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If you’re a fan of Korean skincare (aka K-beauty), you’ve probably heard about the ingredient Centella Asiatica. Known by a variety of names, including Brahmi, Asiatic pennywort, tiger grass, and Gotu kola, this plant extract is hailed as a hydrating skin-saver.
Centella Asiatica is included in numerous moisturizers from South Korean brands, often labeled “cica creams,” and, not surprisingly, it’s also garnering interest from Western beauty brands.
Centella Asiatica is a perennial herb that grows primarily in Asia. For years, it’s had both culinary and medicinal uses, but like many traditional plant extracts, it’s gaining popularity as a skincare ingredient.
This swamp-dwelling herb first started appearing in South Korean cica creams a few years ago, although U.S. brands from Estee Lauder have used it off and on over the years—they just didn’t call them cica creams.
Cica creams became cornerstones of the famous K-beauty ritual because of their alleged soothing benefits, and, in a case of everything old being new again, Western beauty brands are claiming it’s the hot new beauty ingredient. But, is Centella Asiatica worth the hype?
Studies show that Centella Asiatica isn’t just a passing fad—it really does have benefits for skin, thanks to its active compounds, including madecassoside, which serves as an antioxidant.
Centella Asiatica itself also has been shown to have potent antioxidant properties and to be a rich source of amino acids, and there’s additional research showing that it’s a good hydrating ingredient to soothe upset or compromised skin.
There’s evidence that products with Centella Asiatica can help revitalize the skin’s protective barrier, plus it may mitigate some of the visible effects of sun damage.
That’s a great list of benefits for one plant ingredient, but just to be clear: Centella Asiatica isn’t the best or only natural ingredient that can improve skin.
There are literally hundreds of beneficial natural ingredients for skin, as well as outstanding synthetic ingredients (hello, peptides!).
In fact, it’s somewhat similar to green tea, in that it’s a plant-derived antioxidant with skin-soothing properties that got its start in traditional medicine but now has the hard science to back up its purported benefits.
While many natural ingredients are big on talk, but small on results, research supports many of the claims around Centella Asiatica.
Centella Asiatica, also known as “Gotu Kola”, “Pennywort” or “Wild Violet”. Centella Asiatica is a botanical herb that grows in temperate and tropical swampy areas.
It becomes more popular to be used as a natural skincare ingredient. Let’s discover the skin benefits of Centella Asiatica!
Centella Asiatica contains a lot of Flavonoids and an active compound called “Madecassoside”, which serves as antioxidants that help neutralize the free radical damage caused by the sun and pollution exposure.
They also improve blood circulation and the synthesis of collagen and skin tissue for maintaining a youthful complexion. Collagen also plays a key role to enhance skin elasticity and reduce the signs of aging like wrinkles and fine lines.
Centella Asiatica is rich in Amino Acids, Beta Carotene, Fatty Acids, and Phytochemicals, which provide powerful nutrients for the skin. Amino Acids is a great hydrating ingredient to soothe rough and irritated skin.
The main active constituents of Centella Asiatica are saponins known as asiaticosides, which have soothing and healing properties.
Centella Asiatica is ideal for sensitive skin which is red, inflamed, irritated or itchy. It helps reduce the visible signs of skin sensitivity such as itching and burning significantly.
Centella Asiatica is beneficial in the management of eczema, psoriasis, veins, and stretch marks. For acne sufferers, it speeds healing, helping to prevent scarring and prevent future blemishes.
Centella Asiatica contains “Madecassoside” that boosts antioxidant activity at the site of wounds, strengthening the skin and increasing blood circulation.