Summertime skin and Matcha Green Tea. How are these two intricately connected you ask? Summertime is the season we most worry about our skin. The media bombards us about the damaging effects of UV rays, salt water, wind, pollution, etc, and the list seems never-ending. How do we prevent or fight against these elements that are causing our skin to show visible signs of aging? Add to the damage these elements cause, skin conditions like psoriasis, melasma, and rosacea and the problem can seem insurmountable! But before you get unnerved and overwhelmed, My Matcha Life®  has good news for adding an easy and effective layer of protection to your skin care routine.

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Studies that Benefit Your Skin

Between leading-edge skin studies on Matcha’s EGCG Antioxidant, its skin-repairing ability, and results from at-home My Matcha Life Face Mask recipes, there is good reason to be optimistic about the future of your skin.

Recent research is showing that the skin health benefits of green tea are numerous, and mostly occur because of green tea’s unique ‘EGCG catechin’ antioxidant. EGCG is found in high amounts in matcha green tea.

As the sun’s UVA and UVB rays penetrate your skin, they can create harmful free radical molecules. Free radicals roam around inside our systems looking for another molecule to pair with, eventually taking a molecule from a healthy cell causing it to mutate and damaging its ability to function. These mutations can lead to serious skin issues including cellular death.

Dr. Stephen Hsu, a cell biologist at the Medical College of Georgia, discovered that green tea’s polyphenol antioxidant, EGCG, reactivated dying skin cells (1) in the outer layer of the epidermis.

He notes, “Cells that migrate toward the surface of the skin normally live about 28 days, and by day 20, they basically sit on the upper layer of the skin getting ready to die, but EGCG reactivates them. They start dividing again, make DNA, and produce more energy.”

Did he just say our skin stays looking younger, for longer? Nice! Another study suggests that the EGCG antioxidant plays a role in skin hydration and moisture retention (2). Think of reduced fine lines and less saggy skin! If you are reading this blog post, like us you are probably in the age group where you are seeing the signs of aging, and not happy about it! This comprehensive analysis compiled data from research articles focused on green tea and its constituents, the role they play in preventing inflammation in the skin, and its potential anticarcinogenic properties.

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The researchers concluded that supplementation of skin care products with green tea polyphenols may have a ‘profound’ impact on a variety of skin disorders (3). And as always, they finish with, “although more clinical studies are needed.” One study, unique from the others, researched if drinking green tea inhibited the formation of UVB – induced nonmelanoma skin cancer in mice. Unique because it determined that the inclusion of caffeine in green tea was necessary to achieve a positive result.

Interestingly, they found that yes, green tea did inhibit the formation of UVB – induced non-melanoma skin cancer in mice, at least when the mice drank regular caffeinated green tea, but when they drank decaffeinated tea, there was no noticeable effect (4).

This suggests that it is the synergy of green tea’s naturally occurring constituents, including EGCG and caffeine, that make green tea so effective, and not just one component alone. Granted this study was on mice, but it does seem like the whole food approach should be part of your overall skin health strategy.

This Study suggests that EGCG can be used in the prevention of skin carcinogenesis, inflammatory responses, photoaging, and oxidative stress. (5).

my matcha life, matcha mask, beach, summer skin damage, calli obrien, vancouver, yvr, bc

Read Studies, Apply Matcha Mask

So many amazing studies out there supporting the use of green tea and its constituents like EGCG, for overall skin health. Matcha, good quality matcha like My Matcha Life, contains nature’s highest natural source of EGCG catechins, in its whole food form as nature intended. If you haven’t already jumped on the matcha fan wagon, do your skin a favour, get it, drink it, apply it, and bathe in it if you like – but make it part of your health strategy! In fact, we created a second blog with recipes for you! Click here for your at-home matcha mask recipes!

(1) Green tea and the skin

(2) Skin Protective Effect of Epigallocatechin gallate

(3) Green Tea and Skin

(4) Inhibition of UVB-induced nonmelanoma skin cancer: A path from tea to caffeine to exercise to decreased tissue fat

(5) Skin photoprotection by green tea: antioxidant and immunomodulatory effects.

Additional Green Tea Skin Research