SPACE (vata) normal-dry skin, dull complexion, small pores and fine lines. AIR (vata) dry skin, matte complexion, burns easily and rough. FIRE (pitta) sensitive, burns easily, soft, early wrinkles and skin irritation. WATER (kapha) oily, burns rarely, large pores and few lines. EARTH (kapha) normal-oily skin, burns after long exposure and medium pores.
According to Ayurveda, there are 3 constitutional Doshas (or types) – Vatta, Pitta and Kapha which are present in varying degrees within each person. Keeping these Doshas in balance is the key to the health and wellness of all the systems in the body, including the skin. You will need to understand the predominant dosha in your body to restore balance in the body.
Ayurveda takes a holistic approach to skin care and recognizes that the skin is not separate from the rest of the body. Ayurveda treats the body as a whole and does not treat any skin disorder or ailment singularly. Radiant skin is only an outer indication of balance and health. Our skin is a reflection of what is going on inside and we can’t expect to have beautiful glowing skin unless our diet and lifestyle are in harmony with our constitution. What goes in our bodies shows on our skin.
Skin In Ayurveda
According to Ayurveda, the skin has the amazing ability to cleanse and rejuvenate itself periodically. Every individual has this ability, however, the skin disorders may differ. You may wonder why? Is it just the lifestyle and environmental factors?
Every person is born with skin that is a unique combination of these five elements, Space (akash), Air (vayu), Fire (Tejas), Water(apu), Earth (prithivi) and this combination is the basic prakriti or constitution of that person’s skin. We can be more dominant in one element than the another at different times, it doesn’t remain static, but you will have a more regular tendency towards one.
For example, most people’s skin attains more Vata (Space and Air) during the winter months, and Space and Earth elements can shift from Air to Water more easily in general. Usually, people have two elements that are more dominant than the rest in general. Each element has a role in the structure and health of the skin.
Effects Of Doshas On Our Skin
- Space (vata) reflects the vibration of environmental interaction
- Air(vata) contributes to circulation
- Fire(pitta) give the skin its glow, luster, metabolism and warmth
- Water(kapha) is responsible for moisture balance
- Earth(kapha) forms the basis of skin structure.
You should be able to identify your predominant element and skin condition by reading the list below.
What Is Your Skin Type?
- Normal to dry skin
- Occasionally dull complexion that can sunburn occasionally.
- Thin skin, small pores.
- Several fine lines
Problems are spot dryness and lack of moisture.
- Dry skin
- Matte complexion, burns easily
- Thin skin, invisible pores, fine lines
Problems are skin flakiness and roughness.
- Sensitive skin
- Red undertones, noticeable capillaries, always burns
- Delicate, soft skin, prone to inflammation and early wrinkles
Problems are prone to skin irritation like rash, itch and breakouts.
- Oily or acne-prone skin
- Overall shininess, rarely burns
- Soft skin, some puffiness/water retention, large pores, very few facial lines
Problems are excess oil production, blackhead, whiteheads, acne.
- Normal to Oily skin
- Occasionally shiny. Skin can burn after long exposure
- Smooth, thick skin, medium pores; few wrinkles
Problems are excess oil production in T-zone and blemishes.