It has been a while since we posted our last ‘Ingredient Spotlight’ post which covered vitamin C. In that particular post we asked you which ingredient you like to see next and Centella Asiatica overwhelmingly won! So what exactly is this magical plant and why is it popping up in all Korean skincare items lately?
What is Centella Asiatica?
Centella Asiatica, also known as Asian Pennyworth, Gotu Kola, or Tiger Grass is a herb that’s used in many Asian countries as a culinary or medicinal ingredient. Because of it’s antibacterial, soothing, and healing properties, Centella has been used for many years in traditional medicine to treat small wounds, burns, and scratches. The effectiveness of Centella Asiatica can be attributed to the presence of active compounds which are called terpenoids. The most common ones used in (Korean) skincare are Madecassic Acid, Madecassoside, Asiatic Acid, and Asiaticoside. Couple familiar names there right?
Why is Centella Asiatica good for our skin?
Unlike many other (natural) ingredients that claim to be good for the skin, there have been quite some in vitro* and in vivo** studies backing the effectiveness of Centella Asiatica in wound healing. In addition to wound healing, Centella Asiatica and its compounds are also known for increasing collagen production, treating psoriases and eczema, decreasing inflammation and reduce sun damage. Like green tea, Centella Asiatica is rich in antioxidants and amino acids which help soothe and hydrate the skin.
Are Centella Asiatica products suitable for acne prone skin?
Centella Asiatica is used in a variety of popular acne-fighting spot treatments, serums, and creams. However, not only those with acne-prone skin can benefit from the so-called Cica-products. Centella Asiatica and its derivatives can have a stimulating effect on the production of collagen, hydrate the skin and aid in fading scars. Talk about a multitasking superhero right? Since its a natural ingredient with so many benefits, there is a suitable cica product for every skin type.
Korean Beauty products containing Centella Asiatica
This moisturizer is packed with healing and moisturizing ingredients including Madecassoside and Panthenol. The whole Soon Jung Line by Etude House is specifically designed for those with sensitive and or acne prone skin. This daily use moisturizer helps calm inflamed skin and is perfect for after or during a breakout. Want to test it first? There’s a trial kit available which has all of the best selling Soon Jung products, including this Cica balm.
This lightweight moisturizer contains both Madecassoide and Centella Asiatica leaf water making it the perfect anti-trouble formula. It prevents and calms breakouts and contains Niacinamide to even out the skin tone. Because of its light, non-greasy texture, it doesn’t work just great as a nighttime moisturizer but also sits really well under makeup.
If you want to try out a cica product that doesn’t break the bank this Etude House sheetmask is a great option. The 0.2 Therapy Air masks are hypoallergenic sheet masks with a decent serum content which absorb easily into the skin. The Madecassoside mask will calm and moisturize the skin in a matter of minutes and leave it supple and hydrated.
Cosrx has a wide range of Centella products including their popular Centella Alcohol-free toner and Centella Blemish Ampule, however, since Centella is a bit less common in makeup products we wanted to feature their Clear Fit Blemish Cushion instead. Like the Madecassoside Cream, this contains both Madecassoside and Centella leaf water to calm the skin and prevent irritation. The cushion has a medium coverage which is quite buildable, making it suitable for both a natural and high coverage look. One of our sweet customers Ginny wrote a full review on this cushion which you can read here.
We hope you enjoyed this blog post and love to hear all about your favourite Centella products.
‘Lot’s of love,
*in vitro ► testing outside of the body in a test tube or other artificial environment.
** in vivo ► testing carried out in a living organism (human or animal).