Are you tired of jumping onto every skincare trend promising a cure to wrinkles, pimples, acne and scarring, only to wind up with ordinary results and a massive dip in your checking account?
Foods dense in nutrients, minerals and vitamins are typically the ones we’re force fed as children – who can forget their tartness, bitterness and downright lack of, well, yumminess? While we wouldn’t bat an eyelash at the thought of taking honey, avocado or berries to our skin, somehow the ones we’ve known for centuries to good for us seem so foreign to apply topically.
We do many strange and uncomfortable things in the name of beauty, but could the solution to our ambitions rest in some of our more humble vegetables?
Explore the latest skin ‘foods’ the beauty industry has tapped:
First up, broccoli. Love it or hate it, this little powerhouse brims with nutrients required for good health – and the beauty industry is catching on. Broccoli sprout contains sulforaphane, an extract which stimulates skin cells to defend themselves against the tribulations of modern life. In other words, it’s a secret weapon against tired-looking skin. Broccoli seed oil has been available for some time now, but like you do your diet, you can see its benefits when complemented with other bright, nutrient-dense foods combined in a cream or moisturiser form.
Properties: Hydrates, UV protection, calms and soothes, anti-ageing
Try: Skinfood Restore Night Cream, $18.99
The broccoli extracts in this Restore Night Cream ensure it’s packed with iron and vitamins for strong and bright skin while the beetroot extracts contain powerful antioxidants and vitamin C, adding a natural source of retinol, making it the essential addition to a nightly routine.
If you’ve dived into the anti-pollution or charcoal trends for their toxin extraction, consider seeking out kelp. These large brown algae seaweeds are packed with elements that easily absorb into the skin drawing out toxins leaving your skin smooth and hydrated. For those who are prone to breakouts, kelp can aid the reduction of redness and inflammation. But again, using kelp isn’t necessarily a new concept. Internationally recognised luxury brand La Mer has revealed in recent years that fermented kelp – a process which takes up to four months – is one of the potent and powerful ingredients in its Miracle Broth.
Properties: Detoxing, soothing, anti-inflammatory
Try: Obiqo Intensive Facial Serum, $55.50
Combining two types of nutrient-rich New Zealand kelp with anti-aging natural marine peptides of collagen and elastin, this intensive facial serum offers a unique treat for your complexion.
Another ingredient sourced from the ocean growing in popularity is plankton, or more specifically, bioplasma and arginine ferulate. These extracts are brimming with anti-ageing and hydration properties when used in skincare products. Given that the ocean is rather salty and many of its large creatures rely on plankton as a key food group, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that these organisms are nutrient dense and brimming with minerals and amino acids crucial for cell regeneration.
Properties: Anti-ageing, hydrating, conditioning, anti-bacterial, protects from environmental stressors
Try: Coola Mineral Face SPF30 Matte Cucumber, $59
Filled with plenty of antioxidants, plus the added benefit of SPF, this ultra-calming Coola mineral sunscreen with a slight cucmber scent draws on the phyto-protector plankton extract to rejuvenate skin.
A natural source of alpha-hydroxy-acids (AHAs or natural fruit acids), Lime Pearl is extracted from the Caviar Lime found in parts of Australia and, much like an enzyme cleanser, is specially designed to stimulate skin through gentle exfoliation for a smoother, brighter and more even skin complexion removing the dead cells which accumulate on the skin’s surface which make it appear dull and lifeless. Exfoliation is the best way to remove them and reveal a fresher and newer skin beneath. Performed frequently, it helps keep a radiant look with soft skin.
Properties: Gentle exfoliation, AHAs, evens skin tone and texture
Try: Skinfood Quench Coconut Mask, $15.99
This invigorating blend of coconut oil, lime pearl caviar and New Zealand glacial clay creates a multi-purpose cleansing and hydrating mask to help refresh skin and diminish dullness.
Okay, so snail mightn’t be a food that is commonly found at the dinner table in New Zealand, but in France, of course, it’s a different story. Snail slime, the mucus which oozes from the glands on the snail’s foot (gross, we know, bear with us), possesses a complex mixture of glycolic and hyaluronic acids, proteins, peptides and other beneficial components that have become conventional in facial ointments, masks and treatments for their powerful healing and moisturising properties. So much so, that K-Beauty Korean skincare has been turning to snail slime to repair damaged skin and protect it from stress and pollution.
Properties: Antioxidant, stimulates collagen production, repairing
Try: COSRX Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence, $19 USD
Containing a potent 96% snail secretion filtrate for intense hydration and repair, this cult beauty buy is said to repair everything from dry patches to acne breakouts while helping hyperpigmentation.
Shop the latest buzz ‘foods’ in skincare here: