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Couldn't live without your daily cup of java?
Rumor has it that your daily caffeine habit could be doing a number on your skin. But just how bad is drinking coffee for your skin?
To find out the truth about your favorite caffeinated beverage, read on for all the intel. More interested in putting it on your skin? Scroll down for our recommended caffeine-laced skincare products.
The downsides to drinking too many cups of coffee?
For starters, it can contribute to premature aging.
"Caffeine slows down the rate at which your body makes collagen," explains skin specialist Dr. Paul Nassif. "This is the protein that gives your skin its tightness and elasticity, so once it drops, your skin starts to sag and wrinkles appear." Essentially, it inhibits collagen synthesis by inhibiting an enzyme known as prolidase.
Since coffee, or caffeine in general, can be extremely dehydrating, this can make fine lines and wrinkles more visible. It can also trigger dry skin, dullness, and sagging.
Another negative effect of high coffee consumption is that it may cause acne.
Overconsumption of coffee is associated with stress, which causes cortisol levels to spike and toxins to get stuck in the body. As a result, you end up producing more oil in the skin which can lead to breakouts.
You're especially prone to breakouts as a coffee drinker if you favor lattes and cappuccinos. Drinks loaded with milk and sugar can definitely contribute to an increase in stress hormones which is held accountable for everything from breakouts to dryness to premature aging.
Pass on the sweet, milky coffee drinks, and opt for unsweetened black coffee instead.
According to dermatologists, drinking poor quality coffee beans can interrupt your gut flora.
"Poor quality coffee, especially if drank with dairy products sourced from cows injected with antibiotics, can disrupt gut flora," says Gary Goldenberg, a cosmetic dermatologist at Goldenberg Dermatology in NYC. "Organic coffee has not been associated with gut flora disruption."
When your gut is inflamed, it will show up on your skin as inflammation -- think redness, dryness, itching, and general irritation. If you're going to drink coffee every day, invest in organic beans or coffee grounds.
On the plus side, there are some positive effects of coffee consumption.
Coffee contains essential nutrients, minerals, vitamins, and is rich in antioxidants. Research shows that caffeine boasts antioxidant properties and anti-inflammatory effects, which suggests it can fight free radical damage.
However, to enjoy the antioxidant benefits of coffee, you'll need to drink it plain -- that means no sweeteners, sugar, or milk.
It turns out, there may be some health benefits to downing that morning cup of Joe.
Research shows moderate caffeine consumption can improve energy levels, stimulate weight loss, lower your risk of type 2 diabetes, protect you from Dementia, and lower your risk of Parkinson's. Add a tablespoon of coconut oil to your cup of coffee for added health benefits.
If you like the taste of coffee, but you don't like the way it makes you feel, consider switching to decaf. That's basically coffee with a very small amount of caffeine.
The good news is, you don't need to break your coffee habit just yet. To enjoy the benefits of coffee and swerve the negatives, it's all about balance. Drink it in moderation and try keeping your coffee plain to avoid the negative side effects of milk and sugar.
The general rule is between 2-4 cups daily, but some health experts recommend 1-2 cups per day.
If you're drinking more than four cups of coffee a day, you know you're overdoing it. And if those coffees are loaded with milk and sugar, you're going to experience the negative effects even more.
If you like the sound of caffeine's health and skincare benefits, but you're not a big coffee drinker or you're looking to make the switch, try healthy alternatives such as green tea, matcha, and certain energy drinks.
Green tea contains less caffeine than coffee but enough to produce the positive effects. It also contains the amino acid L-theanine, which can help enhance brain function.
If you're keen on quitting coffee or caffeine as a whole, you can still reap the benefits with topical use.
According to the pros, skincare products containing caffeine boast anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can help reduce puffiness, decrease the appearance of cellulite, and brighten the complexion.
You'll commonly find caffeine in eye creams, face masks, and anti-cellulite treatments.
Take a scroll through Truly's caffeine-formulated skin products.
This exfoliating face mask is your go-to for glowing skin. While glycolic acid dissolves dead skin cells, hemp reduces inflammation, and caffeine tightens and brightens skin. It's also made with vitamin A to spur cell turnover, encourage collagen production, and enhance elastin.
This carefully crafted formula delivers powerful antioxidants while replenishing the skin with essential hydration.
Formulated with the same ingredients as its corresponding mask, Mary Jane Glow Serum is a daily skincare staple for keeping skin smooth, firm, and dewy.
In addition to caffeine's tightening and brightening effects, CBD offers its anti-inflammatory effects while glycolic acid lends its exfoliating abilities. This makes the formula effective for treating fine lines, acne, dullness, and uneven texture. If you're using this in the daytime, remember to follow up with a broad-spectrum sunscreen for UV protection.
So, coffee really can change your skin -- both for the good and bad.
Provided that you drink it in moderation, and avoid adding milk, sugar, and sweeteners, you can reap both the skin and health benefits of caffeine.
In small doses, caffeine can work wonders for your skin. The key is to keep things balanced and avoid overdoing it.