Who doesn’t love the fragrance of rain-dampened soil and the cool breeze during the monsoons? But rain’s a pain on skin and hair. High moisture levels can cause hair fall, fizziness, increased breakouts, and chances of various skin- and hair-related infections. We speak to experts about a monsoon-friendly beauty routine, and what products to use and what to avoid to keep skin and tresses in good condition.
“The monsoon can be a nightmare for skin – excess humidity causes sweating, heat rashes, acne, smelly feet etc. A good skincare routine should be adopted and the right skincare products used to deal with such conditions,” says Nikhil Jain, Founder, Navah, skincare brand. He stresses the importance of the CTM routine – cleaning, toning and moisturising the skin – in this climate. “Cleansing of the face (at least twice a day) protects the skin from sweating and helps prevent breakouts. Toning protects the skin from acne and excess sebum production and helps in pore refining. Moisturisation is an essential step. Light hydrating moisturisers are a good choice during the monsoons, while cream-based face serums (with hyaluronic acid and Vitamin C) are also suitable as they keep the skin hydrated and healthy,” he explains.
According to Nandeeta Manchanda, Founder, Enns Closet, a natural, vegan, and cruelty-free skin care brand, people usually face hair issues like frizz, oily scalp and dandruff due to the excessive humidity during the monsoons. “To deal with frizz, try not to bleach or colour your hair,” she suggests. “Use coconut oil, condition the hair well and use hair masks to lock in the moisture.” Nandeeta finds that oily skin, acne/breakouts, dryness and patchy skin are common problems during the rains, as the monsoon tends to rob the skin of moisture. The best way to have healthy skin is to cleanse every day, moisturize (use a gel-based moisturiser / lotion), use sun block, scrub once a week, tone and keep makeup pads handy to use when you feel sticky.”
Easy beauty regimen for the monsoon:
Wash your face often
High humidity can lead to build-up of dirt and grime, which can clog pores and lead to inflammation. Therefore, be sure to wash your face thrice a day if your skin is oily and twice if it's dry. Exfoliate twice a week to eliminate whiteheads, blackheads, and dead skin cells. You can also carry wipes while traveling to clean off dust particles that settle on your face.
Use monsoon-friendly products
During the monsoon, opt for skincare items that reduce oil and sweating, like water-based serums or gel-based moisturisers. Hyaluronic serums and face packs keep the skin moist. Avoid oil-based serums or heavy moisturisers as they can make your face shiny and make it susceptible to acne. If you wear makeup every day, use BB creams instead of foundation.
Don’t skip the sunscreen
Even on cloudy days, do not skip wearing sunscreen, as it creates a shield against harmful UV rays. Use gel-based and water-based sunscreens before going out, to protect the skin from sun damage.
Keep your hair dry and scalp healthy
Massage your hair with warm oil twice a week to combat dryness and strengthen roots. Make sure you wash off the oil within 12 hours. Protect your hair during rain to prevent hair fall and fungal infections of the scalp. Avoid using hair heating equipment as they make the hair weak and susceptible to damage.
— Supritha Ramesh, Director, Sash Products, organic Hair care brand
Ayurvedic skin and hair care during monsoons
Dosha: Vata increases. Vata contributes to cold, dryness, and irregularity.
Vata: Vata is unpredictable. Sometimes the skin is dry, sometimes oily. Digestion is also haphazard, much like the weather itself. The effect is not just inside, but very apparent on the health of your skin and hair. Take control of things rather than going with the flow, especially during monsoons. Make sure you eat light meals at proper times daily, drink healthy amounts of water, and keep your sleep cycles constant.
Warm up: Food, spices, living chambers, hair champi, and skin massage oil – everything you choose should be warm in potency and temperature during this season. Mustard oil and sesame oil are good to use for food and massage during this season. Warm spices like asafoetida, carrom, ginger, and black pepper can be generously used to season food.
Yoga Basti: A series of enemas for 7 or 8 days taken during this season controls the highly dynamic Vata. Basti may sound awkward, but it's the best anti-aging treatment. Basti improves skin tone and plumpness, diminishes wrinkles and dryness. For hair, Basti prevents greying, makes the roots stronger, deeper, and growth.
— Dr Zeel Gandhi, Ayurveda doctor and formulator of Vedix, ayurvedic lifestyle and wellness brand