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From the ‘Herbal Queen’ of India Shahnaz Husain

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By: Shahnaz Husain

Natural Facial At Home For Glowing Skin 

Is the stress starting to show on your face and your  skin  is  losing its radiant glow, luster and  texture due to growing  age  , pollution and  hectic life  style . Is the  dull skin  making  you feel less than your best   in the midst of friends, work and relationships and there's absolutely no time to head to the spa for a facial due to professional commitments .

The professional facials are fantastic and decent to get back glowing skin typically seen as a sign of health and vitality.  However the   Professional image  experts may advise that  you can't get the glow back without  shelling out some big bucks at costly spas but you don't need to heed  by their advice  as  these facials are expensive  affair and majority  of metropolitan  spas hardly uses   pure and natural products  .

Facials are an essential key to healthy, glowing  and rejuvenated skin but most of  skincare  beauty products  are packed with substances and synthetic ingredients which  will go on to have negative long-term effects  .  Well not to worry, you can  get   smooth, bright radiant and  fresh  skin  in the comfort of your home without spending any money by following  simple facial tips  which   works on all skin types including oily, dry, and combination skin.

It’s a good idea to keep one day in the week to give yourself a home facial. It helps to keep the skin in a good condition and also to counteract the effects of pollution and dirt, which are present in the air in most cities. It helps to refresh the skin and rejuvenate it after a week of stress, strain and fatigue.

First take a head band or scarf, place it just above the forehead, along the hairline and tie it at the back just above the neck. This is to protect the hair.

Start by cleansing the skin thoroughly. Choose the cleanser according to skin type – gel/cream cleanser for normal to dry skin; cleansing milk or lotion for normal to oily and combination skins.  Apply it on the face. Take cotton wool pads, wet them and squeeze out the water. Using these, wipe your skin with upwards and outwards strokes. On the forehead, use strokes from just above the bridge of the nose, going on either side towards the temples, following a gentle arc. Pay special attention to the corners of the nostrils and don’t forget the neck area. Wash the face with plenty of water.

While the face is still damp, apply a facial scrub for deep pore cleansing. This is particularly good for oily skins and blackheads. However, if you have spots, pimples, acne, rashes or any eruptions, avoid using a scrub.  Facial scrubs are easily available nowadays. You can also use home ingredients, like almond meal, oats, or rice flour. Add a little rose water, or yogurt and apply on the skin. Rub the skin gently with it and wash the face with plain water.

If you have a normal to dry skin, nourishing should come next. Apply the nourishing cream, wet your hands with water and massage the cream into the skin, using outwards and upwards strokes. Use extremely gentle strokes for the area around the eyes, using only your ring finger. The motion should be outwards and care should be taken to see that the skin is not pulled or stretched. For the neck, use strokes from the chin downwards. Continue the massage for three to four minutes and wipe your skin with damp cotton wool or a clean, moist face towel.  Avoid applying cream if the skin is oily, but nourish the neck area. Next, apply a face mask. Mix together two teaspoons choker (wheat bran) one teaspoon each ground almonds, rose water, curd and honey into a paste. This is suitable for all skin types. Apply this on the face, leaving out lips and area around the eyes. Take two cotton wool pads and soak them in rosewater, for eye pads. While the mask dries, lie down, close your eyes and put the eye pads on the eyelids. Allow your body to relax.  This kind of relaxation is a beauty treatment in itself.

After 20 to 30 minutes, wash off the face mask with water. Next, soak cotton wool pads with chilled rosewater and wipe the skin with it. Stroke the skin too, with the rose water pads and pat your skin briskly with it. This helps to tone the skin, close the pores and add a healthy glow.

Precaution while doing a facial:

1----Don’t wash your face that night. Your skin needs a chance to relax. Your facial will have left it quite clean, so there’s no need to wash your face before bedtime.

2--Do not apply makeup immediately after treating your skin to a facial. Give your skin moderate time to breathe.

3-Give facial every week using skin friendly organic products to improve your skin texture . The synthetic products may damage your skin.

4--Make advance preparations and keep all ingredients ready before starting your facial to complete all steps efficiently.

5---Suit yourself in quiet and calm atmosphere to achieve best results

6--Stay out of the sun,. The new skin cells exposed by your facial are sensitive. Give them a few days out of the sun and, if you have to go out, use a high SPF sunscreen. Use umbrella while going out of home to avoid direct sun light

7-Avoid any gradients which do not suit your skin type and in case if you feel discomfort with any ingredients then rinse it off immediately and cleanse your face.

8---Drink plenty of water/Soup or Juices to  keep your skin refreshed and hydrated.

Bedtime Beauty Hacks to Look Young   

Quality sleep helps revitalize body, mind and improves our mood. Sleep is key to feeling and looking youthful. Sleep  does wonders to feel refreshed, protecting health , immune system to look    gorgeous and rejuvenated .The wrinkles, dull complexion and fine lines on skin are formed due to  innumerable array of things like  harsh ultraviolet (UV) sunrays, dust ,air pollution and  harsh chemicals   which comes in contact with skin during day time .But Sleep is the most powerful rejuvenating treatment  and  you can reverse this by taking  care of skin by good night's sleep .Sleep keeps young , slim and sexy by strengthening mental and physical health of an adult  . Beauty sleep is not just a myth   but    helps to stay young by lowering stress level, preventing weight gain and strengthening immune system.

The skin goes through renewal process at night which helps to remain radiant, smooth and youthful skin.

While you sleep, the skin repairs itself  but  adopting few simple ayurvedic beauty tips can improve your skin tone, reduce blemishes and give radiant  glow  and you can wake up with soft glowing skin ,bright eyes and shiny hair

A bedtime beauty care routine is of much importance, so that the skin is cleansed of make-up, pollutants, dirt and all the impurities that are deposited on it during the day. Also, all the repair and restoration of the body take place when we sleep. The cell renewal process also carries on at night when the body is at rest. Therefore, we should ensure that the skin is clean and the pores are free, so that the skin’s repair and renewal can be carried out properly. If the skin is normal to dry, it should also be nourished at night, especially during the dry season.

As already mentioned, night time cleansing is of utmost importance. Whatever the type or texture of the skin, it requires thorough cleansing at night. Before it is cleansed, the skin surface is covered with a film of dirt, stale sweat and oil deposits, stale make-up and pollutants.

These not only upset the normal balance of the skin, but also hamper its natural functions. Night time pampering of the skin helps us to give special care to particular areas, like the area around the eyes, the neck and hands. These are areas which are the earliest to show signs of age. A nightly routine helps to delay the formation of lines and wrinkles, keeping the skin smooth and youthful. It also keeps the skin and facial muscles toned, strengthening the supportive tissues and preserving the elasticity and resilience of the skin.

Proper and regular care, according to its needs, keeps the skin healthy and free from problems.

During the day, the skin basically needs protection from UV rays of the sun and air pollutants that cause damage to the skin and also deplete moisture. Day time care also involves cleansing and toning, but protection is the main aspect. Night time care basically involves restoration and maintenance of the skin, as well as preparing it for the night. It involves thorough cleansing, including the removal of make-up, care of the area around eyes, nourishing and massage of the skin. If the skin is oily, or if there is acne, night care may also involve the application of products to control the condition.

Here are some do’s and don’ts of night care:

Do’s

Products for cleansing should be selected according to skin type and individual needs. For example, if the skin is dry, a rehydrant cleansing gel should be used. For oily and combination skin, a cleansing lotion or light cleansing milk may be used. For acne, pimples or rash skin, it is better to use a medicated cleanser. After cleansing, the skin should be wiped with a rose based skin tonic, using cotton wool.

If the skin is dry, nourish and massage it with a nourishing cream. Apply it on the face and massage it with outward and slightly upward movements. Wipe off excess cream with moist cotton wool before bedtime. Apply the cream on the neck too and massage it with both hands, starting from the chin and going downwards. The pressure should not be applied when bringing the hands back to the chin, but only as you massage downwards. This helps to delay formation of lines on the neck and also reduces double chins.

For all skin types, an under-eye cream should be applied around the eyes and wiped off with moist cotton wool after 15 minutes.

The hands may be massaged with a hand cream, especially around the nails, so that the cuticle remains soft.

If there is acne / pimples, apply medicated lotion on the eruptions and leave on overnight. If there are pimple marks, apply an anti-blemish cream only on the marks and leave on overnight.

Don’ts

Don’t use oily cleansers and nourishing / night creams if the skin is oily.

Don’t leave cream on around eyes at night, while you sleep. It can lead to puffiness around eyes.

 Camellia Oil for Heavenly Beauty

Camellia oil popularly called "Wonder Beauty Oil" has been used by Japanese women for flawless radiant skin and lustrous shinning long hair since   centuries ago. The versatile organic oil is used on face, hair, scalp and body as natural option for Toner, Serum, Night creams which are common beauty rituals used before going to bed. A native to Japan called "Rose of Winters" is fast becoming a popular beauty ingredient due to the skin-perfecting properties and is considered an excellent all-around moisturizer for the skin as well as for hair.

Switching to pure organic oil may not be easy option to you but carrier oil with heavenly uses provides one stop solutions for all your beauty problems.  The non greasy oil allows it to be easily and quickly absorbed deep into the lower layers of the skin   because its composition is similar to sebum; the oil our skin produces by itself, delivering an immense amount of phytonutrients and is rich in vitamins A, D and E, plant collagen, oleic acid   as well as nourishing Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids. It is an extremely moisturizing and conditioning ingredient which combats inflammation and the signs of aging and is even touted as a warrior in the fight against acne, soothe irritation, increase healing and fight bacteria.

Camellia oil is also beneficial for nourishing the hair, promoting hair growth and is also known to check graying of the hair. It also helps frizzy hair by softening hair texture.. It also carries nutrients, collagen and elastin to the skin, protecting the skin from the drying effects of sun-exposure and ageing, classic legendary beauty of Japanese hair

The question arises as to how we can use Camellia oil for skin and hair care. To apply it on the skin, take a little oil in the palm of your hand. Spread it on both your palms and pat it lightly on the face. Avoid rubbing. It can also be applied directly on areas with wrinkles, lines and blemishes. Indeed, it helps to minimize acne scars and also helps to soften the hard skin on the knees and elbows. Apply it on the body, immediately after a bath, while the skin is still damp. This helps to seal in moisture. Since Camellia oil has the ability to soften skin with a hard texture, it can also be used to massage the nails and soften the cuticle, i.e. the skin surrounding the nails. It is ideal for nourishing the skin on the hands, after performing washing chores.

It gives amazing results when applied on damp hair after showering in moderate quantity as per personal preference  .For difficult hair , it should be applied before washing to untangle hair and make them manageable. Oil can also be used as Deep Treatment Pack to treat damaged hair from coloring etc . You should warm the oil and apply few drops into hair before washing. You can do the hot-towel wrap to moisten the scalp and allow better absorption of the oil. The oil can also be mixed with other ingredients to soften rough and frizzy hair and also to add shine. Mix 200 ml distilled water with one teaspoon glycerin and three tablespoons of Camellia oil. Add 5 drops of rose or sandalwood essential oil for fragrance, if you wish. Keep in a spray bottle in the fridge. Shake before use and apply a little on wet hair.

You can apply camellia oil in combination with rice bran oil by mixing the two oils together and apply it on skin. You can apply them separately also for benefits of vitamin E and anti ageing antioxidants.

Camellia oil also does an excellent job to soften rough skin in areas such as elbows, legs, knees, and heels. Apply small amount gently on damp skin immediately after bath and allow it to be completely absorbed. You can use it twice a day in morning and night both for better results

Camellia oil softens dry or brittle nails and rough cuticles .Add two drops of oil on cotton pad and rub brittle nails and rough cuticles and message gently for soft, smooth and healthy nails and cuticles.

The oil  has an SPF of 3.5 thus  provides protection from harmful UV rays .Apply  light layer of camellia oil before you move out in open areas and it will keep your skin safe from radicals

 The author is international fame beauty expert and Padma Award Winner popularly called Herbal Queen of India.

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