Beautician Shahnaz Husain offers tips and answers queries. Send your queries to askshahnaz@gmail.com

I weigh only 45 kg. What should I do to increase my weight in one month?Suganya

Consult your doctor and ascertain the cause of weight loss. Ensure that you don’t feel fatigued or lack vitality. Eat a balanced diet. Make sure you eat slowly and chew your food well. Appreciate every morsel. Exercise helps build the muscles and give you a better figure. Join a gym and exercise under professional guidance.

I have nail marks on my face. Suggest what I should do to get rid of them.Ayisha

Make a paste of bicarbonate of soda and a little water. After washing your face in the morning, apply the paste only on the marks, washing it off after five minutes. Use a facial scrub twice a week. Apply it on your face, rubbing it gently on the skin with small circular movements, especially on the areas with marks. Wash it off with water. Twice a week, take one teaspoon of multani mitti, two teaspoons of almond meal (ground almonds), and one teaspoon each of honey, curd and egg white. Mix it into a paste and apply it on your face, avoiding the lips and the area around your eyes. Wash it off after 20 to 30 minutes. For dry skin, add one teaspoon of almond oil. If there is dryness, take two teaspoons of curd, add a pinch of turmeric to it and apply the mixture on your face. Wash it off after 15 minutes.

I have lots of hair on my legs and arms. Is there a natural way to stop the growth? Swathi

There is no way of stopping hair growth altogether. Waxing is the best option. It is said to gradually lessen the growth. You could try epilation. This is done at home with a small gadget. It is useful for the arms and legs but should not be used for facial hair. There may be some initial pain, which lessens gradually. The best results can be achieved before the hair has grown long. One should read the directions carefully before using it. Laser is said to be a permanent method of hair removal for the face and body. But, it is an expensive procedure. Several sessions will be needed for the arms and legs. Also, re-growth has been known to occur, though it gradually lessens.

I have pimples. Can I use a scrub on my face?Mohammad Asiq

A scrub is a grainy substance that is rubbed on the skin and then washed off. It helps remove dead skin cells. However, it should not be used on pimples. For pimples, wash your face twice a day, in the morning and night with a medicated soap. Then wipe it with an astringent lotion, using cotton wool. Apply sandalwood paste on the eruptions. You can also mix cinnamon powder with a little lemon juice and a few drops of honey into a sticky paste. Apply it only on the pimples daily, leaving it on for one or two hours. Mix multani mitti with rose water and lemon juice into a paste and apply it on your face two or three times a week. Wash it off after it dries.

I have oily skin. Suggest suitable make-up. Can I use foundation? Archana

After washing your face, apply an astringent lotion. Leave out the foundation and apply compact powder, which is available in different shades. It reduces the oily look. If you want to use foundation, choose a water-based one. Add a drop of water for lighter coverage. Spread it evenly on your face, going outward, with a moist sponge. Blend well. Then apply powder to set the foundation, brushing off the excess powder with cotton wool. Use a powder blusher. Pink or peach blusher would suit most skin tones. Apply it on the cheekbones and slightly below. Use your fingertips to dot the area with blusher. Then, blend it with the brush, outwards and slightly upwards.

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Ask ShahnazSeptember 23, 2012