold buttermilk and gently lay it on your face for five to ten minutes, then gently rinse it away. 
  • Avocados have high levels of fats and vitamins (like A, D and E) that help your skin maintain moisture. Best use: When you eat an avocado use the inner side of the peel and lightly rub it into your face. Then, just let the avocado residue sit for about 15 minutes, then rinse off with warm water.