Pumpkin has become a perennial favorite during the fall, making its way into our beverages, recipes, candles and much more. In skin care, however, pumpkin stands out for its rejuvenation and healing properties. Referred to as nature’s collagen therapy, this super fruit hydrates, repairs and protects the skin.
While pumpkin’s benefits extend year-round, it is no coincidence it is so prevalent in aesthetics during the fall. In fact, because it is a natural form of retinoic acid, it is an excellent ingredient to incorporate into fall skin care as it helps repair the damaging effects of summer, rejuvenate and increase collagen production, and gives the skin a fresh, healthy glow heading into the holiday season.
Today, we are fortunate to be able to deliver the benefits of pumpkin to the skin in a variety of ways from masks and enzymes to serums and cleansers. And beyond the beta-carotene, which pumpkin is most known for, it provides a host of other life-giving ingredients that support optimal skin health. There are more than 103 to be exact, but we're going to look at 10 of them:
L-Ascorbic acid: A vitamin C, it delivers a potent dose of antioxidants to the skin, stimulating the production of collagen and elastin.
Aminobutyric acid (alpha, beta and gamma): A potent inhibitory amino acid also found in the brain, its potent antioxidant properties help inhibit the production of free radicals in the skin by preventing disconnection with the skin’s natural spin traps.
Aspartic acid: A protein-building amino acid responsible for DNA production, it supports tissue respiration.
Caffeic acid: A cinnamic acid derivative that helps reduce the appearance of pigmentation.
Glutamic acid: A protein-building amino acid that promotes the synthesis of NaPCA (sodium PCA), which hydrates and prevents water loss.
Lauric acid: An emollient fatty acid, it provides antibacterial and antibiotic benefits.
Proline: A protein-building amino acid essential to collagen production.
Salicylic acid: A beta-hydroxy acid and natural spin trap, pumpkin has the highest natural concentration of salicylic acid of any plant.
Tryptophan: An essential amino acid, and vitamin B-precursor that suppresses hyperpigmentation along with associated hyperkeratosis and scaling.
Histidine: An essential protein-building amino acid that is the catalytic center of many enzymes, it improves the skin’s immune system.