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Updated: May 19, 2013 19:42 IST

Ask Shahnaz

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

I have chicken pox marks on my hands and legs. Please suggest home remedies. - Kusum

The marks may fade with time. You can try the following remedies. Make a paste of bicarbonate of soda and a little water. Apply the paste only on the areas with marks and wash off after five minutes. Use a scrub twice a week. Rice powder and curd make a good scrub. Add a pinch of turmeric. Apply it on the arms and legs and rub gently on the skin with small circular movements, specially on the areas with marks. Wash off with water.

The outer skin of my fingers is becoming darker day by day. Please suggest a remedy. - Faheema

Add a little turmeric to curd and apply daily on the hands. Wash off after 20 minutes. Take two tablespoons sunflower oil, two tablespoons lemon juice and three tablespoon coarse sugar. Mix together to paste. Apply and rub into hands and fingers three times a week. Wash off after 15 minutes.

Please suggest remedies for itching around pimples and acne on the face. - Gurinderjit

Pimples and acne usually occur on oily skin. Your soap may be causing some superficial dryness, leading to itching. In case of severe itching, you should consult a dermatologist. Use a face wash or mild soap. Mix one teaspoon vinegar with three teaspoons water. Dab the solution on the face with cotton wool. It will help to decrease itching. Mix a little rose water with sandalwood paste and apply on the face. Wash off after 15 minutes. Boil neem leaves over a low fire. Cool and strain. Make a paste of the leaves and apply daily on the face. Wash it off with plain water after half an hour.

I have dry skin which has tanned over time. Is sesame oil good for reducing tan?Thiru

Sesame oil has Sun protective properties and also helps sun damaged skin. Apply sesame seed (til) oil daily before bath on the body and massage. Use a mild glycerine soap. Immediately after bath, apply a body lotion while the skin is still damp. This helps seal in moisture. You can also mix one teaspoon pure glycerine with 50 ml rose water. Store in a bottle and refrigerate. Use a little of this lotion daily to relieve dryness or after bath. To remove tan, you can also mix a little turmeric in curd and apply three or four times a week. Wash off after 20 minutes.

My face is darker than my body colour. Any remedy to improve that? I have oily skin. - Ganesh

Use a facial scrub twice a week. You can either buy a facial scrub, or mix rice powder with curd and use as a facial scrub. Apply on the face and rub gently on the skin using small circular movements. Leave on for five minutes and then wash off. Mix one teaspoon each of honey and lemon juice and apply DAILY on the face, at any time. Wash off after 20 minutes. Or, take two teaspoons curd, add a pinch of haldi and apply daily the same way. Wash off after 20 minutes with plenty of water. Mix multani mitti with rose water and lemon juice into a paste and apply on the face three times a week. Wash it off when it dries. It reduces oiliness and will also remove tan.

I have rough hair. After shampoo, my hair is soft for some time and then becomes frizzy. Please suggest remedies. - Sanju

Use less shampoo and rinse well with water. After shampoo, apply a creamy conditioner, taking less quantity and massaging it lightly into the hair. Leave on for two minutes and rinse off with plain water. You can also apply a “leave-on” type of conditioner or hair serum. Apply the same way, but do not rinse off. Or, mix some water with creamy hair conditioner and put it in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture on the hair. Then comb the hair, so that it spreads through the hair.

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