The practice of oiling your body is called Abhyanga. It’s one of the recommended ayurvedic daily (Dinacharya) practice.
Benefits of Abhyanga:
- This practice rejuvenates and supports the skin
- You feel nourished and calm
- Moisturizes and helps balance your body temperature
In winter, I use warming oil like sesame oil and in summer, I use coconut oil which is cooling. If you feel too warm in winter, you can coconut oil to cool yourself down and vice versa. Fiery nature may be a sign of too much pitta (ayurvedic term meaning warmth) and you may benefit from using coconut oil. If you feel dull, cold or depressed, abhyanga with sesame oil can make you feel nourished and supported. This is a general guideline. If you see an ayurvedic doctor and they recommended a particular oil for your body’s constitution, follow that.
If you have an oil warmer, it will feel nice to use warm oil. Just a cup warmer should do. I found mine at the thrift store. You can also use the oil at room temperature.
It’s best to do this before taking shower. Sitting at a place calmly for a few minutes before showering, allows for the oil to penetrate in. Sitting without multitasking helps you slow down and bask in the calm. Maybe a good time to practice a five or ten-minute meditation. Wash off with warm water. Avoid using soap as it dries the skin. Soap is a recent discovery and it is really not needed for maintaining hygiene.