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Significance Of AHA In Skin Care & 5 Effective Natural AHA Face Masks

When it comes to health, the physical and mental aspect is top-notch, but what about the skin?? Doesn't it need to stay healthy as well??

There are several ways to ensure that your body is getting the right nourishment, while the health of your skin mirrors the extent of normal physiological mechanisms that work without being hampered. The right skin care is a huge reality to be dealt with. Skincare, at any age can be downright overwhelming. Your skin is always on the motion to sway depending on your diet, age and other lifestyle choices.  From an Ayurvedic perspective, the skin’s texture and appearance hangs on the body age and biogenic composition.

There are innumerable modules that regulate skin tone, of which one important commodity found abundantly in the market is AHA or Alpha Hydroxy Acid.

Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) is a group of herb and animal based acids that are used in a wide variety of skincare products. The very common citric acid extracted from citrus fruits, lactic acid from soluble milk proteins, glycolic acid from sugar beet are some of the few most common and widely used AHA.

AHA Face Packs for Skin Care

Benefits of AHA

AHA has become an important commodity for its ability to exfoliate skin, promote collagen and blood flow, prevent acne breakouts, brighten your skin and correct pigmentation from scars and blemishes1. Some of the benefits offered by AHA are:

  • Helps in Exfoliation: Exfoliation refers to the shedding of dead tissue. The presence of the same, undertones the skin and nurtures blemishes. Thus, on exfoliation of the dead layer, the skin looks radiant and free of blemishe, the pigmentation disappears, so do the wrinkles and freckles.
  • Promote Collagen Production: Collagen is one among the layers of skin. When the overlying damaged layers are removed it stimulates new collagen cell makeup.
  • Increase Blood flow: AHA has anti-inflammatory properties that increase blood flow by detaching the pale, and dull complexion.
  • Helps to prevent Acne: Acne occurs due to clogged pores on accumulation of dead cells, once they are removed, help to avoid further acne breakouts and increase more product absorption.

While its use has so far been glorified, it is vital to know its optimal requirement ratio for the skin to function optimally, which is a 10% of the total content of the skincare product, for that which is superfluous is an equal evil. Its exuberance results in burning sensation, itching and blisters on the skin.

While we have understood the modern concept of skin maintenance, Ayurveda explains this idea on the basis of age and Prakrithi the body composition. As stated in Ayurveda, the skin categories are broadly divided as; skin for people below teens, those in twenties and those in thirties and above.

  • The under teen category physiologically has Kapha dosha predominance and tends to have a more smooth graceful skin with few or no blemishes.
  • While individuals in the twenties group have predominance of Pitta dosha and result with oily matted skin with acne breakouts, but may be managed with simple techniques such as removing makeup before bed, hydrating your skin, etc.
  • The above thirties group gradually show predominance of Vata dosha producing a dry to patchy skin, it may be regulated with the right use of oil massages.

According to Ayurveda, all the above mentioned fluctuations in skin are totally physiological and the right usage of ayurvedic principles according to your innate body constitution can be used to regulate the skin texture according to your need.

5 Effective AHA Rich Face Masks

Renowned for its elegance in balancing the body’s mind, body and soul, Ayurveda explains to consider a better lifestyle adaptation to protect your skin. Simple techniques like, Expanding your skin care routine by including simple methods of oil massages, avoiding warm long baths and staying away from detergent soup externally, while internally consuming the right food at the right time according to your digestive capacity, can stimulate better body mechanisms and thus a better skin.

Besides these, there are innumerous skin care products based on organic acids, and they can all be made easily at home with a few fresh ingredients from Nature's basket. Individuals with skin lesions, skin hypersensitivity and pregnant women are required to consult your health care provider before applying these masks.

1. Yogurt and Grapefruit Mask

This simple nurturing mask can be made with just two ingredients:

  • Half juiced Grapefruit.
  • Half cup plain unsweetened organic yogurt.

Mix the contents in a bowl and apply a thin layer on the skin and leave it for 10 minutes. Wash and pat dry and Follow with your moisturizer. Vegans may use clay instead of curd.

2. Anti-Aging Wine Mask

Tartaric acid is commonly found in bananas and grapes. This effective mask gives the best anti-aging effects when used regularly. It contains:

  • 2 Tbsp. of red or White wine
  • A handful of organic grapes
  • 1 tbsp. clay
  • Dash of raw honey

Squeeze juice from the grapes and mix all the ingredients in a non-metal bowl. You may add more wine to get a smooth consistency. Apply a thin layer on the face and neck, avoid the eyes. Leave for 10 - 15 min. Wash, pat dry and apply moisturiser.

3. Honey Sugar Mask

Glycolic acid is one of the most rapid exfoliators extracted from sugarcane. It helps sufficiently to show surface regeneration of skin layers. It can be made easily with:

  • Half tsp. of organic sugar
  • Half tsp. of organic honey
  • Juice of half a lime

You want the sugar as fine as possible to avoid extensive scrub action. Combine all the ingredients to a fine paste and apply a thin layer on the skin. Wash with warm water. You may start for 1-2 min and gradually raise it to 10 min. The content of glycolic acid should only be gradually increased as some individuals show sensitivity to the same on long term initial exposure.

4. Milk and Lemon Combo

Citric acid is abundantly found in citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, grapefruits, etc. It is a wonderful source to lighten spots and pigmentations. While lime is also a good source, avoid its use for the masks it may cause dermatitis on sunlight exposure. Use this homemade mask to let your skin absorb some citric acid:

  • 2 Tbsp. fat free organic milk
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Mix the contents together and leave it for a while to curdle. Once, well curdled, the mask may be applied liberally on the skin, it can be left for 20 min. or longer, according to your skin type. Rinse with warm water and then moisturize your skin.

5. Apple Cider Vinegar Peel

Malic acid is usually found in apples. It helps to fight the signs of aging and reduces acne blemishes. It retains moisture and helps to support collagen formation. It includes:

  • 1 Tbsp. unfiltered organic apple cider vinegar
  • Juice of half lemon (Optional)

Mix the contents in a small bowl and apply on the skin with a cotton swab in small circular movements, avoiding the eyes. Tingling sensations are expected. Those who feel burning sensations are advised to dilute apple cider vinegar before use. If burning sensations persist even after application of the same, use moisturizer after washing your face. Do not hesitate to consult your health care practitioner.

Conclusion

If you are on the lookout for effective exfoliators then AHA is a wonderful option. You may also choose daily exfoliating serums, creams or tonner as per your need but do consider to check the content quantities. AHA is one of the most researched subjects as topical application for enhancing skin beauty for their strong effects. If you think you have sensitive skin, get advice from your health care provider before moving on.

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Reviewed By:

Best Ayurvedic Doctor in Mohali - Dr. Vikram Chauhan

Dr. Vikram Chauhan

MD (AYURVEDA)

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