New Delhi: The most vibrant and colourful time of the year is finally here. A festive mood fills the air as people across the country get set for Holi celebrations. Enjoyed with water and gulaal (colour), the festival of colours adds dollops of fun in our otherwise mundane routine.
But the fun must be tempered with caution because synthetic colours contain harmful chemicals that penetrate deep within your skin and hair. Toxic colours can seriously harm them. Therefore be careful with such colours.
IANSlife speaks to experts to help you protect your skin and hair before the riot of colours sets in.
Experts at Urban Company share pre-Holi haircare guide:
Get rid of the split ends: Often used during Rangwali Holi, synthetic colours are known for their drying effect. With split ends, your hair becomes excessively prone to dryness, leading to further damage. To maintain the quality of your hair, it’s best to get rid of split ends right before the festivities.
Wash your hair: One may wonder — how does washing hair even before getting dirty make sense? Yet, it does! Cleansing your scalp properly before giving it a protective shield to deal with harsh chemicals is the right approach to pre-Holi haircare. Wash your hair properly and make sure you condition it as well, the night before Holi. For better results, you can even apply a leave-in conditioner before playing Holi.
Oil Massage: Ensure your hair is deeply oiled before stepping outside the house to play with colours. It prevents the colours from penetrating the hair shaft and in minimising hair breakage when you wash your hair later. You can use any basic oil (coconut, olive or mustard) and massage your scalp thoroughly to form a protective layer on your hair.
Cover your hair: Never step outside during Holi without covering your head. After the oiling process is done, cover your hair with a cap, scarf or even a bandana. Also, open hair is a big no! It soaks all the colours, which are harmful to the scalp. Tie your hair into a ponytail or make a bun.
Comb your hair: After playing with colours for hours together, don’t rush to wash your hair. Comb it first. Combing and brushing hair before washing allows you to get rid of dry colours, making it easier to clean later. Of course, this works only for dry colours.
Head Wash: Washing your hair is a must after indulging in an hours-long water barrage of colours. Begin by rinsing your hair with plain water, then apply a mild organic shampoo to wash off the colours from the scalp. Do not massage your scalp harshly to get rid of all the colours in the first wash. Else you will end up with a headache afterwards. Instead, use your fingertips to gently massage your scalp, making small circular movements, which will help you get rid of the colours and also leave you feeling relaxed after the shower. Moreover, be certain to use a deep conditioner after shampooing and rinse it well. You can also apply a hair serum, as soon as your hair dries.
Hair Mask: The post-Holi haircare routine is all about pampering your hair with extra love and care. Use a good hair mask after two to three days. This will nourish your hair, helping it recover from the damage caused by harsh chemicals in the colours. Prepared with ingredients such as lemon, eggs, yoghurt and amla, a hair mask is most helpful in giving your tresses a fresh bounce.
Hair Spa: Colours often damage the hair, making them harsh and increasing hair fall. A good hair spa should be mandatory after Holi. Depending on your hair type, get a customised hair spa treatment to restore lost moisture and make your tresses frizz-free and manageable. A hair spa is an ideal 360-degree cure for all your post-Holi hair woes.
Wash your face with a hydrating face wash: No soap, but face wash is the right product here. Soaps tend to steal the moisture from your skin, and application of any cream oil afterwards is quickly absorbed by the skin, leaving no protective layer outside. Using all-natural face wash is the key. They leave behind super hydrated skin. Use of ingredients, such as CinnamomumTamala (Tejpatra oil), Earth Marine Water, mint, Decyl glucoside, Aqua and Glycerin, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glyceryl Laurate, (natural) Vanilla Oil and more are preferred for skin nourishment.
Tone well before applying a deep-nourishing moisturiser: Face toning is a clutch part of this routine to ensure an optimum moisture level in the skin. It is recommended to use natural products such as creme or oils such as Argan oil for protection. It can help create a strong foundation for creams to build a strong protection layer.
Covering under-eye skin: Protect the thin skin around the eye with a top-rated Plant Powered (natural) Under Eye Recovery Gel.
Lip balm for lip protection: The most ignored part on our face in any beauty routine are the lips. The ill-effect of harmful colours can damage the sensitive skin of your lips. You can use any plant-based lip balm made with natural ingredients such as rose, calendula, ginger lemon and more.
For people on the go, simply slip a packet or two of Origami’s Wet Wipes into your back pocket, your bag or place in your car — these easy-to-carry, soft wipes are a blessing in their colourful guises and come in four refreshing fragrances: rose and cologne for those who love a more robust scent, and lemon and aloe vera for subtler and delicate noses.
Experts at Urban Company shares more:
Do not use Soaps and Face washes
The chemicals in the colours already play their part in robbing moisture off your skin. Using drugstore soaps and face washes that are largely laced with chemicals can further rip off the natural alkaline level of your skin. Instead, opt for an organic soap or other gentle cleaning products for your skin to restore the skin. One should also refrain from scrubbing their face right after playing with colours. Our skin tends to be excessively sensitive after coming in contact with the chemicals, and it will not be able to handle any more harsh treatments.
Use Oil to Remove Colours
Time and again, olive oil has proven beneficial for skin, hair, and provides overall health benefits. The extremely mild nature of olive oil can help get rid of any residual colour on your skin. Pour a few drops of olive oil onto a ball of cotton, and wipe the colours gently off your skin after Holi.
Pamper your Skin a little Extra
After all the cleaning to get rid of the colour, it is only if your skin is exhausted at the end of the day. Give it some extra love and care by applying natural face masks and face packs. You can also try using uptans made from easily available ingredients like curd and besan (gram flour), or rose water, sandalwood and turmeric. The healing effect of the natural ingredients will give your skin much-needed comfort after a rough day, and will also help restore the natural balance.