If you’re looking to up your beauty regime with natural and skin safe treatments, you needn’t look any further than your kitchen. Coconut oil, milk and water are the most effective and inexpensive ingredients for hair and skin care that you will find in any and every Indian household. All of these ingredients are regarded as essential for healthy hair and skin in Ayurveda, and with good reason. We’ll take a closer look at these benefits and how they work.
Coconut oil has a long history of use in traditional Indian beauty regimes and there is growing evidence to support such uses of coconut oil. The oil is rich in natural fats, including healthy fats such as linoleic acid and up to 50% lauric acid. While linoleic acid is known to be particularly helpful in dealing with acne, lauric acid is known for its hydrating and antimicrobial effects.
This is backed by research published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, which shows that coconut oil that is extracted from the flesh or pulp of mature coconuts can strengthen the skin barrier. With anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects, the oil also aids skin repair, fights early skin ageing and works as a powerful natural moisturizer.
Ideally, you should use organic or virgin coconut oil as part of beauty treatments for deep conditioning your hair, reducing frizz or split ends, adding a natural sheen to hair, and to fight dandruff. As a skin care treatment, coconut oil can be used to protect against skin burn, as a facial or body moisturizer, as a natural lip gloss and also as a makeup remover.
Dairy milk is another ingredient that has been widely used in traditional Ayurvedic remedies for skin care and it’s become increasingly popular of late. Dairy milk’s skin care benefits may be linked primarily to the presence of alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), which is also a common ingredient in many of the best skin care products. Lactic acid is popular for anti-aging effects and research suggests that it can help with the removal of dead skin cells, also stimulating new cell growth to give you glowing and radiant skin.
Lactic acid is also used in numerous natural skin-brightening treatments and solutions to treat dark spots and is extremely gentle on your skin. The application of milk may also provide some relief from acne due to the high vitamin D content of fortified milk and deficiency in the vitamin is commonly associated with acne outbreaks. Additionally, dairy milk contains natural fats that can help to moisturize the skin without leaving it greasy and oily.
Milk is easy to use in both hair and skin care treatments as it can be easily combined with a variety of herbs and herbal powders. It can be used as a topical application, for skin soaks, hair conditioning, and also as a wash.
The benefits of water should be obvious to most of us, but we scarcely recognize its role in hair and skin care. Poor intake of water is one of the most common reasons for dry skin and aging skin as dehydration causes the skin to lose its elasticity. This relationship between water intake and skin health was also highlighted in a study that appeared in the journal Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology.
Unlike milk and coconut oil, water isn’t a topical beauty treatment, except for the fact that it can be used to wash and cleanse your skin. The main benefits in terms of skincare come from increasing your consumption of water and water-rich fruits as this helps ensure hydration.