*This is a collaborative post.
It’s believed that Queen Cleopatra used black cumin seed oil as a regular beauty treatment, which contributed to her magnificence. Over the years, the affinity for organic-based products has attained new heights in the cosmetic industry. The trend now is to acquire smoother, younger-looking skin by using natural means. That has accounted for a projected market value of 7.2 billion dollars by 2024 in the organic cosmetics market. Are you interested to know what some of these natural plant ingredients are? Take a look at this list below.
1. Pine bark extract
In the cosmetics industry, pine bark extract (also known as “pycnogenol” in cosmetic products) is an organically active substance notable for drastically reducing free radicals, known as unwanted “militant” molecules on the skin. These free radicals are closely associated with several skin conditions in old age. However, with the addition of pine extracts in body creams and lotions, the final formula becomes a wonder product for skin cell regeneration and duplication.
Moreover, this extract is excellent in reducing wrinkles and collagen depletion on aged skins. So, if you continually apply a skin product with pine extract right from your thirties, you can be sure to be setting the stage for delayed wrinkle formation. Furthermore, it has active properties that help protect against ultraviolet rays from the sun.
Additionally, it reduces redness, inflammation, photoaging, and discoloration of the skin. Of prime interest is the pine bark extract’s ability to decrease melasma areas on the body tremendously.
2. Eucalyptus plant extract
People with dry skin tend to have extremely low Ceramide levels. Ceramide is a natural fatty acid that aids in creating a barrier for the skin as it locks in moisture. It also contributes effectively to preventing dryness and irritation. Eucalyptus immediately comes to mind when a cosmetic manufacturer is looking at creating a product that increases the skin’s water holding capacity.
Additionally, most skin products that offer barrier protection and enhance the body’s ability to produce more ceramide tend to contain some eucalyptus leaf extract. The eucalyptus plant contains a compound known as macrocarpa responsible for stimulating the skin to produce more ceramide. The cosmetic industry understands eucalyptus skin benefits, which explains why this plant accounts for almost 40% of all skin creams responsible for reducing visible aging signs.
The eucalyptus is a regular feature in healing creams for cuts, cold sores, cracked heels, eczema, and insect bites, as an antibacterial and antiseptic agent. It’s also excellent in treating athlete’s foot and exposure to poison ivy. Indeed, this is a versatile and potent plant with a wide range of functions.
3. Aloe Vera Extract
Aloe Vera is the most popular plant extract used in several cosmetic products around the world. You’ll not be wrong to consider it as the wonder plant extract since pre-modern times. Its first recorded use was in 16th century Egypt. The aloe plant’s two main components are the latex and the gel contained in the inner leaf. You may also have remembered how your gran or even older parents used natural Aloe Vera gel to treat burns and other skin conditions. It’s indeed a wonder herb.
Notable in its skin protection ability is the success in Psoriasis treatment. Psoriasis’s exact cause is unknown, but it turns out Aloe Vera is that decorated herbal warrior famous for fighting (treating) this skin condition. It’s worth knowing that the European Tropical Medicine and International Health carried out a year-long research on Psoriasis and Aloe Vera extract. The results were phenomenal as over 83% of people who used the Aloe extract for topical applications were completely cured.
Aloe Vera contains compounds such as polysaccharides, galectin, glycoproteins, and glucomannan. These are antioxidants and anti-inflammatory chemicals that give the human skin and body an immunity boost. They’re also responsible for healthy skin and delaying the formation of wrinkles. Most importantly, Aloe Vera extracts are known to bind with collagen to enhance skin elasticity. Now, do you doubt why the cosmetic industry is enamored with this nature’s gift?
4. Coffeeberry extract
This is an extract that proves there’s more to coffee than just being a steamy, delicious beverage in your cup. The coffeeberry is derived from the fruit of the Coffea arabica plant and not exactly the coffee bean inside it. Surprisingly, this powerful antioxidant berry began to gain ground in the cosmetic industry only a few years ago. The coffeeberry looks like cherries but has a more delicate outer flesh and is also highly perishable. That explains why they’re immediately processed for the cosmetic industry after harvesting.
If you’re conversant with the saying, ”better late than never,” then that’s precisely what the coffeeberry is to the cosmetic industry. Its potent antioxidant properties place it in the top ten of all plant extracts with such highly medicinal values. In an Allure interview granted by the Director of Cosmetology at the University of Miami, Professor Leslie Baumann recounted the coffee bean extract as the most powerful in the cosmetic industry at this moment.
5. Walnut extract
The Juglans Regia L. (botanical name) comes in several forms and can be extracted in all available types. Green walnuts, the kernel, shells, barks, and leaves all have unique properties that the cosmetic industry finds highly useful. Originating from the East, the walnut plant is now widely cultivated in North Africa, Europe, and North America. A rich source of phytochemicals, the walnut extract is well known for its antiseptic properties. Also notable is its astringent property, which makes it quite a regular feature in skin scrubs and cleansers.
Astringents in cosmetics tend to receive massive backlash for being harsh. However, if used minimally and less often, they can have lasting cleansing effects on the skin. The walnut extract is also used as a skin tightening agent. Moreover, its Vitamin B5 content ensures success in clearing up dark spots, hyper-pigmentation, and skin rejuvenation.
The walnut extract has special enzymes, known as phenolic compounds, which attack free radicals on the skin’s surface. That’s why walnut oil is excellent in treating skin ulcers and hyperhidrosis (abnormally excessive sweating). Perhaps, it explains why a small amount of walnut oil is used in some roll-on deodorant brands.
6. The sea buckthorn extract
This shrub has its natural habitat in Russia, China, Canada, Northern Europe, and Mongolia. It happens to be a natural soil stabilizer, wildlife food, and a growing organic resource in cosmetic products. Did you know that the berries of this shrub contain over 190 bioactive agents? Thanks to its ability to thrive in harsh conditions, nature-infused it with elements to make it robust on its own.
Naturally high in Vitamin C, the sea buckthorn has healing properties that put it quite close to the eucalyptus. Like the eucalyptus plant, the sea buckthorn contributes to repairing the skin by improving the body’s barrier properties. It also contains omega seven fatty acids and makes excellent organic components for revitalizing creams.
7. Soy extract
Extracted from soya beans, soy has long been considered an excellent anti-aging gem. According to history, it gained its popularity in pre-modern China several centuries ago. With its protein and densely packed nutrients, soy stimulates collagen production and effectively fights visible signs of aging. Now, that’s a loved theme in the cosmetic production industry – ”fighting visible signs of aging to achieve younger-looking skin.”
Nivea is an international cosmetic brand that believes in the medicinal effects of soy on the body. Understandably so, this is good news, especially for menopausal women. During menopause, women typically lose the elasticity of the skin; the slowing down of the hormone oestrogen is the culprit behind collagen loss. However, phytoestrogen in soy conveniently supplements the skin’s natural depletion, thereby boosting collagen production in such women.
Soy extracts in cosmetics boost the skin’s protection from dry winds and the sun. Furthermore, its antioxidant components lead in the fight against atmospheric irritants and free radicals found on the body’s surface. One less known feature about soy extract is its ability to minimize melanin production. In effect, less melanin in the body translates into lighter looking skin.
8. Chamomile Extract
Last but not least on this list of natural cosmetic wonders is the chamomile extract. Perhaps, this plant is the living proof that whatever you infuse in hot water to drink as tea is equally suitable for topical application on the skin. If you’ve got skin inflammation, itchy skin, redness, or even wounds, Chamomile has earned its rightful place in cosmetic non-fiction.
You can say goodbye to that acne breakout giving you a tough experience daily. Even eczema can’t withstand this antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent that speaks ”healing” to your skin. Now, take a minute to ponder on everything you have read so far. Do you know why the cosmetic industry is booming even in the face of a raging pandemic? It’s because
they totally understand the immeasurable benefits of organic-based products on the human body. For almost every skin problem, there seems to be a natural plant extract excellent in resolving it. Besides, human beings (especially women) are always chasing after the ever-young Cleopatra look.
It doesn’t look like the interest in cosmetics is dying out anytime soon. Therefore, the next time you go shopping for your beauty products, knowing the primary organic element(s) contained in the pack will come in handy.