Skin benefits of green tea
Animal studies showed protection from skin cancer. Both animal and
human studies have credibly demonstrated that topical green tea
formulations reduce sun damage. Green tea appears to exert sun damage
protection by quenching free radicals and reducing inflammation rather
than by blocking UV rays. Therefore, green tea may synergistically
enhance sun protection when used in addition to a sunscreen.
A small study showed benefits of 2% polyphenone (via a
particular type of green tea extract) in papulopustular rosacea. In
particular, a significant reduction in inflammatory lesion was reported
compared to placebo.
What about wrinkles, skin sag and other signs of aging? Can
green tea help? Considering their well-documented antioxidant and
anti-inflammatory activities, topical green tea polyphenols are likely
to slow down the development of some signs of aging. Whether green tea
can actually diminish wrinkles and skin sag is far more uncertain.
In a 2005 study, forty women with moderate photoaging were
randomized to either a combination regimen of 10% green tea cream and
300 mg twice-daily green tea oral supplementation or a placebo regimen
for 8 weeks. No significant differences in clinical grading were found
between the green tea-treated and placebo groups.
On the other hand, histologic grading of skin biopsies did show
significant improvement in the elastic tissue content of treated
specimens. More human studies are needed to not only determine the
scope of anti-aging skin benefits of green tea but also to work out the