8 posts tagged "Ingredients Deciphered"
EGGSHELL MEMBRANE (eg-shel mem-bran)/ n./ 1. A thin layer between the egg white and the eggshell meant to protect and nourish the interior; / 2./ Used as a remedy for joint and connective tissue disorders (such as arthritis and lupus), this natural remedy contains glycosaminoglycans and proteins, like collagen, that help with pain and improve flexibility; / 3./ The U.S. food industry produces 150,000 tons of eggshell waste per year, but developments in technology have allowed for the shell to be separated from the protein-rich membrane; / 4./ In skincare, this ingredient is said to increase firmness, minimize discoloration, and treat fine lines—minus any peeling, irritation, or photosensitivity, e.g., “Treat aches and erase age spots with eggshell membrane.”
Try it: Perricone MD OVM, $165, qvc.com
BLUE AGAVE (blu a-ga-vey)/ n./ 1. This plant native to Jalisco, Mexico, is scientifically known as agave tequilana, but is also referred to as tequila agave; / 2./ The heart (or piña) of this species is removed from the succulent plant after twelve years, heated, fermented, and distilled to make the base ingredient for tequila; / 3./ Since the core contains aguamiel, or “honey water,” this syrup can also be used as a sweetener in nonalcoholic beverages and baked goods, and poured over pancakes; / 4./ Historically, the Aztecs mixed the saccharine nectar with salt and used it to treat skin infections and sores; / 5./ The natural sugars in this botanical are known for their bonding properties and nutrients, hence its use in hair treatments and styling products; e.g. “Tame frizz and take shots with blue agave.”
Try it: Matrix Biolage Agave Nectar Control Gel, $16, www.matrix.com
DESERT DATE (de-zert dait)/ n./ 1. Scientific name balanites aegyptiaca, the spiny tree is also commonly known as a soapberry, Thron, Egyptian balsam, and desert date tree; / 2./ Prevalent in Africa’s Sahel-Savannah region, it has been cultivated since ancient times and has a life span of up to a century; / 3./ The tree is especially hardy, able to withstand the harsh and extremely dry desert climes, and produces small bitter yellow fruits; / 4./ Medicinally, the date’s oil has been used to treat headaches, asthma, fever, liver, and stomach issues; / 5./ Since the oil is extracted from a tree able to survive the most extreme weather conditions, it has intense hydrating and regenerating properties for the skin and hair; e.g. “Replenish even the most arid, bone-dry strands with desert date.”
Try it: Klorane Shampoo with Desert Date, $13, www.kloraneusa.com
JAPANESE KNOTWEED (ja-pe-nez nat-wed) / n. / 1. Scientific name Fallopia japonica, the meandering perennial plant can be found in North America, Europe, China, Korea, and, of course, Japan, where it is called itadori; / 2. / Considered one of the world’s most invasive species because of its extensive and strong root system, it can disrupt other plant life and cause damage to buildings, foundations, and roads; / 3. / This herbaceous plant’s flowers are often used by beekeepers as nectar for their honeybees; / 4. / The stems, which are edible and share a similarly slightly sour taste to rhubarb, can be used in soups, jams, or for baking; / 5. / Packed with vitamins A and C, potassium, and zinc, knotweed, when consumed in large quantities, is also thought to have a gentle laxative action; / 5. / Chock-full of resveratrol—the same antioxidant extracted from the skin of grapes—this plant helps lower bad cholesterol and, when used topically, stimulates the natural production of collagen; e.g. “Avoid it in the garden; instead, make use of this pesky weed in a tangy compote or slather on the skin to help smooth fine lines.”
Try it: Darphin Ideal Resource Overnight Cream, $90, www.darphin.com.
LOTUS (lo-tes) / n. / 1. An aquatic perennial from the Nelumbonaceae family that serves as the national flower of India and Vietnam; / 2. / This plant boasts the rare ability to regulate the temperature of its flowers, similar to mammals—a talent suspected by researchers of helping to attract insect pollinators. It can also survive for thousands of years, with a 1,300-year-old sacred seed being successfully germinated in the early nineties; / 3. / A seated posture in yoga, often used for meditation, in which the legs are crossed and the feet are placed on opposing thighs—also known as padmasana; / 4. / Used in Asian cuisine, the seeds, leaves, roots, and flowers can be pickled, dried, boiled, and even popped like popcorn; / 5. / A British manufacturer of sports cars, whose vehicles were driven by James Bond in Casino Royale, The Spy Who Loved Me, and For Your Eyes Only; / 6. / A symbol often found in Hinduism and Buddhism that represents fortune, purity, rebirth, enlightenment, and beauty, among other positive attributes; / 7. / Venerated in many cultures (including ancient Egypt) for flourishing in the most hostile environments, this flower boasts high concentrations of lipids that have been used for centuries to soften hair and skin; e.g., “Whether you drive off in one—or slather yourself in the ingredient—a lotus will always leave you looking smooth.”
Try it in Shu Uemura Ultimate Remedy Extreme Restoration Treatment Duo Serum, $38; www.shuuemuraartofhair-usa.com