Ayurveda in Sanskrit translates to “life knowledge” and teaches nourishment following the rhythms of nature
From K-beauty to J-beauty, A-beauty, and most recently Nordic beauty, it’s fantastic to see how different regions of the world can draw from their own culture and bring something new to the beauty industry. Ayurvedic beauty, or Indi-beauty, is derived from the Indian medical practice of Ayurveda; dating back to 6,000 years ago, it’s a holistic and in some cases spiritual approach to healing the mind and body fully becoming “in tune with your body’s needs”. When applied to skincare, this translates to using natural and mindful remedies; while this does involve cosmetic products, the ayurvedic method includes an all-rounded outlook on the process. Using the right skincare products is only a part of what contributes to healthy skin. This Indi-method understands that effective skincare “isn’t just skin deep” and relies heavily on healthy habits like diet, sleep, and mental hygiene.
The Art of Ritual
Ayurveda teaches you how to tune out of the overwhelming world we are in and tune in to yourself
Creating a ritual is a great way to tune out of the noise of modern-day life. Ayurveda’s skincare rituals work to combine effective skincare techniques with the relaxation element. According to trend forecaster Jessica Smith, ritualistic beauty began to grow in 2015 which is also when ayurvedic began to make an appearance in the west; since then, such techniques have become more familiar to the point that many of us will have heard of a few even if we are unfamiliar with the concept of ayurvedic beauty. For example, you have probably already heard of the benefits of massage, both cosmetically and for your overall health. Whilst other cultures are also responsible for bringing this trend to the west, it’s a perfect example of how you can apply ayurvedic beauty to your regime. Oil pulling is also a great habit falling into this category; aside from the oral and gut benefits, it is also known to make improvements to our skin. A lesser-known ayurvedic ritual technique that has not yet become so popular is Akshi tarpana (meaning eye nourishment). Akshi tarpana is a donut-shaped mold made from gram flour; its purpose is to create a bath-like barrier that is then filled with triphala ghee which is great for reducing wrinkles, dark shadows, and restoring brightness.
The best of Ayurveda in the UK
Increasingly consumers see beauty as a holistic experience and are looking for products that nourish their body and their mind
While Ayurvedic beauty brands have been quite popular all across Asia, they have only recently begun to join the western beauty scene. Although it still “hasn’t yet reached its full market potential in the UK”, we are slowly beginning to see growth in how brands are utilizing these techniques. While ayurvedic beauty harmonizes with the green beauty trend in many ways, there are now British brands creating their message in a way that embraces all angles of the trend. Ayurveda Pura Holistic Essentials is a London based Ayurvedic beauty brand; not only do they have a great collection of products from skincare, to massage oils, and general Ayurvedic equipment, but they offer Health & spa treatments, and even different educational workshops at their brand academy. If you are interested in diving deep into the topic, APHE would be a fantastic place to start! If you are most interested in experimenting with different beauty products and finding new ingredients that work for you, you may like Mauli Rituals. The founders, Anita and Bittu Kaushal, were a British couple who decided to take their interest in Ayurvedic beauty to the next stage when visiting their motherland, India. Some of their top products include Surrender Vata Body Oil and Sacred Union Scent & Dry Oil.
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Leveraging the power of ancient herbs
Bio-active ingredients in Ayurvedic skincare stimulate the skin and the body’s inherent self-healing mechanisms
Ayurveda’s cosmetic products all center around natural herbs and ingredients. One of the most popular ingredients amongst this trend is Ashwagandha, a plant belonging to the Solanaceae or nightshade family. It is known to provide benefits such as treating adrenal fatigue, increasing energy, and balancing stress hormones, which often have a large impact on our skin. Ashwagandha is most often used through consumption of either a food supplement or tea; if you think you would benefit from this ingredient, Holland & Barrett has a selection of ashwagandha capsules. A couple of other common ayurvedic ingredients include Turmeric and Neem. Turmeric is easily accessible and most of us already have it in our kitchens which makes it a great option for DIY lovers. Studies have shown that turmeric holds both anti-inflammatory and anti-depressive properties. That being said, if left on the skin too long, it can leave temporary staining; it’s more likely to stain when combined with water so mixing it with honey or milk is a better option. Neem is a flower that is known to be one of the most powerful ingredients in Ayurvedic herbology. It’s a detoxifier and blood purifier which is also great for skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. The oil made from the flowers can help with a variety of concerns such as joint & muscle pain as well as acne, dandruff, contributes to shiny hair, and can even be found in toothpaste. If you are interested in neem, you can purchase the ingredient in its concentrated oil form from Neal’s Yard Remedies.
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My first intentional herb relationship was with ashwagandha, the soothing adaptogenic herb that helped take the edge off my frazzled entrepreneur lifestyle and slowly ease back into my body. Ashwagandha is quite popular due to the times we’re in, and may be a supportive ally for you (but also may not! Not all herbs are for all people). It’s effects are best seen after taking it consistently for a month-ish or longer. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Ashwagandha mocha: ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 1/2 tsp ashwagandha (I used @furnacecreekfarm, a beautiful small herb farm in PA!) 1 cup nut milk (or regular milk) of choice, I used homemade hemp milk* 1 shot espresso (feel free to use decaf) or sub coffee with less nut milk! 1.5 tbsp raw cacao powder or paste 1/8 tsp vanilla extract Pinch of pink salt Sweetener of choice– maple, honey, or date syrup would work great, sweetened to taste Optional– something fatty such as coconut oil or cacao butter ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Blend all the ingredients together, and enjoy! Make with heated nut milk for a hot mocha, or serve with cold nut milk over ice on a hot day. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ *just blend 1tbsp of hemp seeds in a cup of water and… voila! hemp milk!
The overall wellbeing and natural remedy beauty trend have been booming in the western beauty scene for some time. Even though Ayurvedic beauty is one of many trends falling under the scene, it provides the perfect combination of toxin-free products with a more mindful and health-conscious approach to beauty. We predict that this trend can only grow for the simple reason that we need it; the stresses of modern-day life can have such an impact on our mental health and bodies and Ayurveda brings us closer to the kind of solutions that many of us are already looking for.
What is your opinion on Ayuvedic beauty? Would you be willing to try it out?