Today, we’re exploring caviar skincare. Plus, two surprising skin-boosting traits we have in common with caviar…
For centuries—dating back to when Russia was run by czars—caviar has been a symbol of luxury. This exotic delicacy is a favorite of the well-to-do— from the banquets of aristocrats of yesteryear to the plates of the rich and famous today. It’s no wonder it’s the food of the rich and royal. Eating them on an abalone-shell spoon paired with a flute of fine champagne is pure indulgence. An ounce of premium caviar can cost up to $300!
But do these fancy fish eggs belong on your face?
Lots of celebrities swear by caviar extract as their anti-aging silver bullet. For example, Angelina Jolie used a caviar cream on her skin during all her pregnancies.
However, are the skin benefits so amazing to justify the hefty price tag? (FYI, a spa in New York City charges $1250 for a caviar facial!) The Beverly Hills M.D. team explores the history and benefits of these extravagant eggs so you can decide if splurging on a caviar facial or caviar extract product is right for you:
The History of Caviar
The Persians, who first discovered caviar, originally called it “Chav-Jar”, which means “Cake of Power”.1 In 2400 B.C., the Egyptians and Phoenicians salted and pickled the fish eggs to extend their shelf life during wars, food crises and sailing voyages. In early 14th century, England’s King Edward II declared the sturgeon as a royal fish and proclaimed every sturgeon an imperial treasure.1 When the royals of Russia fled the country in the early 19th century, they brought the trend to Europe—especially Paris—which eventually made its way to the States.
Where Does Caviar Come From?
Caviar is made by harvesting and preserving the freshly caught fish egg masses of the Acipenseridae family—more commonly known as sturgeon.2 They are most commonly derived from Ossetra, Sevruga and Beluga sturgeon species—beluga is the most expensive type.
The process starts with the extraction of the sturgeon’s eggs. They are then separated from the lumps of tissue and fat by passing them through a fine-mesh. From here, salt is added to preserve the eggs and bring out the flavor. Finally, salt-cured sturgeon roe is packaged in glass or tin containers.
Today, caviar is one of the world’s most expensive foods. Why? It can take up to two decades for sturgeon to reach its maximum adult size!
Is Caviar Healthy to Eat?
Romans believed it provides energy to the body and increased sexual stamina.17 And still today, it’s touted, as is chocolate or oysters, as an aphrodisiac.
However, there are much more important benefits of eating caviar. It’s been linked to bolstering brain health. Caviar is loaded with choline. Choline produces acetylcholine—an organic chemical that helps the brain stay sharp. In fact, a choline-rich diet has been shown to help with acetylcholine-deficient conditions like memory lapses, senility, Alzheimer’s disease, and multiple sclerosis.4
This royal roe also has high doses of omega-3 fatty acids. A recent study showed that regular consumption of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids may alleviate symptoms of bipolar disorder and depression.5 Another study also demonstrated that moderate intake of fatty fish—like herring, salmon, cod, caviar—and marine omega-3 fatty acids were linked with lesser rates of heart failure among US elderly.6
What’s in Caviar?
Apart from its positive effects on the brain and heart, caviar has also emerged as trendy ingredient in skin care products since the mid-2000s. In fact, lots of cosmetic companies are incorporating the extract of this classy delicacy to various beauty-enhancing products because of its rich protein and antioxidant content.
Many elements of the sea, including seaweed and algae, are proven to provide beautifying and nourishing effects to the skin.7 Caviar, which is basically a marine living thing, also has an ample amount of sea minerals and nutrients that can make it a potent cosmetic ingredient.
A recent release from the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference has shown the breakdown of caviar’s nutritional components. This report showed that caviar is nutrient-packed with water, proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins, amino, and fatty acids, the ingredients behind the skin-nourishing and anti-aging claims of caviar extract.8
What Humans Have in Common with Caviar
There are two things the human body and caviar have in common: water and protein. The skin and caviar are mostly made up of water and protein. Because of this similarity in the cellular structure, all the nutrients from the caviar extract can be easily absorbed by our skin.
Water and protein play an essential role in attaining a youthful and hydrated skin. It can also slow down the maturing of skin by replenishing skin tissues and improving skin elasticity.10
Protein is also a big factor in keeping skin free from wrinkles, fine lines, and sagging. Every single cell in the body needs protein to repair and construct new cell tissues.12 Amino acids are the building blocks of protein and these amino acids also help in improving the skin’s texture and tone.
Because of these fancy eggs’ high content of amino acids, fatty acids, and lipids, they are loaded with Omega-3. A study released in 2011 proved that intake along with topical application of Omega-3 has significantly contributed to improving patients with Psoriasis.11 Another research project suggested Omega-3 can also protect the skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays by acting as absorbers and antioxidants.12
Caviar’s vitamin-packed components include:
- Vitamin B6
- Folate DFE
- Vitamin A RAE
- Vitamin A IU
- Vitamin B-12
- Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)
- Vitamin D (D2 + D3)
- Vitamin D IU
- Vitamin K (phylloquinone)
Did you know that a single tablespoon of caviar equals to an adult’s Vitamin B-12 average daily requirement?13
Vitamin B12 is one of the keys to glowing skin, healthy hair, and stronger nails because of its fundamental role in cell reproduction.14 With all of these nutritional benefits, you can see why it’s an in demand ingredient in luxury skin care products.
How Does This Royal Roe Help Skin?
Many high-quality cosmetic products and spa treatments use caviar extracts because of its anti-aging effects. Products you may see caviar extract appear in include hydrating shampoos, moisturizing conditioners, replenishing hair masks, high-end facial creams, face and skin moisturizers, serums, nail polishes, and much more.
But, is this anti-aging hype for real?
Well, a study test it out by applying caviar extract to older people’s skin. The study showed that caviar extract could boost the skin’s collagen production by 67%.15,18 Collagen, also known as the “skin’s cement”, is responsible for firm, young-looking skin. This implies that caviar extract is skin’s miracle worker in rejuvenating and revitalizing skin.
Caviar’s Beauty Boosts
Caviar’s large content of water, omega-3 fatty acids and highly saturated lipids provides a great source of hydration—not just for the skin but also for hair and nails.
As shown above, caviar extract is packed with vitamins and minerals that are responsible for preventing dullness and drying of skin. These vitamins and minerals—with the aid of the amino acids—can also even out skin tone and improve skin texture.
The antioxidant components in caviar extract help in protecting the skin by lessening the harmful effects of UV radiation and free radicals to the skin cells. This can also reduce signs of aging.
The water, carbohydrates, proteins, omega-3, unsaturated fats, amino acids, vitamins, mineral, and other trace elements can aid in slowing down the aging process by keeping the skin moisturized, nourished, and vitamin-enriched.
These reasons why we’ve included in our Crepe Correcting Body Complex and Lift + Firm Sculpting Cream. But not to worry, there’s no fishy smell in the products as there is when you eat caviar. This powerful anti-aging ingredient, in part, is why we’re hearing lots of wonderful reviews from people seeing improvement in reducing crepey skin.
Caviar Beauty Treatments: Worth The Moola?
If you’re comfortable with possibly spending a little more (or sometimes a lot more) on your wrinkle-fighting regime, caviar’s nutritional content does seem to aid in anti-aging. Also, if you want an extra boost in moisturizing your hair or nails, caviar beauty products may help as well.
P.S. If you have fish allergies, check with your doctor before adding caviar to your diet or using skin care products with caviar.
2caviar. Encyclopedia Britannica. 2016. Accessed September 6, 2016.
3Sturgeons (Acipenseriformes). Faoorg. 2016. Accessed September 6, 2016.
4 Hedelin M, Löf M, Olsson M et al. Dietary intake of fish, omega-3, omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids and vitamin D and the prevalence of psychotic-like symptoms in a cohort of 33 000 women from the general population. BMC Psychiatry. 2010;10(1). doi:10.1186/1471-244x-10-38.
5 Levitan E, Wolk A, Mittleman M. Fish consumption, marine omega-3 fatty acids, and incidence of heart failure: a population-based prospective study of middle-aged and elderly men. European Heart Journal. 2009;30(12):1495-1500. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehp111.
6USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. 2016.
7 R. Braverman, MD E. N EUROLOGICAL F UNCTION AND THE A GING P ROCESS. 2003. Accessed September 6, 2016.
8 Gong Y, Huang Y, Gao L et al. Nutritional Composition of Caviar from Three Commercially Farmed Sturgeon Species in China. Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2013;1(5):108-112. Accessed September 6, 2016.
922 Amazing Benefits and Uses Of Water For Skin, Hair and Health. STYLECRAZE. 2016. Accessed September 6, 2016.
10 Márquez-Balbás G, Sánchez-Regaña M, Millet U. Study on the use of omega-3 fatty acids as a therapeutic supplement in treatment of psoriasis. CCID. 2011:73. doi:10.2147/ccid.s17220.
11 Sies HStahl W. NUTRITIONAL PROTECTION AGAINST SKIN DAMAGE FROM SUNLIGHT. Annu Rev Nutr. 2004;24(1):173-200. doi:10.1146/annurev.nutr.24.012003.132320.
12 Office of Dietary Supplements – Vitamin B12. Odsodnihgov. 2016. Accessed September 6, 2016.
13 32 Foods High in Vitamin B12 to Keep You Energized. Agribusiness Pakistan. 2016. Accessed September 6, 2016.
14Marotta F, Polimeni A, Solimene U et al. Beneficial Modulation from a High-Purity Caviar-Derived Homogenate on Chronological Skin Aging. Rejuvenation Research. 2012;15(2):174-177. doi:10.1089/rej.2011.1274.
15 Don’t let dull, tired and sun damaged define your skin…visit Simply Moore today! Cherry Creek Now. 2014. Accessed September 6, 2016.
17 Alchemical Properties of Foods: Hundreds of Foodstuffs Classified According toTheir Elemental Nature. Alchemylabcom. 2016. Accessed September 6, 2016.
18 Francesco Marotta, Ascanio Polimeni, Umberto Solimene, Aldo Lorenzetti, Emilio Minelli, Shalini Jain, Reza Rastmanesh, Sonia Sedriep, and Vincenzo Soresi. Rejuvenation Research. April 2012, 15(2): 174-177. doi:10.1089/rej.2011.1274.