Life is found in layers
Ayurveda describes seven distinct layers of the skin, each with its own structure and function. Each layer provides support to the layers above it. The skin as a whole is able to perform its overall functions effectively when all the layers are healthy and balanced.
This is the outermost layer. It is the source of complexion and reflects the quality of the Rasa Dhatu (nutrient fluid, the first of the seven tissues of the body). It also indicates whether the physiology as a whole is balanced or imbalanced, and whether there is inner health or disorder. The avabhasini layer also reflects the aura of the individual-if there is inner bliss, it shows on this layer. It does not have its own colour: it reflects the colours of the inner layers. Internal and external re-hydration and regular massage supports the health and appearance of the avabhasini layer of the skin.
This layer supports the outermost layer. It indicates the quality of Rakta Dhatu (blood). If there is ama (impurities) in the blood, it impacts the aura of the outer layer and accentuates sensitivity to the sun. The colour of this layer resembles molten iron.
This is a white layer, and it provides balance to skin colour, lightening the darker colours of the inner layers.
This layer nurtures the upper layers of the skin. It supports the immune system. This is the layer that helps the skin perform its function of being a "barrier. Skin infections reflect an imbalance in this layer. It is copper-coloured.
This fifth layer sensually links the skin to the rest of the body. It is the centre for transformation of sensation-feeling of pain, for example.
This layer supports healing and regeneration. Imbalance in this layer retards healing and the disappearance of scars over time. A balanced diet, rich in nutritional value, supports the Rohini layer. Mamsadhara
This innermost layer is the platform for the skin's stability and firmness. When this layer is in balance, the skin looks young and supple. A skin product that has a vayasthapana effect nourishes this layer to help retard the aging process.
Skin health: the Ayurvedic perspective
A number of factors determine skin health and youthfulness. These include proper moisture balance (Kapha in balance), effective functioning of the metabolic mechanisms that coordinate all the various chemical and hormonal reactions of the skin (Pitta in balance), and efficient circulation of blood and nutrients to the different layers of the skin (Vata in balance).
Furthermore, the health of three types of body tissue are especially reflected in the skin: nutritional fluid, blood and muscle. The nutrient fluid "feeds" all of the body's tissues and keeps the skin healthy; blood is associated with liver function and purifies the skin; and muscle provides skin firmness.
Waste products of the body tissues are also involved in skin health. For instance, sweat, the waste-product of fat production, helps to purify and refine the skin.
Ojas - the most refined and beneficial by-product of good digestion
Following the advice and daily routine of Maharishi Ayurveda supports the health of the skin from every angle, contributing to the well being of every layer, and produces a substance described in Ayurvedic texts as ojas.
A glowing skin denotes an abundance of ojas, said to be the most important biochemical substance mediating the influence of consciousness on the body, and giving, immune strength, contentment and good digestion.
12 Maharishi Ayurveda Skin Care Tips
1. Bed by 10 - Peace at Night aroma oil on head and soles of feet
2. Early morning drink - 10-minute boiled water
3. Body massage - Sesame oil, Vata Massage oil
4. Bath/shower - Vata/Pitta/Kapha soap / shampoo
5. Yoga asanas, pranayama, meditation
6. Fresh organic food - Vata/Pitta/Kapha churnas
7. Good eating habits - main meal at midday
8. Good digestion - Herbal Digest, Digest Plus
9. Reduce metabolic impurities - Sip warm/hot water every 20 mins
10. Fresh air and sunlight - 20 minute brisk walk
11. Neutralise free radicals - Maharishi Amrit Kalash antioxidant
12. Herbal support for skin (all 7 layers) - Radiant Skin tablets