The plain old coconut oil does not have much nutritive benefits. Thus, the coconut oil is upgraded by adding many Ayurvedic ingredients to improve the hair health and reduce all sorts of hair problems. All the ingredients used like Bringraj, manjistha, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves, hibiscus flowers are known as Rasayana, meaning rejuvenating ingredients which help to nourish your hair.
But something not everyone knows is that shampoo was in fact originated in India, and is derived from the word, ‘ champo’ in Hindi, meaning to massage. Traditionally, a shampoo is made by boiling saponin-rich soapberries or soapnuts with various herbs and fruits to get a lathery liquid that is used to rinse the hair along with various health benefits. This has been exploited by the industries and alternated with harmful chemicals to counter the high cost of using natural ingredients. Therefore, rinsing your already brittle hair with a fragrant mixture of Diethanolamine (DEA), Sodium Lauryl Sulfate(SLS), DMDM hydantoin, Diazolidinyl urea and whatnot, can be less appealing indeed. Not to forget the number of dolphins and whales they are killing in the name of lustrous hair.
Now, the cosmetic industry cannot be closed overnight. But something we can do is to substitute the chemical-based Shampoo with the traditional plant-based ones, with actual health benefits and of course, happy dolphins. So, here are a set of homemade shampoos my grandmother had been using during her prime days.
Maddhu or aati payasam is made from the leaves of maddhu soppu or Justicia wynaadensis leaves, a medicinal plant, endemic to the Western Ghats. This plant grows in the shades of the Kodagu belt and has many medicinal properties. Traditionally, it is believed that this plant, if cooked on the 18th day after the onset of Aati thinga, has 18 types of medicines. It can be cooked any other time though. Let’s get on to the recipe, shall we?
Having a history of more than 5,000 years, kajal is an adornment worn by babies and old women alike. It is a black dye obtained from the soot of the lamp-lit by ghee, which is mixed with butter or oil and applied to the eyes. It gives a sharp and mysterious look to one’s eyes and has numerous health benefits, if organic. Kajal of course is commercialized and the lead used in the chemical ones can be pretty harmful to the eyes. Which completely contradicts its purpose.
Nevertheless, an organic kajal has many health benefits and equally different methods of preparation. Let us learn about one such method, which involves a key ingredient, i.e., Honagane or sessile joyweed ( Alternanthera sessilis ).
Colocasia. This miracle vegetable is a zero-waste, edible from head to toe prodigy. It has various delicacies revolving around it by utilizing its leaves, stems, roots, and also its tuber. It is of many types, black colocasia ( black stem elephant ears), pathrode leaves, white colocasia ( Taro ) etc,.
This recipe specifically calls for the black colocasia. This is a purple stemmed Colocasia found near marshy areas and is a perennial plant. As a cuisine, the young leaves and the stems of this taro is used. The vegetable alone can be very itchy during preparation. If the itchiness is intolerable, some tamarind juice or black vinegar ( something mildly acidic) can be applied. It’s an excellent source of fibre and has many health benefits. Let’s get onto the recipe, shall we?
Irrespective of the generation, the era, or the presence or absence of beauty pageants, the woman always wants to look pretty. The only difference is that my grandma had a slight gruesome method for beautification compared to my stick of Lakme colossal kajal. ” A species of small bat’s blood was used to make Kajal.