How To Use Ghee For Skin Care? A Simple Ayurveda Method

It is a common notion that ghee is used only orally. But in Ayurveda, it is extensively used for skin care. A special but very simple ghee preparation is used in many skin conditions like burns, wound scars, skin marks, burning sensation etc. This traditional remedy is called Shatadhauta ghritham.

Shata Dhauta Grita for skin

How To Use Ghee For Skin? 
This ghee remedy is called as Shata dhauta ghrita in Ayurveda.

  • Shata = 100
  • Dhauta = washed with water
  • Ghrita = ghee or clarified butter.

Ingredients

What do you need? 
Ghee – 10 ounce
Water – sufficient quantity.

ghee for skin care

In this home remedy for skin care, we are taking ghee, adding with equal quantity of water, mixing it thoroughly with hand or a machine for 3 – 5 minutes, letting out the water. Then again we add fresh water and continue mixing. Like this, we repeat it for as many times as possible. In Ayurveda, it is advised to repeat the procedure for 100 times. But in practice, it is usually done for 20 – 30 times.

If you are doing it in summer, then you need to refrigerate it for 10 minutes, and then wash and drain the water.
Spring water, mineral water, rain water or tap water can be used for washing.
You cannot completely get rid of water in this remedy. Some minimal amount will be left in the final product. You can store it in refrigerator.
If water is left in the product, it will be spoiled in about 2 weeks time. With refrigeration, it can be stored for 4 – 6 weeks time.

Changes –
The ghee turns white in colour. It will be smoother to touch and will have butter like consistency.
When you touch it, you can appreciate that it is a lot cooler.

I bought SATADHOUTAGHRITAM from kottakkal. the ingredient list says it has Kshirivrikshatwak 2.5 gm, ghritam 5 gm. What is Kshirivrikshatwak.
Ksheerivruksha refers to bark of five trees including banyan tree, Bodhi tree. Its decoction is used for washing the ghee.

Ghee skin benefits

This Shata dhauta ghrita is used to relieve burning sensation, to relieve burn wounds, wound scar, herpes wounds, chicken pox scars, etc.

It acts as a natural skin moisturizer, if used daily. It can be applied over the face, left for 10 minutes, washed with warm water.

In pregnant woman, with unexplained bleeding or spotting, traditionally, it is advised to apply this Shata dhauta ghrita around the umbilicus.
In Ayurvedic leech therapy, after the treatment, to reduce the burning sensation and to check further bleeding, this ghee is applied over the affected area.
It can be used as a lip moisturizer during summer and fall seasons.
It can be applied under eyes.
Partially useful in skin pigmentation and tanning

It is NOT very useful in
pregnancy stretch marks
Acne with clogged pores

Shelf life

4 – 6 months.
Because this ghee eventually contains some remnant moisture inside, it is not ideal to store it for more than six months.
It should be stored in a clean, dry air tight container.
Over exposure to air will cause foul smell.

If you cannot find time to make it by yourself.

Usage in herpes

Usage of Shata Dhauta Ghrita in herpes:
While treating herpes and erysipelas skin disorders, if the symptoms are associated with Vata and Pitta aggravation, then bitter herbs are mixed with Shatadhauta ghrita and applied externally over the skin lesions. (Charaka Chikitsa Sthana 21st chapter). 

How to apply?

Apply a thin layer of shat dhaut ghrit over the skin area. Leave it on for 30-60 minutes and then wash off with cold water.
Can it be left overnight on the skin?
Yes, only in severe cases of sunburn, burning sensation etc.

Applying on palm and feet:
For people with severe burning sensation in palm and feet, as in case of diabetes, or in people with naturally high Pitta Dosha, it is advised to apply over palm and feet during afternoon or at night.

FAQs

Can Shata dhauta ghrita be consumed orally?
No.
Shat Dhaut Ghrit is processed with cold water for numerous times.
The final product, however carefully you may filter it, will contain some amount (5%) of moisture in it. This moisture along with the ghee is not an ideal combination for oral intake. The final product will be extremely cold and oral intake may cause severe indigestion and Ama formation.
The final product does not contain all the properties of ghee.
The final product stands between the qualities of butter and ghee.

Should we chant any Mantra, while making this product? 
As per my knowledge, no specific Mantra is mentioned. You can recite your own favorite Mantra / Shloka, praying for the welfare of the people who would use the Shata Dhauta Ghrita that you are preparing. 🙂
This rule applies to all the medicine preparations.

Can this be used for under eye care?
It can be applied under the eyes to remove dark circles & fine lines under the eyes.

With rose water, sandalwood water

Can I make Shatadhauta Ghrita with Organic Rose water ? Is there any reference in ayurveda to make Shatadhauta Ghrita with Rose water ? And is there any reference in Ayurvedic text to add pure Sandalwood powder to Shatadhauta Ghrita or to make it with sandalwood water instead of plain water ?
Answer:
There is no reference of making it with rose / sandalwood water. But you can surely make it with any of these liquids. Because both are coolants and the net effect of Shata dhauta ghrita is styptic and coolant, useful in burning sensation in skin, burn wounds, etc. So, there is no problem in using any of the two mentioned liquids.

Detergent for washing the vessel?

I am using a copper vessel to make Shata Dhauta Ghrita. If I use detergent to wash the vessel, will the remnant minute detergent particles harm the product when I make it next time?
Answer by Dr JV Hebbar
I think you are exaggerating. You have to use detergent to wash the copper vessel after finishing the Shata dhauta ghrita otherwise, the remnant fat mixed water molecules will spoil your next batch. After washing the copper vessel, rinse it thoroughly with hot water so that no part of the detergent remains. 
If you are still concerned, then wash the vessel with lemon juice and hot water.

Bleeding During pregnancy

शतधौत सहस्रधौताभ्यां सर्पिर्भ्यां अधो नाभे: सर्वत: प्रदिह्यात सर्वतश्च गव्येन चैनां पयसा
सुशीतेन मधुकाम्बुना वा न्यग्रोधादि कषायेण वा परिषेचयेदधो नाभे: उदकं वा सुशीतं
अवगाहयेत ।
śatadhauta sahasradhautābhyāṃ sarpirbhyāṃ adho nābhe: sarvata: pradihyāt sarvataśca
gavyena caināṃ payasā suśītena madhukāmbunā vā nyagrodhādi kaṣāyeṇa vā
pariṣecayedadho nābhe: udakaṃ vā suśītaṃ avagāhayet | – charaka samhita shaareera
sthaana 8/24
In case of bleeding during pregnancy, one should apply shata dhauta or sahasra dhauta
ghrita (washed a thousand times) on the area below the level of umbilicus.

Lip moisturizer

Can Ghee washed water (Shata dhauta ghrita) be used as a lip moisturizer?

Ghee itself is a good skin and lip moisturizer.  Shata dhauta ghrita is a natural coolant and is used in treating burns, as a sun protection cream. During summer, it is a good idea to apply it on your lips.

Can Coconut oil be washed with water to prepare similar product?
Coconut oil – water mix is quite similar to the ghee-water remedy, though I have not found the classical reference for the coconut oil one. Coconut oil itself is very cool. Washing with water may make it highly cooling, which could be undesirable. Better to avoid it.

Can essential oils be added to it?
Cooling essential oils such as chamomile oil, lavendar oil, jojobe oil – 2 drops per 100 ml, can be added to it.

Is it useful in acne with clogged pores?

Keep in mind that the water washed ghee acts entirely by the rules of physics. It is a coolant and is useful to relieve heat, useful in burn wounds, sunburn, to stop bleeding etc.

There is no big medicinal component in it, apart from the humble ghee. In clogged pores, a medicinal cream with bitter herbs such as neem, Vasa, patola etc., like Mahatikta lepam or six c ointment can be useful. Humble shata dhauta ghrita, having a cooling effect might worsen the clogged pores.

Can it cure brown spots on skin?
Depends on the nature of the skin disease. The answer is no. Probably Kumkumadi oil is a better bet.

Can Swarna bhasma or silver Bhasma be added to it?
There is no real need to add gold and silver Bhasma to Shata dhauta ghrita.
There is no traditional reference that I know, which prescribes external application of gold and silver Bhasmas. I feel it as a waste of money.


61 thoughts on “How To Use Ghee For Skin Care? A Simple Ayurveda Method”

  1. I am having psoriasis psoriasis problem-though not very serious- mainly on legs and hands.
    can this ghee be applied on the affected part and will there be any benefit by doing this?

    Reply
    • To some extent, this ghee is beneficial in psoriasis. All though it is not a definite remedy for psoriasis.

      Reply
  2. Dear sir,
    electric mixer can be used for mixing purpose, but after doing this, the mixer jar might become very greasy.
    Even an electronic blender can also be used for the above purpose.

    Regarding the patience part – If you ever try any home remedy, you will surely experience that it requires quite an amount of patience. But I am sure, it will be rewarding. 🙂

    Reply
  3. i have made this several times. i usually just shake the ghee and water in a jar and then pour out the water and do it again – and try to do it 100 times! i have also kneaded it and stirred it. the shaking it works just as well! i’ve also used orange flower water for the liquid and this works well also.

    however i found that i prefer regular scented ghee for most skin uses. i have very vata skin and the water in the ghee and the cooling effects made my skin dry!!!

    good article!

    Reply
  4. dr.this ghee massage is good for stretch marks for female on abdomen as well as on lower body pl. let me know.thanks

    Reply
    • In fact the final product will have some amount of water in it. Hence this product is vulnerable to rancidity within a couple of months. But it is very easy to make, hence can be prepared as and when required.

      Reply
  5. Thank you, I also have inconsistent results. The first time I made it was with home made ghee, filtered tap water, and mixed it by hand in a glass bowl and it turned out great. The second time I used store bought ghee, mixed it in a copper bowl, and mixed it on the low speed on a machine. It is very gritty and has too much water in it. Are there any tricks or tips for me for making the best batch possible? Thanks you so much and I appreciate your help.

    Reply
    • Using home made ghee is the best option. Then there is maximum chance that everything goes all right.
      More the number of times that you churn the ghee with water, more effective will be the ghee.
      If you have bought ghee from the store, then heat it in very low flame for just two minutes. Allow it to cool down. Use that ghee for churning.

      Reply
      • Another ‘factor’ to consider is the purity of the water — filtered tap water is still usually chlorinated at source, and once chlorinated, water becomes ‘lifeless’ (devoid of ‘Prana’). So you might try using spring water and see if that helps.

        Reply
  6. Hello 🙂

    What happens if I would mix some herbs in the washed ghee?
    and if by any chance would be useful then when should the herbs be mixed in it?

    Thank you 🙂

    Reply
    • I am glad that you asked this very important question.
      1. This remedy is just to explore all the skin benefiting qualities of un-processed pure cow ghee.
      2. This remedy does not involve any process that helps to extract the medicinal chemicals of plants into the ghee medium. For example, if we heat ghee with some herbs, then there is extraction of phyt-ochemicals from plant to the ghee. But here there is no heat at all. There is just the ghee and we are churning it with a little water. So, adding any herb to it might not be that beneficial.
      3. The shelf life of this product is relatively lower than regular ghee, because it contains embedded water molecules and the ghee undergoes rancidity within one or two months.
      4. There is no reference in Ayurvedic text books that directs us to add any herb to the ghee in this method.
      So, all these tells us not to add any herb / spice to it.

      Hope it clarifies your doubt. B)

      Reply
      • Thank you for article. I will make it for shure. But you said in uper unsver to ad turmeric to the whashed ghee for strech marks. So what is ok toad to this amazing skin treatment?

        Reply
  7. Hi, for oily and acne prone face, aloe vera cream would be good.
    For stretch marks, mix a teaspoon of turmeric and sandalwood powder to a cup of ghee and apply it regularly.

    Reply
  8. Hi doctor, you said that this helps to treat wounds/scars from herpes. I have such wounds from long time back and it left me with scar white in colour, meaning I have lost my skin colour pigments from numerous herpes outbreaks on my lips and below my nose. It has been a couple of years now and I still haven’t seen the colour pigments come back. Does this remedy help? Thank you

    Reply
      • Noted Doctor. However is there any other remedy that you can suggest that you think would help to regain my loss skin colour pigments due to injury. Thank you.

        Reply
        • It will help you even if you apply on the white scars. It is not just a kinda white paint that wherever you apply, it will make the area whiter. It is a healing oil and it will also help in normal pigmentation of the scar. But I can not promise that the scar will entirely go away. But it will surely improve.

          Reply
        • Applying ghee on old accident scars helps it?? Can applying ghee with turmeric for only 30minutes will remove all my stretch marks..for how long should I use this remedy..

          Reply
  9. I have developed black marks near the nose on both the sides, can ghee remove those scars if so how should i use it

    Reply
  10. Dr. JV HEBBAR.
    I am 63, diabetic. Diagnosed diabetic cold feet/allowdyna. Sensitive to extreme temperatures and winds. I can’t stand fan air in the room. The lower part of my legs have burning sensation all the time, can’t walk bare foot in the house. I am comfortable in the night under two layers of woolen blankets.
    I feel it as skin problem. Advice if the ghee can help if applied as suggested.
    Thanks.
    Ravinder Reddy. Hyderabad.

    Reply
    • Dear Mr Reddy, this ghee is coolant and hence might not be useful in cold feet. However, it is useful in reducing the burning sensation due to diabetic neuropathy.

      Reply
      • Thank you, Dr, JV Heber.
        Let’s hope, the said ghee reduces the burning sensation. This will do a lot good to the diabetics..
        Ravinder Reddy

        Reply
  11. Hello Dr Hebbar,

    Thank you for the article. Recently, I started using Ghee for its internal benefits – ulcers, GERD, hemorrhoids and digestion. However learning its topical benefits I am now very interested in starting.
    I was hoping you can answer a couple questions I have been searching… can one use Organic Ghee plain or with essential oils – without washing it?
    If so are the benefits and shelf life different?

    And if the Ghee is washed or not, does it need to be washed off the skin eventually or can one leave it on as they would any other cream?

    Thank you kindly for your time.
    Best wishes.

    Reply
    • Hi, one caus use organic ghee or ghee with essential oils without washing it. Shelf life for ghee is usually one year.
      In fact any ghee, can be used on skin without washing also. Washing makes it more coolant and helps to relieve burning sensation, as in wounds, high Pitta conditions etc.
      After one hour after applying ghee, better to wash off, or else, the applied part will be greasy and uncomfortable.

      Reply
  12. Hi, you can use rose water to prepare this ghee to apply over the acne.
    Rose water needs to be added in equal quantity (or at least half the quantity), each time, while washing. At least wash it for 10 times.
    I also suggest to add a teaspoon of turmeric powder and neem powders to it (say, 250 grams of ghee), while preparing.

    Reply
  13. Thank you Dr Hebbar for your response. Any Ayurvedic remedies for warts? Does Mahamanjistha Kwath help? – Regards, Daya

    Reply
    • For warts, local application of Kshara and a few medicines should help. Mahamanjishtadi kwath can also be useful. But better to consult an Ayurveda doctor in person.

      Reply
  14. Hi, using sesame oil for skin to make the oil and using during summer is fine. I do not see a need to mix ghee or coconut oil to the mix.

    Reply
  15. Hi, for acne rosacea, you can just make a mix of fresh cow ghee – 50 ml with a teaspoon of each of turmeric and neem powders and apply. No need of adding water and churning.
    Better to apply twice a day, because you are adding turmeric (stains easily).

    Reply
  16. You can use the ghee with the way that you have explained.
    You can add the turmeric and sandalwood powder, before melting the ghee.
    Heating the powders with the ghee, is more beneficial.
    In your case, no need to give washing treatment.

    Reply
  17. Hi, I made this ghee washed with watter and the first time it was ok, but today I was making it again with electric mixer, and after it was mixed all nicely together it just didn’t want to separate from the watter. It looks like nice creamy mixture, but it just doesn’t want to let go of the watter, I mixted it for 2 hours and that was the first wash. What am I doing wrong??? Is it posible that this is because of the electric mixer? I had home made organic ghee from grass feed cows.

    Reply
    • Hi, it can be done well with an electric mixer.
      In an elecric mixer, One wash is to be done only for 5 minutes, but you have done it for 2 hours at a stretch.
      Do it for only five minutes, then you will have to let out the water and do it again. After 5 minutes of electric mixing, then also, if the water is inseparable, then leave it as it is for 5 minutes, then the fat and water layer may get separated, so you can drain the water out.

      Reply
  18. a paste made of a teaspoon of ghee with a pinch of turmeric – applied daily on the scar may help.
    Even application of Kumkumadi tailam (herbal oil) on the scar may help to some extent.

    Reply
  19. Hi doctor is normal cooking turmeric good for male face. Or should I use “kasturi manual”. Btw I bought SDG from kottakkal. It looks brown in contrast to what I expected to be light creamy colour. The expiry date seems to be far away. Shd i be worried abt this brown colour

    Reply
  20. My concern is that ghee is also considered good to put on hair for good hair growth, so putting on face will it not increase the chances of increased facial hair growth?

    Reply
  21. Hello Doctor,

    Thank you very much for information on Shata Dauta Grihta. I purchased cow ghee and was able to wash with water 30 times and have bee. Using throughout my pregnancy . My skin overall has improved to an amazing smooth texture. However , in 29th week I observed 3 silver streak stretch marks below belly button 🙁 . They might have have turned from pink to silver white . I’m in my 32 week now ., do I have a chance to treat those newly formed marks by continuing applying the Grihta or need I apply anything additional . Also ., have been applying sesame oil 2 times a week before bath since 1trimester.

    Reply

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