Festivals

Celebrate a safe and completely natural Holi this year!

Celebrate a safe and completely natural Holi this year! Here are some safety tips to prevent damage to skin, eyes and hair due to chemicals, on the festival of Holi.

Celebrate a safe and completely natural Holi this yearCelebrate a safe and completely natural Holi this year

Holi is the festival of colours that
heralds the arrival of spring that marks the end of winter days and the beginning of summer.  This festival was traditionally celebrated using natural coloured extracts from seasonal herbs. However gradually, synthetic colours and dyes, most of which contain a plethora of dangerous chemicals, have now replaced these natural colours.

It is an irony that we make so much effort all the year around to keep our skin and hair look healthy and beautiful and on Holi, for momentary fun, we abuse our skin so liberally and allow people rub anything on it. “The fun of playing with colours on Holi can turn out to be harmful if care is not taken. This is because of the presence of cheap materials like mica, acids, alkalis, oxidized metals, industrial dyes like chromium iodide, copper sulphate, and Rhodamine b, engine oil, pieces of glass, which not only induce skin disorders like abrasion, irritation, itching but can impair vision, cause respiratory problems, renal failure, skin cancer, and even paralysis. The dangerous side effects of Holi colours can ruin the spirit of the festival,” Says Dr K M Kapoor, Cosmetic Surgeon, Medispa

Here are some tips from Dr K M Kapoor to make your holi enjoyable.
Skin Care: The hazardous chemicals can cause skin discolouration, dermatitis, skin allergy or irritation of mucous membrane. To prevent this:-
-  Use natural/skin friendly and herbal colours or the ones made by reputed companies using natural products.
-Wear clothes that cover the maximum part of your body.
-Apply waterproof sunscreen on all exposed body parts.
- Trim your nail properly .Use a thick coat of nail paint on the nails and put Vaseline under the nail edges.
- After Holi, use warm water and moisturising soap to scrub the colours off. Use a   baby oil to gently massage off the left over colour. Follow this up with lots of moisturiser, especially one that is meant for sensitive skin to correct dryness.   

Eye Care: Eyes are extremely vulnerable to harmful chemicals in colors.  Chemicals in concentrated form can lead to kerato-conjunctivitis and   staining of the cornea. Water balloons can also injure eyeball, especially in children.  To avoid this: -
-Make sure that colours do not get inside your eyes. If a colour comes in contact with the eye, one should immediately wash it with large amounts of water and in case irritation persists, medical aid should be sought immediately.
-Please ensure that your eyes remain protected at all times. You can use sunglasses to protect your eyes from   colour filled balloons or water jets.

Hair care:
-If possible, cover your hair. Make use of hat or caps to protect your hair from being coloured with hard-to-rinse dyes.
-Use hair gel to counter the harmful effects as colours doesn't stick on your hair and can be washed off easily later.   Rinse your   hair with a mild shampoo as early as possible but don’t keep on washing them again and again.   

General Tips:
• Avoid running and jumping on wet floors, you can slip and injure yourself.  Your bones are especially vulnerable.
• Avoid too much indulgence in bhang, alcohol or food to avoid a bad day ahead.
• Do not drive if you are high on alcohol or bhang for your and other road user’s safety.

Buy natural colours
Over the years, the market for Holi products has seen a number of harmful chemical dyes being promoted for use during Holi. A preliminary survey reveals that these clearly mention the names of the chemicals such as Rhodamine and Melachite on the packets and may also carry warnings such as 'For Industrial Use only' or 'Non Edible', and yet are being sold for use at Holi. Lately, new products such as 'Holi cream' and 'Snow sprays' are being marketed. Chemicals such as these may be potentially harmful to the skin and eyes.

Rang Dulaar Natural Holi colours by eCoexist are made out of turmeric and have been lab tested for zero heavy metal content. They provide an income to the women farmers of the Vanastree group in Sirsi, Karnataka and also help the women prisoners of the Yerawada Central Jail in Pune. Nearly 5000 kg of colour has been produced this year including dry and wet colours.
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You can buy natural Holi colours from these places in Bangalore.

Tags: natural holi, natural holi colours, hair care tips for holi, rang dulaar

3 comments

gurinder kahlon Mar 18th, 2011 02:39 PM

What is a plastic surgeon doing advising on skin care? He seems to be doing only skin care. Does he have Parkinsonism? No surgeries?

Motherearth Mar 17th, 2011 09:56 PM

These are available at mother earth stores in Bangalore, Delhi and Mumbai.

Santosh Sharma Mar 17th, 2011 03:07 PM

Excellent article on Holi. This is very good information to avoid any Safety issue on the occasion.....

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