Meet Archana, a native of India who has been living in New Jersey for three years now. She says “I’ve seen my grand mom use only herbal and homemade products and she has great skin at 80!” Archana tries to incorporate a few of her grandmother’s routines into her busy schedule. Enjoy!
Hair: black, thick and wavy with an oily scalp
Skin: Olive skin tone. Fighting a bout of adult acne. Sensitive combination skin (sigh, I know!). I have been a vegetarian all my life and recently turned a vegan. I make sure I always eat healthy and eat only gluten free, diary free food. I eat only plant-based supplements.
In the shower…
I incoporate dry brushing for about 3 mins. I use the Body Shop brush. Before I step into the shower I always massage a tiny bit of sesame oil on my face and neck. This helps my skin to stay balanced and does not flake out. I use the Pangea Organics Canadian Pine With White Sage Body Wash for my body. For the face, I use my own mixture of ground green gram (Ed.: also called mung bean), a tiny bit of turmeric with enough rose water to make a paste. Green Gram is a natural substitute for soap. It removes the excess oil and leaves your skin fresh and even. You can use a coffee blender to grind, and you can store them for over 4 months in an air-tight container. Turmeric is a natural antispectic and it bans acne from its roots.) I gently scrub my face and neck in upward strokes with this paste and wash off with water.
Every weekend, I massage my skin with a mixture of butter (organic unsalted butter) and a pinch of turmeric and a little bit of greek yogurt. I blend all of them in with a hand blender and apply the mixture all over my body. I wash it off after 30 mins with the green gram mixture. This leaves my skin supple and silky smooth.
I never forget to apply castor oil on my eyelashes and eyebrows and under my eyes before going to bed every night. It promotes lash and brow growth.
For my hair, I wash it every other day with Himalayas Rejunivating Shampoo. I do not use a conditoner as it weighs my hair down. I apply few drops of Josie Maran’s argan oil on my ends. I never blow dry my hair and always let it air dry.
Outside the shower…
I usually leave my skin a little moist and use my own home made oil moisturizer. It is coconut oil, few drops of argan oil and jojoba oil. I use this like another other body lotion. I love Soapwalla deodarant. On weekends (usually on Saturdays) I sometimes pour few drops of khus oil (also called vetiver essential oil) on my filled tub. This gives a unique aroma and leaves your skin pleasntly smelling. I never step out without a suncreen and use Biotique Carrot Face & Body Sun Cream, which has carrots and natural oils, as my sun protector.
I apply few drops of argan oil as a primer and use the Vapour Organic Beauty Atmosphere Luminous Foundation and wear a kohl from Physicians Formula, which is organic. I use Josie Maran’s Color Stick on my lips and cheeks as blush. I do not use any styling products for my hair and never blow dry or iron it.
So, who’s game to try some crushed up green gram? And how about that turmeric trick?! Intrigued? Thank you for sharing, Archana!
Image of Gayatri Devi via. Devi was the princess of Jaipur and a successful politician too. “A perfect blend of beauty, class and brains!”
Everybody, meet Greta, who may have created the word “glowifying” and definitely personifies it! Must be all the exfoliating and John Masters-ing she does. Read and enjoy (keep you eyes peeled for her tip for stopping scars before they start)!
Current weather: Coastal Northern California, so cool, foggy and breezy. Essentially jacket weather 24/7.
Hair: Dark blackish-brown, natural color (not dyed), thick, wavy, and slightly coarse. Boob-length (aka halfway between my armpit and elbow)
Skin: Pale, reddish, very sensitive and prone to sunburn. No acne but prone to roughness and bumpiness.
In the shower…
Pre-shower, I massage a generous blob of Burt’s Bees Avocado Butter Pre-Shampoo Hair Treatment (NB: contains fragrance) from the middle to the ends of my hair. This is my very favorite for softening my coarse and unruly hair—even better than the various oils I’ve tried. Then I wipe my face with a Seventh Generation baby wipe in preparation for slathering my face and neck with Fage 2% Greek Yogurt. The lactic acid in the yogurt is a great gentle exfoliant and I find this to be very smoothing and glowifying with no irritation. I leave it on until the yogurt is nearly dry—about 10-15 minutes. While I wait, I’ll putz around in the bathroom, occasionally dry brushing with a Hydrea London Body Brush or massaging a dropperful of John Masters Organics Pomegranate Facial Nourishing Oil into my nails and scalp. Once in the shower, I apply John Masters Zinc & Sage Shampoo with Conditioner followed by John Masters Organics Lavender & Avocado Intensive Conditioner. They both smell incredible and keep my pouffy waves in check. I’ve tried other lines but always come running back to John Masters for haircare. I can definitely see a difference in my smoother, healthier locks. I soap up my Hydrea London Carbonized Bamboo Exfoliating Gloves with whatever soap we have on hand. I’m always switching kinds. Right now I’m using Big Sur Country Soap, which is made locally and I picked up at the farmer’s market. I shave my pits, legs and bits with a Gillette Fusion razor, and I’m done!
Outside the shower…
I wash my face with Pai Camellia and Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser, and if it’s nighttime, I use my Clarisonic Mia with it. I follow with a couple spritzes of Pai BioAffinity Tonic in Lotus & Orange Blossom. Daytime, I smooth on Pai Chamomile & Rosehip Moisturizer or Dr. Hauschka Rose Day Cream Light. Nighttime, I massage in John Masters Organics Pomegranate Facial Nourishing Oil or Pai BioRegenerate Oil. Any extra oil goes on the ends of my hair. Obviously, I adore Pai—my sensitive skin responds beautifully to their gentle yet effective products. I recommend them to all my friends! My body gets a slather of Pai Comfrey and Calendula Calming Body Cream, and my abdominal incision from last month’s surgery gets a mini-massage with Jason 45,000 IU Vitamin E Oil. Floss and then brush my teeth with my Preserve toothbrush and The Natural Dentist Antigingivitis toothpaste and mouthwash.
I wear makeup maybe a handful of days per month, and when I do it’s Dr. Hauschka mascara in Black and Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Rose.
Soap & Paper Factory’s Bois de Cedrat Hand Cream is my favorite scent. I dab some on my neck and wrists like perfume. I’ve been stingy about using it as I don’t believe they make this fragrance anymore [Ed's note: they don't] and I want my tube to last!
John Masters and Pai: Hire this gal as your spokeswoman! The rest of you: What think you?
Image of Vivien Leigh via