According to Ayurveda—the holistic medicine practice from India, of which yoga is only one part—a dosha is an energetic signature that can inform everything from your skin to your personality to your sex drive.
There are three doshas—vata, pitta, and kapha—and though everyone has a little bit of each, your dominant dosha is what Ayurvedic practitioners use to help you figure out the best way for you to eat, exercise, sleep—and savasana. (Just kidding, everyone loves savasana.)
So, what’s your dosha? Take our quiz to find out!
Keep track of how many A, B, and C answers you have, and we’ll tell you your results at the end.
1. My ideal environment is:
A. Warm! My hands and feet are usually cold and I thrive when the temps go up.
B. On the cooler side. I am usually warm regardless of the season.
C. Either—I am adaptable to most temperatures, with one exception: no cold, wet days for me.
2. When I sleep:
A. I am a light sleeper who wakes up easily.
B. I sleep soundly but in short bursts—I feel rested with much less than the recommended eight hours.
C. (Don’t) wake me up before you go-go—my sleep is deep and long, and I tend to wake up slowly in the morning.
3. Under stress, I:
A. Get anxious and worried.
B. Become irritable or even aggressive.
4. When I have digestive issues, I:
A. Tend toward constipation.
B. Eliminate frequently, with loose stools.
C. Have sluggish, incomplete elimination and feel full, but maintain regular bowel movements.
5. In terms of personality:
A. I like change, and I am lively and enthusiastic by nature.
B. I like to take the lead in solving problems, and I have a purposeful and intense energy.
C. I am easygoing and accepting, and am great at supporting my friends—I’m a go-to for advice.
6. With my money, I:
A. Tend to fritter it away, not knowing where it went.
B. Enjoy splurging on big-ticket luxury items.
C. Am a good saver and skilled at accumulating wealth.
7. My skin:
A. Tends toward dryness or thinness.
B. Is warm and rosy, with moles or freckles—but it can be prone to irritation.
C. Is smooth and soft, tending toward oiliness.
8. My body type is:
A. Slender and lanky with prominent joints and sleek muscles.
B. Medium-sized bone structure with a symmetrical build and good muscle tone.
C. A large frame with thicker ankles and wrists, and I gain weight easily.
9. When I dream, I often dream about:
A. Things I fear or things that make me anxious.
B. Conflict and competition, with fighting and maybe even violence.
C. People I love or are deeply emotionally connected to.
10. My hair:
A. Tends toward dryness or frizziness. Brahmi oil to the rescue!
B. My hair is fine and soft.
C. I have abundant, thick hair.
11. In terms of fitness:
A. I enjoy workouts like yoga and Pilates that make me feel calm and grounded afterward.
B. I’m always the sweatiest one in class.
C. For the first 15 minutes I struggle (and miss the couch!) but after that I find that I have steady, strong endurance.
12. When it comes to eating, my hunger:
A. Is never too strong; it comes and goes, and I often forget to eat.
B. Tends to hit urgently, all of a sudden—and I have to eat.
C. Is slow and steady—pretty much anytime it’s: I could eat.
13. As for my eyes:
A. They’re on the smaller side.
B. People tell me I have a penetrating gaze.
C. I have large eyes and an open, friendly face.
14. When workouts get intense:
A. My joints have a tendency to crack, and other people seem to have a higher threshold for pain.
B. My joints are loose and flexible (AKA pigeon pose is no problem), but I can sometimes push too far and get injured.
C. I rarely get injured, and my joints feel well-padded.
15. I find that having a routine:
A. Is the worst! I like to mix it up.
B. Is fine as a means to an end (think: crushing the competition), but I can take it or leave it.
C. Is deeply comforting to me.
16. My learning style:
A. I sometimes feel scatterbrained and have trouble focusing. I need quiet to absorb new ideas.
B. I am a quick study—especially if it’s information I need to solve a problem or accomplish something. I fearlessly drink from the information firehouse, but I can forget facts just as quickly as I learn them.
C. When I learn something new, I may need to go over it a couple of times, but once I retain it I never forget it.
17. Stick your tongue out and look in the mirror—what do you see?
A. My tongue is somewhat thin and and pale red, and can appear dry.
B. It’s medium thickness and a deeper red color without much of a coating, and may have a pointy tip.
C. It’s thick with a rounded end, and I have a tendency to get a white coating when I overdo it on the carbs.
18. My nails:
A. Tend toward brittleness, and the nail beds may be different shapes.
B. Are soft, flexible, and pink with large “moons.”
C. Are super strong and thick—no “broken nail” emergencies for me.
19. My sex drive is:
A. All over the place—I’m a sex goddess one day, and on other days there’s barely a spark.
B. Intense and passionate.
C. Naturally, consistently strong—I’m an “every day” kind of girl.
20. My friends say I’m:
A. Effervescent and creative—but I get anxious and scattered without my “me time.”
B. The one who can get a bit too competitive on game nights, but who always has your back.
C. The calm, steady rock who holds everybody together—but who may be slightly too set in her ways.
Okay, tally up…
If you have more As than anything else, you’re:
Hello, vata! People with this predominant energy are exciting to be around, with infectious enthusiasm that lights up a room. You’re a sensitive soul who may need extra TLC when things get too much, though. You don’t like routine but when things go from awesome to anxious, routine is your friend. (What’s not your friend? Often, raw foods. Warm nourishing meals make a vata girl feel amazing.)
If you have more Bs than anything else, you’re:
If you’re a pitta, you’re probably reading the other two dosha descriptions—just to suss out the competition. Pitta is on it. As your friends know, though, there’s nothing better than having a pitta on your side because you are all about making things happen and you’re ride-or-die as they come. The downside? Fiery pitta has a tendency toward inflammation—which can lead to digestion and skin issues, especially if you love spicy foods. (Let’s just say they’re not gonna love you back.) There’s an Indian proverb for pittas: Avoid too much hurry, worry, or curry. Follow that and you’ll chill out nicely.
If you have more Cs than anything else, you’re:
Kapha, you are an open-hearted sort with wisdom to spare. Typically calm under pressure and a source of comfort for others, you’re the one people turn to for sage advice. The only problem? All that stability can manifest in your body as heaviness, and in your life as stagnation and routine. (You’re definitely Team Sweats-and-Netflix.) Break up that stagnation by getting sweaty and limiting heavy foods like meat and dairy, and you’ll be sitting in the sweet spot of kapha-land—which is a particularly harmonious, smooth-sailing place to be.
Whether you’re vata, pitta, or kapha, kitchari is the Ayurvedic comfort food of choice—and here’s a recipe. And now that you know your dosha, you can be a better beauty shopper: Here are six Ayurveda skin care brands you need to know.