“In my 20s, oils and I broke up – they just weren’t cool enough! – but when I hit 30, we made up and it’s been peachy ever since.”
My guest blogger,Chinmayee Manjunath today gives us a unique master class on using face and body oils. Chinmayee is a writing coach, online content creator, journalist, editor and blogger. Most recently, she was at ELLE India, as executive editor. She has also worked with Penguin Random House as Lifestyle Editor, commissioning books on fashion, beauty, wellness and popular culture. Now, she works as a freelance writer and editor on books, and any content-based online or offline project. She blogs at http://www.themayabazar.tumblr.com.
As a good south Indian girl, I hold sacred filter coffee, jasmine, and oils for my skin and hair. In my 20s, oils and I broke up – they just weren’t cool enough! – but when I hit 30, we made up and it’s been peachy ever since. Everyone loves a good hot oil head massage but using oils as part of your skin and body care is still both a bit daunting and over-discussed, so here’s my quick guide to help you choose the right one, and use it well:
Coconut, almond, olive, apricot and sesame oils are safe to use on your face and body. The first three are best for newbies because they’re light in texture, and usually suit all skin types. My favourite blend is two parts coconut with one part each of almond and olive oil. Always buy organic, cold-pressed oils – Conscious Foods, Forest Essentials and Amritam are my go-to brands.
Cleanse your face with oils. Start by using a warm face towel to dampen the skin. Never use oils on dry skin, because they just get greasy, and are not effective. Spritz on cold rose water, and massage in 10 drops of oil. Then use a warm face towel, a couple of times, to gently wipe it off. It’s best to use a mild face wash to finish up.
During the day, I moisturise my face with the Rose Pomegranate Oil from Amritam. It’s light, and keeps the skin radiant and healthy. Again, I start with spritzing cold rose water on my face. I layer on both a serum and sunscreen after.
At night, I use the classic Ayurvedic formulation, kumkumadi tailam, which is repairing and anti-ageing. I buy my stash of kumkumadi from a traditional Ayurvedic pharmacy, but Kama Ayurveda does a good version.
On your body, massage the oil – in very small amounts – into your damp skin after a shower. If you like, choose one from the fabulous range of body oils that Forest Essentials and Amritam offer. They leave your body fragrant for hours.
Remember to try each oil on your skin (face, and body) for at least three days before it becomes a part of your routine.
Some oils may be too heavy, and cause breakouts. Almond and rose-based blends are the safest for your facial skin. Use only about four to five drops of oil for your face. And don’t be afraid to experiment with blends, and ways of using oils – they’re a really healthy, organic and versatile base for skincare.