It’s colourful, it’s vibrant, and it’s every shade of awesome! Yes, you guessed right. Holi is here. As we guzzle chilled glasses of flavoured milk, dance to loud Bollywood music, and drench our counterparts in every colour there is, the arrival of spring is celebrated with much fanfare and laughter. And while we enjoy the unabashed revelry, our skin is often at the receiving end. Thankfully, we come bearing great news, because we have some expert-recommended pre and post Holi skincare to keep your skin safe and protected from the onslaught on colours and unrestricted fun.
While you’re up and ready to indulge in boisterous playfulness and loads of colour, here’s what you need to keep in mind to save your skin from the toxic wrath. Colours used during Holi are harmful as most of them contain chemicals that can cause rashes or acne outbursts. The most-loved Gulal and other powdered colours can lead to allergic reactions, especially on dry skin.
“This skin type is always prone to skin irritations and allergies”, says Dr. Vidya T. S., Consultant Dermatologist and Cosmetologist. She also warns us to avoid metallic colours, which are more harmful.
To reduce the chances of allergies, you need to take precautions before you head to the colourful smear party. And Dr. Vidya has an effective solution to this. “Keep your skin hydrated and moisturized, so that you do not develop any allergies”, she says. Another genius trick is to apply oil before you step out to celebrate. Dr. Vidya says, “Oils like Sunflower Oil and Olive Oil also help act as a barrier before applying Holi colours. Barrier creams which contain Zinc Oxide help a lot to protect your skin”.
She also emphasizes that if you have any skin infections, avoid applying Holi colours so as to prevent allergies and reactions. If you cannot avoid this, she suggests applying an antibiotic cream or any bland barrier cream to the infected area to protect from accidental contact with the colours.
Bonus BB tips
- If you can get hold of safe herbal colours, use them. You can also make homemade Holi colours with easily available ingredients like turmeric, beetroot, henna, hibiscus flowers and coffee powder, to name a few.
- While we don’t want to rob you of the joy of being soaked in hues of reds, pinks, blues, and greens, we suggest a simple solution to close your pores. Applying ice cubes wrapped in a muslin cloth works like a charm. This helps in closing pores, thus preventing toxic colours from infiltrating the outer layer of your skin.
- Slather a generous amount of oil on your face, and definitely don’t forget to oil your hair. For your lips, you can use Vaseline or Petroleum Jelly. Ensure that your fingers, between the fingers, ears and behind the ears, fingertips and nails are fully protected with this layer of oil.
- You can protect your nails from being colour-stained by applying a coat of transparent nail varnish.
- Take care of cuts and injuries, if any. Dress your wound with a waterproof bandage before going out to play.
- As you are going to be out in the hot sun for long, don’t forget your sunscreen. Check whether it is waterproof, else all the sunscreen will wash away.
- When the sun is hot and overhead, take care of your eyes. Ideally, sunglasses will protect your eyes not only from the sun but also from the damaging Holi colours.
- Stay hydrated, in the fun of playing Holi, we often forget to hydrate ourselves and drink water. Keep sipping water along the way. The heat can be harsh.
- If you have sensitive skin, don’t forget to consult your dermatologist for precautionary measures.
Post Holi skincare
Now that you’ve had your share of fun, it’s time to pamper your skin with some much-needed love and care to help it heal from the aftermath of the revelry.
If the colours you’ve used are not organic or natural, chances are that they may quite tough to take off. “Do not scrub too hard to remove the Holi colours as that can damage your skin and cause irritations and rashes”, Dr. Vidya warns. She also calls attention to the fact that metallic colours may not go in the first wash itself. She urges us to apply a moisturizer liberally, after washing, to avoid dryness. Another very important tip Dr. Vidya shares is to always apply sunscreen while going out in order to avoid photoreaction with the Holi colours.
If you are prone to skin infections, Dr. Vidya recommends washing thoroughly with soap and water after exposure, and immediately applying an antibiotic cream.
Bonus BB tips
- Post Holi celebrations, treat your skin to a CTM routine. Cleanse-Tone-Moisturize to rejuvenate your skin.
- Slather your skin with tomato juice to help reduce the suntans and burns.
- You can also dip cotton in Coconut Oil to remove the colour.
- You can also try this simple homemade face pack. Mash one ripe banana, add milk and honey in equal measures. Apply generously over your face, allow it to dry and wash off with cold water. Don’t forget to moisturize.
- It’s best to avoid body scrubs, exfoliators, or bath salts for at least 48 hours after playing Holi. These can aggravate the skin.
- Don’t shower in extremely hot water.
- Keep your skin free of makeup and other chemical treatments for a few days. It’s best to let your skin heal and breathe.
- Avoid waxing, bleaching, shaving or any facial treatments for a while.
- If you experience any breakouts, rashes or allergies, consult your dermatologist at the earliest.
There you have it. Follow these handy tips and your skin will thank you. A little effort goes a long way in keeping your skin healthy and happy. Enjoy the festival. Indulge yourself. Make merry. May the colours of Holi fill the canvas of your life with joy, happiness, laughter and love.
Here’s wishing all of you a vibrant and happy Holi!