Polyphenols for Skin Found In Skin Care Products

The word polyphenol on a lavender background

Polyphenols are very good for skin and are found in many anti-inflammatory, skin lightening  and antiaging skincare products. 


Polyphenols in Skincare Products

You will not find polyphenols on skincare product labels because they are a component found in skincare ingredients.  See the table below for a list of classes and categories of polyphenols that have skin benefits.



To find skincare products that contain polyphenols, look for the ingredients in the Polyphenol Table above on the skin care product labels.


Are Polyphenols Antioxidants?

Yes, polyphenols neutralize free radicals and are considered antioxidants.


Polyphenol Benefits for Skin

              What are polyphenols good for? They are used to calm free radicals in the skin.  This means they have antiaging and anti-inflammatory benefits. 

Antiaging benefits of Polyphenols

The polyphenols used most often in antiaging skin care are plant derives such as green tea, genistein, pycnogenol and phloretin.

Anti-inflammatory benefits of polyphenols

 Polyphenols are soothing and used in creams for rosacea, eczema, psoriasis and other creams to soothe dermatitis an treat skin inflammation. Polyphenols found in skincare that soothe inflamed skin include the cosmetic ingredients oatmeal, caffeic acid, chamomile, and witch hazel.

Skin Lightening benefits of polyphenols

The skin lightening polyphenols found in skincare include pycnogenol, and ferulic acid. They work by calming the inflammation that leads to an increase of the skin pigment melanin.


What are polyphenols?


Polyphenols[1] are a family of thousands of chemical substances found in plants.  They are strong antioxidants.

Examples of polyphenols include the four polyphenolic catechins in green tea:

ECG [(-)EpiCatechin-3-O-Gallate]

 GCG [(-)GalloCatechin-3-O-Gallate]

 EGCG [(-)EpiG-alloCatechin-3-O-Gallate]- This is the strongest of these green tea derived polyphenols.

 EGC [(-)EpiGalloCatechin]


Skin Creams with Polyphenols

When evaluating skincare creams and serums with polyphenols, you need to know which polyphenols are in the product and what percent of polyphenols are in the product. Unfortunately, this information is not on the product label.

We invite you to enjoy the rest of our comprehensive skin care library!

[1]  Adapted from Baumann L. Ch 39 Antioxidants in Baumann’s Cosmetic Dermatology (McGraw Hill 2022)

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