Iahas-Shikakai-Soap pod

Shikakai (Soap pod)


Shikakai Scientific Name

Acacia concinna

Shikakai Other Names

English: Senegalia rugata, Soap pod
Hindi: Shikakai
French: Piquant sappan
German: Shikekai-Baum
Sanskrit: Bahuphenarasa

What is Shikakai?

Shikakai is a thorny bush from the tropical forests of India. The pods of the bush are dried and ground in form of powder and used for hair treatments. In Ayurveda, Shikakai fruits and leaves are also used for external body cleansing that is very mild on the skin, owing to it’s neutral soap content. The fruit of Shikakai plant is known to be the “fruit for hair” and it helps to control hair fall and dandruff. It is mostly combined with reetha and amla to create Herbal shampoo which imparts shine and strength to the hair and prevents greying.
As per the Ayurvedic explanation, this herb also works great to manage constipation because of its laxative nature, treats jaundice and alleviates skin problems. Shikakai can be used for faster healing of wounds because of its Varana Ropan (tissue-healing) property and cooling effect on the body.

Common forms of Shikakai


Shikakai is commonly used for:

  • Treating loss of apetite
  • Treating constipation
  • Curing bleeding piles
  • Preventing and treating hair loss, dandruff and premature greying
  • Preventing and treating Baldness
  • Promoting wound healing
  • Treating stomatitis

Shikakai Dosage

Powder: 1-2 teaspoon or as prescribed by the doctor
Oil: 5-10 drops or as prescribed by the doctor.

Shikakai Side-effects and Warnings

Common side-effects: Not known.
Not so common side-effects: Not known.
Pregnant or Nursing Mothers: Avoid use during pregnancy and breast-feeding.
Children: Not known.

Where to Buy Shikakai in US?

Chinmayi Kulkarni

Chinmayi is a Nutritionist turned Marketer, with Masters in both Marketing and Nutrition. Her focus is to combine her knowledge to understand and evangelize Ayurveda.

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