This Anti-Inflammatory Tea Is Known As Nature's Collagen Booster
An elixir for youthful skin sounds too good to be true, doesn't it? But when you really think about it, plenty of natural herbs, spices, and teas can supply your body with the vitamins and nutrients you need for a healthy glow. Beauty elixirs are all around us if you take a closer look.
Take hibiscus tea, for example: Originating from the Middle East and Central America, the brew has been lauded for thousands of years for its medicinal and skin-enhancing properties. In fact, it might just be the tea to try for aging skin.
Why you should drink hibiscus tea for younger-looking skin.
Hibiscus tea has a gorgeous magenta color and a tangy, fruity taste—but its skin care benefits transcend its flavor profile.
First up: Hibiscus tea is super anti-inflammatory, thanks to its rich level of antioxidants1, including vitamin C and beta-carotene2. It also contains a specific anti-inflammatory plant pigment called anthocyanin1 (which is what gives the plant its pink-red hue). All of these antioxidants help neutralize free radicals in the skin, which are responsible for signs of photoaging, like sun spots and fine lines.
What's more, hibiscus is high in an antioxidant called myricetin. This compound suppresses collagenase, an enzyme that targets and degrades collagen. Your collagen levels naturally decline as you get older, but that myricetin antioxidant can help delay that process and keep your skin supple and taut. And because of the plant's vitamin C content, it can help boost your body's natural collagen production—let's not forget that vitamin C is downright necessary for collagen synthesis (aka, your body cannot properly produce collagen without the antioxidant).
Given these perks, it's no wonder many consider hibiscus tea "nature's collagen booster" for your skin. Not only does it help with your natural collagen production process, but it can actually slow down collagen degradation, too.
How to make hibiscus tea.
To prepare your brew, simply boil dried hibiscus flowers for five to 10 minutes, letting it steep for up to 20 minutes before pouring it into a mug or over ice. You can also purchase premade organic hibiscus tea bags, like this pick from Amazon.
You just don't want to go overboard on the pretty pink drink, as studies show it can also lower your blood pressure3, which you don't want to drop too much. Some anecdotal reports even claim people can experience hallucinations after consuming hibiscus tea—as always, do what's best for your body.
If you don't want to drink hibiscus tea for whatever reason, you can also restore collagen by consuming collagen supplements. Hydrolyzed collagen peptides have been clinically shown to support skin elasticity and dermal density4 and even promote the skin's hydration levels. So on days you want to skip your cup of tea, you can reap similar benefits. Here are nine of the best collagen supplements for you to try, science-backed and tried-and-tested.
If you're looking to enhance your collagen production naturally, drinking hibiscus tea is a great way to start. Collagen powders do offer a more consistent, concentrated dose, but there's no harm in adding hibiscus flower to your daily collagen ritual, assuming the tea doesn't give you any wonky side effects. Overall, if we had to crown one collagen-boosting beverage (you know, besides collagen waters or coffees), this pink, tangy tea might just earn the title.
Jamie Schneider is the Beauty & Wellness Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.A. in Organizational Studies and English from the University of Michigan, and her work has appeared in Coveteur, The Chill Times, and Wyld Skincare. In her role at mbg, she reports on everything from the top beauty industry trends, to the gut-skin connection and the microbiome, to the latest expert makeup hacks. She currently lives in New York City.