• Jen Bell

DIY vinotherapy: AKA what happens when you slather wine on your face

Ever wondered whether red wine works well as a face mask? Ponder no longer. We put a homemade treatment to the test in honour of International Wine Day.

Apparently, it was International Wine Day on Monday 25 May, which had us thinking about all things vino this week. I'm 36 weeks pregnant so will have to wait 35 days, three hours, 20 minutes and.....51 seconds until I can have another sip. Not that I'm counting or anything. However! That doesn't mean I can't use my beloved Pinot in other ways.

I first heard about vinotherapy when I was working for a Queenstown winery that had also opened its own spa. I was delighted. Wine combined with beauty treatments. Surely, the only way to make that any more perfect was to somehow include chocolate in the mix?

Since then, I've done a bit of research and it turns out that wine is actually very good for your skin. Particularly red wine. It contains resveratrol, a natural antioxidant found in the skin of grapes, which provides anti-aging properties - and is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Many dermatologists claim that applying red wine to the skin (with a buffer, such as yogurt, to counterbalance some of the acidity), can do you the world of good.

Side note - red wine also has health benefits when you drink it. Consumption of red wine in moderation has been shown to greatly lower the risk of breast cancer. It’s also heart healthy and counteracts the effect of free radicals in our system. A perfect excuse to pour a glass while you apply your DIY red wine face mask.


1) Gather your ingredients. I used a cheap bottle of red wine, plain yogurt and bush honey for my face mask, but there are other recipes on the net that you could use and tweak as well. I went with this one as it was the simplest. I didn't have the mermaid's tears or dried kelp that some of the others asked for!

2) Mix it up. Combine half a cup of yogurt with two tablespoons or honey and a couple of tablespoons of red wine (plus an extra glug for good measure if you're like me and can't resist).

3) Get to a safe zone. Head to your bathroom or other safe area, preferably over a sink. Do NOT apply this mask near anything you hold dear - like a snow white sheepskin rug or tabletop that stains at the mere mention of red wine.

4) Apply. Slather your wine concoction over your face and neck. I used my fingers, which was fine but you might prefer to grab some cotton wool instead.

5) Chill out. Leave on for 10-20 minutes. I left mine on for a decent length of time while I tried to get a shot of myself that didn't make me look insane (I ain't no Insta-model!) It didn't leave my face feeling dry at all so I think you could probably leave it on for as long as you fancied.

6) Rinse. Wash off with warm water, pat dry and apply your favourite moisturiser.

7) Drink. More wine, obviously.


I was actually very pleasantly surprised. My skin felt super soft after I rinsed the red wine face mask off - just as it would after any other good beauty treatment - and my pores were tighter too. If you included it as part of your skincare routine, I think you would start to see even better results after a few weeks.

A brilliant way to use up a bottle of red wine that has been open for a little while. I reckon DIY red wine face masks would also be a really fun idea for a night in with the girls! 10/10. I'll definitely be doing it again. With a glass of red wine in hand...one day soon.

Let me know if you give this a go yourself or have any other red wine inspired beauty tips - I'd love to hear them.