Phytochemicals refer to chemicals produced by a plant (phyto-). People often ask me if our products contain chemicals. As a chemist, this makes me cringe some because yes, everything is made up of chemicals. Colorado Aromatics products contain an abundance of phytochemicals that nourish and repair the skin. Phytochemicals, also called phytonutrients, are naturally occurring compounds that offer a wide range of benefits for radiant skin.
There is a growing interest in natural and plant-based skincare products. With natural products though, we do not want to sacrifice functionality. Lets look at some of the important phytochemicals in our products. These are ingredients that yuo will not find directly on the label because they are part of the whole herb extracts that we use.
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The Power of Phytochemicals in Skincare
Phytochemicals are bioactive compounds found in plants that are responsible for their distinctive colors, flavors, and aromas. These compounds have been studied for their various health benefits, including their potential to enhance skin health. Some of those phytochemicals increase in the plant to protect themselves from insects and microbes.
Phytochemicals are classified into various categories based on their chemical structures and functions. Some well-known phytochemicals include carotenoids, flavonoids, terpenoids, and polyphenols. These compounds are responsible for the vibrant colors of fruits and vegetables and are known for their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties.
Carotenoids as Phytochemicals in Skincare
Carotenoids are pigments that give plants their red, orange, and yellow hues. They are found in carrots, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and spinach, to name a few. Herbs that are rich in carotenoids include calendula, mint and parsley. Beta-carotene, lycopene, and lutein are some examples of carotenoids that offer significant benefits for the skin. Primarily, they act as antioxidants but they also reduce inflammation and improve skin elasticity. You can read more on carotenoids here.
Flavonoids as Phytochemicals in Skincare
Flavonoids are a type of polyphenol that are widely distributed in the plant world. Flavonoids are potent antioxidants that protect the cells from oxidative damage. They are also anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer. They are found in berries, citrus fruits, tea, cocoa and most herbs. Quercetin, catechins, and anthocyanins are some examples of flavonoids that have skin benefits. Catechins, present in green tea, are potent antioxidants that also protect the skin from environmental damage and reduce the signs of aging. Anthocyanins, found in elderberries can help strengthen the collagen in the skin, improving its elasticity and resilience. Fennel, parsley, rosemary and mint also are rich in flavonoids.
Terpenoids as Phytochemicals in Skincare
Terpenoids are compounds responsible for the distinct aromas and flavors of many herbs and spices. They are found in many herbs including rosemary, lavender, and sage. Limonene, found in citrus fruits and herbs like rosemary and lavender, has antioxidant properties that help to reduce skin inflammation. Alpha-pinene, abundant in pine trees and rosemary, has antimicrobial properties and can help to purify the skin.
Plants contain a wide variety of beneficial compounds, most of which have yet to be identified. Incorporating herbs into your skincare routine or diet can provides your skin with these beneficial compounds and contribute to improved skin health.
Colorado Aromatics skin care products have always taken advantage of these plant derived benefits for skin. We continue to dive into the world of phytochemistry to to learn about how plants can benefit your skin.
We grow 30 plus different herbs on our farm to use in skincare products. Some of these herbs are lavender, calendula, lemon balm, peppermint, hops, yarrow, horehound, fennel, elderberry, rose and raspberry leaf.