How did the mushroom transform into an unlikely skin-boosting ingredient that has got everyone raving about it? Before all the hype around it began, mushrooms were viewed as a flavourful garnish for certain dishes, or condemned as a wild toxic specimen that could prove fatal, should you ingest it while hiking in the woods. And then came 2018, the year when the rise of mushroom skincare trends was propelled into the mainstream. Reishi, Cordyceps, Maitake, and Chaga – you name it, beauty skincare brands have it.

However, it is important to note that the usage of mushrooms in skincare and wellness is not a new concept at all. Utilised in Indian Ayurveda practices and ancient Chinese medicinal remedies, the highly therapeutic value of the mushroom has been recognised some 2,000 years ago. From ancient traditional Chinese healing treatments to the hip skin-enhancing serums you see at beauty stores today, mushrooms have certainly come a long way from its original roots. So, what exactly makes mushrooms so beneficial for the skin? Here we take an inside look at the wonders of the various mushroom species and what makes them unique.


What Can They Do For the Skin?

Loaded with a variety of essential B Complex vitamins such as niacinamide and folate, mushrooms are the ultimate skin-saving superfood. While not all mushrooms are the same, the majority of the fungi out there offer a diverse array of skin-enhancing benefits that range from anti-ageing and detoxifying to hydrating and brightening. The vast pool of antioxidants found in mushrooms also helps to eliminate damage caused by free radicals that come with daily exposure to sunlight as well as environmental aggressors.

Aside from that, the B complex vitamins mentioned earlier are true multitasking nutrients as they help to stave off hyperpigmentation brought on by stress and ageing, reduce inflammation, and enhance the skin’s natural production of collagen all at the same time. With all the benefits that the mushroom embodies, this superior ingredient is all you need for a youthful, resilient complexion.


What Are the Mushrooms to Look Out For?

With a bevy of mushroom species available in the world, there is only a handful that made it into the ingredient lists of skincare products. Nonetheless, these few but potent complexion-boosting mushrooms get the job done. So if you are looking to incorporate mushroom skincare products into your beauty regimen, do keep in mind to look out for these ingredients – Reishi, Snow Mushroom, Chaga, Songyi, and Cordyceps.

By inhibiting tyrosinase activity, Reishi and Chaga work best to help reduce dullness of the skin and brightens the visage for a youthful glow as time progresses. On the other hand, Songyi fortifies the skin with its all-encompassing anti-ageing properties to boost the skin’s moisture barrier and prevent degradation of its extracellular matrix. The anti-inflammatory and deep hydration properties of the Snow Mushroom and Cordyceps also delivers magical benefits for the complexion as they aid in calming stressed skin, lightening pigmented spots, as well as moisturising the skin.


What Type of Skin is Mushroom Skincare Geared Towards?

It may be tempting to try out a variety of skincare products, but it is essential for the health of your complexion to purchase only products that are specially formulated for your skin type. Although the divine antioxidant properties equipped by mushroom skincare products are highly beneficial for all skin types, they work exceptionally best for dry, ageing, and irritated skin.

Since it helps to heal inflammation and encourage the production of collagen within the skin, mushroom skincare products can assist in minimising the appearance of acne, rosacea, and eczema. On top of that, mushrooms are rich in vitamin D and selenium, thus it aids in providing an extra layer of protection against wrinkles, premature age spots, and even discolouration brought on by environmental damage.


Should You Try Mushroom Skincare Products?

Yes, you should give it a try, especially so if the benefits of mushroom skincare products seem to resonate with the needs of your skin type. However, it is also important to exercise caution when it comes to purchasing such products and not believe the label of an exquisitely designed skincare packaging without first doing your research. The concept of infusing mushroom-based extracts in serums and creams are still fairly new, and they may have healing properties in ancient medicinal practices, but how much extract should a product contain is still a matter of hot debate.

It has been scientifically proven that mushrooms provide amazing benefits for the skin and health, but the amount of mushroom extract required for the results to be effectively delivered into the skin’s layers is still pretty subjective. But then again, that is something for skincare companies to worry about. You should focus on knowing what works best for your skin, and reading labels as well as doing ample research on skincare ingredients are great methods to ensure that your complexion gets only the best nutrients.

When choosing a skincare product, make sure to steer clear of harmful ingredients such as alcohol as well as artificial fragrances so as to not irritate your skin. To make sure that your visage reaps the full benefits of mushrooms, do make sure that it shows up first on the ingredient list, as this would mean that the product packs a great number of fungus derivatives! All in all, there is no harm trying out new skincare fads just as long as it serves your skincare needs well.