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DIY Pumpkin Face Mask for Glowing Skin

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Reveal a softer, smoother complexion this fall with this DIY pumpkin face mask. This homemade exfoliating mask contains no coarse abrasives like sugar or salt. Instead, it’s made with real pumpkin powder to gently exfoliate without scrubbing. This pumpkin mask’s silky, gel-like texture comes from non-greasy squalane oil and cera bellina wax, which sink into skin readily to eliminate dryness. As a bonus, it has the light aroma of real pumpkin.

DIY pumpkin face mask

I used to engage in some rather unfortunate practices in my quest for smooth skin. As a teenager, I thought that homemade face scrubs made of sugar, coffee grounds or crushed aspirin were the answer to what I perceived as a “bumpy” complexion.

Not only was there nothing wrong with my skin texture, but all that harsh scrubbing was likely damaging my skin barrier.

Thankfully, I’ve come a long way from those days, and I’ve since learned that skin should be nourished and supported.

Treating your skin gently and with kindness will yield far better results than ablating, scrubbing, or fighting against it with a slew of harsh products.

Nowadays, I use a gentle acid toner to exfoliate, and rarely use scrubs on my sensitive skin. But when I do use a scrub, I make sure to only use gentle, minimally abrasive natural exfoliators like rice powder – or more recently, pumpkin powder.

DIY exfoliating face mask with pumpkin powder

This pumpkin face mask recipe is a lovely addition to your fall beauty routine. Unlike harsh face scrubs, this homemade exfoliating face mask is sensitive skin-friendly. The star ingredient is real pumpkin powder.

Pumpkin face mask with pumpkin powder

Pumpkin powder is one of the best natural ingredients to use for gentle exfoliation. Its granules are soft and smooth, with no rough edges like salt, sugar, or coffee grounds. And since it’s fall, what more fitting ingredient to use than pumpkin?

The pumpkin powder in this face mask helps slough off dead skin without abrasion, and a silky base of squalane oil, cera bellina wax and beeswax provide a cushioning barrier. The result is a very gentle exfoliation that’s safe for dry or sensitive skin.

Why I didn’t make a pumpkin spice face mask

I love everything pumpkin spice, from lattes to homemade body butter. But while it’s tempting to pumpkin spice all your beauty products, some things should not be pumpkin spiced.

Pumpkin spice face products might sound lovely, but they’re not actually going to do anything good for your skin – and they’re actually very dangerous to use.

Spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, as well as their respective essential oils, do not belong on the delicate facial skin. Using them on your face can lead to irritation, redness, and even chemical burns.

You should not under any circumstances follow a DIY that suggests putting spices or spice oils on your face. This means that pumpkin spice face masks and face scrubs are not safe.

As well, you should also avoid any store bought facial skincare product that contains spices or spice oils like cinnamon.

The lips are an exception, as spices’ irritating and plumping qualities may be desirable there. (We use cayenne pepper in our plumping rose petal lip mask.)

However, you should still exercise caution, especially with sensitive skin or conditions like eczema, in which case you should probably avoid spices altogether.

On the contrary, products that contain only pumpkin, not pumpkin spice, are completely safe for your face – and a pumpkin face mask also has many benefits for your skin.

Ingredients for DIY pumpkin face mask

Pumpkin fruit powder

As you might guess, pumpkin powder is finely powdered, dehydrated pumpkin. It’s a rich source of antioxidants, carotenoids, vitamins and minerals that help nourish the skin and protect it from oxidative stress.

Pumpkin face mask DIY

Pumpkin powder also contains naturally occurring enzymes. These enzymes can theoretically help exfoliate the skin, but it’s unclear how many of them remain after processing.

Pumpkin powder might offer some enzymatic exfoliation benefits to this face mask, but it’s safe to assume most of its exfoliating properties are physical.

One of the best parts about pumpkin powder is that it smells just like pumpkin, lending a pleasant, natural scent to this face mask. To me, the mask smells faintly like a pumpkin fritter.

Unlike fragrant plants such as cinnamon or nutmeg, pumpkin’s natural aroma is very mild and not likely to be irritating.

Squalane oil

If you’ve never used squalane oil before, you’re in for a treat. Squalane oil isn’t truly an oil at all, but a natural hydrocarbon derived from plant sources like olive or sugarcane.

Oils like jojoba are frequently touted as being non-greasy. However, I find that squalane’s thin texture is the least greasy of all.

Squalane is light, watery, and absorbs easily into skin and hair. This makes it feel more nourishing than other oils, which can have a tendency to sit on the skin’s surface.

As well, squalane provides emollience and slip to this exfoliating face mask. While pumpkin powder exfoliates, squalane softens.

When combined with the other ingredients, squalane creates a pleasant texture that feels like a cross between an oil and a gel.

DIY exfoliating face mask with pumpkin powder

This pumpkin face mask has a silky, oil-gel texture.

I don’t recommend substituting the squalane in this recipe for any other oil. No other oil can truly replicate squalane’s texture, so any substitutions are likely to create a greasy, oily consistency.

Squalane is versatile and inexpensive, especially if you buy it in bulk. You can also use it to nourish your hair’s ends, and if you have some left over, you could make my moisturizing overnight face mask.

Cera bellina wax

Cera Bellina wax is a specially modified beeswax. To create Cera Bellina wax, the free fatty acids in beeswax are transformed into polyglycerol esters.

Polyglycerol esters are a class of surfactants with amphiphilic properties, which means that they are both hydrophobic (oil-loving) and hydrophilic (water-loving). This duality allows them to act like emulsifiers.

This unique ingredient is key for this DIY pumpkin face mask’s pillowy, oil-gel texture. Cera Bellina is a special kind of thickener. It has the ability to turn oils into silky gels with a dry finish.

To me, the consistency is reminiscent of silicones but with a much more moisturizing skin feel.

Unfortunately, Cera Bellina is not suitable for vegans, and I haven’t come across a comparable alternative. Omitting the Cera Bellina or using another wax will not produce the same texture, so I can’t fully recommend any substitutions for this recipe.

White beeswax

A small amount of cosmetic beeswax thickens this face mask to a gel-cream viscosity. I used filtered white beeswax since it’s less likely to irritate sensitive skin.

Aside from its role as a texture enhancer, beeswax also imparts humectant and softening properties to this pumpkin mask. When rinsed off the skin, a thin, protective barrier of beeswax will remain. This bolsters the skin’s barrier and helps it to retain moisture.

Pumpkin face mask with orange pumpkins

How to make a DIY pumpkin face mask for glowing skin

For detailed instructions, ingredient measurements, and tips and tricks, be sure to see the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Ingredients

Squalane oil
Pumpkin fruit powder
Cera Bellina wax
White beeswax

Supplies

Small double boiler pot
Silicone spatula
Glass cosmetic jar

  1. Start by placing a small double boiler pot over a pot of water on medium heat.
  2. Combine Cera Bellina, beeswax and squalane oil. Whisk or stir frequently.
  3. Once the mixture is completely liquified, carefully remove the pot from the heat. Place it into a cold pot of water or water bath. (Cold water from the tap will suffice.)
  4. Mix in the pumpkin powder and stir thoroughly. The mask will quickly begin to cool and thicken, so be sure to continuously scrape the product from the side of the bowl.
  5. Once the pumpkin powder is completely incorporated, leave the mask to cool for about 10 minutes. Stir it well when you return, as some pumpkin powder may have clumped at the bottom.
  6. Take the mask out of the water bath and leave it to gel at room temperature for about an hour. Give it one last good stir to re-incorporate any clumps of pumpkin powder, then transfer it to a glass container.

How to use your pumpkin face mask

Depending on your goal, there are a few different ways to use this face mask. You can use it on clean skin as an exfoliating mask, or on a face full of makeup as a makeup remover. It also makes a wonderful (and gentle) homemade hand scrub for silky smooth hands.

However you choose to use this mask, I recommend using it only once a week on your face as to not over-exfoliate your skin.

Pumpkin face mask for glowing skin

Homemade exfoliating mask

Start with clean, dry skin. Scoop a generous amount of pumpkin mask out of the container with a clean cosmetic spoon. Massage it into your face with gentle motions, being careful not to scrub too hard. Be sure to avoid the delicate eye area.

Once you’ve covered your whole face, wet your hands with warm water and repeat the process again. The step serves to dissolve the pumpkin powder, allowing it to release all of its benefits into your skin.

Once the pumpkin powder is completely dissolved, leave the mask on for as long as you like before rinsing with warm water.

This face mask washes off with water only, but leaves a thin, protective film of squalane and wax behind. If you leave it, it will eventually absorb into your skin.

But if you find that you don’t like the sensation, you may wish to follow the mask with a gentle cleanser. (This one has been my favourite lately.)

Exfoliating makeup remover or cleansing balm

To use this pumpkin face mask as a makeup remover, follow the same steps above on a full face of makeup. Again, avoid the delicate eye area and use something more gentle here instead, such as a micellar water.

Instead of leaving the mask on, rinse it off immediately to cleanse your skin of makeup. Follow it with a gentle cleanser.

Face mask with natural pumpkin powder

Pumpkin hand scrub for soft hands

As temperatures fall, hands can become dry and sensitive. This exfoliating mask can also be used on your hands to remove dead skin without abrasive scrubs.

I’ve actually been using this mask on my hands more often than my face. The pumpkin powder gently buffs away dryness, and the squalane and Cera Bellina leave my hands incredibly soft and moisturized.

Simply scrub the mask all over your hands and rinse with warm water only. You can wipe off any excess oil with a towel, but I don’t recommend using soap. Any film left behind will soon sink into your skin, leaving you with smooth, baby-soft hands.

Pumpkin mask with wood spoon

DIY pumpkin face mask
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5 from 2 votes

DIY Pumpkin Face Mask for Glowing Skin

This DIY pumpkin face mask will leave your skin soft, smooth, and glowing. It’s made with natural pumpkin powder to gently exfoliate without scrubbing. Unlike pumpkin spice face masks, this mask won’t irritate sensitive skin.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Course: DIY Skin Care
Cuisine: DIY Beauty
Servings: 1 jar
Author: Kyla

What You'll Need

Instructions

  • Place a small double boiler pot over a pot of water on medium heat. Combine the cera bellina, beeswax and squalane oil. Whisk or stir frequently.
  • Once the mixture is hot and completely liquified, carefully remove the pot from the heat. Place it into a cold pot of water or water bath. (Cold water from the tap will suffice.)
  • Mix in the pumpkin powder and stir thoroughly with a silicone spatula. The mask will quickly begin to cool and thicken, so be sure to continuously scrape the product from the side of the bowl. (The mask touching the cold bowl will harden more quickly, and we want to avoid any lumps.)
  • Once the pumpkin powder is completely incorporated, leave the pumpkin mask to cool for about 10 minutes. Stir it well when you return, as some pumpkin powder may have clumped at the bottom.
  • Take the mask out of the water bath and leave it to gel at room temperature for about an hour. Give it one last good stir to re-incorporate any clumps of pumpkin powder, then transfer it to a glass container.

Notes

This pumpkin mask can be stored at room temperature. No preservative is required since this recipe is anhydrous (free of water).
Squalane oil and pumpkin powder both have shelf lives of 2 years, but you'll likely use your mask before the season is over.

More DIY face mask recipes

If you enjoyed this pumpkin face mask, you might also enjoy our other face mask recipes:

For even more natural DIY beauty ideas you can make at home, follow us on Pinterest! You can also find us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

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Recipe Rating




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Cyna

Thursday 10th of October 2019

Your creativity to create stunning skincare recipes never ceases to amaze me. The texture of this mask sounds incredible!

Kyla

Thursday 10th of October 2019

Thank you so much, Cyna! ? The combination of squalane and cera bellina has such a soothing skin feel.

Cari

Tuesday 8th of October 2019

I love pumpkin masks! I've never tried pumpkin powder, but I think now I must have it for less waste for hair and skin masks.

Kyla

Tuesday 8th of October 2019

Thanks, Cari! I love how easy the pumpkin powder is to use. You're right, it's a lot less waste. I love that I don't have to worry about the mask going bad.

Rebecca Dillon

Monday 7th of October 2019

What a fantastic recipe! I love how easy it is to make. Cera bellina wax is one of my favorite waxes. I love the smooth glide it lends to products!

Kyla

Monday 7th of October 2019

Thanks, Rebecca! Cera bellina has become one of my favourites too. It has such an incredible texture.

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