Every woman desires to be beautiful irrespective of age. No wonder women go to great lengths to acquire beauty. In ancient times, women used different fragrances and natural products like Shea butter, aloe vera, camwood (known as osun in Yoruba) in enhancing their beauties. The results were glowing complexions and good-to-behold women in the community.face-of-beautiful-african-woman

With the advancement of technology, we have numerous products in the market suited to enhance a woman’s looks. They promise class, elegance and dazzling looks but more often than not are superficial and artificial. The 21st century woman is inundated with cosmetic procedures ranging from laser surgery to teeth-whitening, shaping operations, liposuction, dermabrasion and deep pore cleansing procedures.

Inspite of the above-mentioned, the truly beautiful woman knows that beauty flows from within and manifests outside. We will in other editions touch on the benefits of various beauty products and regimes. However, we will be focusing on the often-neglected foundation that every woman needs for beauty and health in this piece.

Many tips abound on how to exude beauty from the inside out but these are basics for any woman that desires long-lasting gorgeous looks:

1)De-stress your world.

Sounds simple but works wonders. Simple still works! Ensure that you have a good night rest after a hard day of work. Your room should be well aerated, brightly coloured for relaxation and void of environmental pollution that could be generated from technological gadgets such as generating sets. Sleeping in a noisy environment reduces the quality of your sleep which inadvertently impacts on your body balance and calm. Invest in easy-to-use, modern home gadgets like a pressure cooker, fat-removing grill, a washing machine etc. to simplify your daily tasks. Lastly, worry less, plan ahead and relax.

Drink Plenty of water

About 70% of your body fluids, blood and digestive juices consist of water. There is a need for constant replenishment of fluid for physiological/biochemical processes. Drinking about two (2) litres of water a day ensure that your body is well hydrated and can produce the chemicals needed for your skin to glow. Place a slice of lemon in a glass of water every morning for body cleansing and eliminating toxins. Throughout the day, continue hydrating your skin by drinking a glass of water every hour. If water appears too bland to your taste buds, start by diluting a portion of concentrated squash in water and wean by drinking plain water over time. Be warned that drinking plenty of water will result in more frequent urinations until your body is used to the cleansing regime. This also works in ensuring a natural weight loss without much ado.

3)Eliminate junky diets

You are what you eat” is a slogan often repeated by nutritionists. So you want a glowing skin matched with silky, beautiful hair coupled with a radiant outlook? You need to change your diet. It is not enough to have three dishes in a day, it is very important to eat balanced diets. Eliminate over-processed meats, oils like margarine, excessive palm oil and processed tetrapak juices. As someone once told me: “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper”. This means that you include as many natural food products in your meals as much as possible. Eat natural grains, whole wheat foods and full bran cereals like oats, akamu and millet pap. Feast more on salads without the salad cream or mayonnaise. Rather, dress your salad with vinegar, groundnut oil and olive oil.

4)Eat five portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

Good enough, fresh fruits and vegetables are easy to come by in most Nigerian markets. Instead of snacking on pastries and fried food, choose groundnuts, roasted corn, roasted plantain, bananas, mangoes, plums, apples and non-greasy steamed vegetables. Living in an agricultural country like Nigeria offers one cheap and varied amounts of fruits. Five portions of fruits and vegetables refer to different fruits especially those that appear with different colours. You get a great mix of vitamins in each fruit for the body. This could be a portion of tomatoes, an apple, an orange, a cup of groundnuts, two bananas and spinach.

It should be noted that it takes discipline to switch from already-made, processed snacks to fruits and vegetables but the final outcome within a month will attest to the benefits.


It is important to include an active exercise regime in your weekly routine. It could be working out in the gym, walking some distance to keep fit, jogging in the neighbourhood, undertaking some sit-ups at home or taking up a favourite sporting activity. Exercises improve the blood circulation in the body thereby increasing the state of health and well-being. Hormones such as serotonin (known as the “feel good” hormone) and endorphin (known as the excitement/euphoria hormone) are released during exercise. These have an overall impact on your well-being and outlook.


Marie O’Larry: Worked as a Mary Kay Cosmetics beauty consultant and works as a healthcare scientist in the UK.

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