From Mushrooms to Mycology: The Fungal Frontier of Beauty

From Mushrooms to Mycology: The Fungal Frontier of Beauty

Ah, when I reflect on the most common natural beauty ingredients while perusing those skincare bottles and concoctions, I can't help but think of those charming plant oil extracts sourced from delicate flowers or soothing herbs. Rose water and aloe, they're the dependable classics. Not only for their calming and moisturizing prowess but also for the sense of "beauty" and grandeur they bring. But, my friends, just like the peculiarly colored smoothie I concocted for my breakfast this very morn (a medley of berries, an unruly gang of nuts, seeds, assorted powdered "nutrients," all topped with a gargantuan heap of kale), it's clear that the most aesthetically pleasing plants aren't always the ones with the mightiest benefits.

Now, let's set our sights on the matter at hand. If you've been keeping your ear to the ground, you may have noticed that society has decided to take a deep dive into the virtues and merits of mushrooms. Not merely as a potent mind-altering substance or a preferred pizza topping, mind you, but as a nourishing elixir for your very own visage.

But let's not fool ourselves; mushrooms aren't the new kids on the beauty block. As I delved into the wonders of Snow Mushrooms (or Tremella Mushrooms, also affectionately known as The Beauty Mushroom) while researching for our forthcoming Mushroom + Moss gel cream moisturizer here at KLEAR Magic, I couldn't help but chuckle at the long and peculiar history of these enigmatic forest fungi.

You see, these rare and highly coveted mushrooms have a story that traces back to the imperial Tang dynasty. Yang Guifei, one of China's celebrated "four great beauties," is said to have sworn by these fungi as an essential element of her beauty regimen. Imagine that! Even today, Snow Mushrooms are not only a revered beauty ingredient but have also been a culinary staple in Chinese cuisine for centuries. These fungi are brimming with dietary fibers, protein, minerals, antioxidants, and they boast high levels of vitamin D. They continue to grace a plethora of dishes, from anti-aging soups to delectable desserts.

As the world gradually uncovered their internal health benefits, experts and researchers couldn't resist exploring their topical potential: from profound hydration to accelerated wound healing, robust antioxidant fortification, redness reduction, soothing caresses, nourishing care, and skin illumination – Snow Mushrooms have it all.

These days, we hail Snow Mushrooms as nature's rendition of hyaluronic acid, that famed chemical compound renowned for its unparalleled moisture retention abilities. And the secret to this hydrating prowess lies in their rich blend of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and polysaccharides. Among them, the remarkable tremella fuciformis polysaccharide (TFPS) can snatch moisture right out of the air! When paired with glycerin, it becomes a hydrating powerhouse that leaves your skin quenched and content.

Now, with over 14,000 mushroom species out there, each boasting its unique composition, it's clear that mushrooms are far from being a novelty. Clean beauty enthusiasts couldn't be happier that the industry is shining a spotlight on these naturally derived, non-chemical ingredients. Not only are they fresh options, but they're also proving to be just as effective as their more conventional counterparts. As time marches on, and the beauty industry continues its quest for purity and renewal, we can expect to stumble upon more of these Earth-crafted treasures.

References:

(1) Shahrajabian, M. Hesam & Sun, Wenli & Shen, Hong & Cheng, Qi. (2020). Chemical compounds and health benefits of Tremella, a valued mushroom as both cuisine and medicine in ancient China and modern era. Amazonian Journal of Plant Research. 4. 692-697. 10.26545/ajpr.2020.b00077x.

(2) Yang D, Liu Y, Zhang L. Tremella polysaccharide: The molecular mechanisms of its drug action. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2019;163:383-421. doi: 10.1016/bs.pmbts.2019.03.002. Epub 2019 Apr 1. PMID: 31030755.

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