Sebum, sweat and accompanying waste products constantly split out onto the surface of the skin attracting dark and offering home to bacteria. Cleansing removes this sticky laler as well as makeup, leaving the skin surface fresh.
Traditionally, Ayurveda suggests the use of herbal powders called ‘Ubtans’ to clean the skin. The powders are mixed with various liquids to form a creamy paste. They are then applied like the very fine scrub. If this does not appeal, then use a natural cream or oil based cleanser, but never use soap on your face. Soaps strips the skin of it’s protective mantle robbing it of moisturizing oils and interfering with the natural functioning of the pores and temporarily destroying an important barrier to infection. This is even more important to avoid with delicate facial skin. There are few Ayurvedic soaps available such as Chandrika, Sandalwood and Neem. Use them only on the body, and then only occasionally. They are best used for really grimy hands. Generally, when using any soap, use hand or body lotion or oil immediately afterwards to protect skin until it can once again reform the mantle (approx 20 minutes).
Herbal Cleansing Powders
The following are general and specific herbal cleansing powder recipes. The general recipe can be individually tailored one’s own skin by altering the liquid it is mixed with. The more specific powder formulas have specific liquid bases to their effects. All of these fine herbal powder mixtures improve circulation, sooth, heal and bring a glow to the complexion.
General formula contains equal amounts of aloe vera powder, coriander, calamus, comfrey, elder flowers, fenugreek, lemon peel, sandalwood, vetiver, plus fine lentil or chickpea flour or clay (all herbs are in powder form).
To use this powder for normal skin, mix it with spring water or an herbal tea of your choice.
To benefit dry skin, add milk powder and water or use milk, fresh cream,or aloe vera juice.
To benefit oily or blemished skin, mix it with diluted lemon juice or yogurt.
To help mature skin, add a little Wheat germ or Rosa mosquito oil for gentle nourishment together with spring water or milk.
Oil based cleanser
Creams demand help from chemicals to keep them from separating. The following cleanser is free from chemicals and will separate, but only needs a quick shake before use to bring it back to the right consistency.
- Four parts base oil
- Four parts aloe vera gel or juice
- One part each of Jobola, avocado, sunflower, almond and vitamin- E oil and glycerine.
Essential oil (single or in combination) of your choice (20 drops per 2 fl. oz. of combined other ingredients.
The following are base and essential oils for the different skin conditions:
For normal skin, use almond oil as a base plus the essential oil combination of basil, rosemary or lemon.
For dry skin, use sesame oil as your base plus one of the following essential oil combinations;
- Rose or Sandalwood plus Jasmine and geranium
- Cedar, sandalwood and rose
- Sandalwood, geranium and rose
For oily skin, use jojoba oil as the base plus one of the following is essential oil combinations;
- Lemon and Cypress
- Bergamot, Cypress and juniper
For mature skin, try sesame oil or olive oil as a base + the essential oil combination of lavender, frankincense and neroli.
For blemished skin, use jobola or sunflower oil as the base plus one of the following is essential oil combinations;
- Lavender and tea tree
- Bergamot and lemon