Apparently, Thanaka is VERY popular in Myanmar. Mr. Matthias Khumpi, who is Burmese, agrees to this fact and says he used the paste for ten years, especially when his skin broke out into acne during his teens. (He believes Ngapi, the spicy Burmese dish, was largely to blame for the breakouts.) During those days, he says, Thanaka helped diminish the dark spots and scars left behind by the acne. It’s not just for people with acne and pimples though. He adds that the paste also acts as an effective sunscreen and helps protect against sunburns. According to him, it was originally used in the humid plains of Myanmar and the Burmese believed that its application would protect them from the harmful sun rays and also reduce sweating. Apart from this, he also said that people who worked in muddy paddy fields applied the paste to prevent skin diseases. People originally made the paste by grinding pieces of Thanaka wood against a mortar. Eventually, it started gaining popularity in urban areas as well and then, many varieties of the paste started coming out in the market. Now it comes ready made, and in various fragrances too. Burmese women typically make different designs with it on their cheeks for aesthetic purposes. However, it’s mainly used as a face pack by mixing it with a little bit of water and then washing it off after it dries. It can also be left on for the rest of the day.
Now, Thanaka is available in Kathmandu as well. If you want to buy this product, the person to contact is:
Phone # 9813183750
(Like every other product, it may not suit some people. So I would suggest you to first try using it on a small patch of skin to see if it works for you.)