How To Make Ayurvedic Herbal Bath Powder At Home?

I recently published a reader’s opinion about how he quit soap and found out tremendous improvement in skin health. This is further to that post. Different combinations of herbal bath powders that you try at home. So, if you wish to stop soap and try some herbals, then give it a try. 

General considerations: 
Gram flour (also known as basen powder) is the general base for any bathing powder combination. It is good for skin and provides scrubbing action.
A small percentage of people may be sensitive to basen powder, who can use Green gram powder as base.
Overall this powder can be used as 50 % ingredient of the formula. The rest 50 % is composed by different combination of herbal powders.
This combination of herbal powders can be made based on desired effect and availability of herbs.
The below mentioned combination is good to use even in kids.
There are three basic purposes behind use of below herbal powders is

  • Improvement in skin health and complexion.
  • Ability of the herbs to heal acne, skin scars and minor skin lesions.
  • Relieving body pain and inflammation.

Bathing powder formula – 
Gram flour or green gram powder – 10 spoons.

Neem powder – 1 spoon – Neem is very good for skin. Heals wounds, relieves acne and relieves minor skin lesions with ease.
Manjishta  (Indian madder – Rubia cordifolia) – 1 spoon – Very good for skin, used in many herbal medicines to improve skin health.
Turmeric  – 1/2 spoon – 1 spoon – Relieves skin lesions and allergic skin complexion. Improves skin glow.  Quantity can be little less – say, half a spoon only. Too much of it, may leave yellow colour on skin, if not washed with water properly.
Amla (Indian gooseberry) – dry powder – 1 spoon. It is rich in anti oxidants, has a coolant effect over skin and calms Pitta.
Ginger - 2 pinches – Improves blood circulation and relieves inflammation.
Rose petal paste made with water – has calming effect, relieves any burning sensation in skin and improves glow. If you do not get rose flower, you can use a few drops of rose water.
Almond – rich in natural vitamin E, excellent skin moisturizer.
Khadira – (Acacia catechu) – A very good Ayurvedic herb, useful in many skin diseases. There is also a reference in Ayurveda that people with recurrent skin diseases should take bath by adding this powder into hot water.Hence it is very good for skin, even on external application.
Vacha (Acorus calamus – sweet flag / calamus) – useful to relieve skin inflammation.
Rasna (Pluchea lanceolata) – Relieves body aches and pains.

In the above combination of herbs, you can use as much as available, depending on purpose.
If you want to relieve skin problem, use more of Manjishta, Khadira, Vacha and Neem.
If you want to relieve body aches and pains – use more of ginger, Rasna.
If you have burning sensation, use more of rose water  / paste, almond and Amla
If you have skin allergy and non healing wounds, add more of turmeric and neem powder.

Use of fragrance:
If you have any problem with the aroma of your final combination of bathing powder, you can use any natural fragrance of your choice.

Liquid additive options: 
Eucalyptus oil – just two drops – good anti inflammatory oil, good for respiratory healthy.
Rose water – Good for skin, coolant. 1- 2 spoons.
Kumkumadi Taila – 1 – 2 drops. Relieves acne, improves skin glow.
Ad: Where to get the ingredients?

Dr JV Hebbar B.A.M.S, MD (Ayu), is an Ayurveda Doctor. Click here to consult Dr Hebbar
Subscribe and get Dr Hebbar's ebook "Blueprint For A Healthy Lifestyle" for free


  1. wow, 12 min video!!. i predict this video to be a huge hit in youtube (simply based on the keywords) in about 1 years time.

  2. Sir, in addition to washing body, i have been using Reetha powder decoction(prepared by heating Reetha powder in water) to wash clothes, and they wash as good as any detergent, of course without polluting the sewarage water. Even the most dirty stains can be removed by applying a little coconut oil on the grease or dirt before washing.

    Chigare and Shikakai in powder form is much better in cleaning vessels than any dishwashing chemical and are safe for body as the harmful chemicals of dishwashing soap will not be ingested into the body.

    Same thing will cleaning floor, even if you spill oil on floor applying a little shikakai powder on floor before wiping with water will clean even most tough stains.

    And these soap powders are much much cheaper than detergents, and are eco firendly!!

  3. What is green gram flour – powder of green channa or green gram (mung dal that is used to make pesarattu)?

  4. my son was born with a good complexion but within 2 yrs he’s getting a dark complexion. Is it because of soap? If I switched to this herbal bath powder, will it help recover his complexion. More importantly, why is there a change in complexion? I’ll appreciate your response

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      May because of Sun exposure, or due to Pitta activity, there might have been colour change. Skin colour change is a natural process in anyone.
      Switching to herbal bath powder would surely help.
      Add more of sandalwood powder, turmeric and Almond in the bath powder, to serve the purpose better.

  5. Dr Hebbar
    Can you give the list of ingredients in absolute terms. I mean, can you specify the amount of each ingredient, say for 500gms of gram flour powder.That way we can mix all the ingredients at a time for everyday use and not go through the process everyday.Also,I found rose petal powder.I am assuming I could use it instead of fresh rose petals.

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      You can use rose petal powder in stead of fresh.
      The ratio of each ingredient is just arbitrary. Try your own combinations and enjoy.

  6. hi sir,

    very good post. much awaited topic to be discussed.
    i heard few shampoo and conditioners from a reputed herbal company (Hima****)
    is free from harmful chemicals such as paraben, sulphate and silicon and made up from the ayurvedic text reference such as bhavaprakasham.

    is that products also harmful. i use a shampoo which is made up of the following ingredient.

    Tea Tree oil(Melaleuca leucodendron): Natural anti-dandruff agent.
    Grape Seed: Effective anti-dandruff and anti-microbial action.
    Indian Sarsaparilla & Aloe (Aloe vera): Nourishes and moisturizes hair and scalp.

    Please shed some light on this.

    i agree to your point that they use very low quantity herbs and more chemicals. but if it mild when comparing to the other HARMFUL shampoos. is it safe to use.

  7. Namaste Dr. Hebbar, i want to know how to make powder of above mentioned herbs as i get these in raw form. also tell for neem powder i would use neem leaves or any othr part of the tree

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      You can use neem leaf or bark, whichever you get.
      To make powder, just use a mortar and pestle or a mixer / grinder.
      It will be ideal if you get fine powder of raw materials directly. That way, the only job that you have to do is, to mix them at home.

  8. That is a great Bathing powder makes skin looking great ..Thank u So much Doctor for sharing :)

  9. Hi Dr J V Hebbar,i make the paste of the powder with water that ok?? or any other options i can try?

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      Water, rose water, kumkumadi Taila (a couple of drops), Aloe vera juice extract – you can try any of these.

  10. Hello Dr.,
    I’m very impressed with your effort on web. I have a question regarding a bath powder one of my friend suggested. Below is the receipe I was told and I have been using it. I have an oily skin with a little acne on face. Would you please let me know if this is a good combination for me?

    chanaga pappu/ besan………………1 kg
    Bavamchallu……………. 3 tablespoon
    Mudha karrporam/ camphor…………….half inch
    Katsuri turmeric kommulu………..10to15
    Kumkumma puvvu / safron 4 -5 strands
    Vativellu ..handful

    I will look forward to your reply,
    Thank you,

  11. Dr, With the help of your video i made this herbal bath powder,its very nice to use. But i didnt get manjistha at my place. One more doubt, i have is regarding hair care, indigo powder for dyeing hair black.I got neeli aavuri from herbal shop, but its not turning hair black; but people in many you tube videos say, indigo turns grey hair black;What is the herbal name of the indigo in tamil? or they simply add some dye colour saying its herbal powder? please answer me;

  12. Sir , I am not able to find Khadira and manjishta powder anywhere .. even in all good Ayurvedic shops here ..
    But they are available in liquid form( manjishta ras ) .. can powder be replaced with ras ?? will it do the same job in herbal bath powder ??

  13. sushma gidwani says:

    my daughters skin is oily so after applying this she has a pimples so which ingrident not suit her? pl tell me.

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      It may be the case that the powders were infected. Try to remove Vacha and Rasna from the list.

  14. hello.. i have read all your articles .. they were very useful… can you please guide me how to make a (1) body massage oil for smooth skin n healthy skin. (2) also oil for hair… for dealing with damage hair and increasing hair growth.

  15. Thank you for your articles. I have two questions regarding bathing powders – 1. Can roasted gram flour also be used? 2. Can the herbal powder replace soap after swimming in a public swimming pool? Will gram flour be able to deal with the chlorinated water? Thank you!

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      Hi, you can use roasted gram flour.
      After swimming in a public pool, I think it is good to have a soap bath. I think this herbal powder is for general once a day bathing.

  16. Shailaja Deshpande says:

    Dear Sir,

    Thank you very much for giving information on Natural bath soap, hair oil, massage oil etc. I would also like to know
    for dry hair, how to make homemade shampoo & conditioner
    Also a moisturizer for a very dry skin.
    Is there way it can be made at home?
    Please give me recipes for shampoo, conditioner & moisturizer to be made at home. Thanks

  17. Hemant Aggarwal says:

    Is khadira and Kattha (we use in paan) is same thing? I am not able to find khadira powder.

  18. sir.. i found your information very effective..your website is very appreciable.. i have a doubt. after applying herbal bath powder on my body, after how many minutes should i wash it ?i work in hospital. so is it good to fight infection if i use it daily? thank you..

    • Dr J V Hebbar MD(Ayu) says:

      Thank you.
      Pour some water on to body. Make a paste of herbal bath powder with water and apply it. Wait for just two minutes and wash off. If you wish to fight infection, better to add some neem powder into this bath powder mix.

  19. María de la Luz Alarcón Garibay says:

    Thank you very much for your information.!! I love Ayurveda and your website has been very very helpful. I appreciate your big work, the more I read, the more I want to learn from you. I want to try this herbal bath powder, I hope to get the ingredients that are not available in my Country.

Write your opinion about this article