Centella Asiatica has become a rather common ingredient in Korean skincare, especially for products that are targeted at acne, eczema and sensitive skins. Products containing Centella Asiatica claim to soothe, reduce inflammation and heal skin conditions. In this post, I’ll share my knowledge and experience with Centella Asiatica.
What is Centella Asiatica?
Centella Asiatica is a small plant that grows on the ground. It has the shape of an umbrella (belongs to the Umbellifere family) and is found in most tropical and subtropical parts of Asia and Africa. Its medicinal use can be traced back to over 1000 years ago where Chinese used it has a herb both orally and topically to treat various inflammatory-related diseases. Its ability to reduce heat and swelling and detoxify was recorded in numerous Chinese medicinal books. It was widely used to treat skin ulcers, eczema, fever and diarrhoea.
What is the science behind the healing power of Centella Asiatica?
Studies have shown that Centella Asiatica has the ability to increase cellular growth and collagen synthesis of the skin around the wound. It also had the effect of improving the elasticity of newly formed skin, thicken the skin in areas of infection, further accelerating the wound healing process. Its anti-inflammatory properties meant that raised scaring is less likely.
There are other studies that have confirmed Centella Asiatica’s antiseptic and antioxidant properties.
My experience with Centella Asiatica
Due to the hype around this ingredient, I had very high hopes for acne treatments that contained Centella Asiatica. The brands claim that their acne treatment will get rid acne because they used Centella Asiatica. So I was rather disappointed to find out that these products didn’t magically make my acne disappear.
My experience with Centella Asiatica products are:
- They soothe acne so that pimples are not as inflamed and raised. They reduce the bump size and redness of acne.
- They are very effective at healing open wounds, causing popped acne to heal overnight. They reduce the infectious liquid that’s produced as a result of the wound and there’s not much scabbing if you used Centella Asiatica, which meant deep scarring is less likely. I still get some discolouration after the pimples are healed, but these will fade over time especially with the help of whitening products. I don’t get any uneven surface which is much harder to get rid of.
- They help very little in terms of pimples underneath the skin that are yet come to head. They will reduce the inflammation, but you still have to wait for the pimple to develop enough to come to the surface.
- They strengthen the skin’s barrier and help to reduce the occurrence of acne and the severity of inflammation.
- They do very little at hydrate or retain moisture.
Overall, I think Centella Asiatica is great to incorporate into the skincare routine, especially if you have very sensitive skin that gets inflamed a lot, or those who have pimples that are in the “open wound” state or close to be popped.
However, incorporating Centella Asiatica alone is probably not going to see dramatic results with reducing acne, pair it with mild BHA or PHA products have worked wonders at getting rid of my hormonal acne.
How to incorporate Centella Asiatica?
Centella Asiatica is so popular right now that you can find it all forms of skincare.
This powder is so versatile. It can be used alone or added to your existing toner, serum or cream so that you can enjoy the benefits of your functional products (eg hydrating, whitening or anti-aging) while incorporating some Centella Asiatica.