I've always had really oily skin & face wash was my best friend closely followed by multani mitti. Anything that helped take the oil off was good. Eventually I noticed my skin was getting rather dull due to overuse of face wash. From about 2 years I've been using cleansing grains to wash my face & I have to say it's a change for the better. My skin has never looked better. I still use face wash but only once in a day. I think the humidity & pollution in India is too strong to just be handled by cleansing grains. Also if you wear sunscreen & makeup, cleansing grains can't take it off. I highly recommend using cleansing grains the rest of the time, when you just have a layer of night cream or so.
These are the cleansing grains I use. There are plenty of others like basic besan, haldi & sandal. But EVERYBODY & their cousins know of them.
1. Powdered oats- I never liked eating oats for breakfast but it does work wonders for my skin. Just grind regular oats to get a fine powder. Add a little water & let it rest for a minute. Mix it to form a gooey paste & apply on your wet face. Massage in circular motions & wash off.
WARNING : Oats are a particularly clingy grain. You need to wash really, really well to get rid of them. Also if they get stuck in your hair, it'll be a nightmare to get rid of. I always use a headband while washing my face so I don't end up with oats all along my hairline.
Even with these cons, I recommend oats because it's incredibly soothing on the skin & it fades red acne marks too.
2. Masoor Dal & Peanuts- This is fairly easy to prepare. For every tablespoon of masoor dal add a teaspoon of peanuts & grind till it becomes a smooth powder. Mix with little water, make a paste & cleanse your wet face with this. This is slightly grittier than oatmeal so I don't recommend using a scrub while using this as cleanser. This will brighten your face almost instantly.
3. Traditional Sunni Pindi- This is used by all the aunties & grannies for flawless skin. It's so safe that its even used for bathing babies. This one's the most complicated of the lot but is well worth the effort. I made mine almost a year back & it still smells fresh and hasn't spoilt. It can even be used as an ubtan but I like it more as a face cleanser.
Rice flour 100 gm
Besan 100 gm
Green gram (powdered) 100 gm
Rose Petal Powder 20 gm
Lemon Peel Powder 20 gm
Neem Leaf Powder 20 gm
Sandal Wood Powder 10 gm
Kasturi Turmeric 20 gm
Regular Turmeric 5 gm
Vetiver 20 gm
Liquorice 20 gm
Sugandha Kachuralu 20 gm
Bavanchalu 20 gm
Camphor 5 flakes
Powder all ingredients & sift with a sieve. Repeat. Mix everything really well & store in airtight container.
P.S : I couldn't find Lemon Peel Powder anywhere, so substituted with Orange Peel Powder. Vetiver & Liquorice are available at Ayurvedic Stores.
Sugandha Kachuralu, Bavanchalu are available at stores selling Pooja items. These are the Telugu names ( I got the recipe from my Telugu speaking neighbour), I have no idea what it's called in English.
4. Patanjali Body Ubtan
INR 60 for 100 gm
I know it's sold as a body ubtan but I like using it as a face wash. This one smells amazing. If you can't be bothered with finding & grinding a dozen different ingredients, go for this. Mix with a little water & apply onto the face. It's super smooth in texture & fabulous value for money.
Which natural cleansing grains do you use?