More than Skin Deep

Ever wonder what happened to that glow on your face, the time when you could just splash some water on your face and charge out of the house without the now mandatory regimen on foundation/Lacto/SPF base and compact, and then the slathering on of gloss or kohl to keep from looking like something that the dog chewed up and spit on the carpet? I do. I remember with yearning the days of my youth when the skin was so luminous it could light up a room. And now, when I catch a glimpse of myself bleary eyed and panda dark circled and patchy skinned the first thing in the morning, I jump back in alarm and threaten to disown me.

Ergo, I read Skin Deep by Dr Aparna Santhanam with great interest. For one, I have interacted with Dr Santhanam over the years for the various articles I’ve done on skin care for assorted publications, given she has been associated with Kaya Skin Clinic since its inception. And the premise of this book interested me. While we all know about the various treatments that can be done on the surface of the skin to make it look better, the fact remains that well nourished skin from the inside is much healthier, smoother and clearer than anything you could do to your skin from the outside. Which is why the mater always insisted I eat my fruits and veggies, which of course, I never followed resulting in thus pathetic state of skin.
The good doctor starts the book by speaking, a bit and not too much scientific detail thankfully, about the skin and what helps it chug along and shed its cells at a regular interval. She not only prescribes the skin care regimen required for each skin type but also puts down the ideal diet for each kind of skin, with its specific problems, but, thankfully for a kitchenophiliac like me, also details the recipes of each dish she writes about at the end of the book.
Tips? Vitamin A helps in controlling oily skin, ergo eat red and orange fruits and veggies to control your oily skin. Green tea has antioxidants that help maintain oil balance. For dry skin, up your intake of nuts and beans and add olive oil to your food. Avoid simple sugars for both your waist and your skin. Simple cards like pure sugar cause ageing and wrinkling, did you know that, I didn’t and now I swear I will run a mile from them. My waistline would thank me for that too, I think. Thankfully, she gives us carb-a-holics a list of the complex carbs which are good for the skin. And protein, which we learn the lack of causes puffy bags under ones eyes, in the morning, as well as thin, brittle nails and weaker hair. Ergo, throw that cottage cheese, Sprout salad, eggs, tofu or animal protein down your gullet if you want to see your hair and nails stronger and your eyes pack away their bags. And fat, much maligned, but essential as the good doc tells us. Low levels of fat can result in low vitamin D and bone thinning, to transport the vitamins vital for skin beauty and for proper nerve function. Scary. Go on a low or zero fat diet, and not only will your bones thin away, but your nerves will stop functioning as they should and your skin will wrinkle away to parchment. Good fats come from nuts, pistachios, almonds, walnuts, fatty fish like Salmon, flaxseed, soyabean, pumpkin, olives and include these in your diet to make sure you get the benefits for your skin. she also speaks about antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, the benefits of plants, and what is best, she does an A to Z of foods that are good for skin health, speaking about each food, its benefits and how it can be consumed. I also like the AM PM skin care plan she has included which speaks of the basic skin care routine we should follow, but generally never end up doing due to lack of time, or laziness or a couldn’t be bothered attitude. For me, it is only after I crossed 35 that I realised the need to incorporate skin care into my daily routine, and rue my stupidity for not taking skin care seriously earlier and letting the skin reach such terrible levels of pigmentation and patchiness.
The best part of the book for me, the list of super skin friendly recipes at the end of the book. Am I going to try any? I sure will. Would I recommend you read this book? If you’re serious about getting your skin in ship shape, and will follow the advice given within, I’d say go ahead, buy it. If you have no time for your skin, don’t bother.

Skin Deep
An Inside Out Approach to Looking Good, Naturally!
By Aparna Santhanam
Rs 199


About Kiran Manral

Kiran Manral published her first book, The Reluctant Detective in 2011. Since then, she has published eight books across genres till date. Her books include romance and chicklit with Once Upon A Crush (2014), All Aboard (2015), Saving Maya (2017); horror with The Face at the Window (2016) and nonfiction with Karmic Kids (2015), A Boy’s Guide to Growing Up (2016) and True Love Stories (2017). Her short stories have been published on Juggernaut, in magazines like Verve and Cosmopolitan, and have been part of anthologies like Chicken Soup for the Soul, Have a Safe Journey (2017) and Boo (2017). Her articles and columns have appeared in the Times of India, Tehelka, DNA, Yowoto, Shethepeople, New Woman, Femina, Verve, Elle, Cosmopolitan, Conde Nast Traveller, DB Post, The Telegraph, the Asian Age, iDiva, TheDailyO and more. She was shortlisted for the Femina Women Awards 2017 for Literary Contribution. She is a TEDx speaker and a mentor with Vital Voices Global Mentoring Walk 2017.
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5 Responses to More than Skin Deep

  1. Excellent review and I am sorely tempted to grab the nearest copy available. Loved the way you detailed its best points and gave your post the perfect title. It’s been a pleasure to visit your blog.


  2. ok, so im not really a skin person- (look at me and u would know) but this seems interesting and useful too!. thanks


  3. soulmate says:

    Given that I have an oily skin(read problematic skin), I seriously need some tips to take care of my skin…


  4. sukanyabora says:

    how timely your post…i just lamented about my lousy skin on my blog.
    must see what this book has to offer. I am so freakin’ tired of my break outs!


  5. jlt says:

    hmmm…. I can definitely buy, but whether I’ll follow… 😦


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