Beauty basics with SHAHNAZ HUSAIN
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?
Winter is bidding goodbye and making the way for spring to take over. As temperature rises and as we come out of the cosy blankets, bulky sweaters and flannel pajamas, it is time to start thinking about what steps to take to prepare for warmer weather.
Changing seasons mean more than just a switch in wardrobes. Spring is the time to renew and refresh your skin.
While a complete overhaul is not necessary, a few adjustments will help you feel and look better once spring has sprung.
We have identified some easy ways for you to achieve your most glowing, healthy skin with the help of the right skin care products, techniques and antioxidants.
If the skin is very dry, with rough reddish patches, avoid applying soap. Instead, use a cleanser morning and night. Apart from daily cleansing, give the skin some nourishment. As a home remedy, you can try applying a little sesame seed (til) oil and pat the skin with a hot moist towel. Or, you can apply a little milk, with a few drops of honey, leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes and wash off with water. These treatments are especially good for normal to dry skins.
If you have oily skin, add one teaspoon of pure glycerine to 50 ml of rose water. Put it in a bottle and shake well. Apply this on the face. You will find that glycerine and rose water provide enough moisture to the skin.
The coming of spring often brings problems for people with allergies, including skin problems like itchy, rashy or inflamed skin. Sandalwood is an ideal ingredient for such conditions. Sandalwood paste can easily be applied on the skin to soothe inflammatory conditions. It also helps to relieve itching. However, if there is excessive itching, it is best to consult a doctor.
Here are some home remedies:
Mix sandalwood with a little rose water and apply on the face. Wash off with plain water after 20 to 30 minutes.
Simmer a handful of neem leaves on low fire in 4 cups of water for one hour. Leave it overnight. Next morning, strain the water and make a paste of the leaves. Apply it on rashes. The water can be used for rinsing the area. Neem contains organic sulphur compounds with versatile healing actions which are of particular benefit to the skin.
Add a pinch of turmeric to milk and apply on the face. Wash off after 15 minutes.
Clays like Fuller’s Earth (multani mitti) have a cooling and soothing effect. Mix one tablespoon of Fuller’s Earth with rose water. Apply the paste on affected areas and wash it off after 15 to 20 minutes.
Spring hair care
During winter, the hair becomes dull and dry. For spring hair care, heat pure coconut oil and apply once a week. Remember to apply on the ends too. Leave it overnight and wash the next day. Applying curd or egg on the hair 15 minutes before shampoo helps to add body to fine hair. A beer rinse after shampoo also helps to add body.
After shampoo, apply a creamy conditioner, taking less quantity and massaging it lightly into the hair. Leave on for two minutes and rinse off. Or apply a leave-on conditioner or hair serum. Or, mix some water with creamy hair conditioner and put it in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture on the hair. Then comb the hair so that it spreads through the hair.
Remedies for dry hair:
Take two teaspoons of pure glycerine, one tablespoon of sesame seed (til) oil and one egg yolk. Mix together and apply on the scalp and hair. Apply on the ends too. Wear a plastic shower cap and leave on for an hour before washing the hair.
Curd or egg yolk can be applied on the hair for conditioning dry hair. Apply and leave it on for half an hour, before washing the hair.
In keeping with the spring season, the make-up should be one that is fresh and youthful. Try to achieve a more natural look. Yellow and green are the main colours of spring. For clothes, colours like leaf green, olive green, lime green, lemon, yellow, cream, light brown, pink, mauve, turquoise blue and light blue would be suitable. Floral prints, checks and dots look pretty, or you can use lace or light embroidery on your clothes.
For make-up, leave out foundation if the skin is clear. Apply a light liquid moisturiser and a touch of baby powder for a translucent look. Or, use compact powder. For the night, a light, liquid foundation would be appropriate. If the skin is too dry, use a creamy one.
When you apply make-up, remember not to smear too much or rub it. Whether it is foundation or blusher, it is best to dot it with a light touch using finger tips, or an applicator. It can also be applied lightly and evenly with a damp sponge.
If you wish to cover a pimple or spot, it should be done before applying foundation or powder. Concealing sticks are available for this. Using a thin brush, paint over the spot with a little concealer, or a shade lighter you’re your normal foundation. Then, apply a little powder.
For the natural look, use lip gloss instead of lipstick during the day. At night, you need more colour. Applying lipstick with a lip brush helps it last longer. The lip colours for spring can be light brown, rose, mauve and pink for the day, while bronze, coral, copper, burgundy and even red would look good for the night.
Apply a hint of lip gloss after applying lipstick. This gives a fresh and youthful look.
A hint of blusher should be used on the cheeks. A powder blusher is easier to apply. Use it after you have applied powder and at the end of your make-up. Apply on the cheekbones and blend it outwards and slightly upwards.
Regular exercise is great for your overall health and skin. It gets the blood circulation going and helps flush out the toxins ruining your plans of getting beautiful skin. When you sweat, you expel dirt and grime from our pores, making the skin moist and hydrated.
Applying eye cream at night is investing for future good skin. The skin under the eyes is extremely thin and your regular moisturiser might not work. Use an eye cream to hydrate the skin under your eyes and promote younger-looking skin.
Perfume is also a part of make-up. During spring, use light floral perfumes. A cologne would be ideal during the day.