5 Top Benefits & Uses Of Jathikai For Face, Hair, Babies & Sleep

What is popularly referred to as jathikai in Tamil is called nutmeg in English, jaiphal in Hindi and Jaaykaayi in Kannada. Jathikai is a seed of a tree that is widely used in cooking for it’s wonderful aroma and taste it imparts to dishes. I always have a small container full of nutmeg in my pantry to use it in cooking and in home remedies. Jathikai is wonderful in using it in remedies and here are some of the health benefits of jathikai: 1. Jathikai For Infants: We rub jathikai and masikai (oak gall) into a paste using sandalwood stone and give babies on the days they have their hair wash. We call it kulumai in Tamil and it is a traditional practice that has been done for centuries. It gives babies a restful sleep but the correct dosage should be given. 2. Jathikai For Hair:  The oil derived from jathikai has wonderful medicinal properties and it can be used as a massage oil when combined together with a base oil to promote hair growth. 3. Jathikai For Sleep: A pinch of jathikai powder when taken together with warm milk & honey before bed induces sleep. 4. Jathikai For Diarrhea: Jathikai powder when mixed with curd water (the water strained from curd) is a good remedy for diarrhea. 5. Jathikai For Acne: I especially like jathikai’s use for treating acne and acne scars and it can be safely used by people with very sensitive skin too. Acne and acne scars are a big problem for many, especially during the teenage years. Many turn to chemical creams and lotions and suffer the side effects of skin peeling and redness. There are wonderful home remedies for acne and this jathikai face pack is one gentle home remedy that treats acne very effectively. For this remedy, you need good quality rose water, I prefer to make my own rose water and it stores well in the refrigerator. To make this jathikai face pack, take a sandalwood stone or a smooth stone to rub the nutmeg. We call it sandalwood stone because we use the stone to rub sandalwood on it to make sandalwood paste. Sandalwood stones are passed down from generation to generation and mine which belongs to mother-in-law’s grandmother is more than 100 years old. But you can use any smooth stone that you have at home. Take a nutmeg and rub it into a paste using homemade rose water. You can either use the paste as it is or after making the paste, you can add fresh sandalwood paste to it. Adding sandalwood paste has a cooling and soothing effect on the pimples especially if it is painful. To add the sandalwood paste, take a sandalwood bark and rub it on the stone along with the nutmeg paste to form a thick paste. To use, apply it on the problem areas and wait for 15 minutes before washing it off. This pack also smells wonderful!

1. Make your own rose water at home and store it in the refrigerator.

2. Take a piece of jathikai and rub it in the sandalwood stone along with little rose water.

3. Rub the sandalwood bark on the sandalwood stone along with the jathikai paste till you get the required amount of paste.

4. Apply the paste on the problem areas, wait for 10 to 15 minutes before washing it off.


  • If the pimples are painful, you can use it along with sandalwood paste, else you can skip it too.
  • You can also use good quality sandalwood powder too. 
  • Use it regularly till you see good results.



  1. Sonja
    September 17, 2014 / 7:59 pm

    Would this work just as well using nutmeg that has already been ground into a powder (ie. mixing the powder with the rose water to get the paste). I don't know where I'd get a piece of sandalwood, but still want to try this!

  2. Anonymous
    January 3, 2015 / 1:44 pm

    Hi. The sandalwood stone you are referring to – is this a traditional "ami-kal" in tamil? If I can't get the sandalwood stone here in UK, would an ami-kal be ok to use? Krithika

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      January 4, 2015 / 1:58 am

      Hi Krithika,Sandalwood stone is not ami-kal, it is not as heavy as ammikal and it can be carried easily. It is also very smooth for the paste to be scooped out easily. It is mainly used for making sandalwood paste and can be easily substituted with any clean stone. Regarding amikal, you can use it but if you grind other spicy ingredients in the same stone, your face might start burning while using the remedy……

  3. Deb
    April 25, 2015 / 3:28 pm

    Hi Ramya,Nice info. I remember seeing Jathikka tree in my aunt's house in Kerala. Recently started using shaved nutmeg in chai. Boy! The flavor it adds! Chai seems more warming in my stomach, milk digests better. Didn't know it can be used for acne. Handy info for my tween daughter. thanks!

  4. Anonymous
    August 25, 2015 / 4:46 pm

    Hi, where do we get organic turmeric

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      August 28, 2015 / 4:28 pm

      You can get in organic shops and now many departmental stores have separate aisle for organic produce please check there..

    • Anonymous
      July 7, 2016 / 7:45 am

      Nice to see thiz

  5. Unknown
    October 24, 2015 / 5:50 pm

    Dear Ms Ramya, thanks for this blog it is indeed useful. Can i know how to obtain a lighter tone for my legs does exfoliating with manjal helps for just applying manjal alone is fine ☺? Thanks and Regarda

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      October 31, 2015 / 3:45 pm

      Mix pure turmeric paste with curd and besan and apply regularly for a few days…

  6. Rajeswari kosana
    November 2, 2015 / 2:36 pm

    Hi ramya , for fairness how often shuld i apply the pack ..weekly once or daily

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      November 8, 2015 / 3:23 pm

      You can apply it weekly thrice to see good results, add a few drops of lemon juice too..

  7. Anonymous
    April 19, 2016 / 8:40 am

    jathikai could make you high as well

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      June 23, 2016 / 11:31 am

      Yes, jathikai does that in large doses…:)

  8. Anonymous
    June 18, 2016 / 5:26 am

    Hi ramya. Can the paste be given to newborn babies? If so, from which week it is recommended?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      June 23, 2016 / 12:45 pm

      We give kulumai in which jathikai is an ingredient for babies above 3 months old. We give the paste only on the day they have their hair wash (weekly twice) and that too we have to be careful with the dosage, we just rub jathikai once (oru suthu in Tamil) on the sandalwood stone along with other ingredients and make the paste. I will do a detailed post on it very very soon…

  9. deeparaj
    September 20, 2016 / 6:54 am

    Dear Ramya,Could you pls suggest a method for unwanted hair on the face(chin n neck)?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      March 17, 2017 / 3:24 pm

      I have a video on getting rid of unwanted facial hair, check it out here (copy and paste the link in the browser): https://youtu.be/jwbPqblxsgg

  10. Anonymous
    March 16, 2017 / 7:16 am

    Dear Ramya Mam,Im 24 year old. I have acne on my face. Is Jathikai alone will cure it? Im not using turmeric to my face because it turns my face into yellow in color. Since im working i cannot use this. Jathikai alone will it cure my acne?? Pls suggest

    • Anonymous
      March 17, 2017 / 7:04 am

      mam please reply for the above.

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      March 17, 2017 / 3:21 pm

      Jathikai will treat acne and since you don't want to use turmeric, use it along with sandalwood like mentioned in this post. This remedy is very gentle and at the same time will treat acne but continue using it at least a few days to see results…

  11. Dinesh J
    May 30, 2017 / 4:48 am

    Mam please suggest me how to remove hyper pigmentation

  12. Anonymous
    August 10, 2017 / 4:23 pm

    Hi, Will this Jathikai and sandal pack also works for cystic acne? or Can you suggest any effective treatment for cystic acne?

  13. Varshaa
    June 21, 2018 / 4:40 pm

    Where do we get sandalwood or powdee?

    • Ramya (Wildturmeric)
      June 21, 2018 / 8:00 pm

      Hi Varshaa, I buy sandalwood powder in local herb shop, we call nattu marunthu kadai in Tamil. But I mostly prefer and use only fresh sandalwood paste, you can buy sandalwood bark in government run khadi shops….

Leave a Reply