Thursday, November 8, 2012


With your skin constantly losing its moisture in winter season, exfoliating it is a good way to keep it looking great.

Papaya is considered a wonderful wholesome fruit as it meets with some of our most essential vitamins, minerals and protein needs. Both ripe and raw papaya can be used to rejuvenate the skin. Ripe papaya is excellent for exfoliation of the skin and brings about newer looking skin and generally suits all skin types. 

Glow Skin:1/2 cup ripe papaya pulp, 4 tsps orange juice, 4 tsps carrot juice, 1 tsp honey or glycerin. Mix the above ingredients and apply or massage the pack all over the face and neck.

Skin Rejuvenation:1/2 cup ripe papaya pulp, 1/4 cup coconut milk, 1/4 cup of oat flakes. Run the mixture on your face and neck gently for about 5 minutes. Wash off with milk and water and notice the glow for yourself.

Regular applications of the above two-treatments can do wonders to the face.


As winter sets in and sweaters and blankets come out, dry skin and chapped lips start cracking the surface of your skin. 

The popular solution is cold cream and moisturizer. But are these the only cosmetic options? We soak in the facts on ways to fight dry skin and what is the root cause of dry skin. 
Causes of Dry Skin:

Dry skin signifies that the water in skin dries up at a faster pace.
The reason skin dry out in the winter is because there is less humidity in the air, more extreme weather conditions, and indoor heating. Even people who don’t normally have dry skin can experience problems in the winter.
When your skin is dry it can drain out the oils and nutrients. Dry skin makes skin vulnerable. Low temperatures and cool winds suck the moisture from your skin, leaving you with dry and itchy skin and sometimes it even flakes.
The barrier that prevents dry skin is the outer-most layer called the stratum corneum.
The stratum corneum protect underlying tissue from drying out. When this layer loses its integrity due to drying conditions, it can no longer hold in moisture and the result is dry, even flaky skin.

Why is it important to avoid dry skin? 
Not only does a dry skin cause topical issue like eczema, the winter rash, and dry burns, but it also leads to a host of other germ-related diseases. How does this work? Bacteria germs are attracted to dry surfaces and when your skin is dry, you tend to pick up germs from places like common workstations, public loos, door knobs, etc. Therefore, treating dry skin is of utmost importance to avoid winter discomfort. 

A common misconception is the way we bath in the winters: Opt for lukewarm shower instead of a steamy hot bath. Hot water may make you feel better during the winters but it can wash out the natural oil from your skin. 
Here are a few tips to prevent dry skin during the Winter:
-Reduce the heat of your showers or baths – using hot water can actually dry your skin out as it removes the natural protective oils from your skin.
-Replace soaps and detergents with soap-free cleansers. In the winter, replace light weight shower gels with one that contains built-in cream or oil.
-Moisturize more. You may find that a light-weight body lotion works well in the Spring and Summer but when winter arrives, your skin needs change. Use products that are oil-based and that can add that protective layer to the skin. Moisturize after every shower and between hand washings.
-Protect your lips! Lips don’t contain oil glands so they need moisture applied often, especially in winter. Use lip balms with a sunscreen to keep lips protected and moist.
-Protect your face. Even though the sun isn’t out as much, you should still be using a moisturizer with a sunscreen. In addition, use a cream versus a lotion to add more moisture. Using a night cream is essential in the winter to help keep your skin hydrated.
-Keep your skin hydrated by drinking water. Water will build your body's natural moisture.
-Exfoliate less, especially if you have skin that is extremely dry or inflamed. Use a finer scrub that gently removes dead skin from the face no more than twice a week. Exfoliate the body once a week.
-Treat the feet. Because our feet are covered with socks doesn’t mean they don’t dry out. Keep them exfoliated – at least once a week. Then treat them with a mask and an intense moisturizer. Cover them with socks at night and wake up with gorgeous feet.
-Foods with essential fatty acids, good cholesterol, flavonoids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals are important for maintaining skin's elasticity through collagen production. Whole grain products, vegetables, fish, lean meats, and egg yolks protect and nourish the skin.
-Reduce your intake of coffee and alcohol; these two affect and cause dry skin quite adversely. Smoking is a common culprit behind pre-maturely ageing skin, dryness and general hormonal imbalances that affect skin's texture. Avoid it, to maintain smooth skin.
-Use a humidifier. A humidifier adds moisture to the air and aids in your skin retaining moisture. Place them throughout the house and especially in the bedroom. Humidifiers control the moisture in the air. It would work great during winter. By humidifying the air, they prevent environmental drying agents.
-Avoid using products that contain alcohol like toners or astringents. Look for an alcohol-free alternative or skip them altogether. Many experts claim that toners are no longer necessary.

Monday, November 5, 2012


Winter allergies  and infections tend to take a toll on most people’s health. Coughs, sneeze, running nose, water eyes, flu, colds, and sinusitis become very common problems, which last for many days thus making one’s life miserable. People that live in places which experience severe winters, generally are susceptible to chilblains, hypothermia and frostbite if in case they do not take precautions to protect themselves from this kind of weather. People that suffer circulatory disorders and rheumatoid arthritis generally tend to find their symptoms getting aggravated. On account of a lack of sunlight our immune system generally tends to suffer during the winters. As opposed to popular beliefs, flu, sinusitis, coughs and cold are not a result of dipping temperature, but rather an outcome infections.of a slackened immunity, which tends to make people vulnerable to all these allergies and infections.

What causes winter allergies?

Symptoms of winter allergies may mimic signs of colds and flu. Winter allergy symptoms include sneezing, coughing, stuffy nose, runny nose and generalized malaise. In the cold months of the year, you may not be exposed to pollen, but you may be exposed to other triggers. In the wintertime we are often exposed to mold and dust mites. Dust mites are microscopic spider-like creatures that live off our dead skin cells. They are found in our beds, on our pillow cases and floating in the air on dust particles.

Mold is often found where it is dark and damp. We might find mold growing under the sink, or down in the basement of our homes. Spores get released into the air and when we breathe them into our lungs, they often set off an allergic response from our immune system.

Home Remedies For Winter Allergies

Here are a few cures and home remedies to treat various kinds of winter ailments.

To 2 cups of water add half a teaspoon each of marshmallow and Echinacea root. Let the water simmer for a few minutes on a low flame. After about 15 minutes take the mixture off the flame and then add ¼ teaspoon of ginger rhizome, ½ a teaspoon peppermint leaves and 1 teaspoon of chamomile flowers. Place this mixture over a low flame again and let it simmer for an additional 15 minutes. Once the solution has cooled strain it into a glass and consume its contents. This decoction if had once a day will help fight all kinds of winter skin allergies.

Mix together equal proportions of lime juice, water and poppy seeds (crushed). This mixture can also be used as a topical application for skin allergies. A diet that consists of only juices and accompanied with some herbs such as, rose hips and Acerola cherry, will help in boosting the immune system and hence will prevent various kinds of winter ailments. Breathing exercises help in providing an ample amount of oxygen to one’s body, this in turn helps in flushing out unwanted toxins from the body. Practicing deep breathing for about 10 minutes a day will be beneficial. Steam inhalations that are infused with a few drops of eucalyptus oil are an excellent way of opening up blocked sinuses. Finally, the body’s digestive capabilities tend to be at their peak during the winters, thus one can consume rich foods with substantial ease. Energy and nutritious rich foods should be had in order to store energy.

Here are some more winter herbal remedies that will help reduce winter allergy symptoms. Green tea, chamomile tea, grape seed extract, raw honey, and ginger are used by many people who are sensitive to first and second generation antihistamines.

Green Tea:
Everyone knows that green tea is a good calming agent, but many people are finding out that green tea works great as an antihistamine, and doesn't give you the side effects that antihistamines are noted for.

Chamomile Tea:
Chamomile tea also has a calming effect, and is a natural antihistamine. However, if you are allergic to ragweed, you should not drink chamomile tea. If you like honey, you can sweeten the tea with it.

Ginger is another natural antihistamine. It is a spice that is used in many different recipes. Ginger should be purchased in root form and not in the powdered form. You should grind it up yourself, put it in a cup and make tea out of it with boiling water.

Grape seed extract:
Grape seed extract is good to take when you have allergy symptoms in the winter time and all year long. Grape seed extract, like red wine, contains flavonoids. Flavoinoids are helpful in alleviating allergy symptoms.

Raw honey:
Raw honey is honey that has not been pasteurized. The heat in pasteurization kills off some of the properties that are beneficial to allergy sufferers. Raw honey, preferably from your general location is very good to help desensitize you from the effects of the different kinds of pollens in the area in which you live.

Raw honey is a natural anti-inflammatory and antibacterial agent. I know raw honey works, because I have allergic asthma. When my rescue inhaler doesn't help take the asthma symptoms away, honey calms my coughing and wheezing right away.

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