Basics of natural skincare

I’m a skin care addict! And i am not ashamed to confess that my entire life has been focused on how my skin looks and feel. It’s ironic, that the more money i would spend on skin care and expensive treatments the worse my skin would start to look and feel. It’s extremely frustrating growing up with bad skin while your friends and cousins are blessed with naturally good skin. I  was talented, smart, funny with not so bad facial features, but somehow my bad skin used to become a topic of discussion at every family dinner, at every friend’s party, and suddenly nobody cared if i were smart or funny but always reminded me how bad my skin looks.( like i don’t see it myself). Oh! And let’s not even talk about how those pretty but dumb girls with good skin used to lecture me on how I should be looking after my hygiene ( cos that’s what they thought my acne was from.. dumb, Told you!)   or I will never find a boyfriend or a husband. Ugghhh! thinking about it gives me chills.

Some of you might say “ Payal, why so shallow?

You should be confident in your skin, don’t bother what people say or think”  But you can’t really explain that shit to a desperate, rebellious not to forget, really impatient ( SMART!)  16 yr old teenage girl who won’t give up that easily.. Lol

And that’s when I became so vulnerable and fell for every treatment out there, every brand claiming to give me that glass like Asian girl’s skin became my obsession.

I really wish growing up i had someone like me (present me) to tell me to stop taking antibiotics, stop going through chemical peelings, and moreover stop falling for false marketing. Don’t get me wrong, Skin-care is very essential, skin-care products are very important, but to choose them wisely and not falling for every “too good to be true treatments” would have saved me a ton of time, money and relationships. 😛

Taking care of your skin should be simple, easy, and accessible; that’s why it’s my goal to help you begin your journey with  natural/easy skincare. You really don’t need such strong chemicals, exfoliators, 500 products, and 2000 steps to maintain a good skin-care. If  you have good skin, your makeup will look so much better, and you will not use your makeup to cover your face but to enhance your facial features. It’s really not about the $200 serum or the 10-step K beauty routine (unless that’s your thing). If you just want to take the best possible care of your skin without having to think about it too much, here’s where to start.


  1. Manuka Honey

Use as: a daily cleanser, weekly mask, or spot treatment as needed

Manuka honey is a special kind of honey that’s only to be produced in  New Zealand. It comes from bees that feed on Manuka bushes, and has been used for centuries to treat infections, restore tissue damage, and soothe irritation. This stuff is truly incredible: Manuka honey’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties help fight and soothe nearly any skin condition, especially acne and fungal acne, thanks to something called methylglyoxal; Manuka helps rebalancing the healthy bacteria on your skin and prevents acne-causing bacteria from regenerating; and it actually absorbs moisture from the air and draws it into the skin, leaving you super-hydrated and glow-y.When sold, Manuka honey is given something called a Bio-Active Rating, which essentially determines the level of methylglyoxal in the honey–AKA, it determines how potent the Manuka will be in treating inflammation and bacteria. Look for a jar with a rating of 20 or above, guaranteeing that it’s powerful enough to tackle all your skin’s problems. I prefer ManukaDoctor 24+

How to use: Of course, you can ingest Manuka honey–but it’s more useful slathered on your skin than on a piece of toast. Manuka honey is a gentle cleanser (just mix it with some warm water, massage onto skin, and rinse off), face mask (use it on its own or mix with yogurt, or rose water and leave on for 20 minutes), and spot treatment (dab a bit on active pimples and chill).

2.Oregano and Garlic: If you are suffering from acne, yeast infection,or any possible skin condition, stop everything that your doctor has given you! i know i would be the first person to say this out loud on internet that stop your medications, but really, antibiotics that your doctor has put you on is going to kill your gut and ruin your immune system for good. Please stop taking them!! I have talked about the importance of taking garlic and oregano in my previous post and i will tell you again.

Both garlic and oregano have been shown to improve acne, dermatitis, psoriasis, eczema, rosacea, fungal skin issues, and more. If you’re wondering why your dermatologist hasn’t brought these guys to your attention, their price tags might give you a clue (um, they’re basically free).

After 10 days of consuming garlic or swallowing down oregano (or both!), you should see a difference. Honestly, I noticed the effects of the oregano oil within days. (Note that oregano oil is highly antimicrobial, so you shouldn’t take it more than 10-15 days in a row. For long-term use, take it 10 days out of every month.)

Garlic and Oregano supplements

  • Jojoba Oil / Argan Oil
  • Use as: an oil cleanser, a moisturizer, or an overnight face oil

    These are pretty much made for your skin. Basically, if your skin is dry or oily, these miracle oils will help get you back on track. On top of that, it is filled with Vitamins B and E (both essential to skin health), protects the skin from free radicals (like pollution and sun exposure), and slows the signs of aging. If you have an active breakout, these are great oils to reach for: known to speed up the healing process and prevent the growth of new bacteria.

    How to use:  There are three main ways to use Argan and Jojoba Oil: as a cleanser, as a moisturizer, or as an overnight oil. To cleanse with jojoba, warm a few drops between your fingertips and massage onto your skin (it will remove makeup, as well). Then, use a cotton pad to wipe off the excess oil, and follow with a gentle cleanser like Manuka honey. To moisturize, pat a few drops onto the skin after cleansing and toning. To use as an overnight oil, slather a healthy amount onto your clean damp skin after the rest of your routine, and let it sink in while you sleep. Next: wake up Glowing


    1. Tea Tree Oil: If there is one thing that i have consistently used in my skin-care journey then it has to be Tea Tree Oil. Tea Tree Oil is an essential oil that has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties that dry up inflamed areas (pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, cysts), disinfect pores, and actually unblock the sebaceous glands. If you’re thinking, Wait! My skin is already really dry!, it’s totally OK. Tea tree strips excess oils, not moisture, so it’s still a must-have for all skin types.

    This powerful oil is also an age-old topical remedy for acne, rosacea, and even psoriasis. Plus, just smelling it has been said to help with depression. So, basically, if you’re a human with skin and feelings, tea tree oil is probably a good product to include into your routine.

    How to use:

    Tea Tree Oil should always be diluted before you apply it to your skin–never put straight-up tea tree oil on your face! It works best when diluted in water (3 – 4 drops of tea tree oil to 4 ounces of water) and used as a toner. My favorite way to do this is to mix up the tea tree oil and water in a spray bottle and spritz my face after cleansing, letting it sink into the skin before moisturizing.

    NOTE: Essential oils can be irritating for some (although I’ve found tea tree to be a skin superhero). Do a patch test on your arm or wrist before using tea tree on your face.

  • Rose Water
  • Use as: a cleanser, a toner, or a face mist

    Rose water is as basic as beauty gets. This two-ingredient (you guessed it: roses and water) has been used in skincare treatments since Cleopatra’s time–and for good reason. Rose water using it topically brings irritated skin back into balance. It’s a powerful anti-inflammatory; meaning it can reduce redness, puffiness, and irritation, calm active outbreaks, and prevent future ones. It even prevents and treats scars, scrapes, burns, and infections. You can’t really go wrong with this guy here. Organic roses are one of my fav and safe skin care item to include in my personal beauty routine and therefore i had to add them to our formulation of ColorCreams. It took us a while to find a way to add Vitamin E oil and Real Rose Extracts to ColorCreams but i couldn’t be happier with how it has turned out to be!

    Rose water is super hydrating and safe for all skin types; It’s really hard to find mild ingredients that works for all. Even those of us with the most sensitive skin (hi!) can handle a soothing rose water spray. AND, studies have shown that  the scent of roses can reduce anxiety and depression. Can our makeup or skincare do that? Yes pls!

    How to use: You can’t go wrong using rose water as a cleanser, toner, or face mist–but make sure you use good quality, pure rose water to add in your skin care and  not something that’s from Pa…i or Hi….a or it will never work, and chances are it might hurt your skin even more. Also, the pure rose water needs to be diluted before use. You can buy pre-formulated versions Or, you can make your own rose water remedy.

    Simmer organic rose petals in distilled water (just enough to cover them in the pot) for 30 minutes and strain out the petals; this is your “pure rose water.” Measure out how much you have, then add an equal amount of plain distilled water to create your safe-to-use rose water cleanser/toner/mist.

    ICE:  ICE THE SKIN! I can’t tell you enough how icing your skin can save your thousands of bucks you spend on treatments!

    You don’t have to directly put ice on the face but wrap it up in a soft cloth or paper towel to help you massage it without numbing yourself. I can’t tell you how often I repeat this and tell everyone who asks me to help them with their skin, and most people often act like this is news to them when I say it for the millionth time. I’ve been screaming this statement “ ICE YOUR FACE”  since 2008, I say it to every single one of you when you send me messages, and ask for quick-fixes! THIS IS THE LAST TIME I WILL ACCEPT THAT SOMEONE HASN’T HEARD ME SAY THIS!

    Ice, which is basically free, is the key to reducing inflammation. We know this when it comes to sports injuries or sprained ankles…so why do we think we need anything else when our skin is inflamed? (FYI: breakouts, redness, puffiness, flakiness, eczema flare-ups and more are all signs of inflammation.)

    Not only does ice reduce inflammation, but it boosts circulation (making your skin look brighter) and tightens the skin (preventing wrinkles and fine lines).

    Suggested use:

    You really can’t overuse ice. It has short-term and long-term benefits, so go crazy. Follow with a spritz of rose water or a few drops of jojoba oil for extra hydration.

    Lactic Acid Mask aka Yogurt ( Dahi): Now, before you roll your eyes at me, listen! Don’t behave like a 16 year old me.

    In the last few years we all have learned that dairy is a main culprit for skin problems and many, many other health problems–that is, when ingested. However when applied on the skin, dairy (or more specifically, yogurt) is the exact opposite. While the west is still learning that yogurt (dahi) could be so essential for keeping your gut healthy, and skin glowing, we Indians seem to be forgetting our grandma’s old  recipe to beautiful, healthy glowy skin. We are busy running after Koreans to get their K-beauty down! It’s funny, humans never appreciate what they already know and have.

    Yogurt is full of lactic acid and probiotics–two ingredients that normally drive up the price of skincare products. But our grandmothers didn’t know these fancy words or else we won’t need to drop a lot of cash to get in this action; or maybe we would never take their advice seriously unless it came from the West or more i would say from ( Korea)

    Naturally-occurring lactic acid dissolves dead skin cells and works as a gentle exfoliator for the skin. In addition to making you look extra glow-y, lactic acid exfoliation also reduces the signs of aging (like wrinkles and fine lines), treats and prevents pimples, and brightens discoloration and scarring.

    Now about those probiotics: In India yogurt, buttermilk plays a big role in our everyday diet. It’s not a fancy person’s meal but it’s an essential food for us. I am sure back in the days our people were smarter than we are and knew what was essential and thank god included yogurt to our everyday meals.Yogurt deliver a dose of good bacteria (essential for skin health!) and help reduce inflammation. When you add in the fact that yogurt also has antibacterial properties, anti-fungal properties, and is insanely moisturizing, you have to wonder…Why aren’t more people putting yogurt on their faces or including in their diet for a healthy gut?\

    If you have been put on a course of antibiotics and if it’s a must for you to take them pls go ahead and include a tub of dahi to your everyday diet, they are naturally enriched with probiotics and help you keep your gut healthy.

    How to use Dahi for face: There’s no need to get fancy here–plain old everyday yogurt from your fridge makes an incredible one-ingredient face mask. Look for full-dairy yogurt with no harmful preservatives if buying it from outside. (no coconut yogurt or Greek yogurt here) to get all the benefits, slather it on your bare skin. Let it soak in for 20 minutes, then remove with a cotton pad and follow with a gentle cleanser.

    So go get yourself a tub of yogurt tonight and put on your fav movie!

    You can’t fight inflammation with unhealthy gut and bad eating habits so eliminate anything from your diet, lifestyle, and skincare routine that can lead to more inflammation and activity. Sometimes let your skin heal itself by backing off and getting some rest. Your skin is  probably asking you to not slather too many harmful, strong ingredients on your face but you are not listening to it. Your skin is only communicating what your whole body, mind, and spirit needs, so listen and don’t be a product junkie( like a 16 yr old Payal) Buy only what you absolutely need and don’t just blindly follow everything that’s out there. Give yourself a break and don’t take yourself and internet too seriously. You will be okay, your skin will work really hard to make sure you’re okay, and just be good to yourself.

    Of course, nature is full of magic  with wonderful healing ingredients–but these six are key.

    Thanks for reading and until next time, take care. xo – Payal


    THAT’S IT!

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