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Updated: March 9, 2014 19:44 IST

Ask Shahnaz

Shahnaz Husain
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Shahzahn Padamsee
Shahzahn Padamsee

Beautician Shahnaz Husain offers suggestions and answers queries. Send your queries to

I oil my hair only during the weekends. But soon after I wash it, it becomes rough, coarse and dry. How can I keep it shiny without oil? — Sita

Twice a week, heat pure coconut oil and apply it on the hair. Then immerse a towel in hot water, squeeze out the water, and wrap the hot towel around your head, like a turban. Keep it on for five minutes. Repeat the hot towel wrap three or four times. This helps the hair and scalp absorb the oil better. Use a mild herbal shampoo. Use just a little shampoo, taking care to rinse it off well. After a shampoo wash, apply a creamy conditioner, taking very little quantity of it and massaging it lightly into the hair. Leave it on for two minutes before rinsing it off. Also apply a leave-in conditioner or hair serum. Apply it the same way, but do not rinse it off. Hair serums help soften the hair, add shine and make the hair manageable.

I have sensitive skin and get pimples and dark patches on my face. — Lincy

Buy an astringent lotion and mix it with an equal quantity of rose water. Wipe your face with this after washing it, in the morning and at night. The lotion can also be used to wipe the skin during the day. Boil neem leaves on a low flame. Cool and strain the lqiuid. Make a paste of the leaves and apply it daily on your face. Wash it off after half an hour. Mix cinnamon powder with a little lemon juice and a few drops of honey and make it into a sticky paste. Apply it only on the pimples daily and leave it on for one or two hours. Mix multani mitti with rose water into a paste, and apply it on the face two or three times a week, avoiding the lips and the area around the eyes. Wash it off after it dries. Avoid creams and moisturisers. Use only oil-free products.

I am slim and my face has good features, but my eyes are small. What should I do? — Afrin

You can make your eyes appear larger with the help of make-up. When plucking your eyebrows, leave the inner part of your brow thicker, as this will create an arch to frame the eye. On the lids, use a slightly off-white eye shadow on the inner part of the lid and a pure white shadow on the innermost part to create a light effect. Pay attention to the lash line to add definition the eyes. Apply an eye pencil close to the lash line on the upper lid. Dot the pencil along the lower lashes and smudge carefully to enlarge the eyes. When applying mascara, pay attention to the lashes at the outer corner.

I have an uneven skin tone with black marks due to pimples. — Sindhuja

Mix rice powder with curd and use it as a facial scrub once or twice a week. Apply it on the face, rubbing it 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 the face. Wash it off after 15 minutes. Twice a week, apply a face mask. Mix three teaspoons of oats 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 the eyes. Wash it off after half an hour.

I have a lot of pores on my nose and cheeks. What should I do? — Ramya

Apply an astringent lotion on the areas with pores daily, after cleansing. Use a facial scrub on these areas twice a week. Or, mix oats with egg white and apply on the affected areas twice a week. After it dries, wash it off. Cold compress with chilled rose water and cotton wool pads will also help.

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