In the fall, the air gets crisper and the wind can pick up, making it important to protect your skin and body. You may find yourself craving less coconut water and more hot teas and elixirs to feel balanced, as well as hot, nourishing meals you may have largely avoided in the summer.
From an energetic standpoint, it’s important to take measures to feel grounded as Vata, the air-based element in Ayurvedic medicine, dominates the fall season. When imbalanced, this can exacerbate stress and anxiety, which is particularly true if activities dramatically increase after a leisurely summer. Here are some fall beauty practices to incorporate into your routine:
- Eat more hot-cooked meals. It’s the natural time of year to start eating more grounding, warm meals, so be sure to adjust your dietary rotation accordingly.
- Embrace seasonal vegetables. Brussels sprouts, turnips, daikon radish, cauliflower, and mushrooms are some of the vegetables you’ll find in season in the fall, so seek out creative and simple ways to cook and enjoy these fortifying foods.
- Choose better grains. Quinoa, brown rice, and amaranth are great gluten-free grains to incorporate this time of year, especially if eaten with lots of vegetables.
- Try herbal teas. Sip on lemon balm, chamomile, valerian root, ashwagandha, or holy basil/tulsi teas, which are fantastic for helping you de-stress and unwind.
- Keep things regular. Since Vata, or the air element, is so prevalent in the fall, you may experience some constipation. This is a symptom of Vata being out of balance. Be sure to eat lots of fibrous foods and eat mindfully and slowly, always chewing well.
- Make a DIY scrub for your skin. Since you might have gotten your fair share (or more!) of sun, salt water, and chlorine over the summer, your skin might feel a bit taxed. Try a gentle sugar scrub (add more coconut oil if you feel that your skin needs extra lubrication).
- Protect your lips. Apply lip balms regularly that contain natural ingredients such as shea butter, olive oil, and vitamin E. Avoid lip balms that contain petroleum-based, synthetic ingredients.
- Choose your soaps wisely. Avoid using stripping soaps on your skin. Choose all-natural, mild, and simple cleansers with essential oils instead of potentially irritating artificial fragrances.
- Prioritize downtime. After the leisure of summer, you may feel an increased swirl of activities and stress in the fall: kids going back to school or increased work projects, for example. Make it a priority to create downtime for yourself. Take time to cultivate nurturing, grounding activities such as meditation, massages, reading, or whatever makes you feel soothed.
Adapted from Radical Beauty: How to Transform Yourself From the Inside Out. Copyright © 2016 by Deepak Chopra MD, and Kimberly Snyder, CN. Published by Harmony Books, an imprint of Crown Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.