Arab Beauty Secrets and Techniques Through Time
By Katie Teague/Arab America Contributing Writer
It’s no secret that makeup in the Arab world is extravagant. There is a long history of Arab beauty secrets and techniques passed down that are responsible for many of the looks we see today. Check out these top ten ways Arab women stay beautiful.
Kick back and relax in the hot steam bath that is the hammam. Good for your skin and your immune system, this public bath plays a significant role in both health and community. “Hammams were used by rich and poor alike with the only difference being that the rich were given private spaces while the poor bathed in public.”
Besides using henna for typical body art, henna can be used as hair color and nail polish. Give it a try next time you want to go for a new look. Fabbon.com notes how henna was “also used as a cooling agent on the hot summer days.”
The delicious taste of honey is vital in Arab food, but did you know it has important uses in the beauty world too? Arab women reach for this product when they want to rejuvenate their skin. Honey ensures that it stays hydrated and free from drying.
This iconic Middle Eastern food doesn’t only taste good; it also acts as a fantastic remedy for sunburns. Given the yogurt’s ability to moisturize the skin, labneh is ideal for those long summer days in the sun.
Surprisingly, kohl is used by both men and women in Arab culture. Serving as protection from both illness and the sun, kohl also makes for pretty eyeliner. Many Arab women used this beauty secret as a sign of their marital status.
6. Oils – Argan and Castor Oil
The oils on this list are the hidden beauty essentials you need to purchase now. The best Argan oil comes from Morocco, and is “full of essential fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that promote overall health by moisturizing, softening and protecting skin and hair from sun damage – without a single toxin or additive.” On the other hand, castor oil is an incredible substance that promotes hair growth. It is also excellent for your overall health.
7. Camel Milk
Surprised? Camel milk does wonders for irritated skin. Incorporate into a mask facial for instant results.
8. Rose Water
Rose water “decreases damage to the skin’s elastin fibers and helps to reduce and delay wrinkle formation.” For best results, freeze the rose water into ice cubes and rub over your skin twice a week. “Not only will the rose water help to tighten your skin and minimize pores, but the cold temperature will raise the blood to the surface of your skin for better circulation and a natural blush effect.”
It’s not only wonderful in your tea: mint serves as an excellent remedy for bad breath. Above all, mint leaves can be your next cure for bad acne. Grind and use topically, or combine it with a mask facial for overnight results.
Skip your trip to the spa and choose sugar instead! “Ancient Arabians used to heat sugar and lemon juice with water to get a thick wax-like substance. This mixture was used to remove body hair. Though it is similar to waxing, it is less painful.”