How does one put someone like Kavita Khosa into words? Lawyer, yoga teacher (Iyengar no less!), and founder of the iconic skincare brand Purearth, she is full of life, laughter and intelligence. A poster girl for her organic, ethical brand, her beauty rules are steeped in traditional, but that doesn’t mean she forgoes the fun. Whether you look at her youthful smile and thick mane of highlighted hair, or her vintageChanel jewellery and excellent taste in wine, this is one gal who lives life to the fullest.
How would you define beauty?
“Purity and radiance that is quiet, soft and glows from inside out.”
What is your diet like?
“I believe beauty and health come from a diet that is rooted in ancient wisdom and indigenous knowledge. Luckily ever since I was a child I have loved eating raw unprocessed whole foods and desi food that our nani cooked. I munch on sundried copra (dried coconut kernel), chilgoza, lotus seeds and raw nuts which I always carry in my bag for snacking on the go. I buy unsprayed, locally grown fruits and veggies in season, non GMO organic pulses and ghee and cold pressed oils to cook in. I make salads like koshimbir (Maharashtrian onion and tomato salad), and cook based on seasons so amsul saar (kadhi made with kokum) and organic whole milk chaas in the summer is a staple at home. I’ve never really broken my food down into carbs, proteins etc. Instead I trust the wisdom of Ayurveda and eat according to its simple principles. I live in Hong Kong so Chinese food is also very much part of my diet because interestingly, it is based on similar principles of vata, pitta and kapha.
But of course, I have a weakness for chocolate cake and wine.”
How do you de-stress?
“Pranayama. It’s so incredibly subtle yet powerful. I consciously switch to Ujjayi if my mind or body is in a fight or flight stress mode for any reason. The key is in being conscious and aware when a stressful situation arises and dealing with it using the breath as tool. I find it super effective. Sure, I’m still trying to fathom its workings and sit for my pranayama practice with discipline. If you’ve mastered your breath you’ve mastered the art of living.
When I’m feeling exhausted or have had a long week or a long day I love taking a long bath, pouring drops of essential oil while running the bath, or an essential oil infused body oil post showering. Essential oils like blue tansy, lavender and rose are magical for de stressing and calming.
Abhyanga or massage, self massage if you can’t get to a therapy center works like a charm too to de-stress. Also good glass of red wine to unwind, ideally an Amarone can melt away all my stress and tension, preferably, in a long bath!”
What is your favourite skin treatment?
My miracle Purearth Illumine Elixir Face Treatment Oil. I’m so addicted to it that I even dab a drop of it and massage my ears with it at least 4-5 times a day, because I like the smell. Its super loaded with nutrient rich EFAs, antioxidants, the elusive rare Omega 7 in Seabuckthorn which builds your skins collagen structure. Its helped keep my pigmentation at bay and keeps my skin amazingly soft, plumped and luminous because of the wild harvested, unrefined rare plant oils that go into it. I use it as a deep face treatment oil few nights a week, massaging it into the deeper facial muscles to tone skin and the muscular structure underneath it that holds it together. I am also fond of using a few drops of it with my moisturizer or serum as a makeup base. It forms a velvety soft layer without being comedogenic and without any toxic nasties that clog skin or eventually dry skin out.
What is your skincare like?
Very basic really. I have dry skin so I like using oils mixed with beeswax and cacao butter or any seed butter to cleanse skin with a hot wet muslin cloth. Close pores with a cold compress muslin cloth. For the day I use Purearth Wild Rose & Seabuck Face Cream and a sunscreen from Avene. At night I switch my skincare routine depending on the season and my skins needs.
If I’ve been travelling much or my skin is feeling unloved I use Purearth Illumine Elixir after a deep cleansing mask ritual with Purearth Turmeric Exfoliating Face Sand blended with some raw honey and I let it sit for a good 30 minutes before washing it off. At least once a week I use the Face Sand and simply wash it off and leave skin bare to breathe all night without anything on it.
I massage Purearth Wild Rosehip Seed Oil every once in a while at night for at least 10 minutes into my facial skin as an intense pigmentation and toning treatment. Its chock full of Vit A, C and E and EFAs! For eye contour area I use Purearth Camomila Eye Serum for its soothing, calming and gentle benefits on the delicate eye area.
SW Basics Toner (with witch hazel and apple cider vinegar) for toning if I use a makeup remover. For lazy nights or when I’m travelling I carry RMS cleansing wipes.
Tell us about your hair.
I’ve been using and adore Jurlique hair care for decades now. I touch up my grey roots with Phyto’s plant based colouring system and once in a few years I do highlight my hair for fun though it’s bad for my scalp. But a girls gotta have some fun!
Anahita Khorana in Gazelle, Pune has been cutting my hair for decades now and Barry at Hair Corner or Roland at Brune Blonde in Hong Kong know how to work with my hair. I don’t really blow dry it but when I do I like the GHD Platinum styler for some oomph. Shane Chandler at his namesake salon in Hong Kong has created magic on my tresses with his ombré artistry.
I don’t do it often enough but I use cold pressed mustard or coconut oil warmed below 70 degrees and infused with karipatta leaves for a proper champi maalish. It brings fresh blood supply to the scalp, smoothes keratin and rejuvenates hair shafts.
I can swear by apricot oil infused with ratanjot bark for greying, balding and hair loss. I’ve seen the results on my own hair and some of my family members and friends!
What is the common beauty mistake that women make?
Shunning oils! There’s this unfounded fear that oils clog pores, cause breakouts and are acneic. It’s my pet peeve and I go around advocating oils in food and skincare like some oil warrior! Our skin naturally produces oil because it needs it, allowing the largest organ to function optimally. Stripping the skins layers dry with mineral oils and chemical product build up causes the skin to produce even more oil. Leading skincare brands and even baby oils are made with mineral oils – a distillate of petroleum! Break this cycle by using only ethical, organic, green skincare made with good oils that absorb into the skin, support its health and keep it supple, toned, clear and beautiful!
Unrefined, unbleached, unfiltered, clean, raw, virgin, organic cold pressed or CO2 extracted oils are the holy grail of gorgeous skin and a healthy body. Try them and see how happy, nurtured and adored your skin will look and feel.
What’s your favourite makeup?
RMS Buriti Bronzer for cheeks and eyes. It gives my face the warmest, sun-kissed, honey gold glow. I blend the Alima Satin Finishing Mineral Powder into skin (as an overall foundation) with my RMS foundation brush. It’s the greenest, cleanest, luxe foundation ritual ever! And my Ben Nye Bella Luxury Powder in Banana, which is the secret to creating a smooth setting finish to my eye corrector and concealer.
What is the biggest beauty myth?
The more expensive a product the better its effect. The most effective skincare for long lasting dewy clear beautiful skin is found in your kitchen. Turmeric, neem, cold pressed oils, ghee, rose water, honey, oats, yoghurt….Unsprayed, organic wild harvested good quality ingredients are all you need to make your own micro batch skincare. Your kitchen is your pharmacy. Invest in an intimate, ‘me time’ ritual with your skin. Celebrate being radiant and beautiful!