There’s been some spicy controversy lately around natural remedies. And you hear so many things, that it’s all made up, it’s magical thinking, it’s just a grain of what you need in a vial of water.
But there are plants and herbs out there that can-do amazing things for your skin.
Natural remedies keep getting better, and easier to stomach
For one thing, all medicine starts in nature. Pharmaceutical remedies are really specific chemicals extracted from acids, or moulds, or other things that you could grow in your backyard. The inventor of penicillin grew it on a piece of bread.
So it’s no surprise that every culture has a herbal remedy that goes back thousands of years. One of my favourites is a Viking Age tome called Bald’s Leechbook. It has cures for battle wounds (betony and cress), corns (brass filings and cream) and snakebites (a slug in holy water).
Most of those old cures involve animal parts, especially the ones we don’t eat. And now science is starting to learn that a lot of them worked wonders. Which is why they want to suck out the active ingredients and put them in medicine.
But let me tell you my favourite natural skin remedies. A lot of things are equal first, like vegetarian Napoletana sauce, chai tea and a long, long sleep. My latest favourite is the skinB5 Native Australian Botanicals range.
When you spray the foam into your hands and ready it for your face, the soothing fragrance gets to you before the treatment. The highly absorbable, serum type Hydration Essence is even more powerful, delivery visible results. Aussie botanicals are something special. The superpowers of the native extracts used in the skinB5 Australian Botanicals range include:
Reduces Pigmentation & Brightens
Enhances Collagen Production
Reduces Inflammation and Redness
Protects Against Photo-Ageing
Now, I have a soft spot for wildflowers. They grow everywhere and pop up where you’d least expect them. I’m always finding new bluebells and heaths in my backyard, and they are the life of the backyard party. They’re so colourful. And they’re medicinal.
Let’s look at what’s in each Australian Botanical extract in the new skinB5 range, and what it just did to my face.
Davidson and Kakadu plum
These two native plum species are brimming with minerals. Like the skinB5 Extra Strength Acne Control Vitamins, they have plenty of iron and zinc to keep your skin strong. The sodium and potassium are electrolytes, which literally feed your nerves like some B vitamins. Then there’s the insane amount of vitamin C that will restore your skin, heal acne and slow aging – think collagen boosting! Early settlers made jam with these plums.
Tasmanian blue gum
Like everything from Tasmania, its next-level delicious. Tasmanian blue gum is a natural flavouring in cakes and other sweets. Apart from helping you breathe, which is great for confidence, blue gum is a powerful grease cleaner. That means it keeps your sebum from getting out of hand. It’ll clean your makeup nicely, too.
This is a proud Aussie plant that looks like a kangaroo’s paw and can flower into little apples. It’s been an aboriginal medicine for far longer back than our history goes. What we know for sure it that it’s a powerful anti-inflammatory - it’s sugar alcohol is also known for creating a cooling effect. Even the apples, which make great bush tucker, will settle down flare-ups. It also has a reputation for leaving you with smooth skin.
The indigenous ‘wild peach’ is another anti-inflammatory fruit. It reinforces a lot of the minerals in those plums, including twice the vitamin C that an orange has. The really special part is rutin, an antioxidant that can fight free radicals -- you know, the things that cause skin cancer.
Silky oil grass
Another aboriginal medicine, which comes from the same family as lemongrass. Silky oil grass helps settle down sore eyes and will ease any dark eye shadows you might have. And of course it’s full of vitamin C, which means it comes with collagen. If you’re armed with collagen, you’re armed against wrinkles.
Both the leaves and berries of this native pepper plant are delicious, and hopefully will start appearing in many more restaurants soon. The berries especially have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammation properties. They have ten times the amount of vitamin E and beta carotene as blueberries, so enjoy your extra energy. They also have a nice amount of magnesium.
It’s an analgesic that soothes irritated skin, meaning it’ll help with acne you currently have. A few societies have used snowflower to heal toothaches.But the really interesting thing about snowflower (derived from tea tree) is its huge amount of catechins which is 100 times more potent than vitamin C and 25 times more potent than vitamin E. The catechins in snowflower will help your skin hold onto moisture, boost collagen and will actually help inhibit skin photoaging induced by UV radiation which makes snowflower a potent anti-ageing and photo-protective ingredient.