Ayurvedic skin care system is thousands of years old. In Ayurveda, the traditional healing system from India, skin care is based on dosha. Dosha may be defined as the mind body type. It allows you to take preventive steps to prevent skin problems from surfacing if you know your dosha.
There are three different types of dosha or skin-type defined in Ayurveda, namely Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Each dosha is a combination of two of the five elements. It is believed that a person can have a certain skin type at birth but it may change due to various external factors including lifestyle habits, environmental pollution, diet as well as climate.
Ayurveda takes a holistic approach towards skin care. Ayurvedic skin care is focused on maintaining the balance in the body to get that perfect skin.
Vata Skin Care
It’s a combination of air and space elements. This type of skin is generally thin, easily dehydrated, vulnerable to dry weather and cool to the touch. Therefore, skincare products for this type of skin should be very nurturing and should include various types of essential oils and herbs that can help in nourishing the skin and rehydrating it.
As part of the holistic approach to this type of skin, it is recommended to adopt a vata-pacifying lifestyle such as eating three regular meals, going to bed on time, following a regular routine and eating food that helps in nourishing the skin.
Individuals with this skin type should drink lots of lukewarm water daily for internal hydration and should eat a lot of sweet juicy fruits that will help in cleansing the body and also provide hydration. Regular self massage with warm oil is also recommended for keeping the skin nourished and well lubricated.
Pitta Skin Care
It is a combination of fire and water elements which means this type of skin is highly photosensitive, is warm to the touch, looks ruddy and tends to have more breakouts. People with this skin type are also more prone to freckles and moles as compared to the other skin types. This type of skin requires cooling as well as nurturing. Therefore, products that offer protection from sunlight are best for this skin type.
Some herbs that are recommended for balancing this type of skin include fennel seeds, turmeric powder and amla berry among others. This type of skin gets aggravated by eating spicy foods and therefore, individuals should avoid foods such as black pepper and chilies among others. It is also recommended to cook food with cooling spices and eat lots of sweet and juicy fruits.
Kapha Skin Care
It combines water and earth elements which mean people with this skin type are more tolerant of the sun and have greasy and thick skin. Individuals with this skin type are more prone to accumulation of toxins under the skin and therefore, they need detoxification on a regular basis, internal as well as external.
For external cleansing, bentonite clay may be used for gentle external exfoliation. Individuals with this skin type should avoid deep-fried foods as they already have too much oil in their skin. They should also indulge in a daily warm oil massage for enhancing blood circulation and eat a lot of organic vegetables as well as fruits for cleansing the body from within. It is also recommended to include some spicy foods in the diet as these foods help in stimulating digestion.