Nowadays, the health, cleanliness and beauty of the face are the basis for designing new dermocosmetic products. Although they are very popular and better ones are discovered every day, gels, serums, lotions and creams are not the only method to achieve optimal shine. Face masks made of olive oil, honey or eggs have also become obsolete techniques while the new product to take the spotlight, thanks to the TikTok application, is chlorophyll.

What is chlorophyll?

“Plant greens” or chlorophyll is a green plant pigment necessary for photosynthesis, and is found in chloroplasts, i.e. in all green parts of the plant. Therefore, in addition to green plants, algae, as well as some photosynthetic bacteria can also be a source of this “new medicine”. Although very important in the plant world, today it is also found in supplements due to its potentially positive effects on human health (tumor prevention, improved immune system activity, bowel cleansing, etc.). 

Dietary supplements contain chlorophyllin (it contains copper instead of magnesium in the center of the structure) which exhibits actions very similar to chlorophyll. It comes in the form of tablets, ointments, liquids and sprays, and is most often used to detoxify the body, prevent colon cancer and as a treatment to remove skin imperfections. Six years ago, a study was conducted that showed a positive effect of chlorophyllin in the treatment of acne, but also skin damage caused by excessive sun exposure.

Acne and its causes

In addition to increased hormonal activity, faster growth and changes in the body, a common manifestation of puberty, but also other life changes, are acne. They are considered a chronic inflammatory condition of the skin that causes pimples and blemishes on the face, neck, arms, shoulders, etc. They can also occur in the form of blackheads or cysts and although they are not dangerous, they often leave unpleasant and visible scars.

Additionally, genetics as well as an unbalanced diet can cause acne. Today, there are a number of treatments and products designed to erase unwanted scars, but regardless, the possibility of recurrence is still high, and the search for new treatments is a constantly ongoing process. 

Beauty trend or effective therapy

All the studies known so far involved a small number of patients and lasted only a few weeks, but the results were visible regardless of the short duration. Namely, since chlorophyll contains a number of vitamins (A, C, E and K) that act as antioxidants, it helps treat skin damage. Also, despite the fact that it is mainly consumed orally (a few drops of concentrated chlorophyll are added to water), topical application may in some cases be more effective due to the reduction of redness and the antimicrobial effect. Nevertheless, it is not known whether the newly formed changes were due to chlorophyll or increased fluid intake in general.

The first step before applying or consuming a preparation with chlorophyll should definitely be talking to a dermatologist. Assessing the condition of the face and the type of acne can greatly help in improving therapy. The use of chlorophyll has so far not helped with severe cystic acne, but even in classic cases, efficiency is not guaranteed. Different photos on social networks as well as videos on TikTok can show significant changes, but the individualization of therapy for this condition, as always, is extremely important. 

There have also been recorded cases of increased acne during chlorophyll consumption. Additionally, before purchasing supplements, it should be emphasized that a diet rich in green vegetables (spinach, lettuce) is a better way to ingest chlorophyll due to other bioactive components present in food. Therefore, regardless of the amazing “before and after” photos that surround you, ask for an expert opinion and pay attention to everything you put into or onto your body. 

Translated by Filip Sakoman


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  4. Jian LI et al. Efficacy and Tolerability of an Acne Treatment Regimen with Antiaging Benefits in Adult Women. The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, 2018, 11(6), 46–51.

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