When visiting tropical countries, protecting the skin is essential. In this case, sunscreen is the best ally. Of course, it is imperative to protect oneself, but natural products are preferred for health, aesthetic and economic reasons.
In Madagascar, the women of certain regions have found the solution: the Masonjoany, a traditional preparation originating from the northern, southern, and western areas of the big island where temperatures rarely go below 30° C. The know-how in the preparation has been perpetuated from generation to generation. It is still used nowadays, and the recipe is spread all over the island.
What is the Masonjoany
The Masonjoany is the name of the mask used by the women of some areas of Madagascar, namely Mahajanga (in the west), Nosy Be (in the north), Toliara (in the south), and more rarely the highlands.
A Product To Protect From the Sun
Nowadays, the cosmetics industry is beginning to take an interest in the virtues of sandalwood from Madagascar or, by its scientific name, Enterospermum Madagascariensis or Santalina Madagascariensis. However, Sakalava and Vezo women (ethnic groups of the island) have been using this product to protect themselves from the sun’s UV rays for a long time.
An Essential Beauty Product
More than a protective mask against the sun, the Masonjoany is also an essential cosmetic product. Indeed, this product is used for its cosmetic virtues. Thus, on the eve of a ceremony, the application of this mask can make the skin radiant on D-day.
A Mask That Has Become Emblematic of the Island’s Coastal Regions
In addition to its protective virtues, Malagasy women also use the Masonjoany as an ornament, especially during cultural ceremonies. In this case, on a traditionally yellow background are drawn patterns or representations of flowers in white clay.
A Preparation of 100% Natural Origins
The composition of Masonjoany has not changed. This mask is prepared based on sandalwood powder mixed with coconut oil and various products that give its scent and softness. However, the preparation, frequency, and usage vary depending on the desired result.
In principle, this mask is suitable for all skin types. It is not surprising that tourists who stay in Madagascar prefer its use to sunscreen.
The Benefits of Masonjoany
This traditional Malagasy mask has many cosmetic virtues, some of which are similar to the qualities of sandalwood. Indeed, in addition to protecting against the sun, the Masonjoany is beneficial for the skin. Applying this mask regularly allows to:
- Give the skin a brighter tone
- Moisturize the skin and perfume it
- Eliminate toxins and spots on the skin
- Soften the skin
Stay in Madagascar, an Opportunity To Try the Masonjoany
To enjoy the benefits of this traditional mask, choose the island’s coastal regions. Indeed, you benefit from a decor worthy of the most prestigious postcards. The seaside activities are the most practiced there.
For your stay, forget the sun creams and let yourself be tempted by the benefits of Masonjoany. Although the product is now on sale in stores in the capital, authenticity cannot be bought. In the western and northern regions of the island, the villagers will be happy to prepare it for you. It is also an excellent way to discover a part of the Malagasy culture and its values. Moreover, by choosing well the period of your stay, you will have the chance to attend cultural events which put in scene the particularities of the Masonjoany.