Can Banana Peels Actually Reduce Wrinkles? Here's What A Derm Thinks
While there should be a "Do not try this at home" label on some skin care TikTok trends, you don't always have that luxury. So you need to approach any skin care tips, products, and DIY hacks you see online with a critical eye.
Can banana peels actually reduce wrinkles?
First and foremost: "There aren't scientific studies examining the effects of using banana peels on the skin, so I can't say there is any science-backed data to prove benefits," says board-certified dermatologist Hadley King, M.D.
However, she notes that many scientific studies are often funded by skin care companies who may financially benefit from positive results, and banana peels aren't a patentable ingredient or device that these companies could profit from, so it shouldn't be surprising that the data isn't there. (That's also why you should take more than one study into account before weighing an ingredient's benefits and risks.)
That being said, there may actually be some benefits to rubbing this natural peel on your skin, King says, including:
- Gentle exfoliation: "Rubbing a banana peel on your skin can offer gentle exfoliation, and we know gentle exfoliation can be beneficial for the skin," King says. Exfoliation helps with things like uneven skin texture, reducing breakouts, and sloughing off excess dead skin, which can reveal a brighter complexion.
- A shot of nutrients: Bananas also contain vitamins, antioxidants, amino acids, zinc, and potassium, King notes, all of which could theoretically be helpful for skin health, and thus support healthy skin aging. Bananas are also rich in silica1, a mineral that plays an important role in collagen synthesis2.
- May reduce puffiness: Bananas contain potassium, which can help support hydration and counteract fluid retention in the skin.
How to do it
While this process may sound fairly simple, there are a few how-to notes to keep in mind:
- Use it on clean skin: You should cleanse your face before you use the banana peel. You may also want to use organic-only bananas here, as you don't want any potential pesticides near your skin.
- For exfoliation: The action of rubbing the peel on your skin is the exfoliation step in itself, so you can simply rinse off the residue afterward if you wish.
- For a mask: If you want to reap the benefits of the nutrient-rich banana peel, leave the residue on overnight. If you have dry skin, you may want to apply a thin layer of moisturizer under the banana peel residue as it may not sufficiently hydrate the skin.
- Take allergy into account: This DIY hack isn't likely to harm your skin, King says, as long as you don't have a banana allergy. If you are allergic, substitute a gentle exfoliating product rich in antioxidants for similar effects, King says.
While some TikTok skin care trends may be harmful, the banana peel facial isn't one of them. In fact, rubbing a banana peel on your face may help to gently slough off dead skin and provide a shot of nutrients. Now, if you want to level-up your at-home facial beyond banana peels, just follow these steps.
Hannah Frye is the Assistant Beauty & Health Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.S. in journalism and a minor in women’s, gender, and queer studies from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Hannah has written across lifestyle sections including skin care, women’s health, mental health, sustainability, social media trends, and more. She previously interned for Almost 30, a top-rated health and wellness podcast. In her current role, Hannah reports on the latest beauty trends and innovations, women’s health research, brain health news, and plenty more.