AYURVASTRA: A NOVEL USE OF HERBAL DRUGS

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About Authors:
Neha Karekar, Prit Lakhani, Ujas Patel
Mumbai Educational Trust
Institute of Pharmacy
Associate Pharmacy Education Officer 2012-2013
Indian Pharmaceutical Association Students' Forum Maharashtra State Branch
2009nehak@gmail.com

Abstract:
Ayurvastra refers to herbal clothes.  It is made by embedding essential oils and herbs into textiles. A wide range of herbs can be used for this process like Chocolate,Tulsi, Brier rose, Indigo, Red Riding Hood (mix of spices) etc. Such textiles have their applications in providing medicinal value and aroma to the garment. Ayurvastra (also marketed as cosmetotextiles on a broad term) has been used for treating enumerable range of diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, skin infections, hyper tension, hay fever etc.Results by using sensorial evaluations showed that performance of such garments lasts for more than 30 days.


Introduction:
With the growing trend in enhancing beauty, customers demand for new ranges of technology which will benefit them not only aesthetically but also increase their health and provide them a sense of relief and satisfaction by using them. Such a demand has given rise to Cosmetotextiles. In this presentation we are concerned with the development and application of herbal drugs into textiles. Pure fragrance compounds and essential oils have been used traditionally in folk medicines for a long time. The ancient treatment with natural drugs has a viable holistic pharmaceutical effect compared to that of synthetic treatment used today. The approach will combine innovative fibre and textile technologies designed to appeal beyond their basic physiological and functional benefits.

Technologies Used: Microencapsulation, Sensory Perception Technology Microencapsulation, liposomes, dyes and coated textile technology are the technologies used for incorporating herbal drugs and oils in textile range.The temperatures of the dyes, the duration and number of the dye soaks, the blend of herbs, and even the equipment used are carefully controlled

HERBAL DYEING PROCESS
The process of herbal dyeing was developed through extensive research during the age-old dyeing methods practiced since the days of the Indus civilization. The process of herbal dyeing starts with the gray cloth passing through several stages of treatment before it becomes colorful and ready to wear. During this entire treatment only natural processes are used.
Fabrics & Yarns used are certified organic cotton, natural cotton, silk, wool, linen, jute, hemp etc. and their natural blends.


1. Desizing 
The washing of processed greige cloth starts with removing sizing, gums and oils used in the course of weaving by washing with natural mineral-rich water and sea salts.

2. Bleaching
Fabrics are exposed to direct sunlight, use of a natural grass base and animal manure starts the bleaching process.

3. Mordanting
To make the colors bright and fast natural mordents such as Myroballams, rubhabsleaves, oils, minerals, alum, iron Vat etc. are used. Use of heavy metal mordant like copper, chrome, zinc, tin etc. is avoided.

4. Dyeing
Aura uses only medicinally rich herbs, plant material, minerals & oils like, turmeric, Myraballam, castor oil, sea salt etc. for dyeing fabric or yarn. We have aspired to achieve and retain the medicinal qualities of the herbs by immersing the plant material directly in the dye bath for the same reason.


Eco-friendly dyeing of Ayuvastra cloth Photo: S.Gopakumar

5. Finishing
In Herbal Dyeing, finishing is done by sprinkling pure water on the cloth and then stretching under pressure, using hand rolls.

6.Recycling
Solid and liquid waste is separated through the process of filtration and used for farming purposes as a manure & watering the fields.

Herbs Used: Harita, madder, turmeric, Indigo, Pomegranate , onion, Tulsi, Mint, Lavender, Ginger and a much more wide range of herbs and plants.

Commercial Application: Many textile industries are getting inclined towards Cosmetotextiles. The brands making herbal clothes  are Aura, Cognis, Pantaloons, quiospheres etc.  These brands have a range of clothings viz. bandee, vest, camisole, men and women’s tee,coirs etc.

Effects on Body: It acts as a revitalizing tonic and helps in keepin the body fresh and healthy. The use of proper herbs in the textiles have proven to cure diseases like arthritis and Hay fever. Itcan improve the skin’s natural ability to block and resist harmful chemicals and toxins from entering the body will be beneficial to health

Refrence:
1. organicclothing.blogs.com
2. auraherbalwear.com
3. expresstextile.com

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