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With its antioxidizing and anti-inflammatory properties, ginseng makes its way into the cosmetics industry

A popular staple of eastern medicine, ginseng is already being used in skin care and hair care products; its use should soon be widespread in Brazil.

It is said that ginseng has been consumed for over 5,000 years in China and the surrounding areas. The root is known for boosting blood circulation and strengthening the immune system. It is recommended for dealing with stress, concentration issues and overall physical and mental fatigue. Ginseng is a very popular staple in eastern medicine and has already made its way into the pharmaceutical industry worldwide. Now, it is attracting the attention of cosmetics manufacturers.

Isabel Piatti, specialist in esthetic procedures and cosmetology

Isabel Piatti, specialist in esthetic procedures and cosmetology

Ginseng is an ingredient with high levels of vitamins and minerals and is a very rich source of antioxidants, which help prevent and repair cellular damage throughout the body,” says pharmacist Lucas Portilho. Science director at Consulfarma, a company that advises compounding pharmacies, Portilho explains that ginseng also helps the skin’s immune system. “Regardless of skin type, ginseng is most likely capable of helping, because it acts toward the natural balance of the dermis.

According to Isabel Piatti, who specializes in esthetic procedures and cosmetology, ginseng use is a growing trend and has been taking the cosmetics world by storm due to the many benefits it provides the skin. “Because of its antioxidant properties, ginseng has an anti-aging effect. It fights damage caused by sunlight and pollutants, as well as boosting collagen production, which smooths wrinkles and expression lines,” she says.

Piatti lists several skin problems that can be treated with the help of ginseng. “It works as a soothing agent for sensitive skin and rashes, it can revitalize bland and faded skin and it helps stop melanin production and prevent hyperpigmentation and the formation of spots.” An International Center and Institute for Improvement and Scientific Research (CIA in Portuguese) ambassador, Piatti highlights yet another benefit offered by ginseng. “Its anti-inflammatory properties can minimize the effect of conditions such as acne and psoriasis, and counteract redness and swelling.

The use of ginseng goes beyond skincare. This natural ingredient is also found in hair care formulas. “It can be used to stimulate hair growth, and its topical use boosts strands’ regenerative capacity, increasing blood flow to the scalp. It also acts directly on the follicles, preventing hair loss,” explains Mônica Santos, cosmetics technician at N.P.P.E. Hair Care.

N.P.P.E. Hair Care, manufactured by Taiwanese company Shaan Honq Corporation, has been working for over 20 years with ginseng-based shampoos that prevent hair loss. It has recently introduced a new product for greasy hair, with a formula including ginseng, into the Brazilian market. “This root has an antibacterial compound that helps prevent dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis. Additionally, ginseng can create a thin and resistant layer around hair fibers, forming a barrier against external aggression caused by elements such as the sun, pollution and wind, helping prevent hair aging,” says Santos.

Isabel Piatti mentions yet another reason why ginseng looks set to prosper in the beauty industry: it is an all-natural ingredient. “Cosmetics are becoming increasingly greener,” she says. Mônica Santos shares this opinion. “In Brazil, manufacturers are overhauling their operations and products to meet the needs of increasingly demanding customers who look for solutions that will be good not only for their skin and hair, but also for the environment. The search for cosmetics that use natural ingredients has been gaining momentum and we will be following this path for the next few years,” she says.

Renata Martins

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