The Beautifying Benefits of Green Tea
A cup a day will keep ugliness away.
We all try our best to stay healthy—to varying degrees. Some of us do the bare minimum, drinking water and exercising (semi) regularly. Others of us go the Gwyneth Paltrow route and never miss an opportunity to toss “quinoa” and “antioxidants” into any conversation. But wherever you fall on the healthful spectrum, you have probably heard of the benefits of green tea. But chances are, you probably can’t remember them off-hand. No matter, you can use some ginkgo biloba for that.
Green tea is essentially the same leaf as black tea, but unlike its more common brethren, it hasn’t been fermented. Used as a healing agent in China for nearly 5,000 years, it is a virtual panacea with claims that it treats nearly 200 different ailments. The active ingredients in green tea include theophylline, which increases blood flow and is viewed as a useful treatment for asthma. There is also evidence that green tea can aid in protecting and maintaining overall eyesight.
Another common ingredient in all teas, but exist in higher concentration in green tea, are flavonoids. Flavonoids are known to contain antioxidants that aid in reducing free radicals, thereby reducing the risk of heart disease and cancer.
Let’s pause for a second because I know what you are thinking. This is all well and good, but let’s get to the real deal--can this stuff make me look cuter? Well, luckily for you, the answer is yes. Along with being good for your insides, green tea is highly beneficial to your outsides as well. How? Well, let’s find out!
1. It helps reduce inflammation.
This should come as little surprise, but the same anti-inflammatory properties of green tea that treat asthma can also be used to reduce inflammation in your skin. Luckily faithful users of products containing green tea as an active ingredient will help reduce the appearance redness and inflammation. Leaving them with smooth, clear, baby-soft skin.
2. Adds Shine to Dull Hair
The key to shiner hair is far simpler than most people think. Hair looks shiny when the cuticles are closed, and the moisture is locked inside. There are two ways to close these strands. Manually, with a product such as silicone or chemically with the application of a product that has a pH between 4.5. and 5.5. Green tea has a natural pH of about 4.9.
How does this help your hair? Well, while the hair itself doesn’t have a pH, the natural oils that come from the scalp do. When you apply something to the hair that is close to this pH, the cuticles lie flat on the hair shaft. Sealing in the moisture and helping your hair to look its shiniest and most luxurious. This treatment will also aid in reducing dandruff and dry scalp for the same reasons.
To use, just brew a cup a let it cool down. Put it into a spray bottle and apply to freshly washed hair and scalp!
3. Promotes Hair Growth
In addition to making our existing hair shiny, green tea can also help us grow longer and stronger hair. While the previous tip told of the benefits of using green tea topically, the benefit is had by doing things the old fashion way—by drinking it.
It turns out that another type of antioxidant found in green tea are catechins. Catechins have been associated with blocking DHT (Dihydrotestosterone), one of the main hormones responsible for hair loss.
To obtain these benefits, try drinking 2-3 cups of green tea daily and watch your hair begin to flourish.
4. Fighting Acne
But wait, we are not done with catechins. No, no. Turn out that they also help fight acne. In addition to working as antioxidants, they also have antibacterial qualities. Applying green tea or products that contain green tea to acne prone skin will help to reduce some of the bacteria that cause acne. This will greatly reduce breakouts and help to calm acne prone skin.
However, I do want to caution that getting rid of acne isn’t always so simple. Anyone who suffers from more severe forms of this condition will tell you that. Sometimes there is not a singular cause of persistent acne. But fortunately, green tea has another property that may help. And it is due to another super scientific word--Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).
This is a specific type of catechin that is believed to help balance-out hormones. Hormone imbalance is another main cause of acne. So, while green tea may not outright cure severe acne, you can rest assured that application and intake green tea will help to combat it on multiple levels.
5. Tones and Moisturizes Skin
Much like our hair, our skin is healthiest when our natural oils and/or products have a slightly acidic pH. Therefore, applying green tea to our face and body will have the same effect that it will on our hair—closed skin cuticles and increased moisture retention. To use, just take that same spray bottle of cooled tea, spray it on a cotton round and smooth it across the face. Your skin cells will thank you for it!
6. Natural Odor Eater
Now, this one may come as a bit of a shock, but it turns out that the tannins contained in tea, the ingredient that is responsible for that bitter taste, are also great at absorbing less than pleasant smells—particularly for our underarms and feet.
And while spraying green tea under your arms, may not be sufficient in avoiding mid-day funk, soaking your toes in a tea may be a great way to reduce foot odor. Why? Well, when boiled, tea releases its tannins and tannic acid. Tannic acid is known to contain antibacterial and antifungal properties, both of which work wonders at making your feet a little less, well, funky.
So, there you have it! Six ways that green tea will help remain your most fabulous. So, whether or not you are striving to Gwyneth levels or you just want to take steps to be a healthier you, green tea will help you to beautify and detoxify. These tips will keep you looking and feeling fine—from the inside out!