Turmeric's use as a spice and a medicine dates back over 4,000 years. Many traditional medicine practitioners use it to treat upset stomachs, colds, and arthritis. Recently, turmeric has gained popularity for its potential to help treat certain skin disorders, like psoriasis, and improve the appearance of aging skin by fading wrinkles and brown spots. Read on to learn how it can help your skin and how to use it.
Turmeric has been used for centuries as a spice in Indian cooking and as a traditional medicine to help with many conditions, such as arthritis.
Turmeric benefits the skin because it contains antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties.
Turmeric offers anti-aging benefits because it increases collagen production, helps fade dark spots, and speeds up cell regeneration.
Talk to your doctor first before starting turmeric to ensure it is right for you.
What is turmeric?
Turmeric is a flowering plant that is part of the ginger family. It grows in tropical areas of India and East Asia where it receives plenty of rain. The root of the turmeric plant is what traditional medicine practitioners have used for centuries because it contains a high concentration of the compound curcumin. Curcumin is what makes turmeric so special. Turmeric powder can be ingested as a spice in cooking or applied directly to the skin in combination with honey or yogurt to reap the benefits. Many store-bought skin products contain this ingredient.
Benefits of turmeric
Turmeric contains over 200 different compounds, mostly curcuminoids. These curcuminoids offer a plethora of health benefits, . Turmeric serums offer higher concentrations of turmeric than creams, lotions, or oils to give you enhanced results.
The benefits of turmeric for the face include:
- Antioxidant. Turmeric can protect the skin from the sun's harmful rays by scavenging up free radicals produced by the sun that lead to wrinkles and sagging skin. It can also prevent damage to the skin's DNA by the sun that causes deadly skin cancers, like melanoma.
- Anti-inflammatory. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce inflammation to soothe irritated and sensitive skin. This may help treat certain skin conditions where inflammation plays a large role, such as psoriasis, eczema, and acne. It may even help heal wounds quicker.
- Antimicrobial. Because of turmeric's antimicrobial properties, it may help improve skin conditions, such as acne, since bacteria play a role in causing inflammatory acne. It may also treat certain bacterial and fungal skin infections, like Staph or athlete's foot, and parasite infestation, like scabies.
- Stimulated collagen production. Since turmeric can stimulate collagen production, it may improve the appearance of scars, wrinkles, and stretch marks. Increased collagen production may also speed up wound healing.
- Inhibited melanin production. Excess production of melanin is the reason that dark pigmentation appears on the skin. By inhibiting melanin production, turmeric can help fade dark spots caused by scarring, acne, and the sun.
- Moisturization. Turmeric may help hydrate and moisturize the skin to give your skin a radiant, healthy glow with consistent daily use. Hydrated skin is less prone to irritation.
- Increased circulation. Turmeric dilates blood vessels, which can increase the skin's circulation. This increased circulation may help improve dark circles under the eyes.
- Sped up cell regeneration. Because turmeric increases the speed of cell regeneration, it will help quickly exfoliate dead skin that can clog pores and cause acne. By removing dead skin cells, it will give your skin a radiant glow.
How to use turmeric for the skin
You can gain the skin benefits of turmeric by either making a DIY mask at home or buying beauty products that already contain turmeric. If you are wondering which product to choose, select it based on your needs and skin type. People with dry skin should use a thicker cream or oil, while those with oily skin should look for a lotion or gel.
These products include:
|Turmeric product||Potential benefits|
|Oil||Turmeric oil for the face may hydrate the skin. It is great for people with dry skin.|
|Serum||Turmeric serums are great for every skin type because they are lightweight. You only need a couple of drops of the serum because it is so concentrated.|
|Cream or lotion||Turmeric creams are good for dry skin because they offer deep hydration. Lotions are best for people with normal skin who do not need as much hydration.|
|Paste||You can mix turmeric powder with yogurt or honey and make a DIY mask. Just do not leave it on too long because it can stain your skin a yellow color.|
|Soap||Everyone can benefit from using soap to cleanse their skin. Stick to liquid soap because bar soap can be drying.|
How long until I see the results of turmeric?
Most skin care products take time to work their magic. There is no instant miracle cream or magic wand. Turmeric is no different. It can take weeks to see the full effects. Serums usually work quicker because they contain high concentrations of actives, like turmeric.
Side effects of turmeric
Turmeric is usually well tolerated; however, some have suffered side effects. If you leave a DIY turmeric product on your skin too long, it can stain your skin yellow. Store-bought products do not cause that issue. Other potential side effects include allergic reactions, redness, itching, and flaking.
Who should not use turmeric?
Even though turmeric is usually well-tolerated, certain people should avoid using it. Always talk to your doctor first before starting any new product to make sure it is right for you. If you have had an allergic reaction or suffered from irritation from using turmeric in the past, avoid it. People with sensitive skin should ask their doctor first or try a test spot to see if their skin will tolerate it.
Turmeric is a centuries-old traditional medicine harvested from the roots of the turmeric plant. It offers many health and skin benefits because it contains over 200 different curcuminoids that deliver antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties. If you are interested in trying a turmeric product, talk to your doctor first.
Can I use turmeric while pregnant?
Turmeric is probably safe to use topically during pregnancy. However, there are no studies confirming its safety. Ask your obstetrician before using it.
How do I add turmeric to my skincare routine?
The order in which you use a turmeric product in your routine is important. If you layer them incorrectly, you will not get the full benefits. The order is a cleanser, toner, serum, cream, and oil.
Does turmeric help with acne scars?
Turmeric may help with some acne scars because it increases collagen production. It may take several weeks to see the results.
- Nutrients. Potential of Curcumin in Skin Disorders.
- Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine. Biological activities of curcuminoids, other biomolecules from turmeric and their derivatives - A review.
- Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology, and Leprology. Turmeric: A condiment, cosmetic, and cure.