Shop My Shelf: Kavita Khosa
Written By Vibhuti Desai
Did you ever look at someone’s skin and wonder what her routine is or look at their hair and wonder if it is good genes or a good hairdresser? We wonder too. Quite often actually. Shop My Shelf is our repository of recommendations sourced from people whose skin, beauty, wellness and general life principles we admire! In this edition we asked Ayurveda Expert, Founder of our favourite Purearth and recent Author to Beauty Unbottled, Kavita Khosa to share her journey, skincare wardrobe and wellness philosophy with us.
Tell us about your journey from Wall Street to Purearth ?
I have been a lawyer for almost 15 years. At the same time I taught yoga, the Gita & Vedanta at my studio in Hong Kong. But it's been my connection to the earth and soil that really pushed me to launch Purearth. I studied cosmetic science to hone my knowledge and create a line that truly resonated my philosophy that skin food and skincare go hand in hand.
How did Yoga help you in this?
When I started the brand, being both a lawyer and a yoga teacher gave me the discipline. It allowed clarity of thought and a focus on ethics. To make sure we walk the talk, in everything that we are and what we say is what we do. When we do say we are cruelty free, then we actually have placed the bunny icon on our products, which is the gold standard requiring strict authorization. We have worked with Provenance, a company that uses blockchain technology to record the journey of the ingredient and source.
Were there any hurdles you faced in this journey of your personal skin and wellness journey that accelerated the inception of Purearth?
No epiphany, no skincare issues, just my honest connection to the soil. I think I was born to do this because I am wired in such a way that I’m very connected to the earth. I can actually name all the trees that are here. I feel I have been a tree in many lives in the past!
I can see your book Beauty Unbottled comes from a space of exploration towards Ayurvedic rituals & recipes. What was your thought process behind penning this book?
I started writing my book in 2016, to convey as authentically as possible, to the Gen Z and the Millennials, the importance of Ayurveda, and not to get daunted by it or find it very obscure and you know, sort of very mumbo jumbo. It is a science that I believe our sages and seers gave us. An incredible knowledge resource, from superhuman beings, who are literally not from earth. Also through citations and research, there is science backing up the statement that I have made. This book is precious to me since I have always wanted to share my knowledge. So through this if even one person picks up the book, reads it and gets inspired enough to delve further into Ayurveda like I did with yoga, then I think it will be a success for me.
Three Skincare & Wellness rituals that you follow, and would recommend?
I don’t do any fillers or botox. This is my actual face, and I am turning 60 in December.
- Face Massage: Using great quality oils, and of course it’s good genes as well, but they can only take you so far, not upto the age of 60.
- Yoga: I believe headstands & shoulder stands are the key to fabulous skin & hair.
- Masking & Masking: The ubtan & lepan used in ayurveda does really help your skin with cellular turnover, so masking & exfoliation I believe does bring the change.
I definitely feel it's a question of nurturing nature, and maintaining your skin and of course eating well.
Where do you think the consumer knowledge stands in terms of the Skincare Industry?
My yoga teacher, Prashant Sir once long back said “the ignorance of yoga has truly spread all over the world”. Today I will say, ‘the ignorance of skincare has truly spread all over the world’. From retinol to acids, from the latest hyped brand to whatever the newbie enthusiasts are evangelising with zero knowledge and understanding of skin and skincare telling all in sundry what they do, from paid partnerships to multiple endorsements, I am bewildered how skincare from being personal and recommended by experts, has became this sorry state.
Purearth has put Indian skincare onto the world map. Our traditional philosophies and methodologies deserve equal international recognition and we need more people like you.
As an Indian woman, and also with a brand that is proudly made in India, I really want us, and this message is gender neutral for men and women, to take ownership and pride in our legacy that we have been given by our forefathers, ancestors and sages. So the current narrative of don’t put turmeric on your face and use cosmoceuticals containing processed curcumin, which is the same thing, needs to change. Look at our grandmothers, they have beautiful skin & hair, and sunscreen wasn't even a thing, right?
How did Yoga become such an integral part of your life? Were you actively practising yoga even when you were working at Wall Street ?
Of course, I have jumped hoops and hurdles, with a little toddler baby, and travelled and come to India alone to study Yoga, and be a part of a Sunday Yoga school. Yoga, is my go to for everything.
If not a part of the skincare industry, where would you see yourself?
A dancer! Kathak, Bharathnatiyam or Kuchipudi. Anything to do with my Indian roots.
What do you love most about your job?
Touching lives! Seeing happy clients makes me equally happy. Our source, the women, we work with, the producers and just the ability to touch lives and play with all the ingredients. I just love it! I am the formulator for all the Purearth products from soil to harvest to bottle.
A message for the next generation.
Have faith, have faith in Ayurveda and take baby steps towards understanding your skin.
Who would be your beauty & wellness icons that you look upto?
Goddess Saraswati, Maharani Gayatri Devi & Audrey Hepburn.
One last question, any Nani ka nuskha you can suggest?
Every morning take a drop of oil on your baby finger and massage the nasal area (nasya massage). You can use sesame oil, coconut oil, apricot oil, or olive oil to your little finger. Line your nasal passage well, you will see the difference in your internal health and skin.
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