Our time in NYC was incredible. We always love reconnecting with our friends and family, while experiencing the energy of Manhattan – where we both lived in the past! Attending conferences like NYU Advances in Dermatology allows us to stay up to date on the latest and greatest treatments for all things dermatology (aka: skin, hair and nails). We learned SO much over two days of lectures and can’t wait to share it with you.
One thing we noticed, during our off time in NYC, is that many beauty and cosmeceutical companies are offering products that are either fully plant-based or based on some sort of fruit or vegetable. Certain foods have long been known for their benefits when ingested, but what is it about fruits and vegetables that provide benefit when used on the skin?
Let’s break it down by some of the products we saw in the Big Apple:
Korres is a Greek brand that has been widely available in the US for many years. Their mostly plant based products are packaged beautifully, effective and they smell great. We’ve noticed a few Korres standalone stores closing, so their website is your best bet for purchase.
Their “Moisturizing and Balancing Creme Gel Moisturizer” with pomegranate caught our eye while we were strolling. The product, marketed for oily/combination skin types, hydrates and minimizes pores. So, what about the pomegranate makes it so good for the skin?
* Pomegranates help your skin to produce collagen. Collagen is a protein that is one of the building blocks of our skin and helps it to keep looking smooth and perky. This fruit is able to block certain enzymes that can break down collagen and may also extend the life of the cells, called fibroblasts, that produce collagen and elastin.
* There is a high anti-oxidant concentration in pomegranates. Anti-oxidants are essential to nourish the skin, keep it fresh and young looking and, as mentioned above, help prevent free radicals in the environment from breaking down our skin barrier.
* Pomegranates may aid in cellular regeneration. Some studies show that pomegranate extract can help stimulate keratinocyte cells on the surface of the skin as well as repair deeper layers of the skin.
*The oil extracted from pomegranate seeds is high in punicic acid, which is an omega-5 fatty acid that helps to keep the skin well hydrated.
Glow Recipe is a relatively new company that brings some of the most popular and natural K-beauty products to the USA. Their packaging and products are supremely cute and very instagramable, and we are seeing rave reviews about their Watermelon Sleeping Mask. On a hot summer day, there’s almost nothing better than taking a bite of cold, crunchy, juicy, sweet watermelon. But what does it do for the skin?
* Watermelon has a high content of Vitamin C and naturally occurring amino acids. The extract help protect against free radicals (see a pattern here?) and promotes hydration.
*Lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, is also found in watermelon extract. When used appropriately it can help turn back the clock on sun damage.
*A note of caution – watermelon and its extract are high in sugar, and therefore may be irritating to very sensitive skin types.
Neogen has introduced a fun product line called Bio-Peel+. Their lemon version (there is also a cucumber product) is brightly scented and promises to “remove dead skin cells, cleanse, and purify the skin”. The gauze pads themselves are a little bit rough, in our opinion. Even on the backs of our hands they lacked the soft, elegant feel of some other peel pads we have tried.
*Lemons have a high concentration of vitamin C and citric acid, both of which can help brighten and lighten the skin. Lemons have long been used for their bleaching/lightening properties on the hair, skin and nails. And, broken record alert, the vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that can help neutralize those pesky free radicals that like to wreak havoc on the skin
*Using lemons and products with lemon in them can make you extremely photosensitive and can even cause severe, blistering sunburns. Use products with lemon and lemon extract with caution if you are planning to have sun exposure, or if you have very sensitive skin
KALE + GREEN TEA + SPINACH
We have to say, this cleanser from Youth To The People caught our eye because it sounded like a delicious smoothie! Green tea is commonly found in lots of skincare products, but we haven’t seen much in terms of the use of kale and spinach. We hadn’t been exposed to this company before, but it’s website almost reads like a pressed juice company: “100% vegan, cold pressed extracts, no added color or fragrance, no parabens and no animal testing”. This specific cleanser not only has the extract of kale, green tea and spinach but aso includes Vitamin A (gentle exfoliant and anti-aging), Vitamin C (antioxidant, which you are all experts in after reading this post!) and Vitamin E (moisturizing). The addition of aloe here also provides some soothing properties for those with more sensitive, dry skin. We seriously can’t wait to try this, and other products from the Youth To The People line! But in the meantime, take a look at what these yummy ingredients can do for your skin.
* Kale is rich in vitamins A (exfoliant), C (antioxidant), E (moisturizing) and K. There is less research available with regards to vitamin K compared to A, C and E; however, when ingested vitamin K is necessary for clotting the blood, healing bruises and wound healing. When used topically vitamin K has been shown to help reduce swelling and potentially fade dark spots.
*Spinach, like so many other ingredients mentioned, is a nice antioxidant that helps to protect the skin against environmental nuisances that prematurely age the skin and break down its’ outermost layer
*Green tea is super packed with polyphenol. What is polyphenol you ask? You guessed it — an antioxidant! Green tea has also been studied in eastern medicine and shown to be anti-inflammatory and could *potentially* help prevent the development and growth of certain skin cancers.
The key takeaways here? Incorporating an antioxidant into your daily routine will significantly help keep your skin youthful and fresh. Try incorporating one of these unique products into your skin care regimen and let us know your results!