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Natural Living

Green Giant

Out of the cup and into beauty products, green tea's topical benefits rival its health advantages

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Green tea is an anti-inflammatory, an anti-irritant, and a great source of antioxidants that help protect skin and hair and may even slow the signs of aging. The most powerful antioxidant in green tea is epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which helps prevent collagen breakdown and reduces UV damage to skin.

These protective properties have anti-aging benefits. “The high content of powerful antioxidants in green tea slows down the signs of aging, minimizing wrinkles, and maintaining firm, toned skin,” says Lea Eigard, a clinical aesthetician based in Beverly Hills and creator of Eigard Essentials, a natural skin care system that includes green tea.

“Green Tea also contains L-theanine, which has a calming effect on the nerves by reducing tension held in the skin,” says Eigard. “Skin will appear more relaxed and even toned. Green tea also contains vitamin K, which plays a part in reducing the loss of elasticity and protects the skin from developing wrinkles and sagging. It’s wonderful for healing bruises and repairing broken blood vessels as well as reabsorbing the blood leakage that causes dark circles under the eyes.”

Green tea is also added to hair products, as it is has the ability to stimulate growth and soften hair. It contains polyphenols and vitamins C and E, which are known to boost healthy hair. And the antiseptic properties of green tea help prevent and cure common hair problems, such as dandruff and psoriasis, by reducing inflammation.

1. Instantly hydrate your skin with 100% Pure Jasmine Green Tea Tonique. This antioxidant-packed facial toner uses hyaluronic acid as a delivery system to provide age-defying organic green tea, moisturizing aloe, and nourishing rose, calendula, chamomile, and jasmine essential oils to thirsty skin cells. Free of detergents, synthetic chemicals, and artificial fragrances-it’s ideal for normal to dry skin, but gentle enough for delicate skin.

2. Refresh puffy and tired eyes with Alba BotanicaHawaiian Eye Gel. Antioxidant green tea and soothing organic aloe de-puff under-eye bags and help smooth and protect the delicate eye area. Cucumber, chamomile, awapuhi, papaya, and kelp extracts firm and tone lines and wrinkles for a revitalized, wide-awake look.

3. Moisturize and soothe your skin from fingers to toes with J.R. Watkins Natural Apothecary Aloe & Green Tea Hand & Body Lotion. Green tea and aloe hydrate and protect, while apricot kernel oil, shea and cocoa butters, coconut and avocado oils, and calendula and chamomile flower extracts soften skin and make it glow.

4. Get soft, shiny, healthy hair with Kiss My FaceWhenever Green Tea & Lime Shampoo and Conditioner. Green tea nourishes hair and protects it from environmental damage. Sustainable Moroccan argan oil helps hair retain moisture and improves elasticity to prevent breakage. Chamomile, sage, and naturally derived panthenol help strengthen strands. Both are gentle enough for everyday use.

Try it!

Green tea is just one of several carefully selected ingredients in Home Health everclēn Face Cream. This soothing moisturizer is part of Home Health’s unique line of face care products designed for sensitive skin-no soap, fragrance, gluten, or other irritants are added. Home Health is giving away 5 jars of everclēn face cream. To enter to win, email your name and address to, with “Face Cream” as the subject line. Readers will be chosen at random; no purchase necessary.

Sherrie Strausfogel is the author of Hawaii’s Spa Experience: Rejuvenating Secrets of the Islands.Writing about beauty, spas, health, cuisine, and travel, Strausfogel’s work has appeared in more than 100 magazines, newspapers, guidebooks, and websites. She is based in Honolulu.