Spotlight On Green Tea

We are all aware of the benefits of drinking green tea. This drink has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antiaging properties and is said to help prevent cancer and tooth decay. Because of all its beneficial properties, Green Tea has become a very popular ingredient in skincare products too, but does it work as well when applied topically on the skin?

What is Green Tea?

Green tea is produced from the Camellia Sinesis plant, which is an evergreen shrub. From the same plant, black tea and oolong tea are obtained too, but with different processes. Green Tea is obtained from the steaming and drying of the Camellia Sinesis leaves and originated in China, although today it is widespread in the West too.

Green Tea has antiaging properties

Green Tea is very high in polyphenols (and in particular in Epigallocatechin-3-gallate which is considered to be 200 times more effective than Vitamin E), a group of antioxidants that fights free radicals, one of the main causes of aging. In addition, polyphenols also have anti-inflammatory properties. Skin inflammation is another factor that contributes to skin aging so reducing it will help keep skin looking younger for longer.

Green Tea helps reduce damage caused by sun exposure

Studies also suggest that “green tea polyphenols are photoprotective” and that their topical application can help reduce inflammation and redness caused by sun exposure. Another study, performed in 2003, has found that the polyphenols in green tea prevent UVB-induced oxidative stress (which can cause cancer) and the depletion of antioxidant enzymes. In addition, epigallocatechin-3-gallate can also prevent collagen breakdown. That’s why, even though green tea is not a substitute for sunscreen, it is still a good idea to incorporate it in your skincare routine.

Green Tea is an effective treatment for acne

A 2009 study has shown that a 2% Green Tea Lotion is an effective treatment for mild to moderate acne. The lotion was applied twice a day for 6 weeks on 20 patients. The scientists found that “the mean total lesion count decreased from 24 before the treatment to 10 after 6 weeks after treatment, a reduction of 58.33%” and concluded that “topical 2% green tea lotion is an effective, cost-effective treatment for mild-to-moderate acne vulgaris”.

The Bottom Line

Overall, Green Tea is an effective ingredient that has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-acne properties and also helps prevent damage caused by the sun’s UV rays. That’s why it is a good idea to incorporate it both in your diet and in your skincare routine. But make sure that your skincare products look brown. As dermatologist Dr Baumann explains: “if they don’t, it means they don’t contain enough green tea to be effective”

Do you use skincare products with Green Tea? Or do you prefer to drink it?

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  1. says

    I love green tea! I am a regular drinker,especially after a meal with oily food. however, I don’t have any skincare with green tea, not sure if they really work on skin.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Xin, I like to drink green tea. It tastes nice and it works for you. And it works even on skin, as long as the concentration is high enough. It’s an antioxidant, though, so you’ll see the effects in the long run as it prevents damage rather than reducing wrinkles.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Vonnie, oh no! That’s a mistake I made too though. Sadly it’s hard for the consumers to determine how much of an ingredient is in a product and how it will work. But thanks to Dr Baumann we now know better.

  2. Alejandra says

    Great article Gio, Im glad you give us information about the effective concentrations of green tea cause its common to hear “this ingredient is good for the skin” but Im always wondering about the minimum amounts to have a benefical effect on the skin.

    Im using a serum which third ingredient is green tea leaf extract but its an opaque and translucent yellow, it has a particular smell that i thought it was from green tea but now I dont know what to think……

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Alejandra, thanks. I’m glad you found the article useful. Using if an ingredient is listed in third place it means there is quite a lot of it, but it may still not be enough to be effective. The smell may be well green tea though.

  3. says

    I personally haven’t used much products with green tea, nor do I drink green tea much myself. I don’t really know why especially because I know about all the benefits of green tea especially when it comes to beauty. I gave a cream a chance once but didn’t see much effect from it so maybe that’s one reason!
    Chriselle Sy´s last blog post ..How to Determine Your Eye ShapeMy Profile

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Chriselle, maybe the cream you use didn’t contain a high enough concentration of green tea to be effective? Also, because it is an antioxidant, you will see the effects in the long run and not straight away. You can always drink it though, it’s really lovely!

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Makeup Morsels, I’m glad you enjoyed the post. We all know that green tea is good for us but it’s interesting to know exactly how, isn’t it? And it’s good that it’s effective both when drank and applied topically. :)

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Mylanqolia, green tea products are effective, if they contain a high enough concentrations of it. But even though it’s an effective antioxidant, it’s not a miracle ingredient. That’s why I think it is a good idea to incorporate it in your skincare routine, but not rely solely on it and use products with other antioxidants, niacinamide and other beenficial ingredients.

  4. says

    i am sorry for trolling on your old posts but i discovered your blog today so i thought ill read more from it as i find it very intresting.The thing about green tea is that i realized when i drink few cups a day i lose weight..i didnt eat anything less and i drank 2 cups a day for 2 weeks and i was 3 lbs lighter and when i diet,t helps ,i lose weight much faster.Also when i rinse my face with handmade green tea(make in a bottle and keep it in fridge for 3 days tops) it helps my skin,soothes and less breakouts.But when it comes of a cream having green tea..i dont even know what to say.I used a eye cream with lots of green tea in and it was nice

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Roxana, I’m glad that you’ve found my blog and that you like it. I enjoy reading all your comments and I hope to see you around often in the future. :)

      Green Tea is really nice, isn’t it? I think its benefits are more obvious when you drink it than when you apply it on the skin. The problem with creams with green tea is that they often don’t contain it in amounts high enough to be effective. That’s why it’s important to make sure they are brown in color. That means the concentration is high enough to actually be effective. :)

  5. says

    i added your blog to my favorites,so ill be around ,i really like it.And is really nice that u take time to read and reply to all the coments.I became a fan of this blog

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Roxana, I’m so glad to hear that. Thanks for your support, I really appreciate it.

      And I love chatting with you all. :)

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