How Does Licorice Root Extract Benefit The Skin?
Everybody’s first association to licorice is a long chewy candy of a distinctive taste. Did you know though, that the leafy green plant, used for ages in traditional Chinese medicine, has an array of benefits for your skin?
Glycyrrhiza glabra root extract is abundant in active chemicals with impressive anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, anti-oxidative and skin repairing properties. No wonder its popularity among skin care manufacturers keeps growing…
If you want to learn a bit more about the properties of this skin-loving ingredient, stay with us!
Licorice Root Extract Skin Benefits
Licorice root contains around 2-9% glycyrrhizin. Clinical trials have shown that glycyrrhizin, when applied topically, mimics cortisol, meaning that it has a soothing effect on acne-prone skin + redness-reducing effect on sensitive skin. Apart from that, licorice contains another potent natural anti-inflammatory agent – licochalcone. The presence of these bio-actives, makes licorice root extract especially beneficial for those who struggle with psoriasis, rosacea and dermatitis.
Thanks to the high levels of glabridin licorice is an excellent natural skin brightener. Being a phytoestrogen, glabridin serves to prevent hyper pigmentation and dark spots caused by UV radiation. Consequently, products containing glycyrrhiza glare extract are effective, all-natural alternatives to chemical skin lightening agents. They gradually brighten the complexion, to reveal more glowing, clear skin, free of imperfections.
In addition to eliminating pigmentation caused by excessive sun exposure, licorice root extract diminishes scars and dark spots
(those annoying dark marks that we get, when blemishes heal). Studies have found that glabridin activity is similar to that of oestrogen i.e. it stimulates the production of collagen, thus reducing the depth of scars and wrinkles, which leads to visible improvements in skin texture.
What to Try: La Mav Brightening Organic Beauty Kit
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Another beneficial compound found in licorice extract is liquiritin. A study conducted in Egypt, which was aimed at treating melasma (skin discolouration) with liquiritin, confirmed the ability of this extraordinary compound to reduce skin discoloration. With a noticeable improvement in 80% of the cases after 4 weeks, liquiritin is considered to be as effective as hydroquinone. Added bonus – it doesn’t have the pesky side effects hydroquinone has. Not that’s a plus!
Like all these benefits were not enough, licorice offers one more skincare perk. When used in emulsions, licorice (namely glycyrrhizin) can also enhance the penetration of other active ingredients into the skin, making your products more effective!
Is glycyrrhiza glabra root extract safe?
Although there have been some concerns regarding the connection between the ingestion of glycyrrhiza glabra and increased levels of testosterone, licorice extract is considered completely safe for topical use, even on sensitive skin.