Come the new year and it is time for the festivals and celebration. One of our favourite festivals that is right around the corner is Holi! This festival brings family, friends and entire communities together, forgetting everything and shouting "Bura Na Mano, Holi Hai!" But, with the fun and excitement, the dangers of harsh colours can take a toll on our skin and cause a lot of issues like skin allergies, rashes and irritation. This can be such a bummer, especially for women!
Traditionally, people used to play Holi using colours made from flowers and herbs. These not only protected the skin from being damaged but were also of therapeutic value and benefited the skin. With passing years, synthetic colours have replaced these natural colours. This, however, does not mean that you should not play Holi. You should avoid buying these synthetic colours and instead purchase organic or herbal colours. These are not harmful to the skin and you can play Holi, without worrying about those stubborn colours, irritation or rashes.
Synthetic colours contain these ingredients-
- Red colour contains mercuric oxide or sulfide that can cause damage to the nervous system, triggering asthma or allergic reactions.
- Blue colour contains Prussian blue that can cause dermatitis, eye irritation, and even temporary blindness.
- Black colour contains lead oxide, which, if taken in by the body, can cause learning disabilities and damage the vital organs permanently.
- Silver, one of the most dangerous colours contains aluminium bromide, which is again carcinogenic and can cause discolouration, skin allergies, and irritation to the mucous membranes.
- Yellow contains chromium iodide and auramine which can cause bronchial ailments if inhaled.
- Purple also contains chromium iodide. It can cause respiratory problems.
- Pink colour also contains Rhodamine B, which is highly carcinogenic.
These colours are highly structured polymers which make it difficult for them to decompose biologically. You can avoid buying these artificial colours and instead buy herbal colours. These are made up of natural ingredients like flowers and other herbs. These herbal colours are non-toxic, eco-friendly and suitable for any skin type.
You can also make these herbal colours at home, using ingredients available at home and in the market. These colours are harmless, can easily be washed away and are completely safe for children.
- To make a dry green colour, you can use Mehndi/henna powder and mix it with some amount of flour. This will give you a lovely green shade. Make sure that you use pure mehndi and not the one mixed with amla as that will leave you with a bit of a brownish shade. It can also become a pucca colour when mixed with water.
- For yellow colour, turmeric is the go-to ingredient! You can mix it with some besan and the combo is so healthy for the skin, you don't have to worry at all! You can also use marigold flower or yellow chrysanthemums to get a nice, dry yellow shade.
- For red colour, you can use red hibiscus. Crush it to make it in a powder form and add some flour to increase the volume. Red sandalwood powder can also be used.
- For orange colour, you can use sandalwood powder. Saffron can also be used, but it is a less feasible option because it's expensive.
- Boil tea or coffee in water and you'll get a nice brown colour.
Some other tips to follow during Holi are as follows
- Make sure that you wear full sleeve clothes as it will prevent most of the colour from directly sticking to your skin.
- Apply waterproof sunscreen on your face and neck to protect your skin from UV Rays.
- Apply a moisturizing lip balm to protect your lips from any kind of damage.
- Before you start using colours, rub cold cream or coconut oil on your body. This will help remove those colours easily post-holi.
- When removing colours, do not rub your skin vigorously. It might damage your skin. So gently try and remove the colour. You can use a mixture of gram powder with milk to remove traces of the colour. For those with acne, use an antibiotic gel to wash your face.
- Do not forget to apply moisturizer after the bath.
Natural colours are safe and have a curative effect on the skin, so it's time to ditch those chemicals-filled harsh colours and be considerate of your health as well as the environment. This Holi, switch to herbal colours and have a safe and fun-filled day!