The citrus-scented lemongrass plant serves as more than a delicious addition to curries and broths. It also provides antibacterial and astringent properties that might change your skincare routine forever. Lemongrass grows in warm climates, such as India and Thailand, and produces a powerfully healing essential oil that helps to cleanse, minimize pores and brighten skin. Create a simple toner, a refreshing mask or steam away stress with a few fresh leaves for simple, all-natural skincare remedies.

Skip the expensive store-bought toners and make a simple, clarifying and moisturizing treatment for morning or evening. The antibacterial, antiseptic and brightening effects of lemongrass essential oil marries with a soothing carrier oil for a surprisingly simple, yet gentle, final product.

Measure out 1/4 cup of your chosen carrier oil, such as avocado, grapeseed, jojoba or argan oil. Skin naturally absorbs all of these oils for deep hydration without the greasy finish. Any of these choices also tend to have a light, barely-there scent for sensitive skin.

Add in a few drops of lemongrass essential oil. Avoid adding more than two or three drops, as this oil is highly acidic and has a robust scent.

Stir together the two oils and store in an airtight container out of direct light. Apply morning or evening when you want a toning boost of moisture.

Tips

Test any new oils or products on a small area of skin to ensure you have no adverse reaction.

Lemongrass brightens skin, clears away bacteria and leaves behind a soothing scent. Combined with the cleansing and moisturizing power of the lactic acid in plain yogurt, a touch of cleansing honey and a pinch of soothing clay, your skin will feel soft and refreshed in a snap.

Mix together 1/4 cup of full-fat plain yogurt with a few drops of lemongrass essential oil, a tablespoon of honey and a tablespoon of facial clay (such as bentonite or green clay, which can be found at health food stores).

Stir all of the ingredients thoroughly until they are evenly distributed. Apply the mask to your cleansed, dry face, avoiding the sensitive lip and eye areas.

Leave the mask in place for about 15 minutes and rinse off promptly with lukewarm water. Pat your face dry with a soft, clean towel. Repeat this mask up to once a week for a regular skin refreshment.

Fresh lemongrass blades provide a gentle, revitalizing scent and quickly transform into a clarifying steam treatment for cold winter months or when you need a pick-me-up.

Fill a medium pot with water and add a large bunch of lemongrass leaves to the water. You can also add rose petals or chamomile tea leaves to the water for a soothing scent boost.

Bring the mixture to a boil and remove it from the heat. Allow the ingredients to steep for about 30 minutes.

Reheat the infusion on the stove until it just begins to boil. Remove the mixture from the heat.

Tie your hair back and place your freshly washed face over the steaming infusion — keep your face about 5 to 10 inches away from the pot. Place a towel over your head and breath slowly for about 30 seconds to a minute. Repeat a few times for soft, moisturized skin along with a bit of enlivening aromatherapy.