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Holi is the festival to be merry and have fun. But the festivities leave a mark on your skin and hair. Most of the colours that you buy from the market has chemicals and it can adversely affect your skin and hair. By making your own natural colours for Holi, you can open your doors to nature and be safe from the harmful effects of chemicals. The dry "Gulal" and the wet colours of today contain many chemicals, which can irritate the skin and scalp, causing allergies and dermatitis. On the other hand, natural ingredients like turmeric, red sandalwood, maize, gram flour, as well has many flowers can be used to obtain natural colours. These ingredients are not only safe, but have many beneficial properties. Some have antiseptic and germicidal properties, while others help to soften and tone the skin.
Natural ingredients can be used for both dry and wet colour. If you want to play a wet Holi, here are some secrets that you can use to create your own herbal coloured water.
Simmer Tesu flowers in water. Leave overnight. Strain and use the water to play Holi. Tesu flowers leave a yellow colour. The botanical name of Tesu is Butea monosperma.
Boil beetroot in water. This leaves a bright magenta colour. Cool and use the water. Or extract beetroot juice, add a little water and then use it.
You can use the red Semul flower petals for red coloured water. Just soak the flower petals overnight in water. You can also boil the peels of red pomegranate in water for red colour.
FOR A DRY HOLI
You can make dry Holi gulal also just sitting at home. Here are a few tips.
Henna powder can be mixed with gram flour (besan) or maize flour (makka) and used as dry green colour. You can also finely powder the dry leaves of Gulmohur and use it as green colour.
Turmeric (haldi) can be used both as dry and wet colour. Turmeric can be mixed with gram flour for dry colour. Or, it can be added to water and boiled. Leave overnight and then use.
Red sandalwood powder can be used both dry and wet colour.
Try these recipes this year and make your Holi special and vibrant. If you make your own colours, you will be able to keep your skin and hair safe from the chemicals found in the colour that you purchase from the market.
(This article is authored by Shahnaz Husain, a Padma Shri Award recipient and pioneer of the Ayurvedic beauty movement and the head of a global network of franchise ventures and 375 formulations.)
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