5 Remarkably Effortless Skincare Secrets from the Ancient Indians

When it comes to beauty secrets, old is gold, especially when they have been passed down through generations. Our grandmothers and mothers are experts and often resort to their kitchen cabinets to whip up concoctions when it comes to skin care.  They will always opt for home remedies and natural therapies to enhance the appearance of their skin. But even if they're considered ancient to us, they are still the most efficient and finest approach to get the job done. 

The mighty Himalayas, lush Indian woods, and deep blue Indian oceans are home to a diverse range of natural ingredients that could work magic on your skin. Ancient beauty secrets are harmful, chemical-free, skin friendly, organic, economical, and simple.  

Here are 5 Skincare Secret Ingredients from the Ancient Indians that you can still use today! We also have our founder, Nicky Lamba, sharing some quick homemade DIY masks you can try. 

Neem 

Neem has long been a contender for the top rank in a variety of Ayurvedic medications. With a plethora of skin and hair care advantages ranging from antiseptic and anti-inflammatory to antibacterial and anti-ageing, it's difficult to find somebody who isn't pro-neem. In addition to balancing oil production, healing wounds, stimulating collagen development, reducing post-acne scars, and decreasing skin irritation, neem has a number of other benefits. It acts as a natural alternative to cure the skin tissue from the inside out, while also reducing hyperpigmentation and scarring at the same time. 

Nicky recommends: 

For Acne: 

Take a few neem leaves and boil them in water. Dip a cotton ball into the water and then rub it all over your face in an even layer. This may be used as a homemade toner to help draw blackheads and whiteheads out of the skin while you sleep, as well as to cure blocked pores. Also, a face pack made of neem-cucumber can be used to help reduce oiliness on the face. 

For Dry Skin: 

Take a small amount of neem powder and mix it with a few drops of grape seed oil till it forms a paste. Apply this paste to your face and let it sit for 15 minutes. Use cold water with a soft towel to clean it off.  

Nesara by Nicky products with Neem:  Tropical Cream Artisanal Soaps, Black Bamboo Artisanal Soaps, Early Earth Artisanal Soap

Saffron 

The cultivation and use of saffron dates back more than 3,000 years and has been practised in a variety of cultures, continents, and civilisations throughout history. This one ingredient can be traced from Ancient Greece all the way to Ancient India where it’s been used in skincare. Saffron is high in antioxidants, including vitamin C, and also possesses anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It is a soothing element with excellent brightening qualities. Saffron is mineral-rich and contains two kinds of potent carotenoids: crocin and crocetin. 

Early research indicates that saffron has the ability to accelerate cell turnover and production, which may help wounds heal faster. Because of its high vitamin content, saffron not only illuminates skin tone but also improves and decreases unsightly hyperpigmentation when applied topically. Being an anti-inflammatory ingredient, saffron is ideal for persons with sensitive skin and is known to be anti-aging. 

Nicky recommends: 

For Glowing Skin: 

Adding strands of saffron to almond or soy milk can give you a radiant complexion. Soak a few strands in milk for about 2 hours. Apply this to your face and neck with a cotton ball. Wash it away after 5-6 minutes. Use this regularly for great results. 

For Skin Brightening: 

Soak a few strands of saffron in almond or soy milk for around 30 minutes. Add one teaspoon of sandalwood powder to the mixture and apply the pack to your face. Leave it to dry for 15-20 minutes. Wash it away with warm water.  

Multani Mitti (Fuller’s Earth) 

Fuller’s Earth, also known as Multani Mitti, is named after the city of Multan in modern-day Pakistan, where it originated. It has been used in the Indian subcontinent since at least 1879. Besides being well-known for its ability to absorb oil and other impurities, which can make it an efficient face cleanser for oily skin or blocked pores, it is also claimed to have the power to enhance skin tone and complexion, as well as to soften and smooth the skin. 

Fuller's earth is mostly composed of clay minerals with various compositions. Montmorillonite, kaolinite, and attapulgite are common constituents. Other minerals, such as calcite, dolomite, and quartz, may be present in small quantities in fuller's earth deposits. 

It has long been used to absorb dirt and excess oil from skin pores, reducing and tightening them. This also firms your skin, giving it a youthful appearance. Fuller's earth also acts as a skin toner, softening the skin. It is an amazing deep cleaner by acting on the skin's surface and pores of dead skin cells, debris, and oil making your skin look radiant. This process unclogs the pores, allowing creams & serums to be absorbed more quickly into the skin. It is also known to reduce scars and increase skin elasticity.  

Nicky recommends: 

For Exfoliation: 

You will need: a tablespoon of oatmeal, a teaspoon of fuller’s earth and a tablespoon of rose water ( for oily skin) or almond milk (for dry skin). In a mixing bowl, combine the three ingredients to make a coarse paste. Apply the same to your face and leave it on for 10 minutes. Never wait for the pack to fully dry out or it can lead to wrinkles. When it is semi-dry, it is time to wash it off with cold water. Gently scrubbing while washing effectively aids in exfoliation.  

For Reducing Skin Pigmentation: 

You will need a teaspoon each of: Almond milk, honey, lime juice, tomato juice and a tablespoon of Fuller’s earth. Combine all the ingredients to form a paste and apply it over your face and neck. Wait for 10-12 minutes or until it is semi-dry. Wash away with cold water.  

Nesara by Nicky products with Fuller’s Earth: Sunshield Sunscreen 

Turmeric 

Turmeric has been used for approximately 4000 years, dating back to the Vedic culture in India, where it was used as a culinary spice and had religious significance. It is commonly called haldi, a word derived from the Sanskrit word haridra. Turmeric was used by Indians to purify the blood and treat skin issues, in addition to its Ayurvedic purposes. Women in several parts of India would use turmeric paste to remove excess hair and it is still applied to the bride and groom's skin before marriage in some parts of India, where it is thought to make the skin glow and keep harmful bacteria at bay.  

Turmeric has anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and antioxidant properties that can help the skin in a number of different ways. It has been shown to aid in the treatment of eczema, psoriasis, acne, and wound healing. It includes curcumin, an antioxidant that is also anti-inflammatory and helps lighten pigmentation.  

Turmeric aids in the healing and prevention of dry skin, as well as slowing the ageing process. It is used to reduce wrinkles, keep skin supple, and increase elasticity. 

Nicky recommends: 

For Oily Skin: 

Turmeric can be used as a mask and then rinsed away. You will need: Three tablespoons orange juice, one and a half tablespoons sandalwood powder, and a pinch of ground turmeric. Apply this paste to the face. Leave this on for about 10-15 minutes and rinse with lukewarm water. Orange juice contains fruit acid, which helps to remove blemishes, and sandalwood acts as a natural astringent. The turmeric will help regulate the production of sebum; an oily substance produced by the sebaceous glands.  

For Cleansing: 

In equal parts, combine chickpea (or rice) flour and turmeric powder. Store the mixture in an airtight bottle to save time for future treatments. To form a paste, combine a teaspoon of chickpea/turmeric powder with soy milk. Apply to the face evenly and leave on for around 10-15 minutes. Use lukewarm water to remove the mask. 

Nesara by Nicky products with Turmeric: Purging Purity Organic Face Wash, French Flower Artisanal Soap, Black Bamboo Artisanal Soap, Early Earth Artisanal Soap

Sandalwood 

One of our oldest and most valuable resources is sandalwood or what we commonly called chandan, in Hindi. An important export from India, it has a history spanning more than 5000 years. Indian sandalwood is thought to have profound spiritual powers. It was and still is the most often used incense for meditation, prayer, and other spiritual practices across different religions; it is said to bring people closer to the divine by instilling peace and clarifying the mind.  

When it comes to skin, sandalwood has the ability to shield your skin from harsh environmental stressors and pollution. Over time, protected skin remains more nurtured, radiant, and supple. It is medicinal and purifying, and clears your skin from within treating inflammation organically. Its naturally refreshing characteristics soothe and calm the skin. The original sunblock: it forms a protective layer that shields skin from the harsh impacts of the sun. It also protects the skin from damage and preserves a naturally even and bright skin tone. 

Nicky recommends: 

For Removing a Tan: 

Mix two tablespoons of cucumber juice with an equal amount of sandalwood powder and apply it on the affected area. Let it dry and then wash off. You will see results instantly. 

For Oily Skin: 

Take two tablespoons of sandalwood powder and one tablespoon of rose water. Mix them together in a small bowl.  Apply the paste on clean and dry skin.  Allow 10 -15 minutes of application time. After rinsing with lukewarm water, pat dry. 

Nesara by Nicky products with Sandalwood: Purging Purity Organic Face Wash

Disclaimer: We recommend performing a patch test prior to application of any of the above home remedies just to be safe.