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Turmeric: The One Spice Your Face Mask Needs

Turmeric isn’t just a tasty culinary spice. On the skin, its active compound curcumin destroys acne-causing bacteria. It’ll even speed up wound healing by inducing skin growth factors. If your skin is flaring up, turmeric will soothe inflammation. The antioxidant properties are also handy for warding off UV-induced photodamage and skin cancer. To make an easy mask, simply mix ¼ teaspoon turmeric with 1 tablespoon honey. Spread on the skin and wash off after 5 minutes.

Forget expensive face wash and fancy lotion. Turmeric, or Curcuma longa, might be the answer to your skin woes. This vibrant yellow spice is a staple in Indian food, but after learning about the beauty benefits, it’ll be the new star of your vanity.

For centuries, Ayurveda has used this bright yellow spice as medicine. It can fight issues like oxidative stress, poor digestion and food allergies.1 2 3

But you don’t need to eat turmeric to reap the benefits. When applied on the skin, this vibrant spice will become your favorite beauty remedy.

How Turmeric Benefits Your Skin

Turmeric's most active compound is curcumin

Turmeric owes its benefits to curcumin, its most active compound. Curcumin is also the reason why turmeric is bright yellow! On the skin, it’ll work some serious magic.

1. Combats Acne

Turmeric is an anti-microbial and thus kills pimple causing bacteria

Reach for turmeric if you’re struggling with breakouts. As an anti-microbial, turmeric destroys Propionibacterium acnes, the bacteria that causes pimples.4 It also won’t cause drying and irritation like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, two popular ingredients in commercial acne treatments.

2. Heals Wounds

Turmeric promotes skin growth and speeds up healing

As tiny wounds, pimples need to heal properly. It’s also essential if you have a cut, scrape, or minor injury. By applying turmeric, you’ll speed up the process by promoting skin growth factors and restoration. Top it off with anti-microbial protection and infection won’t be an issue.5

3. Soothes Inflammation

Curcumin has anti-inflammatory powers

Curcumin is well-known for its anti-inflammatory powers. Traditionally, it’s been used to treat conditions like dermatitis, psoriasis and rashes.6 For a particularly angry skin infections or breakouts, turmeric will lend a hand, too.7

4. Protects Against Photodamage

Turmeric can protect you from the harmful effects of UVB irradiation

Ultraviolet B (UVB) irradiation induces photoaging, a process that weakens collagen and speeds up aging. It’ll make you look older – and not in a good way! Thankfully, turmeric’s antioxidant properties can prevent and treat photoaging, making it an all-natural anti-aging remedy.8

5. Lowers Risk Of Skin Cancer

Lowers Risk Of Skin Cancer

Beyond appearance, UV rays also damages DNA and kills healthy skin cells. This makes it easy for cancer to grow and spread! But with the antioxidant effects of curcumin, the necessary biological pathways will be put to an end.9

How To Make A Turmeric Face Mask

Turmeric and honey is all you need to make a turmeric face mask

Making a turmeric face mask isn’t rocket science. With a few pantry staples, you can create an all-natural product.


  • ¼ teaspoon powdered turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon honey


  1. After cleansing your face, gently pat dry.
  2. Combine both ingredients and mix well.
  3. Spread all over your face.
  4. After 5 minutes, rinse off and dry.

Why Honey?

Honey is suitable for all skin types. It controls excess sebum while providing moisture, making it useful for oily, dry, and normal complexions. The anti-bacterial benefits also offer extra ammo against acne.10

Don’t leave it on for too long, as turmeric can stain the skin. A simple sugar scrub can be used to remove any discoloration. It also stains fabric, so be sure to wear old clothes.

References   [ + ]

1. Hayes, Paula A., Marianne H. Fraher, and Eamonn MM Quigley. “Irritable bowel syndrome: the role of food in pathogenesis and management.” Gastroenterology & hepatology 10, no. 3
(2014): 164.
2. Chikara, Shireen, Lokesh Dalasanur Nagaprashantha, Jyotsana Singhal, David Horne, Sanjay Awasthi, and Sharad S. Singhal. “Oxidative stress and dietary phytochemicals: Role in cancer chemoprevention and treatment.” Cancer Letters (2017).
3. Chey, William Y., Hai Ou Jin, Mun Ho Lee, Sung Wu Sun, and Kae Yol Lee. “Colonic motility abnormality in patients with irritable bowel syndrome exhibiting abdominal pain and diarrhea.” The American journal of gastroenterology 96, no. 5 (2001): 1499.
4. Jain, A., and E. Basal. “Inhibition of Propionibacterium acnes-induced mediators of inflammation by Indian herbs.” Phytomedicine 10, no. 1 (2003): 34-38.
5. Zdrojewicz, Z., M. Szyca, E. Popowicz, T. Michalik, and B. Śmieszniak. “Turmeric-not only spice.” Polski merkuriusz lekarski: organ Polskiego Towarzystwa Lekarskiego 42, no. 252 (2017): 227.
6. Gupta, Subash C., Gorkem Kismali, and Bharat B. Aggarwal. “Curcumin, a component of turmeric: from farm to pharmacy.” Biofactors 39, no. 1 (2013): 2-13.
7. Nguyen, Tuyet A., and Adam J. Friedman. “Curcumin: a novel treatment for skin-related disorders.” Journal of drugs in dermatology: JDD 12, no. 10 (2013): 1131-1137.
8. Li, Huaping, Aili Gao, Na Jiang, Qing Liu, Bihua Liang, Runxiang Li, Erting Zhang, Zhenjie Li, and Huilan Zhu. “Protective Effect of Curcumin Against Acute Ultraviolet B Irradiation‐induced Photo‐damage.” Photochemistry and photobiology 92, no. 6 (2016): 808-815.
9. Perrone, Donatella, Fatima Ardito, Giovanni Giannatempo, Mario Dioguardi, Giuseppe Troiano, Lucio Lo Russo, Alfredo De Lillo, Luigi Laino, and Lorenzo Lo Muzio. “Biological and therapeutic activities, and anticancer properties of curcumin.” Experimental and therapeutic medicine 10, no. 5 (2015): 1615-1623.
10. Julianti, Elin, Kasturi K. Rajah, and Irda Fidrianny. “Antibacterial Activity of Ethanolic Extract of Cinnamon Bark, Honey, and Their Combination Effects against Acne-Causing Bacteria.” Scientia Pharmaceutica 85, no. 2 (2017): 19.

Disclaimer: The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.

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