Mushrooms are having a real beauty moment: here's why

Mushrooms? In beauty? I know, sounds a bit... icky. But in fact, thanks to the recent lean-in to natural and plant-derived ingredients, mushrooms really are having a beauty moment.


I'll be completely honest — I've been eating mushrooms my whole life assuming they had little to no nutritional value. Someone once told me they don't have a single component worth mentioning in terms of health benefits. How wrong I was, and how wrong that person was.

Since starting to research mushrooms and their use, I've discovered that tons of multi-vitamins and health supplements contain mushroom powder, which is rich in vitamin D and helps boost immunity.

In beauty terms, I've found them all over the place too, and in some of my favourite products. For instance, Ren have a mask that includes white mushroom, which helps soothe skin and calm redness.

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Ren Evercalm Ultra Comforting Mask, €40

Once the preserve of Chinese medicine, there are now a heap of studies that show mushrooms can benefit the skin. They're packed with antioxidants, hydrating, anti-aging and anti-inflammatory elements. Even Charlotte Tilbury's Magic Foundation has elements of mushroom extract going on for those reasons.

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation, €40

The first inkling I had that there was something really going on with fungi was when I recently got a look at Origins' full range of mushroom products.

Their Mega Mushroom range by Dr Andrew Weil is one of the heroes, taking pride of place on the Arnotts Origins' counter. Intrigued, I tried a couple of things from the range.

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Origins Dr Andrew Weil Mega Mushroom Skin Relief Face Mask, €48.50

The relief mask worked wonders for me after I'd had an unfortunate flare-up of sensitivity after a skin treatment. I embraced the skin-soothing wonders and loved having this on. My redness calmed straight down.

Treatment lotions are something Origins really believe in. Not quite toners, these bring the pH levels of the skin back, and prep the skin for further skincare or makeup. I tried the mushroom one and loved it, but equally loved other treatment lotions from the brand.

Origins Dr Andrew Weil Mega Mushroom Skin Treatment Lotion, €38

As an aside — foraging for your own stash is not advised, certainly not by me. Who knows whether you're getting the edible ones, the ones that are used for skin or the poisonous variety. Not me, that's who.

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