As the last of the sultry summer lovers melt into the sea, the wind stirs a new desire: for the spiced effervescence of autumn. Everywhere, leaves turn to rubies and layers of jeweled velvets appear to dazzle the senses and warm the soul. The thrill of the witch’s season tingles up the spine of all creatures, even those who don’t quite believe in us—but the magic is inescapable. And whoever would want to? It’s an enchanted time, alive with possibilities, in an all too fleeting spell of the year.
And speaking of spells, beauty sorcery is rather needed right now. Our lovely sun-kissed flesh, perhaps overworked by the voluptuousness of summer, requires tending from head to toe. Layers of adventure, now a fading memory, may be kept alive in spirit, but never on the skin. As in spring, the liberating (not to mention beautifying) striptease of exfoliation must be taken quite seriously at this time, alongside the fortifying nutrients that are just waiting to bestow their power. After all, this is the season of potent witchery, and we need all the reinforcements nature is willing to give us. Fall into the spiced and vibrant leaves of autumn, and allow her special brand of beauty magic to wrap you lovingly in her branches, holding you close as you rest, dream, and create.
What’s in the cauldron, you ask? A spellbinding blend of fragrant autumnal favorites and classic witchcraft, casting a circle to renew, fortify, and protect your precious skin in a beauty ritual of immense pleasure.
Firing up the potions are the rock-star couple that may surprise you: The colorful, energizing lusciousness of persimmon and cranberry are no strangers to the autumnal table, yet might not immediately come to mind in terms of beauty. Yes, this sexy Venus-Mars pairing is incredibly effective! Together, they increase collagen and elastin production, ease fine lines, tighten, brighten, and give a spellbinding glow. They are both ruled by water and carry enhanced protection magic, alongside an energy of happiness. What better treat for your sorceress skin?
The base of all three potions this season is as simple as it is fabulous:
1 cup cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1 large or 2 small persimmons, chopped
Spring water as needed
Combine the cranberries and persimmon in a high-speed, bullet-style vortex blender. Pulse on high until completely smooth and silky, adding water if needed. You’re going for a thick, creamy consistency, but one that still mixes with other ingredients easily. Joining them are bewitching favorites mugwort and hawthorn, so delightfully attuned to the season! Venusian mugwort is traditionally associated with protection and heightening psychic ability, but I always find her to be a dear friend when I need strength, be it physical, mental, or spiritual. And as it happens, she’s a gift to your skin also. Our darling herb is highly soothing—a dream for sensitive skin—and can help with eruptive conditions like eczema. Anti-inflammatory and rich in vitamin E, mugwort repairs damaged cells (including wrinkles!) and delivers deep moisture. You can use dried mugwort in these recipes, though an alcohol-free extract works even better and will deliver her magic into your skin with more efficacy. Fiery hawthorn brings virile fertility magic, which doesn’t need to
be literal. It’s the energy of creation. The bright berries are ripe with antioxidants and vitamin C, which protect against collagen breakdown and increase cellular regeneration. This not only helps lessen existing fine lines but also helps prevent new ones—how cool is that? As with the mugwort, you can use a dried extract (usually a powder) but you will find a liquid to be more noticeably effective.
As you conjure your potions, remember to take the time to breathe and enjoy the sensuality of the ritual itself. Be in the present with your visions and feelings; they form the sculpture of your desires. Autumn is the season for drawing inward like a tree, yet there is much magic in the air for creation, fire, and celebration, so revel in it! What would you like to put out in the world before the winter sets in to rest? Get that going. Now.
As you concoct, visualize and feel the energies of the ingredients, connecting to nature and the vibrations of autumn, while letting your mind paint onto the canvas of your desires.
THE WITCH’S WILES
Facial Exfoliant and Masque
Conjures two treatments
⅓ cup walnut flour
1 tablespoon cranberry/persimmon blend
1 teaspoon dried mugwort, or ½ teaspoon extract ½ teaspoon powdered hawthorn berry extract, or ½ teaspoon liquid
Pinch cinnamon (optional)
This is such a bright, lovely masque! You can purchase walnut flour at most natural foods shops or sections in your local market, but if not, it is found readily online. You can also finely grind whole raw walnuts in a food processor or spice grinder. In a pretty bowl, combine the walnut flour with the fruit blend. Add the mugwort, then the hawthorn berry, and mix well.
If you’re using all dried herbs, you may want to add a small amount of liquid to get an easily spreadable masque—you can use pure water, floral water, or even plant milk. Add the pinch of cinnamon, and give it one more good, clockwise stir. Apply to a clean face, neck, and décolleté, massaging in circular motions to activate the gentle but potent exfoliation, then apply a second layer and leave on as a masque treatment. While it sits, multitask if you must, but really, the beauty ritual resides in the concept of truly reveling in the moment! Lie back, read, sip … listen to music. Relax like a cat. When the masque has worked her magic (10 to 20 minutes) remove gently with a damp facecloth, then rinse well with cool water. Pat dry. Follow with your favorite floral mist, serum, and crème.
Walnut These solar-powered autumn darlings are filled with protection magic and a wealth of beauty benefits, including minerals, iron, folate, and calcium. In their ground-flour form they make an excellent gentle exfoliant that removes old skin cells and deposits nutrients for a beautiful, smooth glow.
Cinnamon This sweetly spiced fall favorite brings forth love and money magic and potent healing, along with a heightened sense of psychic awareness. A pinch in the potion will add antibacterial cleansing prowess along with circulation boosting for gorgeous cellular renewal and a healthy glow. If you are extremely sensitive, you can omit, but if you can deal with a slight pinkness for a few minutes afterward without any major irritation, do try it.
Beauty Witch’s Secret: For an even deeper exfoliation, add a teaspoon of corn flour to the potion. It will give more polish while remaining kind to your skin, with added autumnal vibes and fiery solar protection magic.
THE SWEET SPICE
Body Exfoliant and Bath Soak
Conjures two full-body treatments
1 cup coconut sugar
1 tablespoon cranberry/persimmon blend
2 tablespoons mugwort extract, or dried
2 tablespoons hawthorn berry extract,
or powderedA pinch each cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg
In a similar fashion, combine all ingredients, one at a time and with consciousness, in a beautiful bowl and stir clockwise. Apply to damp, clean skin in the shower or bath, and massage into skin. Really get a good sloughing! As you breathe in the luscious scent, enjoy the sensuality of the ritual experience … this is your time. If you are bathing, soak in it after you massage—get even more of a bewitching bath. And your skin will be heavenly! Rinse, and pat dry. You can follow with a body oil or crème, but you won’t even need much. This leaves your skin silky soft and touchable.
Coconut Ruled by the moon and water, coconut heightens your intuition and psychic abilities as it provides beauty fats for supple skin. Coconut sugar is a non-glycemic natural sweetener that provides vital minerals and makes a fabulous body exfoliant.
Clove Decadently spicy, Jupiter-ruled clove oil kills bacteria and clarifies skin while conjuring love, money, and protection magic.
Nutmeg Jupiter-ruled nutmeg is an excellent anti-inflammatory for skin that can have a reaction to the changing seasons. It is also highly valued for its ability to open up our psychic awareness.
Beauty Witch’s Secret: Create an even witchier bath by adding fresh cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon essential oils to your candles, enhancing the vibrations and the sensual atmosphere.
Conjures two cocktails
½ cup cranberry/persimmon blend
1 cup sparkling water
⅛ teaspoon each: cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg 1 teaspoon pure Bourbon vanilla extract Juice of ½ orange
Orange slice, for garnish
Here’s a lovely one! Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice, and give it a good, sexy shake. (While you’re shaking it, put some fire energy in there—and have fun!) Strain into a stunning glass, garnish, and sip with pure, unleashed pleasure. Celebrate fall, and you!
Orange Fiery, protective orange supports collagen production and cellular renewal while bringing forth love and prosperity.
Vanilla Heavenly scented Venusian vanilla is rich in copper to promote collagen and elastin production and has noted aphrodisiac powers.
Beauty Witch’s Secret: Add a generous splash of vodka to make a night of it! Double, quadruple the recipe for friends, and know that this popular spirit can actually help with arthritic conditions and hypertension, acting both as an anti-inflammatory and a boost to blood circulation. And you know there are beauty benefits to that!