Ayurvedic Skincare

Ayurvedic Skincare: Nourish Your Skin from the Inside Out

Ayurveda reminds us that skincare requires a holistic approach. One of my teachers would remind us often, “Skin is a reflection of your digestive health.” In this article we will explore Ayurvedic skincare to balance your digestion, understand your doshas, and achieve radiant skin naturally.

First let’s focus on the basics…

There is a reason dermatologists ask people to go easy on sugar or why alcohol is considered “drying” for the skin. In Ayurveda skincare, it’s not what we eat but what we digest that matters most. Acne and blemishes or burning sensation on the face tells us a lot about what’s happening inside the gut. They are also an insight into our digestive and elimination issues.

Relationships between digestion and skin

According to Ayurvedic principles, the process of digestion is carried out by agni or digestive fire. If agni is working at par, the skin looks radiant. But if an individual has ama (mental, emotional, environmental, or physical toxins), their skin will lack luster, and they may even have acne, despite using the best skincare products.

Why the concepts of digestive fire and toxins matter!

Basically, an unhealthy diet and lifestyle will result in the doshas becoming imbalanced. What do imbalanced doshas do? They impair agni, which can lead to ama or toxins accumulating in the body and impacting the health of your skin. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your digestion is functioning properly. It’s equally important to eat foods that won’t increase inflammation.

Doshas for the skin

In Ayurveda, we look at skin on a deeper level. Be it redness or inflammation or scaliness or oily or breakouts or blackheads, we can rely on Ayurvedic doshas to explain these conditions. There are three main doshas or constitutions that we focus on: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha when it comes to the body. There is a reason why surface treatments and remedies won’t eradicate deep-rooted skin issues.

Understanding Your Skin Type

Ayurveda classifies skin based on the dominant dosha. The skin types include:

Vata: Vata is made up of air and ether elements. In terms of skin, think dry, cracked, and cool to touch. Vata skin is likely to have a thin texture with fine pores. This skin type is likely to show early signs of aging as it tends to get dry, dehydrated, and flaky when vata dosha is imbalanced. For vata skin to stay youthful, skin care products that can nourish and rehydrate the skin should be used, otherwise it may be susceptible to wrinkles and premature aging. Warm oil self-massage or abhyanga may help.

Pitta: This dosha is made up of fire and water elements, which means Pitta skin doesn’t handle excess heat well. It ages moderately fast and doesn’t do well with hot and spicy foods. Pitta skin is extremely sensitive and prone to getting tanned. It has a tendency toward acne, moles, and freckles when the dosha is imbalanced. For pitta skin, the recommendation is a daily use of good sunscreens for protection from the sun and good facial skin oils.

Kapha: This skin type is normal or oily, clear, smooth, firm, and ages slowly. Honestly, people with kapha skin should deeply cleanse their face and exfoliate to maintain skin health. Kapha is made up of earth and water elements, which adds to “stability.” But then Kapha skin tends to show enlarged pores, blackheads, and water retention in times of imbalance.

Ayurvedic Skincare Tips for Glowing Skin

Skin is the largest organ in our body. Whatever we smear it with, it eventually gets absorbed by our organs. Ayurvedic protocols address common causes of skincare issues like hormonal imbalances, stress, environmental toxins, underlying health conditions, and improper diet, digestion, and lifestyle.

  • Eat according to your Ayurvedic dosha and seasons. Also, avoid junk food and erratic eating to reduce toxin build up in the body.
  • Sip on warm water—no ice—throughout the day. It’ll help keep the skin supple.
  • Detoxify the body with yoga asanas for inner and outer glow.
  • Practice good sleep hygiene as it lowers skin aging and enhances the quality of your skin.
  • Calm the mind through meditation as it will influence the choices you make with your diet and lifestyle.
  • Move your body daily as it can improve blood circulation and tone your skin.
  • Follow a wholesome skincare regimen.

A good digestion turneth all to health.

George Herbert
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