The 6 Best Ingredients to Sooth Skin
Just as Alicia Keys once sang “this girl is on fire,” unfortunately so is our skin sometimes. When we talk about maintaining healthy, young-looking skin we often discuss antioxidants, skin-replenishing ingredients, and of course, the MVP of all MVP’s, daily application of SPF. But what about when our skin gets red and sensitive? Here at Mirra, we want you to know what’s really up when your skin gets inflamed. It’s time to get in touch with your inner gardening goddess, because we’ve got a handful of plants that might just be the secret to damage control. Let’s start with the basics.
What Is Inflamed Skin?
Inflamed skin refers to skin that has been irritated in some way. According to dermatologist Nada Elbuluk from NYU, this irritation can occur from an internal or external cause. Inflamed skin will typically manifest in the form of itching, burning or discoloration. Discoloration will depend on how deep in the skin the inflammation is occurring and for how long.
Acute vs. Chronic Inflammation
Acute inflammation usually lasts for six weeks or less and results from acne, sunburn or allergic reactions. If your skin is inflamed for more than six weeks, you are likely suffering from chronic inflammation, which usually goes hand in hand with with eczema, rosacea and psoriasis
Meet Your New BFF’s: Skin Soothing Ingredients
Skin soothing ingredients are a v special group whose job it is to #keepcalmandcarryon when your skin gets irritated and sensitive. Think of them as that friend you call when you’re freaking the F out and you need someone to remind you to breathe and stay calm. A lot of these ingredients come from plants, which means that they have great antioxidant benefits in addition to their main task of soothing your sweet sweet skin.
How Do Skin Soothing Ingredients They Work?
Give them a round of applause folks, because these skin soothing agents are working hard to lessen irritation showing up on your face in the forms of redness or blotchiness. The skin soothers gently quiet whatever is sensitizing your skin’s surface; their job is to stop any sources of distress before your things go awry. No matter your skin type, these bad boys will help! Even if you suffer from acne or rosacea, the following ingredients are truly gentle souls.
Rise and shine! It’s time for a healthy breakfast...for your skin! Colloidal oatmeal is essentially oat kernels that have been ground and processed finely enough to be used as a skin protectant. Oats are packed with molecules that bind to our skin to form a super soothing protective barrier.
The main molecules makin’ the magic happen are lipids, beta glucan, and avenanthramides. What do they do?
1. Lipids replenish our oils to combat dryness and irritation.
2. Beta Glucan is the ultimate moisturizer, keeping our skin firm AF by triggering collagen production.
3. Avenanthramides work like an antihistamine to reduce redness and itchiness.
Nope, not your guilty pleasure movie theater Redvines. The root of the licorice plant! According to Chicago dermatologist Dr. Toral Patel, licorice is the bomb.com for brightening dark spots and improving skin tone. Licorice also contains an anti-inflammatory compound known as glycyrrhizin, which can soothe that red, irritated skin.
It hydrates. It heals. It rocks. Extracted from the root of the Comfrey plant, Allantoin is one of our fave non-irritating ingredients that stimulates new tissue growth and encourages natural exfoliation in the strateum corneum-- the outer layer of the skin. If there’s one ingredient that wins the gold medal for skin softening, it’s Allantoin.
It’s so much more than your favorite cozy chamomile tea. This stuff has been used in the beauty industry for many years, acting as an anti-inflammatory that can help to calm and soothe your irritated skin!
Curcumin, a bioactive component in Turmeric, also functions as an anti-inflammatory. It has antioxidant properties to give your skin a fabulous natural glow. You know the one we are talking about.
This nutrient dense root is filled with powerful antioxidants like phenolic acids, luteolin and quercetin. It also contains essential minerals like iron, magnesium, manganese, selenium, zinc and calcium. In addition to treating acne, eczema and psoriasis, a 2008 study found that Burdock Root can also help with wrinkle reduction! The powers of this magical root extend beyond the outer layer of your skin--it helps to smooth your skin by detoxifying your blood! Here at Mirra, we are totally rooting for this root.
A Final Note: Protect That Skin Barrier!
Remember to steer clear of fragrances and drying alcohols that will damage the skin barrier. No matter how good your ingredients are, if they are paired with bad ones, what’s the point?