Calendula: 6 Skin Care Benefits, Uses and More  

Calendula: 6 Skin Care Benefits, Uses and More

Calendula: 6 Skin Care Benefits, Uses and More

Originating from Asia and Europe, calendula is a plant that has been widely employed in traditional medicine for countless years. Its dried petals are commonly transformed into teas, drops, and capsules, all of which are consumed orally to promote overall well-being. Moreover, calendula's topical forms, such as oils, tinctures, gels, salves, and creams, have proven effective in alleviating various skin conditions, including acne, eczema, and psoriasis. The main reputation associated with calendula is its ability to soothe inflammation and expedite the healing process for wounds. Due to its remarkable skin healing, nourishing, and calming properties, calendula is highly regarded within the realm of traditional and alternative herbal medicine. It has been utilized to address numerous health conditions and skin issues through both oral consumption and topical application. The skin care benefits of calendula are abundant, including its proficiency in wound healing and its ability to alleviate dry and irritated skin that may be itching.

What exactly is calendula, you may wonder? Calendula officinalis, commonly referred to as calendula or pot marigold, belongs to the marigold family. This natural remedy provides numerous health benefits. The dried flowers or petals of calendula have been utilized medicinally for centuries, primarily due to their high flavonoid content, which provides protection against harmful free radicals. Calendula possesses several medicinal advantages when applied topically or ingested orally, primarily due to its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral, and antibacterial properties. Furthermore, calendula contains lutein and beta-carotene, which are converted into vitamin A within the body. This vitamin plays a vital role in promoting wound healing and hydrating and fortifying the skin. Additionally, calendula contains two key fatty acids: linoleic and calendic acids. These acids work together to soften and plump the skin while repairing and safeguarding its barrier. Finally, calendula boasts oxygenated oils known as monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes. Monoterpenes are responsible for providing essential oils with antibacterial, antiseptic, and antiviral effects, while sesquiterpenes offer antimicrobial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory qualities.

The leaves and petals of calendula are steeped in a carrier oil to produce essential oil, which can be used as is or incorporated into various products such as teas, drops, and pills for consumption, as well as tinctures, gels, salves, and creams for topical use. This essential oil can serve as a primary treatment option or a complementary addition to conventional skincare products.


The Skin Care Benefits of Calendula

Clinical studies on calendula are lacking, with only a few documented trials on this essential oil. Nevertheless, numerous in vitro studies have highlighted the health advantages of calendula and showcased its positive impact on both skin health and appearance.

When applied topically, calendula oil has been proven to offer a range of benefits. These include sun protection, enhancement of wound healing, and promotion of collagen production, resulting in plumper and stronger skin. Additionally, thanks to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, this oil can play a role in managing and healing skin conditions such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis.

Calendula's effectiveness in treating and preventing acne can be attributed to various mechanisms. Its strong antiseptic and antibacterial properties inhibit the growth of acne-causing bacteria, while its astringent effects help clear pores of debris and excess oils. Moreover, research has demonstrated that calendula possesses anti-inflammatory properties, alleviating itching and irritation commonly associated with acne lesions. By calming inflammation and reducing histamine levels, it enables faster resolution of acne lesions.

In terms of skin care benefits of calendula accelerates the healing process, soothes the skin, and aids in moisture retention for nourishment. This is particularly important for individuals prone to acne breakouts, as acne treatments often cause dryness and irritation. The oil's moisturizing and softening properties help maintain soft and supple skin.

Furthermore, calendula oil has the ability to lighten post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) - dark spots that persist after lesions have healed - and reduce the appearance of acne scars. By promoting tissue regeneration and collagen production, it restores a smooth and even texture, resulting in healthier, firmer skin.

In addition to its other benefits, calendula can also serve as an effective anti-aging tool. It offers strong protection against photodamage from the sun, acting as a sunscreen. Crucially, calendula oil contains flavonoid antioxidants, which effectively scavenge free radicals and guard against skin damage that contributes to premature aging. Flavonoids are particularly responsible for shielding against sunspots, liver spots, and solar lentigines that develop as a result of sun exposure.

With its potent antifungal properties, calendula is a natural and effective remedy for treating conditions like athlete’s foot, ringworm, and vaginal infections. These infections occur due to an imbalance of Candida albicans yeast, a fungus that naturally exists on the skin and in the vagina.

An extensive study on calendula's effectiveness against fungi revealed that this essential oil successfully combats all 23 types of fungi.

Researchers have acknowledged the necessity for novel and efficient alternatives to conventional drugs, which can be costly, toxic, and limited in their efficacy. Essential oils provide a solution, as they have demonstrated viability, safety, and natural attributes.

Furthermore, a clinical trial comparing the impact of calendula cream and clotrimazole (the standard therapy) on vaginal candidiasis concluded that both treatments were effective. While the calendula cream took longer to resolve the infection, it provided superior long-term effects compared to clotrimazole.

Eczema and psoriasis are chronic skin conditions caused by an overactive immune system, presenting similar uncomfortable symptoms such as redness, flaky skin, inflammation, and sensations of stinging and burning. The severity of these symptoms can vary.

Atopic dermatitis, commonly known as eczema, is characterized by compromised skin barrier function, itchiness, and hypersensitivity to food and environmental allergens. Skin affected by eczema appears red, extremely itchy, and may have flaky patches with clear discharge.

Psoriasis is characterized by an accumulation of skin cells due to an overactive immune system and various environmental triggers. This condition results in inflammation, the presence of thick, red, itchy patches, and silverish scales.

Calendula possesses anti-inflammatory and wound healing properties, making it an effective remedy for soothing and healing irritated skin. By reducing pain and inflammation, it alleviates redness, swelling, and discolored patches.

Moreover, the presence of vitamins, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids in calendula oil nourishes, moisturizes and supports the skin while maintaining a healthy barrier function, ultimately improving the skin's overall appearance.

In addition to its healing properties, calendula has also exhibited impressive wound-healing capabilities. This includes various types of skin injuries, such as burns (including sunburns), bruises, scrapes, and cuts.

Calendula possesses several significant qualities that are highly advantageous for maintaining skin health. These include its ability to act as an antiseptic, reduce inflammation, fight against viruses, protect against oxidation, and combat bacteria.

Its most well-known benefit lies in its effectiveness in healing wounds and reducing inflammation. Additionally, it can address numerous skin problems such as fading dark spots, revitalizing and safeguarding sun-damaged skin, and enhancing collagen production to minimize the appearance of wrinkles.

Read more: Unlocking the Power of Glycolic Acid: A Complete Guide to Transform Your Skin

Calendula essential oil can be used as it is, incorporated into skincare products, or purchased in pre-made preparations. It is suitable for all skin types, devoid of any adverse side effects, and can serve as either a primary or supplementary solution for skin care.

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