Monsoon

Your skin has strong tendencies toward heat, sensitivity, and oiliness, much like the Monsoon climate

Köppen-Geiger Climate Classification: Am

Profile: Monsoon

Your skin has strong tendencies toward heat, sensitivity, and oiliness, much like the monsoon climate. Cities with monsoon climates include Jakarta, Indonesia; Miami, Florida; Cairns, Australia; and Chittagong, Bangladesh. Monsoon climates are typically found closer to the equator, along the coastal regions of southwest India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Southwestern Africa, French Guiana, and eastern Brazil. Monsoon climates are warm to hot throughout the year with average temperatures above 18 °C (65 °F) in every month of the year. Monsoon rains occur during the high-sun season, while the low-sun season is characterized by a short drought.

Similarly, your skin tends to be consistently hot or warm throughout the year and is generally sensitive, making it prone to oiliness and moistness. Furthermore, like the monsoon climate, which is susceptible to flooding, droughts, and more extreme weather, your sensitive skin is susceptible to its own extremes in the form of breakouts, inflammation, and irritation as well as blackheads and clogged pores.

Products And Ingredients

Balancing products and ingredients

The Monsoon skin type is highly oily, moist, and sensitive. Thus, this skin type is very prone to inflammatory skin conditions like acne, which can become quite severe. Overall, your skin care routine should emphasize making the skin less oily and keeping the pores clean and clear. Your skin care products should be gentle, as your skin is also very sensitive and prone to inflammation if it becomes irritated. Lastly, this skin type is highly sensitive to the sun and sun exposure can also cause dark spots including areas of previous acne bumps.

  • Jojoba oil - this oil closely matches the skin’s natural sebum and can be used in small amounts to help soothe, cool, and moisturize the skin.
  • Moisturizer - Even though your skin tends to be oily and inflammatory, a light moisturizer can help protect your skin’s barrier. Choose a moisturizer that is oil-free, light, and preferably in the form of a lotion rather than a cream.
  • Sunscreen - your skin is especially prone to signs of aging such as dark spots. It is essential to wear a daily broad-spectrum sunscreen on all sun-exposed areas.

Aggravating products and ingredients

The Monsoon skin type tends to be very oily; therefore, oily and heavy products should be avoided entirely. In addition, heavy makeups such as oil-based foundations will very likely lead to clogged pores and pimples. Your skin very sensitive and is extremely easily irritated by certain chemicals, leading to inflammation and redness. Examples of products and ingredients that should be avoided in your skin type include:

  • Heavy products that may clog your pores - avocado oil, almond oil, shea butter, and heavy creams are examples of products that are too heavy for your skin type and will increase your chance for developing clogged pores and pimples.
  • Chemical fragrances and harsh exfoliants tend to easily irritate your skin, leading to inflammation and disruption of your skin’s protective outer barrier.
  • Warming essential oils - many essential oils, such as ginger and cinnamon, are too irritating to your skin type.

Bathing and Washing

Balancing bathing and washing habits

The Monsoon skin type is oily year-round and extremely prone to skin conditions like acne and redness. Regular cleansing is important to balance oiliness. Your skin will best benefit from daily cleansing with a gentle cleanser in order to rid your skin of grime and makeup residues. Always wash your face after exercising to avoid increased breakouts.

Aggravating bathing and washing habits

Avoid over washing your face, since this can disrupt your skin barrier and lead to irritation and inflammation. Due to your skin’s sensitivity, harsh soaps may be too irritating so choose gentle cleansers free from harsh chemicals. Additionally, do not use facial brushes or cleansers with little beads or gritty materials, as these will all irritate your sensitive skin.

Diet

Balancing foods and beverages

For the Monsoon skin type, you should aim to eat meals that are well balanced with cooling, drying, and light foods. By consuming a diet rich in predominantly whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and legumes, you will help balance your skin type and achieve a clear complexion.

  • Cooling foods: fruit smoothies, popsicles, melons, cucumbers, mushrooms, zucchini, chilled soups, cool beverages, and cooling spices like neem.
  • Drying foods: cruciferous vegetables (eg. kale, collard greens, broccoli), cauliflower, beans, lentils, apples, raw vegetables, salads, pomegranates.
  • Complex carbohydrates: root vegetables (eg. butternut squash and sweet potatoes), cooked grains, whole grain pasta, and muesli cereals
  • Light foods: apples, pears, raw vegetables, berries, salads, and pomegranates.

Aggravating foods and beverages

Monsoon skin types should avoid very oily and high sugar foods, as they can lead to increased oiliness in the skin. In addition, spicy, hot, sour, and salty foods are also best to be limited.

  • Hot and spicy foods: chilies, onions, garlic, cayenne pepper, radishes, pepper, and hot soups and beverages.
  • Heavy, oily, and sweet foods: milk (especially skim milk), refined grains such as white bread, fried foods, pastries, ice cream, and candy. Nuts and seeds can be eaten in moderation with careful attention to portion size.
  • Sour and pungent foods: highly-fermented yogurt, tomatoes, vinegar, hard cheeses
  • Salty foods: soy sauce, tamari, seafood, added salts or high sodium food items
  • Alcohol should be avoided

Activities And Excercise

Balancing activities and exercise

Monsoon skin types should opt for methods of exercise that consist of soothing activities like yoga and moderate cardiovascular activity. Monsoon skin types have a particular challenge during exercise in that the oiliness of the skin can keep water trapped in the skin and decrease the ability of the body to naturally cool by losing water through the skin.

Since you tend to be very oily, remember to wash off any makeup before exercise and wash your face afterward. Exercise can increase the redness of the skin and it is important to minimize heat exposure to keep the skin from overheating. If you haven’t discovered the exercise that fits best with your lifestyle, see the following list of activity ideas that are balancing for Monsoon skin types:

  • Yoga - non-heated types only
  • Pilates
  • Tai Chi
  • Mediation
  • Speed walking and jogging
  • Swimming
  • Rowing
  • Hiking (avoid midday heat)
  • Cycling, aerobics, dancing, and other moderate-intensity cardiovascular activities

Aggravating activities and exercise

The Monsoon skin type tends toward being very warm and easily inflamed. Highly heating activities, such as heated yoga, intense sprints, and long distance running should be avoided, especially in a hot environment. Always wash your face and body after exercise and avoid exercising with makeup on to avoid overheating on the face and to reduce the chance of breakouts. Activities that should be avoided include:

  • Heated yoga
  • Steam rooms
  • Saunas
  • Intense running or sprints

Exercise routines should be discussed with a physician first to ensure that you are fit enough to engage in exercise.

Climate

Balancing climates

Cool and dry climates, such as the Mediterranean climate can bring hot and slightly oily tendencies in your skin back into balance, therefore decreasing the chances of inflammation and acne. Dryness in the climates can help balance the natural oiliness of the Monsoon skin type.

Aggravating climates

Per the law of opposites, people with the Monsoon skin type should avoid living in warm and rainy climates, such as the monsoon climates. Hot and wet climates can lead to a greater imbalance in the hot and oily tendencies in your skin. Cold and rainy climates can be humid enough to aggravate the skin.

Ayurveda

Ayurveda is a health system that is from India and is over 5000 years old. The basic concept in Ayurveda is that each person can either be in balance or have imbalances. Everyone has the potential to balance their body and their skin if they can pay attention to their imbalances and their skin’s natural tendencies. Imbalances are described by the Ayurvedic concepts of the doshas which describe three unique physiological building blocks for the body and skin. These doshas are known as vata, pitta, and kapha. Ayurveda is a practical approach to skin care. Learn more about how Ayurveda works and what makes up the doshas.

Imbalances in the doshas

This skin type is associated with a major imbalance in the Pitta dosha and a minor imbalance in the Kapha dosha. Pitta represents transformation and metabolism in the body and is made up of the elements fire and water. Heat, vitamin D production, and skin radiance are all thought to be mediated by Pitta. Kapha represents structure in the body as seen with collagen and oil production in the skin.

The pitta dosha is made up of water and fire, the latter of which is represented strongly in the Monsoon skin type and leads to its natural tendency for inflammation. Kapha is made up of earth and water, which represent structure and water in the skin and correlate with the oiliness

How are the doshas influenced?

Pitta is affected mostly by anything heating, such as spicy food, hot weather, and stress. Relaxation and cooling foods can balance Pitta, with care not to imbalance Kapha as it is affected by anything cold, wet and heavy. Cold and wet climates, heavy foods, alcohol, and sleeping too much can cause imbalances in Kapha. Warm, dry weather and light foods can help balance Kapha for this reason. Kapha’s cooling, grounded nature can help balance the fiery nature of Pitta.

What the skin says about the rest of your body

In Ayurveda, the entire body is thought to be either in balance or have an imbalance. When the skin reflects an imbalance, the principle is that this imbalance exists in the body and mind as well. Individuals who have more Pitta in their constitution tend to be ambitious and driven. When pitta is out of balance, it can lead to inflammatory rashes, impatience, anger, reflux, and indigestion. If you feel tired all the time, lack motivation or feel depressed, you may have a Kapha imbalance. Obesity and diabetes are also signs of a Kapha imbalance.

Foods

Pitta imbalance can occur with hot, spicy, sour, salty and oily foods. Kapha excess can occur from foods that are cold, oily, sweet, salty and sour. Warm, lighter foods with bitter and astringent tastes are optimal for this skin type. Learn more about Pitta and Kapha balancing foods.

Take care of your skin, body, and mind from an Ayurvedic perspective

From an Ayurvedic perspective, imbalances in the doshas, or the physiologic mind-body constitution types, lead to different issues in both mental and physical well-being. The mind-body connection is well recognized in many different healing traditions and is now being recognized more in conventional medicine. The Monsoon Skin Type is at risk for pitta imbalances and it is paramount to find ways to avoid overwork and stress. Moderate exercise can be very helpful for this skin type as it can help decrease Kapha imbalance and also relieve stress.

Personality

Those with the Monsoon skin type tend to be driven due to their pitta related qualities and steadfast due to their kapha related qualities. While they are inquisitive and perceptive, they do not let their curiosity lead them from being down to earth.

Their relationships with others are passionate as they are both dependable and loyal. They are ambitious and driven, sometimes, to the point that their work-life can take over. At times they can also burn out and lose their drive for pursuing their goals. The kapha component puts them at risk for depression. It is important for those with this personality type to make it a priority to relax to avoid burn-out.