Are you aware of the amazing benefits and goodness that hibiscus brings to your skin? Often referred to as 'botox herb', hibiscus is power-packed with minerals, vitamins and antioxidants that makes your skin look youthful and feel supple.
In this article, we tell you how hibiscus benefits your skin and what are the most effective ways to use it on your skin.
Our Ayurvedic Doctor Speaks
“In Ayurveda, hibiscus is called ‘Japa’ and classified as the herb which has the potential to pacify aggravated Pitta and Kapha doshas. Thus, Ayurveda says hibiscus can treat skin ailments, especially those linked to elevated Pitta and Kapha.’’
Dr. Zeel Gandhi (Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine & Surgery), Chief Ayurvedic Doctor, Vedix
Is Hibiscus Good For Skin?
Hibiscus is an ultra-hydrating and nourishing herb that is a rich source of protein, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, zinc, vitamins-A, B6, C, E, and K. Besides, it also contains niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, antioxidants, alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids, malic acid, and many other compounds that benefit your skin. 
“In Ayurveda, hibiscus is called ‘Japa’ and classified as the herb which has the potential to pacify aggravated Pitta and Kapha doshas. Thus, Ayurveda says hibiscus can treat skin ailments, especially those linked to elevated Pitta and Kapha,” says Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix.
Benefits Of Hibiscus For Skin
1. Fights Aging Signs
With high amounts of antioxidants, hibiscus helps your skin cells recover from the damage caused by skin ailments, wounds, pollutants, UV rays, etc. “The anthocyanins present in hibiscus promote the production of elastin and cell turnover in your skin, thus making it appear youthful and supple,” says Dr. Zeel.
Researches claim that hibiscus sabdariffa calyx aqueous extract has potential anti-ageing effects on the skin against UVB-induced photoaging.
2. Improves & Evens Skin Tone
Be it hyperpigmentation, discoloration, dark spots, age spots, or any type of uneven spots, hibiscus is your go-to remedy. Hibiscus contains malic acid, alpha hydroxy acids and citric acids which work to revamp your skin tone while controlling the melanin production. Besides, it also nourishes your skin.
A study by Biomolecules has found that the anthocyanins present in Hibiscus syriacus L. act as potential skin whitening agents by inhibiting the melanogenesis in the skin.
3. Hydrates Skin Well
If you are someone with dry, flaky, and itchy skin, hibiscus can work wonders. It has powerful hydrating properties  which makes your skin texture turn soft and smooth.
4. Cleanses Skin Pores
Hibiscus contains saponins which helps in cleansing your skin naturally and gently. Also, the organic acids present in the herbs aid in the elimination of dead skin cells and keep your skin pores clear.
A study on Safety and Efficacy of Skin Cleanser Contained Roselle Extract in Acne suggests that hibiscus-based cleansers are safe for skin and do not cause any allergic effects and irritation.
5. Tightens Open Skin Pores
Hibiscus has astringent properties  which help to tighten open skin pores, thus, controlling overproduction of sebum in your skin. “The vitamin C present in hibiscus helps in tightening your facial skin by promoting collagen production,” says Dr. Zeel.
6. Prevents Acne
Hibiscus contains acids that act as chemical exfoliators and help to clear the clogged skin pores. It also has antibacterial properties that work to fight acne-causing bacteria on the skin. Thus, it prevents the formation of pimples.
According to a research article by Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, anti-acne formulations containing hibiscus are very effective in controlling bacterial activity in the skin and treating acne.
7. Moisturizes Skin
The mucilage, a sticky content present in hibiscus which helps the plant to store its food and water, acts as an ultimate moisturizer and nourishing agent for your skin. It also helps to lock the moisture in your skin tissue for a longer time.
Studies found that 30 minutes after application, the skin moisturizing effect of 0.2% of mucilage extracted from hibiscus rosa-sinensis linn is significantly more effective than 0.2% hyaluronic acid, 5% propylene glycol and 5% butylene glycol.
8. Controls Inflammation
The anti-inflammatory activity of beta carotene present in hibiscus helps in reducing skin inflammatory disorders while healing itchiness and redness. Also, the anthocyanins in the hibiscus work to control the oxidative stress  in your skin and the inflammation which comes along.
A study on skin-protective and anti-inflammatory effects of Hibiscus syriacus L. states that hibiscus flowers are effective in protecting the skin cells against inflammatory damage.
9. Speeds Up Wound Healing
Hibiscus aids in healing wounds faster by increasing the production of fibronectin protein in your skin. It also boosts hydration and cell regeneration in your skin which play a significant role in the process of wound healing.
As per a research paper published by BioMed Research International, hibiscus extract enhances the healing potential of the skin by accelerating the wound healing process and stimulating the expression of the biomarkers involved in hydration and skin regeneration.
10. Protect Collagen In Skin
“Hibiscus contains myricetin, an antioxidant which helps in reducing the production of collagenase which is an enzyme that works to damage collagen in your skin,” says Dr. Zeel. This, in turn, prevents and controls the skin damage caused by different factors and improves the natural glow of your skin.
A study published by Plants claims that the phenolic compounds extracted from hibiscus are effective in inhibiting collagenase and helps in UV absorption in the skin.
How To Use Hibiscus For Skin Care?
1. How To Use Hibiscus As A Deep Cleansing Mask?
Mix hibiscus flower powder and multani mitti in equal proportions. Add sufficient amount of rose water to the mixture to prepare a smooth paste. Apply the paste to your face and exfoliate it gently for a few minutes. After 10-15 minutes, wipe off the mask and wash your face with normal water. Do this twice a week. This works best for people with normal and oily skin types.
2. How To Use Hibiscus As Body Scrub?
Crush 3-4 hibiscus flowers into smooth paste. Add 2-3 spoons of honey and 4 spoons of granular sugar to it. Mix well and use it as a body scrub on your damp skin. Massage your skin all over for a few minutes using gentle circular motions. After half an hour, take a bath with normal water without using any soap or body wash. Do it once a week. This works great for every skin type.
3. How To Use Hibiscus For Treating Fine Lines & Wrinkles?
Blend one avocado into smooth pulp. Add 2-3 spoons of hibiscus flower powder to it and mix well. Apply the mixture as a face pack and wash it after an hour. Do it twice a week. This works great for every skin type.
4. How To Use Hibiscus To Treat Dry & Flaky Skin Conditions?
Crush 4-5 hibiscus flowers into a fine paste. Add 3-4 spoons of aloe vera gel to the paste and mix well. Apply it to your dry skin and rinse it off with normal water after half an hour. Do it twice or thrice a week for best results.
5. How To Use Hibiscus As A Moisturizer?
Add 2 spoons of almond oil or olive oil to 20-30 petals of dry hibiscus flowers. Blend the ingredients into a fine paste and microwave it for 2-3 minutes. Now, take the paste in a clean cotton cloth and squeeze in the hibiscus oil. Add this hibiscus oil to a cup of aloe vera gel and use it as your daily moisturizer on your skin.
6. How To Use Hibiscus Skin Tightening?
Grind 5-6 hibiscus flowers into a fine paste and add 3-4 spoons of tomato puree to the paste and mix well. Apply the paste on your face and rinse it off after half an hour. Do it twice or thrice a week. This remedy is suited for all skin types.
7. How To Use Hibiscus For Skin Whitening?
Add 2 spoons of besan, 1 spoon of yogurt and 1 spoon of honey to 3 spoons of hibiscus powder. Mix the ingredients well and apply it to your face evenly. After half an hour, rinse your face with normal water. Do this twice a week for best results.
8. How To Use Hibiscus As A Toner?
Add 1/2 spoon of witch hazel, 1/2 spoon of fresh aloe juice and 1 spoon of rose water to 5-6 spoons of hibiscus tea. Mix well and pour the solution into a spray bottle. Use this as a face toner to make your skin look fresh and youthful.
Vedix Tip: Add 5-6 petals of a clean hibiscus flower to 3 cups of water and boil it on low flame for 10-15 minutes. Then strain the decoction and add a spoon of lemon juice and honey each to it and serve it as a tea.
9. How To Use Hibiscus For Acne?
Prepare a fine paste by blending 3-4 hibiscus flowers. Add a spoon of lemon juice to it and mix well. Apply it as a spot treatment on acne and wash it off after half an hour. Do it twice or thrice a week to control acne breakouts in your skin.
Side Effects And Risks Of Hibiscus On Skin
In general, hibiscus is considered to be safe when applied topically. However, people with extremely sensitive skin may experience slight itching or burning sensation and redness after using hibiscus on their skin.
For internal consumption, hibiscus is considered to be safe when taken in moderate amounts. Excessive consumption of hibiscus can result in the following side effects:
2. Gas formation
3. Stomach disorder
4. Constipation with pain
A study on the effectiveness of Hibiscus sabdariffa L. states that excessive doses of hibiscus can potentially lead to liver damage. Hibiscus also can interact with certain medications such as chloroquine.
Seek immediate medical help if you experience any side effects after the consumption of hibiscus.
“Japa promotes menstruation (emmenagogue). People with blood pressure disorders or diabetes should cautiously take hibiscus as it can lower the blood pressure  and blood sugar levels,” adds Dr. Zeel. It is also not advisable to consume hibiscus for at least 2 weeks before and after surgery as the herb has blood-thinning properties.
Consult your doctor to understand how safe it is for you to use hibiscus internally or topically based on your medical history and skin type.
Frequently Asked Questions On Hibiscus For Skin
1. Is It Safe To Drink Hibiscus Tea Every Day?
When taken in moderation, it is safe to drink hibiscus tea daily. However, Dr. Zeel recommends consuming hibiscus tea not more than 1-2 cups a day.
You may need to talk to your doctor to understand if hibiscus has the potential to interact with any of the medications that you use. Avoid taking hibiscus tea if you are a pregnant or breastfeeding woman.
2. Can You Apply Hibiscus On Your Face Daily?
No, applying hibiscus to your face every day can result in over-exfoliation of your skin. This eventually makes your skin dry and rough. Dr. Zeel recommends using hibiscus on your face once or twice a week.
The Last Word
In traditional Ayurveda, hibiscus is served as tea as it offers a plethora of health benefits. Besides this, it works great on the skin too when used as a mask, toner, or body scrub. So be it acne breakouts, aging signs, or pigmentation problems, adding hibiscus to your skincare regimen can bring remarkable changes in your skin's health and appearance.
At Vedix, we understand your skin needs and customize an Ayurvedic skincare regimen that addresses your unique skin concerns.Know Your Dosha Now
1. Nutritional and Health Importance of Hibiscus Sabdariffa: A Review and Indication for Research Needs (Mar-2017), Journal of Nutritional Health & Food Engineering
2. Structure and physical properties of flowering plants of the genus hibiscus (Dec-2014), Journal of Sudan medical monitor
3. Rosa sinensis (Hibiscus) -a versatile Indian origin plant, Journal of chemical and pharmaceutical sciences
4. A review on phytochemistry and therapeutic uses of Hibiscus sabdariffa L. (June-2018), Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy
5. Can hibiscus tea lower blood pressure (Jan-2009), Agricultural research service
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