•Anti-Aging & Cosmeceutical Corner
diagnosis and treatment. Diagnosis is
not made by skin type but by body
type (dosha), then an individualized
regimen is prescribed that includes
the use of herbs, roots, flowers, minerals and essential oils. Prior to any
treatment, skin is detoxified by using
herbal oils, salves and decoction of
different herbs and minerals. Skin is
the body’s largest detoxification
Ayurveda categorizes skin into seven
major types: Vata, Pitta, Kapha, Vata-Pitta, Pitta-Kapha, Kapha-Vata and
Vata-Pitta-Kapha. Vata skin is usually dry, flaky and itchy. Winter season
worsens these symptoms. Pitta skin
is moist and oily. It is easily sunburned and is prone to acne, freckles
and moles. Kapha skin is primarily
oily, smooth and delicate. It is prone
to fluid accumulation, so puffy eyes
and under eye circles are common.
Vatta-Pitta skin is dry in winter and
oily in summer. It cracks and easily
develops inflammation. Pitta-Kapha
skin texture is oily and during winter
it gets dry and is prone to acne and
skin cancer. Kapha-Vatta skin is usually clear and has good skin tone.
Vata-Pitta-Kapha skin is fairly well-balanced and has even skin tone.
But whatever the skin type, with
the proper routine, a consumer can
achieve healthy, beautiful skin. The
regimen consists of several steps.
First, skin gets detoxed via
Panchakarma, a five-step purification
process that includes oil massage,
sweat therapies, enemas, purgatives,
emetics and changes to the diet.
Detoxification achieves three objec-
tives: health maintenance, disease
treatment and preparation for rejuvenation. These five measures eliminate
excess dosha or ama from the body
and are used for internal purification.
They are vomiting (ramana), purgation (virechna), medicated oil or decoction enema (basti), bloodletting (rakta
moksha) and nasal administration of
specific medication (nasya).
A daily, full body oil massage is
ideal for keeping skin healthy and
beautiful. For consumers with pitta
imbalance, sunflower oil should be
used. For consumers with vata imbalance, sesame oil should be used and
for consumers with kapha imbalance,
corn oil should be used. For skin and
hair cleansing, neem or sandalwood
soap is ideal for bathing, but they
should be used sparingly to maintain
skin softness and luster. Pitta skin