By Bipin Sharma
Pioneer of Organic Beauty care and Ayurveda, Shahnaz Husain loves celebrating Holi, the festival of colours. Like every year, her emphasis this year too has been on educating people to play a safe and healthy Holi.
Since the past many years, Shahnaz has vociferously been crusading to propagate the concept of an ‘Ayurvedic Holi’ which not just ensures the safety aspect, but also proffers the wonders of plant power. The reason why her company’s herbal based Gulal enjoys huge popularity in the market is because it is constituted of herb and floral extracts like turmeric, marigold, rose petals, rattanjot, henna, red sandalwood powder, maize powder and gram flour.
The Shahnaz Husain Ayurvedic Holi Kit is endowed with the healing power of the herbs, and includes flower power, white water lily cell, replenishing rehydrant lotion, Shacleanse Plus, Shahenna Plus Hair cleanser and nano Sunscreen Gel SPF 20.
Says Shahnaz, “Since time immemorial, vegetable dyes and natural ingredients have been put to optimum use for preparing colours for Holi. They were considered not just safe, but in fact, preparing the colours with them became an integral part of the festival. Ayurvedic texts were followed for preparing these Holi colours of ancient India. Herbs, flowers, plants and grains were used, and these colours possessed no chemical constituents. “Tesu” flowers were boiled in water to obtain a fragrant, yellow coloured liquid. It had medicinal properties and helped in preventing skin problems. Similarly, colours were obtained from red “palash” flowers, henna, marigold, turmeric, pomegranate peels, beetroot, ratanjot, rose petals, red sandalwood, maize powder and “besan. It is distressing that the dry colours in the present day scenario contain chemicals, like mica, silica and even lead. On the other hand, water colours contain toxins like lead oxide, copper sulphate, aluminium, mercury, etc. These irritate the skin and scalp, causing allergies and dermatitis. Year after year, my advice for Holi remains unchanged, that of educating and motivating people to make simple, natural colours at home and to encourage them for celebrating an ‘Ayurvedic Holi’ with the goodness of plant power. I have always celebrated Natural Herbal Holi with my staff and friends at my home in New Delhi. The Kit comprises Shamla Plus (Hair Cleanser normal to Dry Hair), Shamoist Plus (intensive moisturizing milk), Tulsi-Neem Face Wash, Professional Power Nourishing Cream, Professional Power Bio-hydrating Cleanser and Herbal Gulal. There has been a marked rise in the number of people celebrating Holi the Ayurvedic way in the last two years or so in the capital city. People duly realize the benefits of the plant power which is why see them opting for the herbal colours.”