In the age of instant gratification, we prefer quick and easy fixes to all our problems and this feeling spills over to beauty treatments too. Nobody really has the patience to go through elaborate facials and skin treatments. There is a solution to that: Make use of the nighttime to pamper your skin. The Week talked to Kshitiza Bidari of Elia Beauty Parlor to find out what can be done to wake up with radiant skin.
Treat your skin Tomato and honey facemask
Honey has antioxidants that benefit the skin by moisturizing and healing it. Using it with tomato helps make your skin appear flawless and bright. To make this mask, mash a ripe tomato with a fork and add a tablespoon of honey to it. After mixing them together to form a paste, apply it and leave it overnight. “The next morning you will wake up to glowing skin and, in the long run, this mask helps reduce dark spots, pigmentations and also helps regenerate your skin while you sleep,” says Bidari.
If you have an acne prone skin, swap tomato for yogurt. It has lactic acid that dissolves dead skin cells and creates a natural glow while helping prevent breakouts as well. Bidari suggests putting on this mask twice a week for best results.
Lemon mix mask
Perfect for those who have an uneven skin tone, this mask mixes lemon juice, and coconut oil or almond oil. All three of these ingredients are known to lighten skin color and even out skin tone. Mix a tablespoon of lemon juice with a tablespoon of almond or coconut oil. “Make sure you use a cotton ball or a cotton pad to dab the oil over your face and neck for even application,” she says.
After having applied the mixture, use your fingertips to gently massage your face, focusing on the problem areas. Wash your face and neck thoroughly in the morning and apply moisturizer as well as sunscreen as the lemon in the mixture might make your skin sensitive.
“It is important to think of your lips when you are using facemasks,” says Bidari. Petroleum products usually only stay on top of the skin and don’t really get absorbed easily. You can use a lip-balm of your choice or apply honey on your lips before you go to bed. However, make sure that you don’t end up licking the honey off your lips as saliva is known to chap your lips even more.
For the body
“We have grown up watching our mothers apply a mix of lemon and glycerin on their feet before bed. It is a tried and tested method that works wonders on your skin,” explains Bidari. Add lemon juice and rosewater to a small bottle of glycerin and shake the bottle well to make sure it mixes well. Apply the concoction to your feet and elbows to soften tough skin. You can go to bed just like this as well but, for added benefit, wear light cotton socks. “Make sure that the socks don’t have a tight elastic band at the ankles as you don’t want to hinder blood flow,” she says.
Bidari also recommends using coconut oil on your skin. “Coconut oil has many benefits. If you can get your hands on raw coconut oil (which is easily found in South India), then that’s even better,” she says.
A treat for your hair
“The reason hair masks are so great is because they are considered to be intense conditioners and have more fatty acids and lipids which help return the lost moisture and protect the hair as well,” reveals Bidari. Healthy hair has closed cuticles that minimizes frizz and makes your hair look better. These masks repair what environment and styling take out of your hair. Most people however don’t know that you can leave hair masks on overnight. This helps the hair take all the nutrients from the mask and start the repairing process even before we wake up. Coconut oil and yogurt have become really popular ingredients because of their ability to penetrate the hair shaft. Use these masks twice a week this summer to help control frizz and damage.
Coconut oil mask
This is a hot oil therapy for your hair. Heat a small bowl of coconut oil and add yogurt to it after taking it out of heat. Mix the two properly before breaking open two vitamin E capsules. “Vitamin capsules are easily available at pharmacies and even beauty parlors,” says Bidari. After thoroughly mixing the ingredients together, apply it evenly all over your hair. Wear a shower cap to bed but, as an extra layer of protection, spread an old towel or a t-shirt over your pillow.
Banana and yogurt mask
This mask is perfect for people with dry and frizzy hair. It doesn’t only nourish the hair and make it soft but it also banishes any dandruff problems you might have as well. All you need to do is mash a ripe banana with yogurt and you are good to go.
Milk and honey mask
“You need to first make sure that there isn’t any ant problem in your house. You don’t want to wake up with ants all over you,” Bidari says. After a thorough inspection of the house and all its nooks and crannies, mix a splash of milk with a tablespoon of honey. Make sure you have enough to massage through your scalp. Apply this mixture the way you apply oil, concentrating on the scalp more than the ends. However, don’t completely neglect the ends of your hair either. “This mask is great for people who have brittle hair with split end, but if your hair is long and rough too, you will benefit from using yogurt instead of milk,” Bidari says.