The spinach is a vegetable plant that originated in Asia, introduced to Andalusia in the 10th century. As an antioxidant, the spinach powder is known to prevent photo-ageing and brighten dull and tired skin. Discover everything you need to know about it in this article.
What is "Spinacia Oleracea Leaf Extract" and what is its utility?
- Spinach, in a nutshell
- The cosmetic benefits of spinach extract
- In which skincare products can one find spinach extract?
Spinach, in a nutshell.
Originating from Persia, the Spincia oleracea is an edible herbaceous plant known by the common name of spinach and belongs to the family of Chenopodiaceae. Among the numerous minerals that this plant contains is beta-carotene. This trace element is the photosynthetic pigment responsible for the green colour of spinach. In addition to beta-carotene, there is a significant proportion of vitamin C and vitamin E as well as thylakoid, a source of protein and chlorophyll.
Rich in nitrate, spinach is recommended in natural medicine to thin the blood, improving its flow to certain areas of the brain and thus preventing cognitive decline and even dementia. It is also recognised as the vegetable with the highest content of vitamin B9 or folic acid.
In cosmetics, spinach is used in the form of a powdery extract under the I.N.C.I. denomination "Spinacia Oleracea Leaf Extract". This ingredient is well tolerated by all skin types and does not present any contraindications.
The cosmetic benefits of spinach extract.
Spinach powder is obtained through the mechanical grinding of its leaves. It exhibits several beneficial properties for the skin and even the hair.
Firstly, it has ahigh antioxidant activity. Indeed, spinach leaves are rich in antioxidant flavonoids, particularly spinacetin and patuletin. These compounds neutralise free radicals, highly unstable and reactive molecules generated by various factors (sun, pollution, cigarette smoke, stress etc...). Free radicals attack skin cells and accelerate their ageing. The flavonoids present in spinach powder donate an electron to them, making them more stable and less reactive. Thus, spinach powder delays skin ageing and protects the skin from external aggressions. This antioxidant activity is also beneficial for hair; indeed, hair fibres become damaged and dry when they are attacked by free radicals.
Next, spinach extract is recognised for its lightening action. The provitamin A found in the leaves helps to revive dull complexions and fight against the appearance of pigmentation spots.
Finally, spinach extract contains Vitamin K, a molecule known for its anti-inflammatory action: it promotes cellular renewal and therefore the healing of the epidermis. It helps to combat post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation which often appears after an acne outbreak. Furthermore, a study has demonstrated the ability of a spinach leaf extract to limit the phenomenon of degranulation by mast cells, a characteristic of an inflammatory type allergic response.
In which skincare products can one find spinach extract?
The fine spinach powder often referred to as a "super ingredient" due to its green colour, is typically incorporated into antioxidant creams designed for mature skin and radiance serums for dull and tired skin . Some hair masks and balms are also enriched with spinach extract to protect the hair from external aggressions and free radicals that can cause long-term damage to the hair fibres.
SUGAHARA T. & al., Inhibitory effect of aqueous spinach extract on degranulation of RBL-2H3 cells. Food Chemistry (2013).
FLINIAUX M. A. & al. Development and evaluation of an enriched natural antioxidant preparation obtained from aqueous spinach (Spinacia oleracea) extracts by an adsorption procedure. Food Chemistry (2004).