The internal health benefits of green tea are relatively well known - but what if we told you that green tea has benefits for your skin, too? That's right - green tea has the power to change your appearance for the better, both through consuming it and applying it topically. In this blog, we'll discuss all the ways green tea can be a perfect addition to your skin care routine!
What is Green Tea?
Let's begin with a short description of what green tea is. Green tea is a type of tea that, like all other teas (black, oolong) is derived from 'Camellia sinensis' leaves, and originates from China. The tea leaves are steamed/heated almost immediately after picking, and then promptly dried, to ensure that they don't oxidize too much in the process. It's one of the least processed type of teas, and isn't oxidized like black teas are - which is why it gets the 'green' descriptor, for being closest to the color of the leaves its derived from. This lack of processing allows it to retain many beneficial natural compounds! That's in fact why green tea's medicinal properties are ample and have been recorded for centuries, ranging from calming the nervous system to having anti-aging benefits.
Unlocking the Gifts of Green Tea for Skin: 5 Amazing Benefits!
Let's talk about how and why green tea benefits your skin!
- Anti-aging: Its rich in antioxidants (due to its lack of processing/fermentation), particularly polyphenols and catechins. One of these catechins is Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) - this is a naturally occurring compound known and studies for its abilities to repair damaged skin cells, increasing skin elasticity, and retaining moisture. This makes green tea perfect for hydrating your skin and making glowy, while also improving the appearance of wrinkles.
- Nature's Toner: The anti-oxidants in green tea also make it a natural astringent. It can be highly beneficial for those with oily or combination skin types. Thanks to the same EGCG compound we mentioned earlier, it also works to tighten your skin and reduce the appearance of open/enlarged pores!
- Perfect for De-Puffing: Green tea has anti-inflammatory properties due to its caffeine content - ranging from anywhere between 24 to 40 mg. Caffeine works to shrink inflamed blood vessels, making it an excellent remedy for soothing skin conditions like acne, rosacea, and eczema. It also works wonders for eye puffiness and eyebags!
- Anti-microbial and Acne-Controlling: Being naturally anti-bacterial, green tea works to fight common acne-causing bacteria on your face, making it useful in treating fungal acne. It also contains polyphenols (these are usually the plant's own defense against pathogens and UV radiation), which can help control sebum oil protection. Controlling clogged, oily pores can be extremely helpful in dealing with recurring acne!
- Rejuvenating: It contains Vitamin A, C, and E, which can help in healing dark spots, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and making your skin softer!
Green Tea in Your Skin Care Routine!
Here's two DIY recipes to get you started with incorporating green tea into your routine, topically, to get the most out of its skin benefits!
Green Tea Face Mask
What you'll need:
- A bowl and spoon
- 1 Tbsp. Green Tea Powder (Matcha works perfectly for this) OR Green Tea Leaves
- 1 Cup of Water
- 1 Tbsp. Yoghurt
- 1/2 Tbsp. Honey
- A pinch of Turmeric (Optional)
- 1 Tbsp. of Rice flour OR 1 Tbsp. of Aloe Vera Gel
If you're using green tea powder, add about a 1/2 cup of slightly warm water in a bowl and slowly mix the powdered tea until it's fully dissolved.
For green tea leaves, boil 1 cup of water in a small pan (you can add more water depending on how strong you want the tea). Then add the tea leaves, a let the tea brew for about 5 minutes. Then take off the heat and allow the tea to cool to just above room temperature. Then, strain the cooled tea in a bowl.
- Add the turmeric, honey, and rice flour/aloe vera gel to the bowl and mix until fully mixed - try and catch any clumps that might form while mixing!
- Add the yogurt into the mixture.
- At this stage, you can see whether you like the thickness of the mask - if it's too watery, you can add more green tea powder or rice flour. If it's looking too thick, you can dilute it with a bit of water.
- Done! Once your mask is looking adequately thickened, you can leave it to cool in the fridge. You can then apply this to your face (it should last about a week if refrigerated) as a pre-moisturizer step!
Green Tea and Rose Toner
What you'll need:
- A pot to boil water in
- A spray bottle (Optional)
- 2 Tbsp Green tea powder OR 1 Tbsp. Green Tea Leaves
- 5-10 Dried or Fresh Rose Petals
- 2 Cups Distilled Water
- Boil the water in a pot. Once boiling, bring the heat to medium or low.
- Add the green tea to your water and let it brew for 5 minutes.
- Add the rose petals to the pot, and let them brew for an additional 5 minutes.
- Take the pot off the heat and let it cool to room temperature while covered with a lid.
- Strain the cooled tea-rose water into a bottle of your choice - a spray bottle would be ideal!
- Your very own homemade toner is now ready to use! Use it after a cleanser, or as a night-time hydrating step!