Did you know that Centella Asiatica has a long history as a medicinal herb? It's now being used as a skincare ingredient because of it's compounds that contain potential to treat acne along with many other skin benefits! You may also have probably heard of this herb known as Centella Asiatica, Cica, or Gotu Kola as some may have commonly called it. Here are the origins of Centella Asiantica and the skin benefits it contains.
What is Centella Asiatica?
Centella Asiatica is known to be a tropical medicinal plant coming from the Apiaceae family or Mackinlayaceae, which is native to Southeast Asian countries such as India, Sri Lanka, China, Indonesia and Malaysia as well as South Africa and Madagascar.
Centella Asiatica may also go by other names, so if you see this in your ingredients list it's the same plant. Centella Asiatica is also known as Asiatic pennywort, Indian pennywort, Indian water navelwort, wild violet and tiger herb. ( Yes, I know it's confusing when theres 8 different names for the same thing) Centella Asiatica has been considered to be a top ingredient for skincare, healing wounds and also revitalizing the nerves and brain cells, which makes it primarily known as a "brain food"/"brain tonic" in India. This plant has also been used in Traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine.
Skin Benefits Of Centella Asiatica
Centella Asiatica or Gotu Kola, has several skin benefits that may benefit acne prone skin. Its skin benefits include:
- Soothes Skin
- Speeding skin healing
- Anti-Aging and prevents UV damage
- Promoting Collagen Production
- High in antioxidants
Centella Asiatica is also effective in improving healing of small wounds, hypertrophic wounds, burns, psoriasis and scleroderma.
While this ingredient doesn't fight the acne bacteria itself - many types of acne are triggered and worsened by inflammation and the side effects of acne can lead to acne scarring and dark marks from post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. With centella asiatica's abilities to reduce inflammation, strengthen skin, and prevent UV damage, it can potentially be beneficial for inflammatory acne, as well as reduce and protect skin from the marks and scarring in the aftermath of acne.
Main Components of Centella Asiatica
Centella Asiatica has 4 main active ingredients in it that are the most beneficial for skin and acne and they are the following:
1. Asiatic acid - This compound is an antioxidant as well as an anti-inflammatory agent which is great for combatting inflammatory acne.
2. Madecassic acid - found to have preventive effect on burns and postoperative hypertrophic scars. This is also found to reduce sun spots. It does this by preventing the inflammation caused from UV exposure.
3. Asiaticoside - increase in wound healing abilities, increases collagen synthesis and strength of skin, as well as anti-inflammatory properties.
4. Madecassoside - speeds wound healing through its antioxidative activity and enhances collagen synthesis.
These 4 active ingredients have been studied for their antimicrobial, antioxidant, reduction of redness, aging and acne healing capabilities. If your skin is dealing with a lot of irritation, itching, and redness, you may want to give skincare that contains centella asiatica a try!