Once fall rolls around, coffee shops as far as the eye can see (and beyond), pull out that seasonal favorite, the one my best friend asks for well into January, knowing that sometimes secret stock is left over from the fall holidays: the pumpkin spice latte (or pumpkin chai, if you’re not a coffee drinker). But the gorgeous gourd isn’t just for sweetening your espresso. No, pumpkin packs a serious skincare punch that helps combat an array of skin conditions, from pigmentation to acne.
What’s unique about pumpkin is its small molecular structure. The vitamins in pumpkin meat can penetrate deeper into the skin than other topical ingredients, making it great for treating a myriad of conditions.
Worried about dull, aging skin? Pumpkin is rich in vitamin A, which soothes and softens your skin, and vitamin C, an antioxidant that can help remedy damage produced by free radicals (read: lightens pigmentation). The natural enzymes it contains can help dissolve dry skin cells, while beta-carotene-rich antioxidants remove old surface skin cells, and promote new cell growth.
Concerned about spots? Pumpkin is full of vitamins E and T, inflammation fighters that reduce pore size and control excess oil. Wave goodbye to blackheads, blemishes and redness: The zinc in squash’s flesh and seeds helps balance hormone levels and assists with healing the skin, all in promotion of clearer, healthier skin.
How can you harness the power of pumpkin on your own? A simple face mask will do. Mix it up, relax and try not to eat the concoction before it makes it to your skin.
Easy DIY: Pumpkin Face Mask
- 2 tsp. cooked or canned organic pumpkin, pureed
- 1/2 tsp. raw, organic honey (hydrates and helps regenerate)
- 1/4 tsp. organic milk or soymilk (lactic acid helps skin cell turnover)
- Mix all ingredients together and apply to your face, avoiding the eye area.
- Relax for 10-15 minutes.
- Rinse with warm water and proceed with your usual skincare routine (I love a good toner and thick moisturizer for the fall).