Sure, your morning java is outstanding for waking up your brain, but did you know there are benefits of coffee on skin and hair? The antioxidants and beauty perks your entire body can receive from caffeine are like no other. In fact, Julia Hunter, MD, a dermatologist at Wholistic Dermatology in California told Prevention magazine that it’s a great idea to double up on coffee’s benefits whenever you can. “Drinking coffee is one piece of the puzzle; another is putting it on the surface of your skin,” said Hunter. “A coffee facial scrub can help brighten skin, prevent clogged pores, and soften lines. The acid in coffee gives you some chemical exfoliation on top of mechanical exfoliation. It also helps bolster skin’s protective barrier. That’s what keeps you healthy when bacteria, viruses, and fungi are landing on your skin 24/7.”
There are two ways to apply coffee grounds on your face. The first is mixing six tablespoons of finely ground coffee with four tablespoons of coconut or olive oil to create a thick paste. Gently rub the grounds on your body and face in a gentle circular motion to remove the dead skin. You can use fresh or used grounds for this, but be sure to avoid the eye area, which can be sensitive to the roughness. The second, and what Dr. Hunter recommends, is soaking coffee grounds in bowl of warm, filtered water and adding Epsom salts. Once the grounds have dropped to the bottom, rinse your face with the water from the bowl, then scoop up the grounds to gently scrub skin. Finish by rinsing with more of the water from the bowl. And voila, tight, perked up skin.
Coffee grounds can also do wonders on your hands. For one, if you’ve ever accidently rubbed some coffee grounds on your hands while washing out your espresso maker, you know that the coffee’s grounds oils and acid left your hands feeling renewed and soft. Those grounds can also remove smells like garlic, fish, and onions from your hands after a night of fragrant cooking.
Simply scrub your hands with some coffee grounds and rinse with warm water.
If you’re a brunette, mixing coffee grounds with water and applying it as a paste to damp, freshly shampooed hair will add depth to your color and give it extra shine. And, according to a study by the International Journal of Dermatology, caffeine can also stimulate the hair shaft and help it grow. How does it do that? By blocking the effects of DHT, a chemical known to damage follicles. But unfortunately you can’t just hop in the shower and pour some grounds on your hair and rinse to see results. According to the Daily Makeover, a leave-in topical product is necessary to have this type of effect described. The editors recommend spray formulas that contain caffeine and that effectively absorb into your hair follicles. Look for Schwarzkopf Thicker Fuller Hair Weightless Volumizing Hair Spray with Caffeine Energizer or Sally Hershberger Major Body 3-in-1 Volumizing Spray.
More benefits of coffee on skin include the fact that coffee grounds are also great for de-puffing tired eyes. In fact most eye creams contain caffeine because it dehydrates and constricts blood vessels. This routine only works if the coffee grounds are used, so once they’ve cooled, scoop up a bit with your fingers and carefully apply to the area under your eyes and on your lids. Close your eyes and relax for 20 minutes. Then rinse the grounds off with cool water and pat dry with a clean cloth. While this has a wondrous effect, a caffeine crash can also happen on your skin: expect to see de-puffing results last for only half hour to an hour. Time for your next cup!