Having conditions like eczema also known as atopic dermatitis or psoriasis (an auto-immune condition) which is characterised by dry, itchy patches of skin is particularly difficult in the winter season. Cold, dry conditions take away the natural moisture from your skin as well as indoor heating, frequent hot baths or showers causing further dryness and itching. To avoid a winter flare up, Ayurveda the ancient Indian system of healing offers natural remedies to help heal and nourish the skin during the colder months:
- Daily Oil Massage (Abhyanga)
One of the key practices of Ayurveda is daily body massages using warm herbal oils known as Abhyanga. Applying natural oils to the skin such as sesame, almond or coconut after a warm bath can help to lock in extra moisture as well as promoting lymphatic drainage for overall wellbeing which is super helpful during cold and flu season. Choose a suitable natural plant-based oil, pour a clean, empty shampoo and put the bottle in a pot of hot water until the oil is warm. Apply the oil to your whole body, including the top of your head. Massage your chest and abdomen, moving in clockwise and circular strokes. Relax for 10 minutes to let your skin absorb the oil before taking a warm bath or shower. Practicing self-massages using warm oil is not only incredibly relaxing but will help your skin to cope better with the colder temperatures.
- Herbal Face Masks
A firm favourite in the South Asian community, Ayurvedic face masks made with natural moisturising ingredients can help to not only soothe a flare up but also reduce the chances of one due to its nourishing properties. A simple and effective recipe is mixing equal parts honey with yoghurt and applying to cleansed skin. Honey is a firm favourite amongst many eczema sufferers due to its intense moisturising and anti-inflammatory properties whilst yoghurt contains lactic acid to help hydrate and gently brighten dull winter skin. Experiment with different ingredients such as turmeric and sandalwood to help boost and protect your facial skin from the cold, winter conditions.
- Hydration from the inside
As your skin needs to adapt to the winter months, so does your diet. Up the amount of water you drink daily as well as ensuring you choose hydrating foods and herbal teas. Ayurveda places great emphasis on the connection between skin, diet and your overall health. Ensuring you choose clean, gut-boosting foods can ensure your immunity is strong and ready to cope with the winter season. Make collagen rich bone broths once a week and include ghee in your diet. Ghee is rich in essential fatty acids and has moisturising properties that help combat dryness.
- Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise!
The easiest way to stay on top your skin’s moisture levels is to regularly apply a nutrient rich emollient throughout the day. Our award-winning Migh-tea Moisture balm is available in a smaller travel-friendly pot for easy nourishment on the go. Apply regularly to hands and face, focussing on the drier parts of skin on your body to keep winter flare ups at bay.
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