While you may know matcha to simply be that mug of green goodness you drink for an energy boost – it’s actually got a lot of health and beauty benefits as well.
Firstly, it helps to understand what makes matcha such a special product. Matcha is made from a type of green tea leaf called Tencha. Unlike regular green tea (namely Sencha) where the leaves have a lot of direct sunlight and are rolled and steamed straight after harvest – Tencha leaves are placed in both shaded as well as sunny areas throughout their grown and then dried and ground to make matcha powder. By exposing the leaves to both sun and shade, they are able to develop more antioxidants and natural caffeine than any green tea leaves grown in pure sunlight. So basically, matcha is the star of the green tea show.
How does matcha benefit your skin?
It may be time to use a little matcha in your cupboard to make a DIY face mask, here’s why:
1. Reduces inflammation
It’s becoming more and more understood that our environment and the food we eat affects our body’s inflammatory response. Chronic inflammation has been linked numerous lifestyle diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and arthritis – all of which can affect your skin health as well. Not to mention there are also many skin conditions, such as acne, rosacea and psoriasis, that trigger an inflammatory-skin response as well.
Matcha is packed with catechins, particularly EGCG, a type of flavanoid that is brimming with the antioxidants your skin needs to alleviate the inflammation and in doing so, minimising any redness and puffiness you may have. (1)
2. Boosts complexion and prevent premature aging
EGCG doesn’t only help with skin inflammation, but it also helps with slowing down cellular degeneration – meaning your skin can remain smoother and tighter for longer, and fine lines and wrinkles can be easily prevented. Given the sheer amount of antioxidants in catechins such as EGCG, matcha also has the potential to deactivate free radicals in your skin which contribute to premature aging, and put you at risk of skin conditions and diseases such as skin cancer. By giving your skin this nutrient-filled boost, it’ll definitely help you achieve a fresher, healthier and more youthful looking skin. (2)
3. Treats oily skin
If you have oily or acne-prone skin – you are going to love this! Firstly, matcha is packed filled with chlorophyll (the green pigment found in all green plants) which works wonders for detoxing your skin as it protects it against any external harms such as chemicals or pollution that would potentially clog your pores and leave your skin prone to blemishes and discoloration. (3) Matcha also contains tannins, a compound that is:
- Packed with antimicrobial properties – meaning it can fight off harmful bacterial infections. (4)
- A natural astringent – meaning is can tighten and clean your pores without drying them out. (5)
- An antioxidant – meaning it can fight against free-radical damage. (6)
4. Works gently on all skin types
This is about as natural and unrefined as you can get when it comes to ingredients, making it all that more gentle on your skin when you use it.
Make your own DIY matcha mask
There are many ways you can use this ingredient to make a nutrient-packed face mask, but this recipe is one of my favourites as it combines the incredible benefits of matcha with honey and essential oils. To make the mask, you will need:
- 1 teaspoon of matcha powder
- 1 teaspoon of raw natural honey
- 2-3 drops of rosehip oil
Mix all these ingredients together in a little bowl and apply onto clean, dry skin for 15 – 20 minutes. At this point, you can wet a cloth with warm water and gently remove the mask. Rinse your face with warm water and apply your moisturiser afterwards as normal.