Beauty and the East

Ayurveda is traditional Indian medicine- heavily botanic that embraces a holistic approach to beauty and sees the skin as a reflection of inner health. It's fascinating but also exhausting in its many rituals and recipes for health and beauty so here are a few easy Skincare tips and tricks that you can easily incorporate into your routine. 

1. Identify your Dosha  - this is an imbalance reflected in the skin as follows - Vata is thin, dry, fine-pored, delicate and wrinkle-prone; Pitta is susceptible to rashes, breakouts, and rosacea if out of balance; and Kapha is thicker and oilier, prone to enlarged pores, blackheads, pimples, and eczema. 

2. Embrace Seasonality - whatever your skin's dosha - seasonal imbalances dominate them especially summer when the approach requires a balance of pitta. 

3. Facial Oils - Ayurveda is a major proponent of coconut oil but this is to be carefully adopted in the summer as it is comodogenic and it's preferable to look for an ester of coconut oil - Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride in your summer Skincare. Or choose a light facial oil like jojoba oil.

4. Facial Massage - systematically massaging the face with a gentle facial oil like jojoba preferably boosted with essential oils like lavender and jasmine can relax any accumulated tension and promote sleep and regeneration. Especially upward strokes on the neck and circular motions on the cheek and forehead is a self-care ritual worth adopting while watching mindless TV so you are doing it for long enough.

4. Rose water - pure rosewater is a fantastic toner but look for a steam distilled source as products with synthetic fragrance could add more chemicals than you realize.

5. Turmeric - add anti-inflammatory turmeric to your diet but preferably with virgin coconut oil and a few shavings of black pepper to increase its bioavailability. Topical turmeric is not advisable as it stains the skin and requires harsh exfoliation to clean completely. 

6. Sandalwood  - true sandal if you can get your hands on it has immense skin benefits - it is anti-microbial, softens skin, fights redness and acne and reverses sun damage. The fragrance calms the skin and improves meditation. 

7. Meditation - outside of diet - concentrating  on any particular area of imbalance in the skin or body during meditation and projecting healing thoughts and healthy feelings all contribute to holistic Skincare.