Should Turmeric Be Part of Your Skin-Care Routine?

May 12, 2020
Jessica Khorsandi
By: Jessica Khorsandi | by L'Oréal
Should Turmeric Be Part of Your Skin-Care Routine?

Many say turmeric makes just about everything taste better, but did you know that the wonders of this vibrant yellow spice span well beyond the kitchen frying pan? It’s true, and we’re hardly the first ones to discover this. Ayurvedic, Chinese and Egyptian traditional medicines have long used turmeric as a botanical supplement. In fact, South Asian brides slather their entire bodies in a paste made with the spice as a ritual before their wedding in hopes of having an ethereal glow when it comes time to say “I do.” Turmeric ingredients in skin care are claimed to calm the skin, soothe redness and help you achieve major dewiness. Late to the turmeric train? No worries, we’re sharing why this ingredient is worth the hype below. 

It’s an Antioxidant Powerhouse

This deep yellow powder doesn’t mess around in the antioxidant department. As ethnic skin expert, and consultant William Kwan, M.D., revealed to us, turmeric is known for its antioxidant properties. And if there’s anything you need to know about antioxidants, it’s that our skin needs them to help fight off free radicals generated by UV radiation, which can cause our skin to break down rapidly and show premature signs of aging — think: wrinkles and fine lines. Vitamins C and E might be the most popular antioxidants for scavenging and neutralizing harmful free radicals, but don’t discredit turmeric’s ability to jump right in and help fight the bad guys.

It Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties

Antioxidants are amazing, but turmeric’s other properties deserve recognition, too. Turmeric is also notable for its anti-inflammatory properties, according to board-certified dermatologist Rachel Nazarian, M.D., of Schweiger Dermatology Group in NYC. “It might be a good choice for those with acne, rosacea, and those with a tendency to have pigmentary problems of their skin, like dark spots.” According to the National Institute of Biotechnology Information (NCBI), turmeric has anti-microbial properties, which also makes it a good ingredient for these skin conditions and types.

It Can Help Brighten the Appearance of Dull Skin

Turmeric has been used for centuries to help reveal skin’s radiance. Give your fatigued skin a boost by incorporating products formulated with this spice into your skin-care routine. Not sure where to go for skin-suitable turmeric? Look no further than the Kiehl’s Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque, which is formulated with cranberry extract, micronized cranberry seeds, and — of course — turmeric extract. The “instant facial,” as Kiehl’s calls it, helps brighten and energize the look of dull, fatigued skin to restore a healthy-looking, rosy appearance.

It Has an Anti-Aging Effect 

For an ingredient to make a name for itself, it typically needs to have anti-aging capabilities. And turmeric delivers on that front as well. The Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology reveals that topical turmeric extract can be used in a moisturizing cream formula to help reduce the appearance of facial spots, fine lines and wrinkles — essentially all of your aging-related concerns.

It Is Suitable for All Skin Types & Routines

No matter how much hype an ingredient receives, positive word-of-mouth isn’t a guarantee that your skin will respond kindly to a new ingredient. Thankfully, according to Dr. Kwan, really people with any skin type can use turmeric on their skin. That means regardless of whether you’re dry or oily, you can add turmeric to your routine. The only warning Kwan offers is to fair-skinned individuals, as turmeric may stain their skin. It isn’t permanent, though, so don’t stress if that happens to you. Simply opt to use turmeric at night or use a light layer of makeup to conceal the yellow tint that it may leave behind.

Dr. Nazarian also notes that nearly all other skin-care products in your routine can be used in tandem with turmeric. “It’s gentle, calming and plays well with others,” she says. “There are really little to no restrictions on what it can be used with.” 

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