Ramadan is one of the best times to detox and take a break from chemical-laden cosmetics which may cause our skin more harm than good.
Follow these tips to ensure your skin remains supple, healthy and glowing throughout – and in time for Eid.
Drink enough fluids during non-fasting hours
With the soaring temperatures of the summer heat, particularly in the Middle East, it is vital to drink as much water possible – up to two litres during non-fasting hours to hydrate your skin. Avoid tea, coffee and sugary drinks that can be dehydrating. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables that contain plenty of water to help combat dehydration and aid digestion.
There is probably no better time to quit smoking than during Ramadan. Smoking is bad for your health and for your skin, too. It causes early ageing, uneven skin tone, broken capillaries and collagen and elastin damage, which in turn leads to sagging skin, hair loss, and damage to gums and teeth – none of which enhances your beauty in any way.
Eat well for a healthy complexion
What you eat during Suhoor and Iftar is important for your skin, so plan these meals carefully. Oily and fried food or sugar-laden sweets can make your skin over-oily and prone to acne. Your diet during Ramadan should be similar to your usual diet, and should be as simple as possible. Here, too, fruits are highly beneficial as they help fight constipation due to changes in your eating schedule and possibly reduced physical activity.
Nutritionists advise us to eat foods rich in vitamin C and A to help the body produce collagen. Also include nuts, plant-based oils, meat and fish in your diet as they are all rich in omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, which will help lower your risk of suffering from chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, and cancer. Vitamin B complex is also vital for great skin – especially vitamin B2 or riboflavin which will help your skin to glow. It’s also a good idea to consume foods rich in vitamin E and zinc to help repair skin damage and keep skin soft and supple. Foods rich in iron also help improve your skin tone.
Maintain an exercise routine
Change the timing of your exercise routine to after Iftar to maintain your physical health, tone your body and stay in shape. Exercising helps release excess salt via sweat and makes you feel more energetic – plus it puts a glow on your skin.
Protect your skin from sun damage
If you live in the Middle East, it’s best to wear light cotton clothes and cover up your head to avoid heat stroke and heat rashes. And, regardless of where you live, there are ample UVA protection sun block creams available that you should apply when going outdoors to avoid help protect against photo-ageing, sun burns and skin cancer.
Hydrate your skin regularly
Use appropriate moisturisers while fasting to keep skin hydrated and supple. Pay attention to your T-zones and any dry areas; this will help avoid flaky skin. Make sure to use a facial mask at least once a week to keep your skin hydrated. Applying a light moisturiser before sleeping is also good.
Use henna products
Use henna products to further enhance your skin. There are many beautiful henna designs for the hands and feet. During Ramadan and Eid, when most cosmetics cannot be used, henna comes to the rescue and it lasts longer on hair, nails and other parts of the body than regular commercial cosmetics.