We started Living Deeply Foundation in 2015, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit to help teach and fund Yoga of living deeply programs, to bring balance and peace to the body and mind.
As part of this vision, we have been sharing simple practices in easy to understand format. Anything that might bring peace and joy to everyday life. A project that followed out of this was to share my homemade simple skincare cream and lotion, that I have used since childhood.
My Nani and my Mom always used only a mix of rosewater, glycerin and fresh lemon for all moisturizing needs head to toe. They made it fresh every week, and that’s all I used for almost three decades of my early life until I came to the United States.
In my early years in the United States, I would get lost in aisles and aisles of products, natural or otherwise. I bought many seemingly natural and organic products. Most of them left my skin either dry or with rashes.
Over the next few years, as I explored and researched more about triggers for allergies for my two young kids, I discovered numerous toxins in all types of skincare products.
Most labels have words we cannot even pronounce. Even organic or natural products have toxins. Anything that is prepared in a factory and requires a shelf life by default needs some preservative or chemical to kill the fungus and bacteria that will grow as part of nature’s decompose plan. What will kill them may not kill you, but will undoubtedly damage your cells.
We are exposed to hundreds of chemical toxins every day. It is not news, and we all know about it. Our liver and the immune system gets stressed by all these toxins that add up quickly to dangerous levels.
Whatever we put on our skin goes quickly inside our bodies. Another easy way to understand the dangers of using store-bought skincare all the time; is to imagine eating all your meals from store-bought packaged boxes. You can quickly imagine how sick you will get only after a few days without real nourishment. Just like we know fresh meals are good for us, and we cook them; it is even easier and less time consuming to make your skincare. And a major source of chemicals can be quickly eliminated.
Years ago I went back to using the simple lotion my Nani and Mom made at home. I ended up improvising on the basic with things readily available in the kitchen or nearby Trader Joe’s like Organic Olive oil, Grapeseed oil, Aloe Vera or Shea Butter.
I also improvised with traditional Indian essential oils since I love natural fragrances. I discovered essential oils back in my engineering days. My college was located near Chandani Chowk in old Delhi. Every semester I had to make a few trips to Nai Sarak to buy books for new courses. They were always fun trips, a part of Delhi so different from where I lived. Tiny shops were full of books piled up high on streets, clothes, bags, medicines or jewelry. Narrow roads and alleys, full of carts and people carrying huge bundles of everything. Smells of all types of street foods – chole
Surprisingly, they never gave me headaches, unlike many expensive and fancy perfumes. I still use only pure essential oils for any fragrance needs, room fresheners, body lotions or roll-ons.
Wrapping up this post, I am again trying to share that it takes less than 15 minutes to make your own fresh face, body lotion or scrubs or any skincare.
Remove a significant source of toxins quickly to bring more balance to body and mind. Reduce, Recycle, Reuse.
Grateful to all my friends and family who loved the moisturizing creams. I am also excited that some of you have started making your own versions at home.