There are hundreds of skin products that focus specifically on treating and supposedly clearing your skin. Everyone's skin is different so that means some products may work while others flounder. However, what if the answer to your skin problems was in that morning cup of frothing matcha? Rich in antioxidants and great for your body, is matcha green tea as good for your skin when you have acne?
What Causes Acne?
The pathogens that cause acne outbreaks come primarily from three factors: hormones, genes, and inflammation. Some people get over acne after puberty, while those with the genes are literally just born with a predisposition to it. However, for most people, acne comes from:
Increase sebum production
Increase of acne bacteria, Propionibacterium acnes
Sebum is the term used to describe the fatty acids and oils that are naturally produced to moisturize your skin. When we produce too much, it gets trapped in the pores and can turn into acne.
Inflammation occurs when the skin has to endure oxidative stress. In those more prone to acne, the sebum has more of a fatty acid called squalene that oxidizes in the skin and depletes protective antioxidants, triggering inflammation and acne outbreaks.
Finally, Propionibacterium acnes, or P. acnes, is a bacteria that naturally lives on our skin in small levels. When the levels of P.acnes grow out of control, the bacteria can cause skin infections and inflammation that accompany acne outbreaks.
Matcha and Acne
So how does matcha treat acne? The key ingredient that makes matcha so overall healthy for those that drink it is EGCG, an antioxidant with strong anti-carcinogenic, anti-microbial, and anti-inflammatory properties. When matcha green tea power is mixed into paste, added into a skin cream, or even just ingested, its EGCG and catechins absorb into the skin to fight the sebum and bacteria that cause acne.
For sebum production, a study showed that after eight weeks of drinking matcha, production of this fatty acid was reduced by up to 70 percent. The EGCG in matcha binds to the receptors of the androgen hormone responsible for sebum production on the skin, blocking the pathways so that less is produced. Some sebum, which is essential for healthy skin, still gets through, but this is a great option for those that produce the excess that causes acne.
As for the activity of the P.acnes bacteria, that's where topically applying matcha works best. With matcha face creams, the antimicrobial properties of the tea that typically work to give you better dental health when ingested also work to suppress P. acnes growth. A study found that not only does matcha reduce inflammation, but it reduces acne caused by P.acnes by up to 89 percent over eight weeks.
Although our ceremonial grade matcha green tea is too good not to drink, our organic everyday matcha is perfect for every occasion - from rejuvenating yourself in the morning to turning into a powerful acne-fighting face mask. Contact us today to learn more about how matcha can foster beauty within and without.