When it comes to figuring out what’s the next hot new ingredient, the beauty industry is always switching things up. Skincare lovers have seen product formulations that included almost every item under the sun. From standard items like cucumbers and aloe vera to more out-of-the-box selections like snail mucin and placenta (yep, you read that correctly).
Two countries that are often at the top of their game when it comes to discovering what the hot new formulations are South Korea and India. There are several reasons why these countries, both home to incredibly talented musicians and amazing culinary options, are known for introducing the most innovative skincare ingredients to the world of beauty.
South Korea has one of the largest and most competitive beauty, especially in regards to makeup and skincare, markets in the world. In 2023, the South Korean beauty and personal care market is predicted to grow up to $12.58 billion dollars in revenue by the end of 2023. The largest segment of that amount derives from skincare sales at a market volume of $7.63 billion.
India has a rich history of finding herbal remedies for a range of issues, from tummy troubles to dry skin. Many of these remedies are derived from Ayurveda, an ancient Indian medical system. This system is based on the concept of preventing and treating illness by maintaining a balance in the body, mind, and spirit through drinking, diet, and lifestyle. Today there are several South Asian-owned skincare brands, like Avya Skincare and Ranavat, that take inspiration from Ayurvedic medicinal treatments with the inclusion of skin-benefiting ingredients like saffron, ginger, turmeric, and more.
The New ‘IT’ Ingredient
Some trends catch on more quickly than others and one new ingredient we believe will be showing up more often in product formulations in the next year or two will be lychee.
A lychee, or litchi, is a small round fruit with scaly, red rind, a sweet juicy center, and a rounded pit. The fruit is native to China and has been used in food, drinks, and even medicine for thousands of years. In recent years, the popularity of this delicious little fruit has grown in the U.S., lychee martini anyone? Besides making for a delicious treat or beverage, lychee has some incredible beauty benefits as well and has been popping up in a variety of skincare products from cleansers to moisturizers.
Here’s why you should begin incorporating lychee into your beauty routine.
Beauty Benefits of Lychee
- Lychee is high in vitamin C, a well-known active ingredient in many a skincare product. Vitamin C helps promote cell turnover, meaning that dead and damaged skin cells are replaced by new ones more quickly, making your skin look clearer.
- Lychee also has polyphenols, which can significantly reduce hyperpigmentation. They inhibit the excess synthesis of melanin, a pigment naturally present in the skin, which can lead to uneven skin darkening.
- Lychee has antibacterial properties so, like honey, it can be used to reduce inflammation of acne and help cleanse the skin of the infections that caused the acne in the first place.
- Lychee is also rich in vitamin E and niacin, both of which boost the skin’s moisture balance and give the skin a fresh glow.
- Lychee can also be used to help down and even repair signs of skin aging. Lychee seed extract inhibits enzymes like elastase and hyaluronidase, which excess activity of these enzymes adversely affects the skin leading to fine lines and loss of firmness of the skin.
DIY Spa Treatments
If you want to hold off on buying a bunch of brand new products, there are some DIY treatments you can do in the comfort of your own home to the beauty benefits of this cute little fruit. Here are some at-home treatments you can try out:
Lychee Face Mask
-¼ ripe banana
-4-5 lychee, de-seeded and peeled
Step One: Squash the banana and lychees and blend well until it forms a smooth paste-like texture.
Step Two: Place the “paste” all over your neck and face.
Step Three: Keep the mask on for 15 minutes and then wash off with cold water.
Lychee Face Mask #2
-1 Tablespoon of organic honey
Step One: Extract the juice of 2-3 lychees until you have 2 tablespoons of freshly-squeezed lychee juice.
Step Two: In a bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons of lychee juice and 1 tablespoon of organic honey together and blend well. Apply the mixture all over your face and neck, leaving aside the area directly under and around your eyes. Leave it on for around 10 minutes before you wash it off with cold water.