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Pumpkin: More Than Just Pie Filling

November 19, 2010

By Brianne Harrison

I love Thanksgiving: the family time, the food, the leftovers. Well, most of the leftovers. For some reason, every single year, I end up overbuying canned pumpkin and wind up with at least one extra can on my hands and a strong temptation to turn it into another pie or muffins or something else that I’ll have to hit the gym hard to work off. But this year, I might overbuy on purpose, because I found out that pumpkin is actually fabulous for your skin and incredibly easy to whip up into homemade treatments.

Pumpkin (raw and cooked) is packed with antioxidants and nutrients such as vitamins A, C, and E; potassium, alpha-carotene, zinc, beta carotene, and lutein. The vitamins, zinc, and alpha-hydroxy acids can help reduce the signs of aging, and pumpkin can help soothe and protect your skin, restoring your healthy glow and giving your skin a hydration boost (who doesn’t need that this time of year?).

Have some pureed pumpkin left over? Why not give these treatments a try and turn Black Friday into a personal spa day (after Thanksgiving, no doubt you’ve earned it!)


Homemade Pumpkin Mask

2 tsp pureed pumpkin (make sure you don’t get canned pumpkin pie filling by mistake)

½ tsp honey

¼ tsp heavy cream (optional, for dry skin)

½ tsp brown sugar (optional, if you want to exfoliate a little)

¼ tsp apple cider or cranberry juice (optional, for oily skin)


Combine all ingredients and apply to your face, avoiding the eye area. Relax and let it do its work for 10-15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.


Pumpkin Spice Scrub

½ cup pureed pumpkin

½ cup brown sugar

¼ tsp cinnamon


Combine all ingredients. Stand in a tub or shower and apply the scrub to your body, scrubbing gently using circular motions. Rinse and pat your skin dry.


Recipes courtesy of

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