You might be surprised to discover that these tiny seeds can pack quite the punch when it comes to caring for your skin.
Flax seeds are very nutrient-dense, and are known to support health and wellness through a variety of uses or applications. A few of their more notable benefits include supporting heart health and digestion.1
As for skin, flax seed just might hold the key to healthier-looking, glowing skin — at any age. Read on to learn more about how the tiny-but-mighty flax seed could be a skin care game changer.
What Is Flax Seed?
Flax seed (or flaxseed) is touted today as a superfood of sorts, but the flax plant it originates from was once a popular raw material for textiles — dating as far back as the Egyptian times. The flax plant was used to weave a strong linen fabric, and the practice of using the flax plant for textiles continues in modern times.
But today, the flax plant is cultivated mainly for flaxseed — its small, edible, nutty-flavored fruit. It also goes by the name linseed (if you’re an artist, you may be familiar with linseed oil).
Flaxseed is often used in cooking, and both ground flaxseed and whole flax seed are popular additions to lists of healthier baking ingredients. Flaxseed is also pressed into flaxseed oil, which has a number of potential health and beauty applications.2
You can also find flax in flaxseed gel form in various health supplements.
Flaxseed Versus Chia Seeds: What’s The Difference?
It’s easy to mistake one for the other, since both flaxseeds and chia seeds boast similar nutrition profiles. Chia seed edges out flax when it comes to calcium content and amount of soluble fiber, but flaxseed can’t be beat when it comes to beneficial essential fatty acids — the thing that makes flax the nutritional (and skin-boosting) powerhouse that it is.3
There’s definitely room for both in a healthy diet that can help support a solid skin care routine.
Smooth, Well-Hydrated Skin
A study among women with sensitive skin showed that the topical application of flaxseed oil helped give their skin a smoother and more moisturized look. The results also noted a decrease in skin sensitivity, as marked by the resolution of roughness and scaliness from the flaxseed oil.4
Breakouts And Skin Irritation
Applying flaxseed oil gives your skin a healthy dose of lignans, an enzyme known to help balance skin. In addition, the omega-3 fatty acid compounds present in flaxseed oil might help calm skin prone to breakouts and irritation.5
The Sun’s Harmful Rays
Antioxidants found in flaxseed oil might help shield skin from the harmful effects of UV rays. Plus, flaxseed oil contains fatty acid compounds that support cell renewal. This might help support healthier skin and ease redness and irritation from excessive sun exposure.6
The omega-3 fatty acid compounds (whether in flaxseed oil or ground flaxseed) may have a positive impact on your skin cells. These fatty acid properties help support the skin cell’s ability to retain moisture, produce collagen, and strengthen itself from damage.7
This is excellent news for aging skin. Omega-3s may help skin appear visibly smoother, lessening the appearance of fine lines. Skin might look more youthful and vibrant.8
How To Make A Flaxseed Face Mask
With all of these positive benefits, you’re probably thinking of the fastest and simplest way to reap the benefits of this omega 3 fatty acid- and lignan-rich ingredient. Apart from massaging high-quality flax seed oil into your face as part of your skin care regimen, and adding flax to your daily diet, you can also try making a mask out of ground flax seed.
What You Need
- 2 Tbsps ground flaxseed
- 4 Tbsps clean or purified water
- 1 tsp bentonite clay
- ½ tsp honey
- Mix ground flaxseed and water in a small bowl. Set aside for about 15 minutes. The mixture will thicken as the flax absorbs the liquid.
- Mix in the bentonite clay and honey. Stir in well.
- Apply the flaxseed mask to your face, making sure to avoid the eye area. Let sit for 15-20 minutes.
- Work some water into the mask to soften and loosen, and massage your face for a couple of minutes. Rinse the mask off using warm water and pat your face dry with a clean towel.9
Adding More Flax To Your Diet
In addition to the topical application of flaxseed masks, you can also add a flaxseed gel supplement to your daily dose of multivitamins (under the guidance of your doctor, of course).
You can also consider adding flax seeds and flaxseed oil into your daily diet in a number of tasty ways:
- Sprinkle toasted flax seeds into your soups, salads, and sandwiches.
- Add a couple of teaspoons of ground flax into your breakfast smoothie, oatmeal, or yogurt bowls.
- Use flaxseed oil in homemade salad dressings.
- Use flaxseed and water as a vegan egg replacer when baking.
- Add flax seeds or flaxseed oil to meat dishes like burgers, casseroles, and meatballs.10
Get More Flax Facts From Your Doctor
Always get the okay from your doctor before introducing any new foods to your diet, no matter how healthy they’re purported to be. Make sure any health-food supplements are vetted by your doctor, too. As for using flax on your skin, make sure to watch for any adverse skin reactions and report to your dermatologist straightaway.
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