‘It’s time we return to Ayurveda’

Shahnaz Husain, who received international acclaim for pioneering the Herbal beauty care movement and taking the Indian herbal heritage of Ayurveda worldwide, shares her experience.

It is due to the medicinal properties of Ayurvedic ingredients that I have promoted our ancient system of herbal healing throughout the world. At a time when the modern world is staggering under the side effects of chemicals, Ayurveda is the only alternative.

Seeing the damage caused by chemicals, I embraced Ayurveda and made it relevant to modern cosmetic care and cures. Innovation has been the basis of our formulations. For instance, we made the Chemoline range to alleviate the effects of chemotherapy and radiation on the skin and hair. An article I read on cancer and the side effects of chemotherapy had a deep impact on me. It said that cancer cases are expected to surge in the next 25 years. Chemotherapy, the treatment given for cancer, has several side-effects and one of the most visible and distressing is hair loss and skin problems, like skin sensitivity and pigmentation. This happens because chemotherapy does not target only cancer cells, but affects other cells of the body. The hair follicles also get affected and so does the skin. In most cases, the hair comes out in clumps.

It was the extreme distress of cancer patients due to hair loss and skin problems that prompted me to start working on Ayurvedic ingredients, known for their powerful healing properties. They actually help to set up a healing process in the body and also help to calm the nerves and reduce stress. Our Chemoline Scalp tonic draws upon the soothing and healing properties of ingredients like amla, manjishtha, hibiscus, brahmi, trifala and fenugreek seeds, which have a gentle, cooling effect on the scalp and promote blood circulation to the hair follicles. This restores the natural balances and helps the absorption of nutrients, thus checking hair loss and promoting healthy hair growth.

Brahmi, for instance, helps to reduce stress-related conditions. We worked on ingredients that help to soothe skin and scalp sensitivity. With the skin, there are problems like dryness, moisture depletion, redness, itching, peeling, allergic rashes or hives. The Chemoline skin cream contains plant oils and extracts, like aloe vera juice, date, chironji, along with wheatgerm oil, argan oil and almond oil which heal, soothe and nourish the skin. 

In my long experience of treating hair loss, including Alopecia, I have found Ayurvedic ingredients extremely useful, due to their powerful healing properties. They not only help to aid the removal of toxins and stimulate hair growth, but many of these herbs have been known to calm the nerves and reduce stress. They also contain vitamins, minerals, enzymes and other valuable substances, which are imperative for hair health. Brahmi helps in treating stress-related hair problems, while herbs like Bhringaraj and Manjishtha have powerful tonic properties. Amla is the richest source of Vitamin C and also helps to restore the ideal balance. Trifala, a combination of three herbs, is known to promote hair growth and is one of the important ingredients of our specialized hair tonic. Plant ingredients and natural substances do not harm the structure of the hair. In fact, they help to strengthen the hair.

As part of our CSR activities, we have sent Chemoline products free of  cost to cancer hospitals, like Sloan Kettering, Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute and Research Centre, Dharamshila Cancer Hospital, MNJ Cancer Hospital, Tata Memorial, etc.

We have also become known for our therapeutic products and treatments for specific skin and hair problems like acne, pigmentation, premature ageing, scars, dandruff, hair damage, hair loss / alopecia, etc. The Ayurvedic ingredients that we use not only have specific curative properties, but have no harmful after-effects. In fact, many of them help to soothe the skin and cure inflammatory conditions. Therefore, we must return to Ayurveda, because our future lies in turning the time clock back to natural living. India will lead the international cosmetic world over the next decade with the plant power of Ayurveda.

Shahnaz Husain has received international acclaim for pioneering the Herbal Beauty Care movement

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