Tea Isn’t Just For Drinking!
Elise Hecker LC, LMT
WHolistic Licensed Esthetician
While most of us may know the great health benefits of drinking tea, little is ever said about the topical use of tea on the skin.
The health giving properties of tea have long been recognized by Chinese medicine and it is only recently that its benefits have been confirmed by modern science. The medicinal effects and antioxidant powers can no longer be denied and are now contributing to increased longevity by stimulating the function of the heart, strengthening the immune system and preventing cell mutation.
So, while I now have you all reaching for that cup of tea to drink up, I need you to switch gears and start thinking about putting that same freshly brewed tea on your skin!
In most generic spa facials, the Esthetician will use plain warm water to remove product from the face. That would never happen in my treatment room! I have traded out the use of plain water for a tea press full of aromatic, vitamin packed freshly brewed organic chamomile, rooibos or green tea. That’s right, you heard me right, tea!
In addition to using organic tea to remove facial cleansers and masks on the face, I often soak muslin cloths in the tea of choice to be used as a compress or I might even run an herbal tea ice cube over the skin. Using tea in my treatment room here at Lake Washington Wellness is just one therapy that makes my wholistic treatments unique. It makes a huge difference in what a custom wholistic facial experience looks, feels, and smells like, vs your run of the mill, cookie cutter generic spa facial.
Top 8 Beauty Benefits of Tea on the Skin
SOOTHE – Green tea is known for many things, from it’s high antioxidant (and therefore anti aging) components, to its ability to help energize and awaken. But did you know that this tea is also soothing as well? Yes, this antioxidant-rich tea has a soothing effect on skin, making it ideal for many of those with sensitive or irritated skin.
ANTI-AGE – Green is not the only antioxidant-rich tea. In fact, many of the most popular teas are naturally equipped with antioxidants galore. These antioxidants help to nourish the skin and fight fine lines and wrinkles associated with aging.
PROTECT – Black tea is packed with tannins, an antioxidant that is wonderful for protecting the skin from environmental damage. You can also find tannins in red wine, which is also known for its skin-boosting abilities.
REGENERATE – In addition to containing tannins, black tea is also rich in polyphenols, which promote cell regeneration. This is an essential step in the anti-aging process, and will ensure that your skin looks (and feels) younger and healthier for longer.
DE-STRESS – If you find your skin is suffering from oxidative stress, reach for white tea. The antioxidants in this light and delicious tea help to reduce oxidative stress that can be caused by the environment, meaning healthier, happier, better-looking skin.
IMMUNE – Many people don’t realize that keeping the skin’s immune system strong is crucial for overall skin health. White and green tea are both wonderful options for boosting the skin’s immune system.
ANTI-ACNE – Though slightly lesser known than it’s black, green, and white cousins, rooibos (red) tea is another option you might want to consider for it’s beautifying benefits. Specifically, this tea contains zinc, which has been shown to help soothe and prevent acne and related skin conditions.
BEAUTY SLEEP – Sleep is an absolute essential for beautiful, healthy skin. While many teas deliver a caffeine boost, others, like chamomile, help to promote calm and sound sleep. Much like ginger, chamomile tea is fantastic for soothing upset stomach, and skin irritations.
My #1 favorite use of chamomile tea for Sunburn RX:
Chamomile Sunburn Treatment
1) Place 5 tea bags of any Organic brand of chamomile tea in a medium glass heatproof bowl.
2) Add boiling water and let the tea steep for 10 minutes or longer
3) Remove tea bags and cover bowl.
4) Place in the refrigerator overnight.
5) Place and soak a small wash cloth in the cold tea and wring out.
6) Place compress onto the area of sun burned or irritated skin until cloth is no longer cool.
Repeat steps 5 and 6 several times
**You can also pour any unused chamomile tea into ice cube trays and pop the trays into the freezer for future use **