While some may base their purchases on packaging, I always have my eyes on the formula. When picking a product up, the very first thing I do is check its ingredients list. Aside from the popular beauty ingredient cica, also known as centella asiatica, another contender’s starting to pop up in K-Beauty products.
Meet mugwort, the latest ingredient that’s making its way into Korean skin care. Mugwort isn’t anything new – it has long been used as a medicinal plant in Korea – but it’s definitely becoming a trendy and buzzy skin care ingredient. Let’s dive into its origins and learn more about what it can do for your skin:
What’s the story behind mugwort?
Mugwort is a root-based perennial plant that’s also known as artemisia, named after the Greek goddess of the moon Artemis, and grows in Asia, North America and Europe. Its history dates back to the 5th century when ancient cultures used it to treat health issues such as joint pain, digestive problems and menstrual pain.
In Korea, mugwort or ssuk (쑥) is a common ingredient in soups, salads, rice cakes and teas as it is believed to be an effective blood cleanser and tonic to improve digestion. Mugwort is packed with antioxidants and provides antibacterial, anti-fungal and skin-protective benefits. No wonder it’s slowly emerging in Korean skin care products.
What can mugwort do for your skin?
Are you struggling with acne? Do you react to products easily? Do you want to get rid of redness?
If you answered yes to all of the above, then you need mugwort in your life.
Thanks to its antibacterial benefits, mugwort is great for those who want a clearer complexion, and is also beneficial for those with eczema and psoriasis. It contains high amounts of Vitamins C and E, which help to lighten dark spots and scars while nourishing and protecting skin from external aggressors. This powerful ingredient also strengthens the skin’s moisture barrier, making mugwort-infused products ideal for those with dry skin or a damaged skin barrier.
Who can benefit from mugwort?
All skin types can benefit from using mugwort-based products in their skin care routines, but those with dry, sensitive or aging skin will get the most out of the ingredient. Mugwort soothes dry and irritated skin, and is gentle enough for sensitive and acne-prone skin.
Aside from its radiance-boosting, calming and hydrating benefits, mugwort also helps protect skin from UV damage, therefore preventing signs of aging. Even though mugwort is targeted towards mature skin, you can always start early and integrate mugwort into your regimen when you’re still in your early twenties. Prevention is better than cure!
How do you incorporate mugwort into your skin care routine?
You don’t have to overhaul your entire routine and replace every step with everything mugwort-based. But if you want to give it a go, Korean brand HANYUL carries a Pure Artemisia line that includes a cleansing oil, cleansing foam, toner, cream and mask.
There are plenty of other mugwort products that you can add to your routine, like the popular Mugwort Essence from I’m From. Rich in vitamins, minerals and tannins, this essence calms, refines and purifies skin with 100% Korean mugwort extract to treat skin problems and refine skin texture for clearer, smoother skin.
Mugwort products to try: