Have you ever heard of amla or Indian gooseberry? I know, the first thing that comes to mind is that it’s sour and unpleasant to taste. But, though it may not satisfy your palate, amla is one of the best natural items that can boost your skin’s and hair’s appearance. We will explain just how it does that in this post.
What is Amla?
Amla, or the Indian gooseberry, belongs to the Euphorbiaceae family (1). It is a tree native to India, China, and many tropical areas of Asia. It is considered sacred and is often used in Ayurvedic treatments for a plethora of ailments. When dried and powdered, these berries are used widely for various medicinal purposes. Amla contains many elements and properties that help fight diseases and promote good health.
Amla is abundant in vitamin C, a very effective antioxidant. It also contains antioxidants like tannin and flavonoids (2). These components effectively reduce the number of free radicals in your blood, helping to diminish the oxidative stress in your body. Amla is also rich in minerals and vitamins like calcium, phosphorus, iron, carotene, and vitamin B complex.
How Does Amla Benefit the Skin?
The vitamin C content in amla helps boost collagen production to make your skin supple and soft. It contains antioxidants and anti-aging properties that help reduce wrinkles and facial lines. It helps tighten your skin and gives it an even tone, resulting in a more youthful look. Amla is also a natural exfoliator that can remove dead skin cells and debris. It reduces pigmentation and lightens the skin while adding radiance and brightening your face. Amla is very mild and is suitable for any skin type so that everyone can benefit from it (3) (4).
Trivia – Amla can boost immunity when taken with a pinch of salt. Enriched with Vitamin C, iron, calcium, phosphorous, Amla drink can be considered a complete drink.
How Should I Apply Amla to My Skin?
Amla can be applied to the skin in various ways. Here are a few common methods that you can choose from.
1. Amla Scrub:
Mix 3 teaspoons of amla powder with a teaspoon of tamarind paste. Mix it well and apply it evenly over the face. Next, scrub the paste into your skin in circular motions, starting from inwards and moving outwards. Do this in one area at a time and then leave it to dry. After 10 minutes, rinse it off with warm water and pat dry.
2. Amla Facial:
Mix equal parts of amla powder, honey, and yogurt to form a thick paste. Apply this uniformly on your skin and leave it on for about 20 minutes until it dries. Then, wash it off with warm water and pat dry. This facial can be repeated twice a week and makes your skin clean and smooth.
3. Amla Face Pack:
You can prepare an amla face pack by boiling tea leaves in water and then straining the decoction after it cools down. Then, mix amla powder with it to create a paste. Add a teaspoon of honey and give it a good stir. Apply it on the face and allow it to dry thoroughly. Wash off with warm water and pat dry. This face pack not only firms your face but also reduces acne and other skin problems.
4. Amla Skin Lightening Pack:
To prepare this pack, start by mashing a few pieces of papaya. Mix water and amla powder to form a paste and add it to the papaya. Add a teaspoon of honey and mix. Apply it uniformly on your face and leave it for 15 minutes before washing it off. This paste helps reduce pigmentation and dark circles and makes your skin fairer.
Read Also – How to use Amla for Weight Loss
How Does Amla Benefit the Hair?
Amla has numerous hair benefits. Our ancestors have long used it as a remedy for hair loss, as it enhances hair growth and prevents baldness. Amla nourishes and enriches hair, strengthening its roots and making it thicker and healthier. It also provides luster to dull and dry hair. Amla also boosts hair pigmentation and can help control premature greying. It also provides a moisturizing effect to the scalp, helping control dandruff and other related issues.
How Should I Apply Amla to My Hair?
There are many amla hair oils available in the market. You can massage your hair regularly with any of these oils to get results. You can also use amla powder to make nourishing hair packs at home.
1. Strengthening Pack:
Make a paste with 2 teaspoons of amla powder and 2 teaspoons of warm water. Add a teaspoon of yogurt and a teaspoon of honey to this paste. Apply this paste evenly on your scalp and throughout your hair strands. Allow it to stay for about 30 minutes before you rinse it off thoroughly. You do not need to use shampoo after using this pack.
2. Anti Dandruff Pack:
To prepare this pack, mix 2 teaspoons of amla powder and 1 teaspoon of shikakai powder in a bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of curd and combine to form a paste. Apply this from the roots to the tips and let it soak in for about 15 minutes. Then, rinse it off with a mild shampoo. This pack not only cures dandruff but can also take care of rashes on the scalp. It also acts as a coloring agent by boosting the pigmentation of your hair and fights against hair loss by strengthening your roots.
Some Important Points to Keep in Mind:
- For all herbal packs, whether it is for the hair or skin, regular and consistent use is necessary to achieve results. You must use one pack that suits your requirement for at least 2 months to notice a desirable outcome.
- Amla can dry out your scalp if used too often. This can result in hair fall, flaking, and dandruff. Apply amla on your hair no more than twice a week to prevent this.
- Some people experience an allergic reaction to amla. If you develop redness, itchiness, or any other concerning symptom, discontinue using amla and seek professional help.
- “Phyllanthus emblica” – en.wikipedia.org
- “Chemical and antioxidant evaluation of Indian gooseberry (Emblica officinalis Gaertn., syn. Phyllanthus emblica L.) supplements” – pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
- “Amla Extract for Skin: Why Derms Are Obsessed With This Antioxidant Powerhouse” – byrdie.com
- “Can You Use Amla Powder for Hair Health?” – healthline.com