Health Topics

Healthy Living

August 2011
Monsoon Skin Care
Shahnaz Husain
After the arid conditions of summer, high humidity during the monsoons poses a problem, especially for those with oily or combination skins. Oily skins look even more oily and dull, due to sweat and oil secretions on the skin. Sweat on the skin also attracts dirt and pollutants from the atmosphere.

Cleansing of pores
Deep pore cleansing with facial scrubs is important, in order to keep the pores free of clogged oil and dirt. Use a facial scrub twice a week. Apply it on the face and rub gently on the skin, using a circular motion. Then, rinse off with plenty of plain water. For a home facial scrub, mix rice flour, or ground almonds with curd. For pimples, acne or sensitive skin, avoid scrubs. Wash the face several times with plain water. Night time cleansing is a must, to remove the impurities that have collected on the skin during the day.

Using natural toners
A flower based skin tonic or freshener is a boon in humid weather. Rose water is a natural toner. It can be mixed with cucumber juice for oily skin. Keep skin tonic or rose water in the fridge. Wipe the face with it, using cotton wool pads. It is extremely refreshing and also tightens the pores.

Scrubbing out blackheads
In humid weather, the skin can be prone to blackheads and eruptions. A facial scrub should be used on the blackhead-prone areas. The scrub can also be applied on open pores and the marks left by acne. Or, mix oatmeal with egg white and apply on the face twice a week. Wash it off when it is dry. Stubborn blackheads should be removed at a skin-care clinic, by a trained therapist, using proper methods.

Treating skin eruptions
If there is rash, pimples or acne, wash the face with a medicated cleanser. Wipe with a skin tonic, or buy an astringent lotion and mix it with rose water in equal quantities. Keep in an airtight bottle in the fridge. Add a little rose water to sandalwood paste and apply on the rashes and eruptions. Neem leaves can also be used to treat rashes, pimples and acne. A handful of neem leaves can be simmered on very low fire in four cups of water for one hour. Leave it overnight. Next morning, strain and use the water to wash the face. Make a paste of the leaves and apply on pimples, rash and acne.

Moisturising lightly
Oily products, like heavy nourishing creams, should not be used when the weather is humid. If your skin is dry, you will find it looking and feeling better during the monsoons. A light, liquid moisturiser should serve your purpose, both to keep the skin moisturised and as a base for make-up.

Refreshing frequently
If you are out during the day, carry a small bottle of skin tonic in your handbag, so that you can use it whenever the skin feels sweaty and greasy. Wet tissues and skin cleansing pads are also useful for refreshing the skin. After wiping the face with wet tissue, use compact powder. It helps to refresh the skin and remove the oily look.

Combating oiliness
If your skin is very oily, multani mitti may help to reduce the oiliness. Mix it with rose water into a paste and apply on the face, washing it off when it dries.For a monsoon face mask, mix 3 teaspoons oatmeal with egg white and one teaspoon each of honey and curd. If you don’t want to use egg white, add rose water or orange juice. Apply it on the face and wash it off after half an hour. Use it twice a week. Dry and powdered lemon and orange peels can also be added to face packs.

Hydrating regularly
During the monsoons, the body loses fluids through sweat.Remember to drink more fluids to keep the system flushed. Drink plenty of nimbu paani and fresh fruit juices, apart from a lot of water. Avoid heavy starchy meals. Include salads, fruits, sprouts and yoghurt in your daily diet. Substitute your hot cup of tea with iced tea, lemon juice and a dash of honey.

Beauty is not just a question of how you look, but how you feel and at no time is this more relevant than during the hot, humid weather.
Shahnaz Husain is a prominent Indian female entrepreneur best known for her herbal cosmetics
  • The information on this site does not constitute medical advice and is not intended to be a substitute for medical care provided by a physician.
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