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Herbs for healthy skin and nails

A glowing complexion and healthy looking locks are both signs of good health. Looking after our skin and hair is not just about looking after the surface - we need to nurture the inside.

Here are five top tips to naturally boost your beauty regime:

1. herbs for breakouts
If you are suffering with breakouts it can be a combination of hormonal imbalance, excess stress and liver stagnation. There are some incredible herbs that support liver function, which is the major organ responsible for breaking down and excreting excess fat soluble hormones, such as oestrogen.

If liver function is poor, hormones will build up in the bloodstream and play havoc with skin health.

Some of our favorite liver-supportive herbs are dandelion, turmeric and lemon, as well as matcha green tea for breaking down fats more effectively and providing essential antioxidants to neutralize free radicals.

2. herbs for healthy hair
Any herbal tea containing nettle is wonderful for healthy hair. Nettle is rich in the mineral silica, which naturally helps to strengthen the keratin (a compound in hair) in the hair and nails, allowing them to grow stronger and longer.

If your hormones are out of balance and you’re feeling stressed, this can also cause hair to become fine, brittle and sometimes fall out.

To help reduce stress and balance hormones, the Ayurvedic herb shatavari nourishes the body and helps support a healthy hormonal cycle. It is also an adaptogenic herb, which means it is able to help the body cope and adapt when it is going through periods of stress.

3. herbs for clear skin
In order to have clear and healthy skin, it is important to have a liver that functions effectively. A healthy liver helps to keep the body clear of toxins that may originate from our diet or from the environment. These toxins can cause breakouts and unwanted skin troubles. Ensuring you have enough antioxidants in the diet also is a must for radiant, glowing skin.

The bright yellow spice turmeric, is known as ‘the golden goddess’ in India thanks to its beautifying properties. Not only does turmeric help to support a healthy liver function, but it is jam-packed full of antioxidants that protect the skin cells from ageing. This also improves the appearance of skin so you can sport a healthy glow from the inside out.

4. herbs for beauty sleep
We all know that getting enough sleep at night is one of the best ways to stave off premature ageing. When you don’t sleep it impacts on your appearance, with poor sleepers often suffering with dark circles around the eyes and tired-looking skin.

Herbs such as valerian, oat straw and chamomile have been used for centuries as a natural relaxant and sleep aid and can greatly benefit those who have problems falling asleep or staying asleep. They also help the mind and body to relax and unwind before bed.

5. herbs for hair growth
Stinging nettle is one of the best possible plants you can take to stimulate hair growth. It does so by balancing the hormones that are responsible for hair loss. Nettle is also nutritive, containing many important compounds required for repair and optimal body function.

Ginseng is a popular herb for its tonic effects. A tonic helps to support the body when it is tired, overworked or depleted and therefore will help restore normal vigor. Once a body is balanced and retains equilibrium, growth processes such as hair will function better.

Meet the author

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Katie Pande, Senior Herbal Advisor

Katie is a qualified Medical Herbalist, and member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists (NIMH), currently practicing in Shaftesbury. She holds a BSc (Hons) in Herbal Medicine and a BSc (Hons) in Plant and Environmental Biology.

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