BIY: Turmeric Face Mask Goes Vegan
Bye, acne. Hello, glow.
The story goes that in Hindu tradition, a couple days before her wedding, an Indian bride slathers on turmeric from head to toe to achieve ethereal radiance for her big day. Modern adaptation of this long-held practice known as haldi has made the spice a golden child of DIY skincare, but the ingredient is more than just a beauty trend. Turmeric is believed to cleanse and protect the body and soul, and applying the haldi paste (typically made with turmeric, rosewater and sandalwood powder) is meant to bring infinite blessings to the bride and groom.
The ceremonial significance is part of what makes turmeric so special, and it’s also a reminder that skin care as a ritual can go beyond the skin’s surface and be a conduit for living a beautiful life. Externally, it’s true that the yellow spice is abundant in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that can slow cell damage and alleviate acne, dryness and redness.
The most basic incarnation of the turmeric glow mask involves mixing the spice with plain yogurt and honey to exfoliate and treat breakouts—and it really works. But experimenting with bringing the recipe a little closer to the original haldi paste transforms the simple mask into a deluxe vegan-friendly version with even richer beauty benefits.
Swap out the yogurt for coconut milk as a base. Coconut milk boasts lauric acid, a fatty acid that prevents pimples with its antimicrobial properties, along with acne-fighting zinc and vitamin C to diminish spots and hyperpigmentation. Sandalwood essential oil and maple syrup boost the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant power. Tip: Grade B maple syrup has even more antioxidants than Grade A. Throw a little rosewater in the mix for good measure and to calm the skin.
Note: Those with fair skin may see a residual yellow tint on the skin after rinsing off the mask. If this is the case, wash the face with an oil cleanser or mild water–based cleanser, then follow up with moisturizer.
Combine ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.
Apply all over the face and leave on for 20 minutes.
Rinse off and follow up with moisturizer.