I love using sandalwood powder mixed with turmeric and rose water once a week to keep my skin clear and bright. It smells divine too. If you have dry skin, you could mix in some Argan oil or yogurt to make it more moisturizing. For acne prone skin, turmeric, neem or tea tree oil. For oily skin, try adding clay. The possibilities are endless. You can find sandalwood powder for about $5 at any Indian grocery store, but for that price, I suspect it's mixed with a filler powder. My bag says "100% pure sandalwood" but the scent is very faint. Maybe it's the by product of the sandalwood oil processing?
I'm in my early 20s and have suffered from moderate cystic acne since I was 16. I have tried various pharmaceutical products (creams containing high concentrations of tretinoin or benzoyl peroxide, and oral antibiotics) to get rid of my acne, but as soon as I stop the treatments, the acne returns in full force. Where I come from, sandalwood powder (available at organic or spice stores) is considered a powerful, natural anti-acne treatment and, mixed with an equal amount of turmeric and enough fresh lime juice to make a smooth, thin paste, it makes for an excellent anti-acne mask. However, the lime juice stings, so do NOT use this if you have sensitive skin. For sensitive skin, I'm sure water or unsweetened yoghurt would work just as well to bind the sandalwood powder and turmeric into a paste.
Initially, I applied this mask every night for three months. When my skin cleared up, I would only apply it about 3 or 4 times a week. You can gently rub the paste into your skin to exfoliate, but do not do this often. I exfoliate with this paste about once a week, but otherwise I just smear it thickly onto my face after cleansing with a gentle face wash, avoiding the eye area. I leave it on for about 30 minutes to an hour, and then rinse it off with water. Provided your skin isn't sensitive, the stinging sensation should only last for 5-10 minutes (you'll get used to it!).
I have been using this mask for about 5 months now and it's the best anti-acne treatment I've ever tried. It's also dirt-cheap, and all ingredients are actually good for your skin (unlike the chemical nasties in conventional anti-acne products). After washing off the mask and pat-drying your skin with a towel, I recommend moisturising with rosehip oil because it reduces scars and won't clog your pores. You'll wake up the next morning with glowing, smooth skin.
You have nothing to lose, so I recommend trying it. Your skin might purge for the first two weeks, but persevere. Your skin will clear up after that. Thank me later! :)
BACKGROUND - As a kid, I remember rummaging through my Mom's wardrobe to find any candy. The scent I associate with her wardrobe is a curious mix of Nivea creme and Sandalwood! She has a sandalwood piece kept in a drawer and it has scented all the clothes and other items in the closet. The scent is calming, holy and reverent.
I also remember getting 'holy water' at temples, which has a mix of eight herbs.
A paste of these eight herbs with water or milk in which a holy Rudraksha bead is immersed, is known as 'Ashtagandha'. Following are the ingredients - sandalwood powder, saffron, holy basil, henna, Durva, Bhimseni Camphor, Agar and sriphal. Some ashtagandha powders may include musk scent as well - I am not a fan of musk scent and it's origins. The paste is applied to the forehead as benediction. Ashtagandha, appropriately has a DIVINE scent and is also beneficial to the skin and physiology!
SANDALWOOD review - Most important is the quality of sandalwood powder and the source. Not all sandalwood powders are of equal calibre. The scent of sandalwood is unique. Hard to describe but it does create a calming effect. There are some sandalwood 'essential oils' which cause headaches instead. If so, that is not true sandalwood.
Real sandalwood paste has been used in Hindu rituals and the real thing does something unusual to the mind. Difficult to put in words....but it is amazing.
I bought the Sandalwood powder while I was in India, from a herbal pharmacy store. It was quite cheap compared to the sandalwood products we get here under brand names like Pratima, EvanHealy, etc, but more expensive than the usual brands we get in Indian stores in the USA. The scent is absolutely divine.
Here are some of the uses of sandalwood (for me) :
1) face mask, mixed with oatmeal, red clay, etc.
2) dehydrating pimples/cysts. Apply at the local spot and leave overnight.
3) mixed with cornstarch, arrowroot, lavender, this makes a delightful dusting powder and even face powder. Perfect for tanned / olive skin tones. Note : I also add this powder to the mineral powder (brands like Physicians Formula, Wet n Wild).
4) can even be consumed in summer, to produce a cooling effect.
5) making a herbal scrub which can be used instead of soap. Sandalwood has a cooling effect, and therefore it is perfect for summer. Mix sandalwood powder with red lentil powder, red sandalwood powder, vetiver powder and some powdered milk to make a cooling scrub. It also gives a healthy glow to the complexion.
6) Apply a thin paste of sandalwood powder to the forehead, before meditation or yogic sleep. Results will be pronounced.
7) SUNBURNS - Sandalwood paste is *amazing* for sunburn or irritated skin. I had a nasty sunburn in July, after a beach trip. I applied a mask of sandalwood+yogurt and this probably prevented the skin from blistering (which usually has happened for the past sunburns)!
8) UNDER-EYE treatment - Sandalwood has cooling properties and is *Amazing* in de-puffing eyes, reducing dark circles, reducing redness and brightening the eyes and smoothing out fine lines near eyes. Just make a paste of sandalwood powder, a little grated cucumber and sesame oil and apply around eyes. Leave overnight or for few hours.
9) HEADACHES, MIGRAINES, INSOMNIA - apply a paste of sandalwood and milk on the forehead and around the eyes and nose bridge. Very important however to use pure sandalwood. If fake sandalwood (with sandalwood scent) is used, the headaches may increase instead!
10) FACE LIFT and WRINKLE REMOVAL - apply a paste of sesame oil and sandalwood powder/paste on the face. Add pure aloe gel to the mix too. It zaps wrinkles and literally gives a face lift. The face looks so youthful and soft after a sesame-sandalwood treatment.
11) The SCENT - just the scent is sufficient to induce a peaceful feeling.
For cosmetic purposes, sandalwood is God-sent for skin tones of darker hues and in general a wonder product for all.
Thanks to the sweet old man who runs this herbal pharmacy. He could have prob'ly made a fortune somewhere else, I guess, but thankfully he lacks that capitalist attitude. I hope the shop never shuts down.
I have been using sandalwood powder on my face forever. Its and amazing face pack for refreshing my face, helping me to clear up the blemishes and overall for my skin. I add a pinch of turmeric powder and milk/water/rose water to make it a paste and leave it on my face for as long as I can. My face feels very clean after I wash it off.
This is my first review because I'm so impressed with this! I use the recipe below (sandalwood powder, turmeric and chickpea flour) and add lemon juice and honey. This mask has been nothing short of remarkable for my teenage daughter. Her acne has significantly lessened to the point that her skin is almost completely clear. She had tried several different topical prescriptions as well as several $$$ treatments and facials, and nothing has worked as well as this mask. I use it on myself as well, and my skin tone has become more even and smooth. Love this mask and so happy I read about it here!
I stumbled across one of those Yahoo! websites that give you skin care or make-up tips that everyone knows... I was bored. However, they mentioned sandalwood mask. And I thought.. "ooh never heard of that before". So off to MUA I went, and looked it up.
I was really curious to try it out. However, finding the powder itself was a bit tougher than I thought it would be.
You need to go to an Indian store. It could be a grocery store, as long as they have a spices section. Or if you're lucky and you have an actual Indian spices store around you, then that's awesome.
If the signs aren't in English, sandalwood is called "chandan" in Indian.
I decided to use water, so I can see what the sandalwood itself is doing. If I mixed it with other new stuff, I wouldn't know exactly which ingredient was doing anything, you know?
I take about 1tsp of the powder (also, the powder is pretty cheap, about $4 for 250mL) and add about 1/2 tsp of water.
I usually let it sit (the powder in the water) and go brush my teeth. Usually, when I come back the powder's kind of dissolved in the water, but if not, I stir until it's a paste. It's an orangey-brown paste.
It doesn't really matter how liquid-y it is, it's up to your preference. I then put it on my face, just using my fore and middle fingers. It doesn't sting, doesn't hurt. Make sure you put it all over, but not too too close to your eyes.
I wait about 5-8 minutes until it's dried, then rinse it off. Unlike other masks, especially clay ones, my skin doesn't feel tight after I rinse. It feels very smooth though. Very smooth and clean. However, it is a bit dehydrated, so I use my 100% Pure Rose Floral Water to tone/moisturize.
As for the results, after the first time, like with all masks, I felt really good about it. Did it's job, cleaned my skin, made it all smooth. Then the next morning, I woke up, and UNLIKE all masks I've tried, my skin was still smooth. I wasn't sure if the sandalwood was it. So I tried again 3 days later. Man, oh, man, same thing.
After about a week, I noticed my skin wasn't really as clogged. That said, I also stopped using moisturizer and as for make-up, I only use concealer, but I felt like a huge factor of my clean pores was the mask.
After I was using the mask, during the night and in the morning, my skin felt unusually clean and smooth, but not tight and stripped of its own oils.
So yeah, that's my story. Hope it helped. Feel free to ask me more questions if you still have some.
P.S. Sandalwood smells very nice :)
There are various kinds of sandalwood I guess I have seen only 2 kinds - white & red. I have used it myself for some time & the results are pretty good but one has to use it consistently. I have used both the tomato & sandalwood thing as well as the uptan kind.
Just have to say sandalwood powder should not be cheap. It is an endangered plant so if you find it cheap it might not be real sandalwood or it was illegally gotten. (Ancient trees were cut down by theives at night all time when I lived there). I recommend researching the sandalwood you buy so you get it from a reliable source. You don't want to depleate such a great skin care product.
This stuff is absolutely amazing! My only problem with this is that it's a little bit messy. I mix this with my face wash and use it as a gentle daily scrub. So far so good, all my blackheads are gone. I'd recommend using sandalwood powder to all my friends but it's my top secret beauty tip. I will buy this again and again and again. What are you doing sitting in front of your computer reading this? Go out and get some sandalwood powder!
It is a great recepie!!!
It works wonders with the skin.But anybody using it has to have patience.It shows effects after 1-2 weeks of daily applying it.
I use *Calamus powder* instead of chickpea powder.
If your skin type is acne prone I suggest you use it and you will see that within few weeks your skin will be very less prone to acne.Just use it, you yourself will notice the difference and have an enviable skin!!