The Benefits of Turmeric for Your Skin, According to Dermatologists

Good Housekeeping posted "The Benefits of Turmeric for Your Skin, According to Dermatologists" featuring Dr. Purvisha Patel and Visha Skincare.

Dr. Patel recommends tumeric (when used topically) to help with a whole host of skin conditions--from acne to other types of inflammation and uneven pigmentation.

Say goodbye to dark spots and skin rashes and hello to a bright, glowing complexion.

Is the secret to radiant skin sitting in your spice cabinet? One of the buzziest skincare ingredients right now is turmeric, a golden yellow spice that doesn’t just taste good, it can also deliver some major skin benefits, according to dermatologists. Applying turmeric to your face can help calm skin rashes, lighten dark spots and hyperpigmentation, treat acne and brighten skin tone, just to name a few of its benefits.

To answer all your questions about turmeric — including what exactly it is, how to use it and if there are any side effects — we spoke to four experts.

The Experts

  • Dr. Purvisha Patel, a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Visha Skincare
  • Dr. Simran Sethi, MD, MBA, the founder and medical director of RenewMD Beauty & Wellness
  • Dr. Deepak Bhanot, an Ayurveda expert at The Ayurveda Experience
  • Sabina Wizemann, a senior chemist at the Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty Lab
    Read on to find out how you can use turmeric to achieve your brightest, healthiest skin yet.

What exactly is turmeric?

Turmeric is a root plant related to ginger that’s commonly used as a spice around the world, especially in South Asia. You may recognize it by its bright yellow color, which comes as a result of the active ingredient curcumin, “a potent anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, anti-neoplastic and antioxidant [that] combats free-radicals and free-radical damage,” says Dr. Patel.

Turmeric has been used for centuries as an anti-inflammatory and preventative health supplement, and traditionally has been used to heal wounds and treat pain. It’s also a common ingredient in Ayurvedic skincare. “It is often applied on the skin of brides and grooms a few days before their wedding day to enhance their complexions and give the skin a glow,” says Dr. Bhanot. “For cosmetic purposes, it is used as an ingredient in Ayurvedic oils.”

Are there any side effects to using turmeric in skincare?

As long as you’re not allergic, Dr. Bhanot says that there are no side effects to using turmeric. “There can be some yellow staining of the skin if used in a DIY mask fashion,” warns Dr. Patel, but skincare products on the market have been designed to minimize that staining.

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