by Alexandra Tunell
Getty ImagesA hot cup of herbal tea is one of my favorite winter treats. It's warm, soothing, and healthier than my other go-to, hot chocolate. And while I recently learned about the skin benefits from drinking tea, I never thought I could get them from just relaxing in its presence.
The new Maijan Herbal Facial Steam blends for acne, oily, or dry complexions look just like loose-leaf tea and contain chamomile, peppermint leaves, rose petals, and lavender. Just heap a few fragrant spoonfuls into a bowl of steaming--never boiling--water, hold your face over the bowl, drape a towel over your head to trap in the steam, and chill out for five to ten minutes. The steam softens pores, the herbal add-ins detoxify, and the aroma? It's enough to clear anyone's sinuses.
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A side note: Extracting your own blackheads and whiteheads is always ill advised--you run the risk of redness, swelling, and scarring--but if you insist, steaming first can minimize the impact. "You'll clean out dirt without excessive pressure," says Amy B. Lewis, a New York City dermatologist. Just remember to always use distilled or purified water; the minerals in tap water can leave nasty buildup on the skin.