A staple in West African cuisine, okra is incredibly nourishing, filled with nutrients like Vitamin A, C, B, protein, calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium, folate and others. Eating okra is definitely very good for your skin, hair, nails, eyes and general body!
One of its unique properties is that it has a high mucilage content. This makes it slippery and slimy! Some of us hate cooking okra because it’s slippery but honestly, the outstanding health benefits are not to be trifled with! Okra is one of the best foods you can eat on the planet!
But we’re not here today to talk about its health benefits but its beauty benefits! You can consume it and use it topically to make your skin, hair, nails glow like never before!
So let’s get on with 7 outstanding beauty benefits of okra for skin, hair & more! Note: Please ensure you’re not allergic to okra before consuming/using it on your body.
7 Beauty Benefits of Okra for Skin, Hair & More
Below are 7 amazing beauty benefits of okra for skin, hair and more!
1. Supple Youthful Skin
Okra is super rich in Vitamin C, one of the best vitamins for anti-aging. Vitamin C is known in the skin care industry to boost collagen production on the skin, which keeps skin wrinkle-free and firm by increasing elasticity & suppleness! Eat okra regularly to promote young looking skin! You can also make an okra face pack at home to increase your skin’s moisture levels and firm your face naturally. Here’s how to make it:
Anti-Aging Face Pack: Slice 6 fresh okras horizontally then boil them in one cup of water for 10 minutes till soft. Strain and add the boiled okra to a small blender. Don’t discard the water! You can use it to make DIY hair gel (recipe in Point 3 below). Next add 4 tsp of thick greek yogurt and 1 tsp of extra virgin olive oil to the blender. Blend for a few seconds till smooth. Transfer the okra face pack into a sealable jar and store in the refrigerator & use within a week. Apply on your clean face and neck, avoiding the eyes. After 15 minutes, rinse off with tepid water in the shower. Your skin will look and feel youthful!
2. Thick Long Hair
Our moms always told us to eat our greens but we made bad faces, didn’t we? Well, now we’re older, we know better I hope! If you skimped on eating veggies, it’s time to start loading your plate with some! Okra is one of them so eat up! Green vegetables help encourage growth of thick long hair because they’re rich in many nutrients including antioxidants, minerals and nutrients more than other vegetables.
3. DIY Hair Gel
Don’t be grossed out but the slime in okra is great for concocting your own DIY hair gel! If you’re a naturalista, then you’ve probably heard of or even made flaxseed hair gel and chia seed hair gel, haven’t you? It’s basically the same concept! Here’s what you’re going to do:
Okra Hair Gel: Begin by horizontally slicing and removing as many seeds as possible from 6 okras. Next, boil 1.5 cups of water in a pot. When it comes to a boil, reduce the heat add the okra and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes. If you want a thin gel, go for 10 min and a thicker gel would need 15 min. Stir occasionally then remove from heat and let it cool down. Strain with a plastic fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Use the boiled okras for making the face mask in Point 1 above! Now add 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil and ½ tsp vitamin E oil to the gelled water. Pour into a sealable jar then stir in 5-7 drops of your favorite smelling essential oil. Use within 10 days. It lasts longer if refrigerated. Section your freshly washed and conditioned hair and apply for great curl definition! It also makes your hair soft.
4. Glowing Skin
Did you know that some of the world’s most powerful women like Cleopatra of Ancient Egypt and Yang Guifei of China loved to eat okra? And they had lovely skin too! Eating okra keeps your skin looking healthy and glowing! It contains nutrients such as Vitamin C, Vitamin A, folate, calcium and protein that promote healthy skin cells. You can also apply okra on your face as well! It pumps moisture into skin cells, leaving them soft and supple. Here’s the recipe:
Okra Facial Mask: Into a bowl, add 1 tsp of organic okra powder and enough water to make a gelled up mixture. Slather this mixture on your face, avoiding the eyes. Let it sit for 10 minutes then rinse off with tepid water and moisturize with a pea-sized amount of shea butter. You can do this 1-3 times a week.
5. Shiny Hair
There are certain foods you eat and your hair becomes shiny and lustrous! One such food is okra! That’s because it contains a lot of protein that makes up our hair strands, and makes hair look shiny & conditioned.
6. Strong Nails
Want strong unbreakable nails? Add okra to your diet regularly – at least once a week make sure to eat this tasty veggie! If you can’t handle the real veggie, buy organic okra powder which you can add to oatmeal, milkshakes, smoothies and drink up without any issues!
Okra gel (the one we saw how to make at Point 3 above) is also good for applying on your nails to strengthen them. Mix ½ tsp with 2 drops of lavender essential oil and rub it on your nails, let it dry then head off to bed! Do this consistently every night for strong nails.
7. Acne Buster
The slime in okra is actually amazing when it comes to boosting gut health! It lubricates the digestive tract, allowing wastes to move easily through the intestines for elimination. How does this help bust acne? Well acne in most people actually results from toxin overload particularly due to constipation. By helping eliminate wastes properly, okra prevents toxins from breaking out your skin in form of acne.