If you are feeling too broke to splurge on a facial at the salon, let Mother Nature come to the rescue.
All you need is to do is invest some time and effort once a week, and use the ingredients available in your kitchen to concoct your own facial at home.
You can decide which facial to opt for, depending on your skin type and on the availability of the ingredients.
These facials can be done once a week, or before going for a party or for an occasion.
Note of caution: If your skin is sensitive to any natural product, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist before using any of the given remedies.
Also, please wash your face before using any of these face packs.
~ Extract the juice of half an orange or tomato, mix with two teaspoons of curd. Lightly massage onto your face in an upward direction. Let it dry. Then, wash your face with cold water and wipe dry. This will give your skin a nice glow.
~ Rub the inner part of the skin of a papaya on your face. Let it dry. Then, wash your face with cold water and wipe dry. This will give your skin a nice glow.
Whenever you cut a papaya to eat, save a small portion of the peel for this purpose. You can store the peel in an airtight container for about two days in the fridge; however, it is preferable to use it fresh.
~ Grind 50 grams (around half a cup) of cabbage and extract the juice. Apply this on your face. After it dries, wash with cool water and wipe dry. This helps tighten your skin and prevents wrinkles.
~ Grind one small carrot and squeeze the pulp to remove the juice. Apply the juice on your face and let it dry. Then, wash with cold water and wipe your face dry. This helps to rejuvenate your skin.
~ Whenever eating an apple, do not discard the skin. Use it as a skin cleanser.
Just rub the inner side of the peel in an upward direction and let your face dry. Then, wash with cool water and pat dry. This helps tighten your skin.
~ Take an ice cube and rub on your face. Then, pat dry. This helps to improve blood circulation and keeps your skin healthy.
Variation: Boil some lemon grass in a small container of water and cool. Pour it in the ice tray and freeze. Later, rub the ice cube on your face.
~ Beat the white of one egg and apply on your face in an upward direction. Once it dries, wash with cold water. It helps tighten your skin and delays wrinkles.
~ Make a paste of 2 tbsp of wheat flour using as much water as needed. Apply on your face in an upward motion. Leave to dry. Then, wash with cool water and pat dry. This helps remove excess oil from your skin.
~ Mix two teaspoons of raw milk, around the same quantity of cucumber juice and few drops of lemon. With a cotton ball, apply the solution on your face and leave to dry. Then, wash with water and pat dry.
~Soak two to three teaspoons of methi (fenugreek) seeds overnight. Grind into a paste, then rub on your face. Once it dries, wash with cool water.
The granular effect helps remove blackheads. Methi also helps remove excess oil from your skin.
The excess paste can be stored in the refrigerator but should be used within a week.
~ Soak two to three teaspoons of whole masoor dal (red gram) overnight. Grind into a paste and apply on your face. Once it dries, wash your face with cold water and pat dry. It gives the same effect as methi.
The excess paste can be stored in the refrigerator but should be used within two days.
~ Grind half a cucumber and squeeze to remove the juice. Apply the juice on your face and leave to dry. Then wash with water and pat dry.
It helps refresh and tighten your skin.
For dry skin
~ Mash half a ripe banana, add a teaspoon of honey and make a paste. Apply on your face. Once it dries, wash with cold water and pat dry.
This acts as a moisturiser and helps in tighten your skin.
~ Soak khus khus (poppy seeds) overnight. Grind it with just enough milk to make a paste. Apply on your face. Once it dries, wash with cold water.
The natural oil present in khus khus helps to moisturise your skin.
~ Just before boiling milk, remove two tablespoons. Massage it lightly on your face in an upward motion. Leave to dry, then wash with water and pat dry.
This helps to keep your skin supple.
Variation: Add ¼ teaspoon of salt to the raw milk and follow the same process. However, avoid doing this if you have pimples on your face.
~ Make a paste of 2-5 tablespoons of raw peanuts with milk. Add ¼ teaspoon of honey to it. Apply on your face. Leave to dry. Then wash with cold water and pat dry.
The natural oils present in the peanuts help moisturise your skin.
~ Make a paste of one teaspoon of malai, a pinch of turmeric and four to five drops of olive oil. Apply on your face, leave to dry. Wash with cold water and pat dry.
Malai acts as a natural moisturiser and turmeric and olive oil helps rejuvenate your skin.
~ Mix 3-4 tablespoons of Multani mitti (Fuller's Earth) with 8-10 ground pudina (mint) leaves. Freeze the pack overnight.
Keep outside for 10-15 minutes and then apply on your face. After 10-15 minutes, wash off and pat dry. It helps in cooling and cleansing your skin.
~ Boil a handful of lemon grass leaves in one litre of water, until you get the aroma. Then, place in an ice tray and freeze.
After returning home from work or an outing, rub a lemon grass ice cube all over your face. It cleanses the dirt and grime accumulated in your skin's pores and shuts them.
Whisk away black spots and pimples
~ Make a paste of either half a piece of nutmeg/ six to eight jamun seeds with water/ rose water. Apply on your face. Leave to dry. Then, wash with cold water and pat dry.
~ Squeeze half a fresh lemon into one glass of freshly boiled milk. Leave for half and hour, then apply on your face before retiring to bed.
~ Take 125 ml (¾ cup) of tomato juice and squeeze in half a lemon. Add five to seven mashed mint leaves and black salt to taste.
Drink this every morning and evening for at least one week. It will help detoxify the body.
It also helps to relieve constipation and worm infestation.
~ Rub a slice of lemon or the remains a squeezed lemon on your face. Allow it to remain overnight, then wash with cold water. It will restore your skin's softness and lend your complexion a glow.
~ Squeeze the juice of one lemon into one ripe tomato (in which a hole has been made). Rub the tomato on your face. Leave to dry. Then, wash with water and pat dry.
Diet can play a major role in imparting glow and freshness to your skin, some of the tips that can help are:
~ Drink 12 to14 glasses of water everyday.
~ Avoid eating to much of fried foods like vadas, samosa, chips, bhajias, etc. Stick to fresh vegetable salads or fruit salads.
Depending on the seasonal availability, eat all types of fresh, green vegetables and all types of fresh, juicy fruits (except for strawberries and mangoes; they are heaty and overconsumption can lead to acne).
~ Avoid consuming too much of heaty food like chillies, garlic, non-vegetarian items or dried fruits like dates.
~ Detoxify once a month by consuming fresh vegetables, fruits and liquids all day.
Seemaa Tarneja and Priya Khanna are consulting nutritionists. They are based in Mumbai.