Winter Skin Care from the Kitchen Shelf

Shahnaz Husain
In your home and right there on the kitchen shelf are many ingredients for winter skin care. Honey, for instance, is one of the most powerful natural moisturizers, which actually attracts moisture to the skin. All the properties of honey make it an ideal natural cosmetic ingredient. It suits all skin types and nourishes the skin when externally applied.
If you have dry skin, apply honey daily and wash off with plain water after 20 minutes. For dry skin, you can also mix half a teaspoon honey, one teaspoon rose water and one teaspoon dried milk powder. Mix into a paste and apply on the face. Wash off after 20 minutes.
Oily skins also suffer from dryness in winter. For a moisturizing lotion for normal to oily skin, take 100 ml rose water, half teaspoon honey and one teaspoon lemon juice. Mix, shake well and keep in a jar in the fridge. Apply on the face and wash off with plain water after 15 minutes.
Milk is another kitchen ingredient that is commonly available. It contains proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals. Ideal for winter care, it helps to relieve dryness, nourish the skin and make it soft. To cleanse normal to dry skin, take half a cup of cold milk and five drops of any vegetable oil, like olive, sesame seed or sunflower oils. Put in a bottle and shake well. Cleanse the skin with it, using cotton wool. Keep left-over mixture in the fridge.
Yogurt also nourishes the skin. It contains lactic acid, which restores the pH balance of the skin. Applied on the skin, it relieves dryness and removes tan. It also has a healing effect on acne. Take 2 teaspoons Yogurt and add a pinch of turmeric. Mix and apply on the face. Wash off after 20 minutes. Turmeric is a natural antiseptic and has an anti-inflammatory action. It helps to soften the skin and lightens skin colour over a period of time.
For normal to dry skin, mix together 1 ripe avocado, with one teaspoon each olive oil, curd and honey. Apply on the face and leave on for 20 to 30 minutes. Wash off. Avocados are extremely beneficial for the skin. They contain vitamins and fatty acids, which nourish the skin and improve skin texture. Olive oil also nourishes the skin and provides emollients in winter. Curd restores the normal pH balance and honey moisturises the skin.
Boil carrots and turnip (shalgam) in water. Cool and mash them into a pulp. Apply the pulp on the face like a pack and wash off with plain water after half an hour. Carrots are rich in Vitamin A, while turnip is a powerful cleanser.
They have a soothing effect on the skin, making it soft, smooth and supple. In fact, it can be applied to soothe dry, sensitive skin.
Take honey and yogurt and add a few tablespoons of red wine. Apply this on the face and leave it on for 20 minutes. Rinse with plain water. This softens and moisturizes the skin, removes tan and also adds a glow.
Cream of milk (malai) is extremely nourishing for dry skin in winter. It softens the skin and makes it smooth and radiant. It is suited to dry skin. It also helps to lighten skin colour over a period of time. It can be added to face masks and body scrubs. Applied on the lips, it helps to soften and lighten the colour of darkened lips.
For all skin types, mix 3 teaspoons choker with one teaspoon each of ground almonds, honey, curd and egg white. Wash off after 20 minutes. For an oily skin, mix red wine and green tea with Fuller’s Earth (multani mitti) into a paste. Apply on the face, avoiding the lips and area around eyes. Wash it off when it dries. For the area around eyes, soak a few strands of saffron in milk for half an hour. Soak cotton wool pads and apply under eyes, or use as eye pads. This relieves dryness and dark circles.
From a quick fix to long term treatments, you need not look further than the kitchen for beauty needs!