There was a time when make up was my crutch. I could use a little concealer to cover up a late night, some powder to hide the dark circles and I was on my way!
Then came my cancer diagnosis.
Let me tell you, cancer can do things to your skin that no make-up can cover!! I felt like I aged years in only a few months, I was sick and tired of hearing people asking me if I was sick and tired!
As I made cancer free lifestyle changes, I experienced incredible results. Clearer, brighter, and younger looking skin! I didn’t need all that make up any more, my skin could stand in its own!
It was these cleansing lifestyle guiding principles that led me to find out as much as I could about Ayurvedic philosophies on anti-aging, beauty and skin care. The philosophy that everything, from the way we eat, to how we breathe, and the thoughts and emotions that enter our mind are what make us beautiful is meaningful to me. A philosophy that came from a place of wellness and not a place of vanity was one that I felt good about embracing!
Using Ayurdevic Priciples I am sharing my 10 favorite ways to allow your inner beauty to shine through too!
1. Hydration purifies your body and your skin.
Water needs to become food. We should teach our bodies to crave water just as we do foods and treat it as such. Water is the ultimate nourishment we need. Staying hydrated and drinking water purposefully is vital for beautiful, healthful skin. (For best results drink half your body weight in ounces, per day)
2. Use natural plant sources for toning, smoothing, and soothing.
- Organic Coconut Milk – bathing in coconut milk can cool and soothe, moisturize and nourish your skin. Try dipping a cotton ball into coconut milk to clean your pores in place of a harsh astringent
- Aloe Vera – Drink (I recommend drinking 4 ounces of George’s Aloe Vera daily in the morning) or use topically, Aloe Vera can decrease the signs of aging and leave your skin feeling soft and supple. The benefits are felt from either method of intake!
- Rosewater – Rosewater balances surface pH and has a cooling effect on the skin. This is an incredible toner, and contains natural astringent and antiseptic that can treat and reduce inflammation caused by blemishes, rosewater also hydrates and soothes skin. Mist on your face or add to water and drink the benefits. (I use Royal Sense Bulgarian Rosewater daily).
3. Eat for glowing, ageless skin. A diet that excludes processed, oily, fried, and refined foods and is also moderate in spicy foods and alcohol has been shown to slow the aging process. The most recommended ayurvedic foods for skin are; green tea, beans, nuts & seeds, eggs, tomatoes, and pomegranate. Foods that contain artificial flavors, colors, preservatives and chemicals speed up the visible aging process and should be eliminated.
4. Where and how you eat is as important as what you eat.
The body not only digests food, it also digests all your thoughts and emotions and these show in our skin. Eating in a peaceful environment will allow you to appreciate your food and acknowledge that each nutrient serves a purpose. Take time to chew, eating should be a respected ritual and should be recognized as nourishment for spirit, mind, and body. Eat away from work and away from distractions of television and external chaos.
5. Never use harsh chemicals or soaps on your skin. (This includes pretty much all conventional skin care products!) Your skin care ingredients should be safe enough to eat. Harsh chemicals over stimulate the sebaceous gland, resulting in the over production of oil, they also are processed internally and pushed outwardly, resulting in even more skin issues. (I recommend DoTerra’s Clear Skin Foaming Wash or DoTerra’s Pore Reducing Toner)
6. Work to alleviate emotional stress and tension.
Emotional stress is just as dangerous to your skin as a poor diet. Ayurvedic medicine accepts that emotional stress and anger are processed internally and will present on your face if not handled correctly. Allow for emotional relief through meditation and daily breathing techniques, learn to let go of the little things in life. Try this simple imagery and breathing exercise daily for sound mind and body. At the end of each day, allow yourself to ackowledge and completely feel your causes of frustration for the day. It is a part of Ayurvedic belief that releasing anger is key to keeping your beauty.
7. Choose how you move
Moderate intensity exercise will improve blood circulation and sweat out damaging toxins. Exercise can improve digestion, which is crucial for internal balance. Exercise should make you feel energized, not to exhausted. Your exertion rate should stay in the 50% range, and it should be a practice that you find enjoyment in. Find an exercise method that brings you true joy, whether it be: dancing, zumba, hiking, yoga, or team sports. Looking forward to the practice is an important part of the health and longevity benefit.
8. Treat like with like. Oily skin is asking for oil to balance what the body is trying to replenish itself. Oil is cooling in nature and can be used on both face and hair. I prefer organic coconut oil, but know others who prefer ghee (clarified butter). Massaging oil into your face and hair can improve circulation, increasing your glow and will moisturize without breaking you out. Oil is part of the daily beauty routine, and can be used at night to rehydrate skin while sleeping.
9. Add essential oils into your skincare routine. Essential oils have a molecular structure that is closer to that of our skin, much more so than lotions and creams. Lotions and creams work well as surface barriers to environmental toxins, but they do not treat the root cause of aging. Essential oils feed our cellular tissue and address aging at its source, literally from the inside out. (I like DoTerra Essential Oils Cedarwood or Geranium)
10. Don’t underestimate the power of massage
Oil massages work moisturizing agents into your skin, stimulate blood circulation and encourage lymph drainage. Massage also relieves emotional stress and tension. A weekly reflexology massage can do wonders for your body and mind. If you don’t have the budget for massage, a partner massage can provide the same benefits so partner up for great skin!
If you want to explore more, identify your Ayurvedic skin type, whether Vata, Pitta, or Kapha and you can learn how to specifically treat your skin type!