Boost your skin with this seasonal spice
More than just a warming, wintery store cupboard ingredient, cinnamon has many hidden beauty benefits making it worthy of a spot in your beauty cabinet too. ‘Cinnamon, especially the essential oil, is an anti-inflammatory that improves blood flow and brings oxygen and blood to the outer surface of your skin,’ says Dr Isabel Sharkar (sondskin.co.uk) ‘It can protect skin from irritations, rashes, allergic reactions and infections. Frequently used together, cinnamon and honey, when applied directly to skin, are beneficial for acne, rosacea and other possible skin allergies.’
Used within traditional Chinese medicines for its skin-clearing abilities, cinnamon is cited as being great for plumping lips, too. ‘Cinnamon is also loaded with antioxidants, so it helps to combat skin ageing as well,’ says Dr Sharkar.
The Science Behind the Claims
A skin-stimulating, cleansing ingredient, cinnamon is antimicrobial, meaning it helps clear away the bacteria that can lead to acne. ‘Cinnamon has shown potential activity against acne bacteria within some research reports,’ says Alicia Falero, head of education and training at Gazelli Skincare (gazelliskincare.com). ‘Cinnamaldehyde, a major constituent of cinnamon, shows anti-inflammatory activity that inhibits the production of nitric oxide, which is responsible for inflammation. It’s especially effective for congested skin and works well in scrubs because of its microdermabrasion properties, which aid the removal of dead skin cells. This unclogs pores and stimulates circulation, leaving the complexion radiant,’ says Alicia.
Sandra Gould, a member of our Reader Panel, used Medik8 beta Moisturise Skin Balancing Mattifying Moisturiser, (£38, medik8.com)
Containing cinnamon extract, this mattifying moisturiser works to regulate sebum production and keep skin free of blemishes while providing optimal hydration levels. ‘As soon as I opened the tube, I was presented with a fragrant scent that instantly drew me to the product. The lotion went on very smoothly and made a great base for make-up – in fact, I could skip primer altogether as this removed any unwanted shine. It helped my complexion stay fresh-looking all day while also feeling comfortable – I am very impressed!’