THE IN-TRAY

Spice up your beauty regime with turmeric-laced products

Turmeric, the golden spice native to southwest India, is being embraced by product developers for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Maybe it’s time to add a dash to your own regime?

From sun-coloured lattes to golden honey, from Surry Hills to Beverly Hills, turmeric is everywhere these days. The distinctive yellow-orange powder—a mainstay of Indian cuisine, Ayurvedic medicine and Chinese tradition—has long been tapped for its remedial benefits. It’s a superfood whose presence is felt way beyond the pantry; researchers are studying its impact on everything from toothache to tuberculosis. Lately, the spice has been cropping up in makeup and skin care for its soothing, calming and brightening powers.

Turmeric derives its clout from the chemical compound curcumin, a natural antioxidant (take that, free radicals), antiseptic (blemishes, you’re next) and anti-inflammatory that functions internally and with topical application. Taken orally, turmeric can protect and repair skin from environmental stressors, and help with inflammation including sensitive skin conditions. In terms of makeup and skin care, some brands trumpet the plant, whereas others list it in their ingredient decks without so much as addressing it.

Verso’s Antioxidant Turmeric Booster is in the former camp. This lightweight serum, which shields the complexion against UV-radiation and soothes skin flare-ups, is ideal for busy urbanites. A booster, it delivers both immediate and long-term antioxidant protection, and paves the way for additional treatment products. For other innovative brands, including Dr. Dennis Gross and This Works, turmeric is an important background player in skin-protecting, anti-ageing elixirs. formulas.

At Indian weddings, brides famously apply a turmeric paste from head-to-toe to reveal a radiant glow. But there’s no need to go to that length. You could turn to NARS Sheer Glow Foundation, which harnesses powerful antioxidants, including turmeric extract, to protect against free radicals and improve skin’s luminosity. Similarly, Rose-Marie Swift, founder of RMS Beauty, blends the yellow herb into several of her products, including her antioxidant-rich lipsticks and her Beauty Oil, whose colour recalls the gilded spice.

Turmeric has also been used in cosmetics for its ability to enhance skin tones and deliver a sun-kissed glow. It even has a cameo role in hair care. Aveda Invati Advanced Exfoliating Shampoo promises thicker, fuller manes, and utilises a mix of Ayurvedic herbs including ginseng and organic turmeric to invigorate the scalp. So, if you’re only exploring the benefits of turmeric through a takeaway vegetarian korma, perhaps you should also spice up your beauty regime.

Words by George Epaminondas
May 2018

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