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What are adaptogens? Skin care herbs you need to try

What are adaptogens? Skin care herbs you need to try

Have you ever heard of adaptogens? You don't have to be a skin care fanatic to have heard this term, but it still leaves many people scratching their heads and asking "what are adaptogens?" Keep reading to find out what these miracle ingredients are, how they work, and why you should use them in your skin care.


What are adaptogens?

Adaptogens are actually a group of ingredients, rather than a single substance. By definition, adaptogens are plant extracts that "increase the body's ability to resist the damaging effects of stress and promote or restore normal physiological functioning." (1)

Adaptogens are a group of herbs, mushrooms and plant extracts that help the body and skin resist stress, therefore strengthening both. This is why wellness and beauty bloggers can't stop talking about adaptogens.


How do they work?

Adaptogens often adapt to your body specifically to reduce the physical response to stress. When digested, adaptogens can help boost overall well being. When applied topically, they can soothe, balance and strengthen your skin.  Adaptogens are powerful, but slow acting, so give them time to work.


What do adaptogenic herbs do for the skin?

Adaptogens benefits depend on which adaptogenic herbs you apply to your skin. For example, licorice is an adaptogen and has been found to counteract inflammation and irritation, which is why Bioelements uses it in Calmitude Hydrating Solution, Stress Solution and more products designed to soothe skin. Ginseng and gotu kola, two more adaptogens, can help reduce wrinkles and encourage skin to heal itself (2).

Most adaptogens used in skin care work like adaptogens used in your diet – they help your body and skin stay strong and balanced.


Bioelements adaptogen skin care

Bioelements has been formulating skin care with adaptogens since 1991. Many products feature a blend of ginseng, gotu kola, dong quai and watercress Chinese herbs, as they work together to naturally balance and strengthen the skin.  You can find this adaptogenic blend and other adaptogen combinations in the following products:

  • Decongestant Cleanser: A lathering gel cleanser for oily skin that removes all traces of impurities, excess oil and makeup.
  • Moisture Positive Cleanser: A rich, creamy cleanser for dry skin that gently washes away impurities and removes all traces of makeup
  • Equalizer: A hydrating toner laced with Chinese herbs and aromatherapist oils to rebalance and nourish.
  • Crucial Moisture: An emollient creme moisturizer for dry skin to improve the look of lines with lubricating hydrators.
  • Beyond Hydration: A refreshing gel moisturizer for oily skin keeps skin comfortable without added shine.
  • Measured Micrograins +: A microbead-free, multi-action facial scrub for all skin types – including unpredictable skin
  • Quick Refiner: A gel exfoliant that visibly smoothes skin with powerful alpha hydroxy acids including glycolic and multi-fruit acids.
  • Restorative Clay: A pore-refining clay mask to absorb oil and dirt, and improve texture with active natural clay.


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  1. Source: Merriam Webster Dictionary
  2. Source: Livestrong.com

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