With over 20 years of being a vegetarian under my belt, I'm no stranger to the health benefits of chickpeas. But only in recent weeks have I started to put those tasty legumes on my face to brighten up my dark spots and improve my overall complexion. As it turns out, chickpeas are a versatile ingredient you can use in your skincare routine; from acne, to blemishes, to unwanted hairs, chickpeas may quickly become your everything... and gluten-free babes can rest assured that their new-found beauty secret is 100 percent safe for them too.
You may know that chickpeas are rich in fiber and protein, but did you know about all those A, B, and K vitamins living in just one lil pea? According to Dr. Josh Axe, a certified doctor of natural medicine and clinical nutritionist, chickpeas have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties while being pH balancing. Now, that's something I want to put on my face on the reg. You can purchase chickpea flour, also known as gram or besan flour, or you can even use a can of pre-cooked chickpeas (as long as they are not soaking in salt and spices) to make an easy and effective facial.
Since I trust no one, I obviously decided to make my own flour and soak my own chickpeas to make a few face packs that won't strip my face of natural oil. Check out these tips below to get your chickpea game goin' strong.
1. Make Gram Flour Out Of Chickpeas
Even though this is incredibly easy, I still felt an extreme amount of success/elation/pride when I made my first batch of gram flour. Just take a cup of dry chickpeas and throw them in a food processor until they're totally smooth. Remove your flour and store in a sealable container.
2. Use Your Gram Flour For An Acne Fighting Face Mask
Now that you've become an adult and MADE YOUR OWN FLOUR, you can proceed to make some bangin' face masks. One of my fave ways to control my pesky/horrific cystic acne outbreaks is with turmeric, which happens to mix wonderfully with gram flour. Combine equal parts of turmeric and gram flour, a teaspoon of lemon juice, and a teaspoon of raw honey in a bowl. Then, apply your mask to a damp, makeup-free face and neck and leave on for about 10 minutes. Rinse with warm water — and know that your skin will probably have a slight orange tint to it until your next wash.
3. Use Your Gram Flour For A Brightening Exfoliate
This is a great exfoliate for the bod and the face. Use half a cup of gram flour, half of a banana, and one tablespoon of fresh pumpkin pulp. Blend your ingredients in a blender and apply those nutrients all over your face. This mask is gentle enough to use as a morning facial a few times a week and serves as a gentle exfoliate that isn't over-drying. Still, don't forget your test patch before you DIY facial.
4. Make A Gentle Chickpea Mask
To make a simple mask with your chickpeas, boil a cup of chickpeas in hot water for two minutes and then let them sit for about an hour. Once your chickpeas are ready (they will be expanded and soft) you can put them in a blender with a tablespoon of raw honey. Apply your mask your damp, makeup free skin and leave on for about five to 10 minutes. This mask is super gentle and a great way to start using chickpeas.
5. Concoct A Chickpea Toner
Don't pitch the excess water when you boil your chickpeas because the infused water makes for a superb toner. You know all those antioxidants are just waiting to soothe fine lines and wrinkles on your face. Add a touch of rosehip oil to your toner and apply after you cleanse and before you moisturize.
Image: Jelena Jojic Tomic/Stocksy; Kristin Collins Jackson (5)