Get to know tremella, the mushroom that can save your face from dryness

18 Apr 2022

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Tremella Photo: Prostock

Skin care is so trendy right now that literally even Harry Styles has his own serum, and it seems like a new must-have ingredient makes its way into the zeitgeist every ten minutes.

This can make it difficult to discern between reality and marketing — what works to improve the health of your skin and what’s just the latest (often celebrity-shilled) snake oil. Tremella, aka snow mushroom, however, is no passing fad or money-grab gimmick; it’s been a staple in parts of Asia for thousands of years, and when we asked the experts, they confirmed the buzzy ingredient actually works.

The main reason to hail tremella as a holy grail in skin care is that it is moisturizing, leading many to refer to it as nature’s hyaluronic acid — the superstar of skin hydration . “The snow mushroom has a unique gelatinous structure and is often used as a hydrating ingredient to help moisturize and plump the skin,” says board-certified dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD.

In fact, Delise Martire, director of product development for skin care brand Veracity, says that snow mushrooms can hold up to 500 times their weight in water, which helps boost the skin’s capacity to hold water, too.

See also: The best vegan Glow Recipe products

tremella Photo: Envato

Tremella mushrooms are also packed with fatty acids, and Dr. Zeichner explains that this enables them to help fill cracks between cells in the outer skin layer, thereby adding to their ability to improve and enhance the health and appearance of skin. “Fatty acids offer emollient benefits and help repair the skin barrier,” he says.

And while moisture is this mushroom’s main value-add, it’s not the only trick tremella has up its sleeve. Snow mushrooms also contain kojic acid, which Dr. Zeichner describes as a botanical extract that blocks production of abnormal pigmentation. “It is used to even skin tone and lighten dark spots,” he says.

Martire further notes that tremella contains a specific antioxidant that helps fight off free radicals and other environmental aggressors that damage the skin. “It's a really amazing ingredient to not only boost this antioxidant protection, but also enable hydration on deeper layers of the skin as well as on the skin’s surface,” she says.

Ultimately, says Martire, she likes tremella because it’s a natural, renewable ingredient which boosts skin health overall.

This article was first published on Shroomboom

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