According to Ayurveda, dry skin can be cured by limiting exposure to vata's qualities and increase exposure to those substances and experiences that are the opposite of vata.
For example, in late fall and early winter, we should nurture ourselves and our skin with foods and sensations that are warm, stable, heavy, smooth, and grounding.Â
Ayurveda recognizes three basic energies of life: The first is known as vata; the second,Â pitta; and the third, kapha. Vata also means wind in Sanskrit, and vata's sensory qualities dryness, coolness, mobility, lightness, unsteadiness, and roughness are much like those of the wind.
When vata is aggravated, arteries, capillaries, and nerves become dry and won't work properly, affecting your circulation, says Archana Rao, an Ayurvedic doctor in San Rafael, California, explaining the theory behind dry skin.
Your hands and feet become cold. Skin becomes rough and dry. Your heels may crack or your lips peel. Inside and out, we've got to calm that vata down.
Here are some Ayurvedic home remedy recipes to calm the vata and soothe that dry skin.
- 2 teaspoons quick-cooking oats
- ¼ teaspoon almond powder
- ¼ teaspoon orange peel powder
- ¼ teaspoon lavender flower powder
- 2 tablespoons yogurt
- Stir together all the ingredients and apply very gently on face with fingertips.
- Let the scrub set on skin, then using very slight pressure, flake the mask off into the basin.
- If the mask feels too sticky, use warm water to rinse. Dab face with a soft towel, and apply a good moisturizer.
Instant oatmeal is excellent for exfoliating the skin. Oats counter daily sun damage and replenish the skin with vitamins B & E. Orange peel balances the pH level of the skin and softens it. Almond powder is a protein-packed exfoliant. Yogurt contains friendly lactobacilli that pacify an aggravated Pitta. And the healing aroma of lavender powder makes this a soothing, pleasant mask.
- ½ teaspoon cocoa butter or coconut oil
- ½ teaspoon lemon or lime juice
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 3 drops lavender oil
- This is a deep yet non-greasy moisturizer. Lavender oil keeps in the fridge for up to a week.
- Mix ingredients together and apply lightly to face twice a day.