As part of the Ambassador Program I received product samples and compensation from NOW Foods to thank me for my participation, but the product selection and all opinions are genuinely my own. #NOWWellness
You guys, after My 8 Step AM Beauty Routine post where I really dissected my routine and explained why I use or hesitate to use certain products, I’ve been getting more emails than usual asking for more posts like that. I haven’t gotten emails from you in a while, so to receive several in one day is a big deal for me! I thought I’d take a longer break, because that last one took me about 2 weeks to write, paragraph by paragraph. However, I really want to write things that you will want to read, so let’s just keep the momentum going, shall we?
Today as part of my regular collaboration with NOW Foods I wanted to talk about the ingredient that got me hooked on anti-aging skincare in the first place. When you think about anti-aging ingredients that really work, most of us probably imagine things like Retinol, AHAs, BHAs, and various sunblocks. Natural ingredients are rarely considered to be powerful anti-agers. First and foremost we associate them with their anti-oxidative properties, so almost everyone I know [myself included] doubles up with one or more of those other things above. However, some plant extracts have been clinically proven to have almost miraculous properties on par, or even better than the aforementioned traditional power trio [Retinol, acids, SPF]. One of them is Pomegranate Extract.
Used as a natural remedy for millennia, the benefits of pomegranate have been well-documented in ancient medicinal texts, but only recently modern cosmetic science finally decided to unveil the truth about this superfood. What they have discovered forever changed my perception of natural extracts in general!
Without further ado, here are 5 Reasons You Should Add Products with Pomegranate Extract to Your Beauty Routine [Backed by Science].
WONDERFUL ELLAGIC ACID:
This powerful polyphenol antioxidant is found in high quantities in pomegranates and berries. Like most antioxidants, Ellagic Acid helps reduce the signs of sun damage like hyperpigmentation and formation of new moles and age spots. Despite what most people think, age spots are actually caused by sun exposure and not by the natural skin aging process. Ellagic Acid helps your body build its own antioxidant Glutathione to protect skin cells from free radicals, and preserve collagen in the skin when exposed to UVB light, minimizing the damage from your daily dose of UV exposure.
Clinical studies have shown that Pomegranate Extract has the ability to prevent and treat a sunburn in women [men too, I’m guessing, but the focus group for the study was young women]. Considering that sun exposure, and particularly sunburns, is the main cause for skin aging Pomegranate Extract sounds like a wonderful natural alternative to lab-created anti-aging molecules.
A fairly recent study discovered that pomegranate peel extract has an inhibitory effect on the collagen-depleting enzyme Matrix Metalloproteinase-1, also known as MMP-1, which is responsible for the formation of fine lines and deeper wrinkles. Basically, it showed potential to slow down the formation of wrinkles and help your own skin bounce back without forming lines.
Pomegranate Extract works wonders for damaged skin, regardless of where the inflammation occurred. It will help soothe forming breakouts that are sitting under the surface and treat already existing ones by promoting collagen synthesis to speed up skin repair.
MAKE SUNSCREEN STRONGER:
I think you all might have read or at least heard of the latest exposé of the sunscreen market. As it turns out, a lot of products from the test group provided drastically less protection than listed on the label, which is concerning because sunscreens are considered drugs. You’d think there would be better regulation for those, but nope! Here’s where products with Pomegranate Extract may come in handy. In Dr. Murad’s book “Wrinkle Free Forever” [yep, that Murad!], he stresses the importance of using lab-made chemicals only where necessary, and talks about his preference to instead substitute them for effective botanicals without sacrificing the potential efficacy. According to Dr. Murad, Pomegranate Extract increases the effectiveness of topical sunscreens, protecting your skin even further. So even if you are using a product with SPF30 along with a lotion that contains Pomegranate Extract, the actual sun protection you’re getting is higher than the number on the bottle.
For the past several months I’ve been using NOW Solutions Green Tea & Pomegranate line of products that were designed for normal and combination skin. Mine is kind of both of those, and it’s also dehydrated, so I was looking for skincare that is lightweight and moisturizing.
NOW Solutions Green Tea & Pomegranate Cleanser Cream [$9.99, available here] – You don’t normally think that a cream cleanser would work well for someone with combination skin. We’re usually talking about a really oily t-zone, possibly with clogged or congested pores, and occasional breakouts. However, this cream cleaner turns into a comforting milk that gently purifies the oily areas without making the dry spots even drier. I usually have that problem on my cheeks, and for a while even washed my face with micellar water instead of a regular cleanser. After using this low pH, gentle cleansing cream on my normal, combination, and dehydrated skin I could see improvements in the skin’s moisture levels right after washing. Sometimes even the gentlest gel cleansers can make my skin feel dry immediately afterward, and this one didn’t.
Personally, I think the only 3 things a cleanser should be are delicate, low pH, and non-stripping; I don’t look at the ingredient list too closely since none of it will stay on my skin. However, NOW went above and beyond as always and added some really nice soothing ingredients like Aloe Vera [second on the list!], CoQ10, Sweet Almond Oil, Grapeseed Oil, Borage Oil, and fatty alcohols in addition to this line’s star complex of Green Tea Extract and Pomegranate Extract.
NOW Solutions Green Tea & Pomegranate Purifying Toner [$9.99, available here] is the next step after cleansing. It removes residue that might have remained on the skin, and potentially even traces of makeup. I’m not saying that the cleanser cream doesn’t remove makeup well, in fact it does a pretty good job at it, but I am just not very good at getting the edges, so there’s always a little bit of foundation left on my jawline and hairline. This is where a few quick swipes of toner can really help out.
There are three types of toners: astringents, acids, and moisturizing ones, and Green Tea & Pomegranate Purifying Toner is the latter. It does have astringent properties due to the presence of Green Tea Extract, but mainly its function is to hydrate the skin and prepare it for the next steps of the routine. The toner is alcohol-free, so it works perfectly for my skin without ever causing irritations. This brown runny liquid has a mild herbal fragrance, it smells very natural unlike those strong, cloying chemical fragrances added to many other cosmetics.
NOW Solutions Green Tea & Pomegranate Day Cream [$8.99, available here] – It’s kind of hard to find a good moisturizer for combination skin that isn’t too focused on pore control. Most of the moisturizers specifically targeted for this finicky skin type tend to be either too drying, or simply don’t moisturize enough. I think NOW did a pretty stellar job with this one, honestly. First of all, this is a gel cream that looks a bit thick straight from the tube, but it melts into gellish milk that absorbs into the skin and leaves it with slightly hydrated, lightly powdery finish. It feels just right. The dry spots on my cheeks are soothed, and the pores on my forehead, nose, and chin and under control throughout the day. Remember what I said about Pomegranate Extract and sunscreen? I always apply some SPF afterward, and this moisturizer actually makes my sunblock more effective.
Overall, this is just a very nice, comforting cream that is perfect for everyday use on skin that feels stressed, dull, and needs some re-balancing. Included Vitamins A, C, E, and CoQ10 keep the skin looking firm, while providing antioxidant properties to fight off free radicals.
NOW Solutions Green Tea & Pomegranate Lotion [$9.99, available here] – This night cream has a similar consistency to the day cream, which makes it really easy to layer with other overnight beauty products I use. It has a pleasant gel-cream texture that feels very soothing and comforting on the skin. Unlike the day cream however, this lotion feels more hydrating, it would definitely make the skin too shiny if used during the day. Although it was richer, I never experienced any breakouts. Instead, my face felt very soft and hydrated in the morning, and looked well-rested, too.
I really enjoyed having Green Tea & Pomegranate products in my routine. I’ve already used up both the day and the night cream, and there is about a quarter of a bottle of toner left, and about half of the cleanser. Like I mentioned in my AM routine post, I am currently trying to use up another cleanser that is set to expire within the next couple of months, but once I’m done with it I’ll go back to this one. Spoiler alert: the pomegranate toner is currently a part of my PM lineup, so you’ll see it again in a future post!
Have you tried using beauty products with Pomegranate Extract? Let me know in the comments below!
Disclosure: This post features products received for editorial consideration and contains sponsored content. For more details about my product review policy, copyright, and information about affiliate links, please refer to Disclosures & Content Use page.