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Concept of Beauty in Ayurveda

“Roopam, gunam, vayastyag, iti shubhanga karanam.”

According to ayurveda, there are three pillars of beauty. Roopam is outer beauty — personified by shining, healthy hair and a clear, radiant complexion. Gunam refers to inner beauty — the beauty that shines from within, characterized by a warm, pleasing personality and innocence of mind and heart. And vayastyag means lasting beauty — looking, and feeling, younger than your chronological age. Thus, ayurveda does not focus only on cosmetics to achieve the state of true beauty.

Ayurveda determines beauty by prakriti (Body constitution), sara (structural predominance), sanhanana (compactness of body), twak (skin completion), Pramana (Measurement). Beauty gives confidence and proud in everyone. According to Ayurveda Human body functions through various channel systems called “Srotas” These channels function as innumerable psycho-biological processes such as enzyme production, neuro-transmitter secretion, hormonal intelligence, respiratory capacity and digestive assimilation/ elimination, immune power etc and responsible for wellness and beauty. These act rhythmically and in concert with one another to perform complex functions like, supply of nutrients, filtration of toxins, excretion of wastes and much more. This channels could get obstructed by any ways. Which can lead to disturbance of normal rhythm of bodies physiology. Most important among them is obstruction due to AMA. Ama is metabolic waste, which is formed due to improper, food metabolism, which get absorbed.

If these metabolic waste materials are not eliminated, it can become deposited in weak areas of the body. If unaddressed, these can become a disease. Weak zones occur in the body due genetic factors or more commonly, lifestyle factors, such as unhealthy food choices, stress or environmental influences. These toxins or unprocessed metabolic deposits can cloud the normal psycho-biological cellular intelligence and loss body luster and beauty.

The Ama (toxic materials inside our body) make a person unhealthy. Health promotion, beauty management and healing in Ayurveda rely on freeing the body from this ama (toxins), restoring cellular nutrition, facilitating complete elimination of vitiated dosha and re-establishing the balance of the doshas. Diet and lifestyle are two things that help achieve good health and beauty. As Ayurveda relates to every aspect of the mind, body and the soul, it considers beauty as an intimate part of the human personality. To serve the purpose of fast natural beauty a faster and deeper cleansing and re-balancing is accomplished by using Ayurveda’s traditional rejuvenation therapy.

Ayurveda Medicine as Cosmetics

Charak samhita( one of the authentic classical text book of ayurveda) classified cosmetics drugs as Varnya (Increasing the complex) , Kustagna (Group of medicine that reduces skin damage), Kandugna( group of drugs that reduces skin irritation) , vayasthapak( group of drugs that is anti-aging) etc. Many lepam (poultice) Pradeha, upnaha, are described in Susruta Samhita and astanga hrudaya in the context of twak roga (skin disease). Some of the common medicine are- Kumkumadi lepam, Dasnga lepam, Chandanadi lepam, Elaadi choornam, Kukummadi taila, Nilibringaraj taila, etc. Sesame Oil and coconut oil is used as base in many herbal oils, in Ayurveda. It contains Lignin compounds called Sesamin and Sesamolin, which are biologically active. These compounds enhance oxidative stability of the oil. They have potential to be used as anti oxidant compounds as well as having a moisturizing effect. Buttermilk and goat’s milk powders traditionally used in Indian face mask preparations have soothing and emollient properties. They also contain vitamin A, B6, B12 and E. They would make beneficial alternatives to chemical bases and emollients.

Shikakai is a traditional herb used in hair shampoos. The material is extracted from the Shikakai pods and Shikakai nuts of the Acacia Concinna shrub. The pods are rich in Saponins and make a mild detergenent, which has a neutral pH.

The oils also maintain integrity of cosmetic products and could be used as a base instead of petroleum and plastic derivatives. There are significant evidences already generated for Ayurveda skin care in vitiligo, psoriasis, eczema, acne vulgaris etc.

Some Ayurveda therapies for beauty

1. Sodhana : Deep tissue cleansing, by virechana (induced purgation) or Vamana (induced vomiting) will clean the body from Ama. This makes the minute channels clear, there by increasing the physiology of body cells.

2. Lepana – Applying of herbal paste and leaving for certain period of time, until the active ingredients of paste gets absorbed into the skin. It can be a facial pack with desired herbs. Or applying the paste over the body and cover with leaf, which will be called as Upanaha. The herbs will be selected after examination and proper history taking.

3. Udvarthana – It Is a form of herbal scrub. The powdered herbs are made to paste or directly used as dry over the skin and massaged in upward direction. This cleanse the skin.

4. Njavara kizhi – It is a form of swedana therapy, to strengthen the weak body. It also increase the circulation. The selective herbs added will help this therapy to nourish the skin, improve the complexion etc.

5. Ksheera dhaara – pouring medicated milk over the body in proper direction. This when done after the oil application, improves the circulation and also the skin weakness. It reduces the dim appearance of skin.

Benefits of Applying Herbal Face Pack

  • Nourishes the skin. Fruits, herbs etc supply essential nutrients to skin.
  • Helps to reduce, acne, pimple, scars and marks depending on its herbal ingredients.
  • Remove dead cells of skin.
  • These face masks provide a soothing and relaxing effect on skin.
  • They help to restore the lost shine and glow of skin in short span of time.
  • Regular use of natural face masks bring glow to skin, improve skin texture and complexion.
  • The harmful effects of pollution and harsh climates can be effectively combated with judicial use of face packs.
  • They help to prevent premature aging of skin.
  • Formation of wrinkles, fine lines and sagging of skin can be effectively controlled by using natural face packs.
  • Natural face packs make the skin look young and healthy.
  • The packs ensure that the dryness is taken care off and also your skin stays hydrated for a good amount of time.

Some natural herbal home remedies

Face packs made of neem and tulsi help to reduce acne and pimple. Face packs which are recommended for acne, pimple, black heads usually control the over discharge of sebum from sebaceous glands and remove the harmful bacteria inside acne lesion.

The scars and marks of skin can reduced by adding fine powder of sandal, rose petals and orange peels with acne face pack.

Use a clean lemon to Clean the face.

Elaadi choorna can be used as scrub to get a clear skin, free from pimples.

Use milk + Banana paste a mask, for bright skin. For better result use it daily for 1 week.

Precautions to be taken while applying face pack

  • Select the face pack according to your skin type. Take opinion of therapist or concerned skin expert before applying face pack.
  • The face pack should not be left on face more than 15 to 20 minutes. Keeping for very long time may result in formation of wrinkles, sagging of skin and enlargement of open pores..
  • Don’t try to peel or scratch the dried face pack. This may harm underlying skin. Spray water (which is at room temperature) on face before removing dried face pack. Do not scrub face vigorously on dry and light skin. This may result in eruption of pimples and dark spots.

Tips for beautiful skin

  1. Drink plenty of water.
  2. Eat timely and healthy food.
  3. Have gentle and regular exercise.
  4. Eat fruits for vitamin c. especially citric fruits, strawberries etc
  5. Omega 3 fatty acids are good for skin, include walnut, sardine etc
  6. Soya (tofu) is also found to be good for skin elasticity.
  7. Almond, oyster, Pumpkin, chickpeas, Eggs etc are also good for bright and healthy skin.
  8. Sunflower seeds containing vitamin E.
  9. Carrot contain carotenoid, that give more healthier and yellow tinged skin.
  10. Avoid using chemicals to your skin.
  11. Avoid daily or regular bleaching, artificial beauty creams etc as they may damage new healthy cells also.

 

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