How Plant-Based Actives Alleviate Skin Conditions
You’ve probably heard the term plant-based actives being used more often in skincare and there’s good reason why these ingredients are so popular. Plants are filled with phytochemicals that combat the signs of ageing and help alleviate skin conditions such as psoriasis, rosacea, and acne. Filled with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, plant-based actives come with little side affects and are suitable for most skin types unlike chemical-based ingredients.
Your skin is the first place you start to see the visible signs of ageing. Some of the signs include loss of skin elasticity, wrinkled, dry, loose skin, inflamed skin, and more hyperpigmentation. Plant-based actives help even skin tone and make the skin look healthier as they boost the natural cell renewal process (skin aging), stimulate elastin and collagen production (wrinkles), and inhibit excessive melanin production (hyperpigmentation).
To understand the true power of plant-based actives, we need to look at what’s on the inside, polyphenols. Polyphenols are the micronutrients that naturally occur in plants and there are approximately 8000 known polyphenol compounds. Predominately found in edible plants, these compounds are divided into two categories, flavonoid, and non-flavonoid. The main difference between the two groups is their chemical structure but most importantly both have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-microbial properties.
Flavonoid compounds are found in fruit, vegetables, grains, and seeds as well as wine, tea, coffee, and cocoa. Phenolic acids, tannins, stilbenes and lignans make up the non-flavonoid group and are found in cereals, legumes, oilseeds, fruits, herbs, and vegetables.
Polyphenols have been scientifically proven to help with various skin conditions so let’s look at how they help the following conditions.
Effecting up to 3% of the global population, psoriasis is characterised by inflamed dry or red patches of skin covered with scales and red borders that are often itchy. Many treatments for psoriasis cause irritation and reactions so natural remedies are an important alternative. A variety of polyphenols have been identified to treat psoriasis including linseed oil, fish oil, Capsicum annum, Ranunculus arvensis and Aloe greatheadii from the Aloe Vera family.
Rosacea is a vascular and inflammatory condition that can present in skin as flushing, papules, and pustules and watery or irritated eyes. As there is no effective cure for rosacea, treatments mainly consist of relieving symptoms and inhibiting their spread. For these reasons, a lot of natural alternatives have been tested and one of the best plant-based ingredients to use on rosacea prone skin is Green Tea. Green Tea contains the phenolic compound epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) which reduces skin inflammation and redness. Another ingredient proven to reduce the severity of rosacea is Golden Chamomile. It has a strong anti-redness effect due to its unique mix of soothing compounds of luteolin and acacetin-7-rutinoside.
We’ve all experienced acne at one stage of our lives (and if you haven’t, lucky you) and know that it’s caused by over activity of the sebaceous gland. Most treatments are local topical treatments, oral antibiotics, or hormone therapies but increasingly plants are also used. Plant extracts from Eucalyptus and Mangosteen’s have shown to have anti-microbial properties against acne. Other phenolic compounds with antibacterial activity against acne include extracts from the Magnolia plant, caffeic and ferulic acid, luteolin and thymol from wild bitter melon leaf.
For these reason and many more, we’ve included plant-based actives in our entire range of evidenced based skincare. Discover our range today.