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Updated: December 22, 2013 14:46 IST

Ask Shahnaz

Shahnaz Husain
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Preity Zinta
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Beautician Shahnaz Husain offers suggestions and answers queries. Send your queries to askshahnaz@gmail.com

I have a lot of hair fall, especially at the forehead My eyebrows are also getting thinner. My face is dark with dark spots. Suggest remedies. — Supriya

Consult a dermatologist or trichologist (hair specialist) without delay, to make sure that it is not alopecia. Dandruff can also affect the eyebrows and eyelashes, causing eyebrow hair to fall. For the dark facial skin, mix rice powder with curd and use it as a scrub once or twice a week. Apply it on the face and rub gently on the skin with tiny circular movements, especially on the dark spots. Leave it on for a few minutes before washing it off. Mix honey and lemon juice in equal quantities and apply it daily on your face. Wash it off after 15 minutes. Twice a week, apply a face mask. Mix three teaspoons of oatmeal with one teaspoon each of honey, curd and lemon juice, or egg white. Apply it on the entire face, avoiding the lips and the area around your eyes.

Suggest a daily/weekly skin care routine for my hands and feet. — Rayeesa

Massage your skin with sesame seed (til) oil before having a bath. Use a mild glycerine soap. Immediately after a bath, apply a body lotion, while the skin is still damp. Mix besan with curd, lemon juice and a little turmeric into a paste. Apply it on the hands and feet twice a week. Wash it off after half an hour. Mix four tablespoons of sunflower oil, four tablespoons of lemon juice and five tablespoons of coarse sugar. Mix it together till it becomes a paste. Rub it on the hands and feet. Wash it off after 15 minutes. Do this two or three times a week.

There are blackheads everywhere on my body. The skin on my hands and legs is extremely dry and scaly. Please tell me how to get rid off the tan. — Seema

Are these black spots or blackheads? Blackheads are caused when oil clogs the pores of the skin. They are raised, and when pressed, a whitish plug with a black tip comes out of the pore. You can mix rice powder with curd and use it as a body scrub twice a week. Rub it gently on the skin, especially on the blackheads. This will also help get rid of a tan. Wash it off with water. Apply til oil or olive oil before a bath, daily to relieve dryness. Avoid using soap. After a bath, apply a body lotion or cream.

I have aloe vera plants at home. Can I apply it on my body at night and wash it off after 15 minutes? — Tabassum

Aloe vera can be used if the plant is available at home. The gel or juice may be applied directly on the skin. The gel is taken from the leaf pulp and is found in the inner portion of the leaves. The juice is found just beneath the outer skin of the leaves. However, while using it directly on the skin, one should wash the plant well and maintain hygiene. The gel or juice may be applied on the face and body daily, at any time, and washed off after 20 minutes. It helps soften and moisturise the skin.

Suggest remedies for frizzy hair. — Fabiola

Take two drops of a light vegetable oil like sunflower oil in your palms and rub them lightly together, so that the oil spreads on both palms. Smooth your palms on your hair. Or, take the ends of the hair in your palms and scrunch them. Leave the oil on. Or, mix some water with a creamy hair conditioner and put it in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture on the hair. Then comb the hair, so that it spreads throughout. Avoid very hot water to wash the hair. After a shampoo wash, wrap a towel around your head and let it soak up the water. Avoid rubbing. If you use a hair dryer, use a big round brush. Divide the hair into sections. Pin them up and dry one section at a time. Blow in a downward direction. Using the dryer on the hair can cause more frizz.

How can I reduce my arms and thighs? — Jisha

After consulting your doctor, do the following exercises daily. For the arms, stand with your feet slightly apart. Stretch the arms out to the sides, palms facing upwards. Rotate your arms in small circles, clockwise and then anti-clockwise. Do this ten times each and increase the number of repetitions gradually. For the thighs, lie on your right side, leaning on your elbow. Place your left hand on the floor, palm downwards, in front of your chest. Lift your left leg approximately eight inches off the floor and hold it in this position. Supporting yourself with your waist, elbow and hands, try to raise the right leg to try and touch the raised left foot. Return both legs slowly to the floor. Repeat this exercise five times; turn on your left side and repeat.

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