Whip up this ancient recipe for a natural mask in your own kitchen for blemish-free, all-over skin
BY STELLA KING
If the harshness of this past winter wasn’t kind to your skin, be warned that these summer months aren’t going to be so friendly either. Our natural oil glands, which hibernated in the cold, are now in full flow, leaving us looking less than our best during the outdoor party months with a dull, blemished, oily look. Intense UV rays are wreaking their own havoc, and basic precautions like hydrating, cleansing and screening can only help so much.
If you’re in the midst of such a hot weather beauty crisis, then relief – and instant, sun-kissed glowing skin – is just some footsteps away: in your kitchen. Gather up the ingredients mentioned below and make an organic, homemade face and body mask that has been trusted by Asian grandmothers and wise women for generations. This basic uptan (beauty paste) recipe, used twice or thrice a week, has a miraculous effect on the skin, clearing pimples, lightening dark patches, unclogging pores and smoothening overall skin tone.
HOMEMADE `UPTAN’ NATURAL SKIN PACK RECIPE
♦ Whole milk: 1 cup
♦ Lemon juice: 2 tablespoons
♦ Chickpea gram flour: ¾ cup *
♦ Turmeric: 1 teaspoon *
♦ Rose water: 4 tablespoons *
1) Mix all ingredients into a thin paste consistency that can be smoothed all over the body without dripping. Add more milk if necessary to get a consistency you can work with.
2) Wait 15 minutes, or until the pack has dried.
3) Scrub the uptan off in the shower with a circular hand movement. Finish your shower routine as usual.
4) You should be able to notice a marked difference after the very first application. Within 4 weeks of consistent application, your skin will be supple, smooth and glowing.
* WHERE TO BUY
Chickpea Gram Flour: Visit any Indian grocery store (search online if you are unaware of one in your area) and ask for besan (Indian name for chickpea flour). The flour is easily available, and come in packages of varying sizes. Buy the smallest one, as you’re not going to cook with it.
Turmeric: Like chickpea flour, powdered turmeric (or raw turmeric pods if you want to crush your own) is also easily available in any Indian/South Asian store. The local name is haldi. Again, buy the smallest package as a little turmeric goes a long way. Please note: Turmeric stains are hard to remove, so be very careful about accidental stains and spills during the application process.
Rose water: Water steeped in rose petals imbibe the flower’s unique cosmetic, medicinal and flavoring properties and are sold in bottles in Indian grocery stores. Store your bottle in the refrigerator and use the leftover rose water to splash your face when you come in from the sun to soothe and hydrate the skin.