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DeCoding Ayurvedic Skincare

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DeCoding Ayurvedic Skincare



Bridging the Gap

Most often we shy away from learning the wisdom of old cultures who have deciphered the mysteries long before some method we embrace today and newly discovered. It is essential to look back and learn from our predecessors all that we can before we approach wide-eyed toward the cutting edge that was trademarked by some big brand. If we do that it is impossible to ignore how much of what we consider the new is indeed very old.

Ayurveda is the world's oldest holistic (“whole-body”) healing systems. I understand Ayurvedic principles use some long and somewhat complicated to pronounce words and some of these words have a complex learning curve. In this blog, I am going to attempt to bridge that gap and bring Ayurveda to mainstream and in the process take away some of that complexity that surrounds it. 

The first step in Ayurvedic skincare like with any skincare is knowing your skin type.

Vata, Pitta, and Kapha are ayurvedic mind-body principles. Before you tune me out, let me explain this is not complicated. For this blog, these three exotic words will only refer to your specific skin type. See? That is easy.

Vata as V.  Pitta as P.  Kapha as K

The practice of Ayurveda believes we are all connected to the elements of the earth in an intangible yet undeniable way. And yes our skin is a part of that wheel.

These three principles are combinations of the five elements.

Vata is mostly air and space

Pitta is mainly fire and water

Kapha is primarily earth and water

A person's ayurvedic skin type, therefore, can be Vata, Pitta or Kapha, or sometimes a combination of two of these elements otherwise known as doshas. 

Over the years, our skin type may change because of external factors such as climate we live in, the food we eat, age, chemical changes in the body, health-related factors and lifestyle choices or environmental pollution. These free radicals should also be taken into account when choosing a skin-care regiment.

The V-type (per Ayurveda) related to air and space is the skin type identified as dry, thin and cool to the touch, easily dehydrated, and very vulnerable to the influence of dry, windy weather. Generally but not always this type is most often aging skin. 

The P-type is fire, prone to breakouts, photosensitivity, less tolerance to spicy food. This skin is warm to the touch and tends to be more inclined to freckles and moles than the other skin types.

The K -type is water and earth, this skin tends to have all those qualities — it can be greasy, thick, pigmented and more tolerant of the sun, will be less likely to age quickly and wrinkle due to its consistency and more likely to blemish.

Understanding the Many Spaces and Faces

Our skin types were predetermined by our environment and climate in the regions our races were born into. Tropical, glacial, etc. But over time this predetermination evolved and produced a skin type that wasn't so starkly one or the other.

As we evolve climatically and travel and take up residence in different regions, these subtle changes affect our skin type. Our skin along with the rest of us adapts to survive. And so other types were born of this change. We in the west most often use the term "Combination" skin which is a mixture of two skin types.  

This adaptation can be a combination of skin types V and P (dry and sensitive) or V and K (oily and dry in areas).

The Ayurvedic approach to caring for combination skin takes into account environmental and seasonal factors. For example, a person with V-P skin type would follow the recommendations for P skin in summer and V skin in winter.

Why? Because the summer heat and humidity will activate the oil-producing glands and make the skin greasy and will need remedies with extra-cleansing designed for oily zones and a less emollient moisturizer, so it does not exasperate the issue. 

What You Eat, You Wear

Caring for V (dry and aging) Skin. For this skin type to stay youthful, it's best to use skin-care products that are very nurturing. These should include some essential oils or herbs in combination which can nourish the skin and rehydrate it; otherwise, it may be susceptible to wrinkles and premature aging. 

A balanced V lifestyle type is getting enough sleep time, eating three regular balanced meals, and following a proper daily skin care routine. Our skin reflects what is happening inside of us. If we are in crisis internally whether it be emotional or nutritious, this becomes evident in our skin.

It is a myth that an expensive and miraculous skin care product can fix what is inherently wrong on the inside. Don't buy into that lie.

Here are some nutrition based recommendations for caring for your V (dry and aging skin type):

  • Add Organic whole milk, whole grain-based foods, and green leafy vegetables to your diet.
  • Drink plenty of water every day for internal hydration.
  • Eat plenty of sweet, juicy fruits; they help cleanse the body from within and provide hydration as well. (also seek medical advice should you see a conflict in this diet plan based on pre-existing medical conditions)
  • Include a little healthy fat such as ghee (clarified butter) or olive oil in your diet for added lubrication.
  • A warm-oil self-massage (in Ayurveda this is known as abhyanga) with a vitamin and nutrition rich massage oil is essential for this skin type to keep skin hydrated and also to stimulate blood circulation to the body which will kick-start a sluggish cell regeneration process which is most often found in aging body and skin. We recommend Synergy Rose Body Oil as a source of hydration which also doubles as a massage oil.
  • Use a gentle, all-natural moisturizer for the whole body. 
  • Get plenty of rest, so your mind and your body have the opportunity to recharge this applies to all skin types.

The P skin type needs extreme care. Use skin-care products with SPF protection and elements that help enhance resistance to the sun. Avoid getting a  tan, or being out in the sun for extended periods of time and activities that expose your delicate and sensitive skin to steam, hot water, and extremes of any kind. 

Those with this skin type need to be extremely discerning with their choices as far as what they put on it and be aware of what to stay away from while shopping for products. Ask a lot of questions and determine what works.

Our recommendations are based as a general rule of thumb nonallergic skin types who can use our clarifying soap bars like Zen with a mint and citrus bar which is made with nourishing oils and butters and coffee grounds which perk up the skin as well and clarifying it and removing odor and impurities without stripping of moisture. Or Namaste, a goats milk soap is a soothing soap made with sensitive skin in mind with honey, goats milk and oatmeal.

  • Stay away from synthetic based cosmetics; they can damage your sensitive skin and make you prone to breakouts.
  • Avoid spicy foods and an excess of deep-fried foods; they add heat to an already fiery makeup of your skin.
  • Eat lots of cool, sweet, juicy fruits. Rose based products are considered cooling for mind, body, and emotions. Our Simplify is perfect for this skin type.
  • Use a cooling moisturizer for extra dry skin.
  • We highly recommend a regular weekly soak to relax and unwind with our famous Balance British Rose Bath Tea.
  • We also have a wide assortment of rose based products for you to try HERE.

Care for those with K type skin is a little bit more intense. People with this skin type have options but also more in the form of options.

Because of its thickness and oiliness, the K-typers are more prone to accumulate lymphatic (toxins) under the skin. People with K skin should detoxify on a regular basis — both internal and external detoxification to flush toxins from the surface. Garshana a Dry brushing practice is highly recommended for ALL skin types but is essential for this one. Find the details on this method in our previous blog HERE.

K types sweat oils and always have to wipe off the light sheen across the forehead and around the nose and mouth areas. If not kept clean regularly a breakout is imminent and lest just say messy. Not only that, this type of skin doesn't hold makeup well with all the constant sweating and wiping. To eliminate these issues a consistent and robust care regiment is necessary.

Scrubbing the skin with a gentle exfoliating clay mask like our famous D-ToX Clay Facial Mask can help with a massively, oily day for external cleansing. Be cautious in using this one it is very potent and must be used once a week or at the most twice - not more. Twice a week is recommended for this skin type a middle of the road sensitive skin. Use a good skin scrub; I recommend a salt scrub like Elevate, which works as an antiseptic.

We also have some excellent soaps and scrubs which will be gentle yet cleansing. 

K skin types may also indulge in different herbal tea based formulations specially designed for their make up. See an Ayurvedic Practioner for help with this. We do not recommend you self-diagnose or make your own based on information found online which is often open to the wrong interpretation and can be dangerous.

Some suggestions for caring for K type skin:

  • Avoid overindulging in sugary foods or deep-fried oily foods — they add to the oiliness of the skin.
  • A daily warm-oil massage can also help circulation.
  • Eat plenty of organic vegetables and fruits to help cleanse the body from within which will balance the exterior.
  • Cleanse your skin twice every day, and exfoliate with a clay mask at least once a week.

I have a K-V skin type. So combination skin types will have to adapt their regimen mixing two or more kinds depending on what traits they find their skin emulates from each product.

This was a lot to take in at once, I know. But as you can see skin type is determined by what we eat and where we live and who we are. Crafting a lifestyle and a solid care regiment around our skin types is a wholesome way to live. No, you won't go up in flames if you don't follow these rules. However, the aging process will accelerate and rather than maintaining healthy skin you will be battling for it back.

Slow it Down and Stop the damage

Schlepping it with Skin Drama

Does it feel like you are battling with your skin to keep it presentable? Do you plan your special days around your blemishes? Are your breakouts unpredictable and a source of stress? If you answered yes to all these questions, then you need to read this.

There was a time when skin issues required an appointment with a professional. Thanks to a plethora of information on the net, hundreds of great bloggers, youtube, simple solutions are easy to find if you know where to look for it.

Luckily, you found me!

Let's Talk Sexy Skin

Skin is expansive, but it is more sensitive than we give it credit. A little awareness and a gentle touch go a long way in preventing damage. It is way harder to bounce back from damage than to stop it before it even happens.

  • Avoid hot showers
  • If you are like me and wash your hands often, be aware of how warm the water is when you wash your hands.
  • Don't scrub skin excessively.
  • Wear gloves when working with washing detergents and other potentially irritating ingredients. Yes even when using Clorox wipes. 
  • Don't overdo skin cleansing or skincare products. Natural or not excessive use of anything can harm you or at the very least cause redness, inflammation acne, etc.
  • Stay away from products that contain these ingredients. Benzoyl peroxide, sodium lauryl sulfate, retinoids, and propylene glycol to point out a few.

Water. Water. Water

I can't stress this enough. It is easy to do it is readily available, and there is no excuse why you can't load up on this every day. AQUA.

Yes, drinking water will undoubtedly help dehydrated skin, but that isn't enough. Many things factor into lackluster, gray-hued dull and rough skin.

List of culprits we all know.

If your skin feels drier or grainier than usual cut back on alcohol consumption and or the caffeine a little bit. Both can dehydrate skin.

Sumam's Tip:  I find that my skin benefits from this process. Wash tone - Under eye Gel, Face Serum and then moisturize. 

Balance Your Plate

Not literally in an acrobatic way but balance your plate with the right foods.

Our skin is the largest organ in the body, and always on display, a blaring display of underlying health issues. The biggest of those is a poorly balanced diet. So if you’re loading up on large amounts of sugars and carbs, you are setting up for acne or inflammation or frequent breakouts.

KNOW your BODY. For example. Dark chocolate and stress trigger breakouts in me.  A combination of stress binging on dark chocolate and that time of the month... well let's just say that's a triple threat. A perfect storm, the "skinaami" if you will. I am aware of this, and I try and avoid the eye of the storm most of the time. Find out what type of skin you have so you can narrow down your skin regiment

Dairy heavy diets can also trigger certain skin woes. Milk and cheese can stimulate oil production and lead to clogged pores and breakouts.

Lymphatic Chaos.

If your skin is lacking color, your lymphatic system might not be doing such a great job delivering nutrients. Puffiness can be a cry for help from your lymphatic system. Manage your diet, regular massages and compression garments can help. Of course have a professional diagnose this issue. Web MD while a fabulous resource is not your doctor.


Mild exfoliation breaks down dead skin cells and clears the weight. Using our scrubs.

Herbal steam is hands down my go-to for glowing skin, but it also adds to opening pores, loosening blackheads and making them easy to wipe off. Not to mention the element of respiratory care it provides as a bonus. Soothes breathing pathways and allows mucus drainage too.

Want to know more about herbal steaming here is an awesome blog for you.





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