Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 4, Issue 16 , Tuesday April 24, 2007



Chemical goblins, vegetable angels

If every era had to have a catch phrase or if every time frame had to be summed up in one word, the times of today would probably be tagged 'awareness' (provided of course you forget the mammoth vocabulary of defining words such as technology). Sadly or gladly, whichever side you choose to root for, awareness has come in more ways than one, be it social, environmental, human or animal rights. And undeniably, the trend has seeped its way into Bangladesh as well.

Whether it is in relation to CNG conversion or promoting the use of natural dyes, we have jumped strongly onto the awareness bandwagon, both feet firmly on board and one of the best-known advocates for the cause latter mentioned (natural dyes) is Kumudini Cares.

Living up to their cause, Kumudini held a press briefing for the concept of using vegetable dyes on Friday, April 13. First on the agenda was a slide show conducted by one of their members that went on to highlight the history of Kumudini Cares, the life of their founder, R P Shaha, and the organisations that they maintain. It was followed in suit by an in depth presentation on the use of natural dyes instead of chemicals in the clothing industry. And to drive the point firmly home, the last leg of the exhibition included a physical demonstration of the entire process of dyeing.

Raising enough cause for alarm, as pointed out by Kumudini, the vices of using chemical colouring are aplenty including disadvantages such as chemicals are harmful for the skin, they absorb heat and the use of chemicals elevates pollution. And yet, on the other end of the table and hardly known as common knowledge, vegetable dyes are environment-friendly, they facilitate safe working conditions for dyers and pose no health risks to consumers. And of course there is the nationalistic feather on the cap of being able to say that natural dyes are an ingrained part of the indigenous knowledge of Bangladesh, giving all the more reason to protect and promote it.

There are still numerous challenges facing the natural dye industry despite its many benefits and believers of this concept hold that policy support from the government and campaigns to create awareness would be very welcome in stimulating their industry. Also needed deeply are more research facilities, patenting indigenous knowledge and media promotion.

The Natural Dye Fair will carry on for a month at Kumudini so make some time to stop by and discover for yourself what chemical monsters you wrap onto yourself everyday and what you should be wearing instead.

By Subhi Shama Reehu
Photo: Kumudini

News Flash

Escape to the Spring Spa

In a city that has undergone drastic changes in the past three years, there is yet another pioneer and another new addition to the long list of service providing institutions. A venture of the Persona Group, this new addition to their list of facilities is the Spring Spa- a first and a one-of-its-kind Spa in Dhaka as well as Bangladesh.

Located in the Suvasta Zenim Plaza in Dhanmondi which houses other Persona ventures, Spring Spa is what is nicknamed as “a rejuvenating escape”. And an escape it is- from the hustle bustle of the city, where one can get pampered and treated to luxurious facials, decadent body massages, invigorating body scrubs, relaxing body wraps, and a score of other therapies that will leave any customer feeling loose and languid. And all this is done by staff who have been trained by Thai veterans in this field.

And to launch this new venture the Persona Group hosted a lavish gala event at Sheraton Hotel's Winter Garden amidst much aplomb and fanfare. His Excellency the Thai Ambassador did the honours of inaugurating the event. What followed was a night of singing, dancing and little glimpses of what Spring Spa will be offering. Sumon (from Aurthoheen), S.I. Tutul and Fahmida Nabi entranced the crowd with their captivating songs while a flutist and a dance troupe assailed their senses. And to top it all, models graced the catwalk in what can be described as spa wear.

In today's rat race, amidst all the demands of a monotonous routine life, there are few things for women in Dhaka to indulge in. Now with the launch of Spring Spa they can finally escape to a relaxing retreat. So the next time you're in need of some real pampering, swing by the Spring Spa and treat your self to some tender, loving care.

By Tahiat-e-Mahboob
Photo: Spring Spa

On The Cover

Beat the heat and stay cool this summer with our season's special on Centrefold and Page04.

Photo: Amirul Rajiv
Model: Shumu


While no one wants beauty to be skin deep, everyone wants beautiful skin. The skin is probably the most abused part of our body. It is the easiest to neglect yet the most convenient to take care of. All one needs to know is the right way to do it. Taking care of your skin requires only a few simple steps…

To put or not to put
One of the main reasons for aging is unshielded exposure to the sun. This can be easily prevented by using a broad-spectrum sun block daily. Another common misconception is about washing. Washing takes away oil and moisture from the skin. And to make matters worse, tap water has chlorine. This causes oxidative damage. Washing your face twice a day will be enough. Instead of using hot water, choose warm water to bathe in. It is more natural and doesn't dry out the skin as much. None of us have the same skin. So be it make-up or basic skin care products- choose them accordingly or else you might find yourself with a lot of acne. And never wear make-up to bed.

The body does play a part
The overall body does play a part in the health of your skin. Do not smoke because it makes skin age prematurely and assists it in acquiring a displeasing sallow hue. Nicotine is the fastest way to reverse your anti-aging cycle. Sleep is essential to skin care. After all, your body rejuvenates and fixes itself while you sleep. And to give your skin a natural, healthy glow, exercise. Exercise causes the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the skin to increase and that is what makes your skin glow.

So you see? Taking care of your skin is very simple. To top it all off follow a nightly routine and apply skin care products an hour before you go to sleep. This gives them sufficient time to penetrate the skin. So what are you waiting for? Get started right away. And in no time you will be sporting beautiful, healthy, glowing skin.

By Tahiat-e-Mahboob



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