The dark green infusion was perfumed and flowed fluidly down the throat. Tilopa avidly drank from the small cup that had been offered to him by his master, feeling, as he drank, a new energy that pervaded him. Tilopa was a guest disciple at the Buddhist monastery and was drinking a special green tea, made by shredding tea leaves and adding them to water, without needing to filter them. The infusion had been discovered by Tilopa's master in an experiment that, at first, he thought had failed. In fact, he was chopping herbs to prepare potions to cure another monk's gout and, without realizing it, he had finely chopped the tea leaves. Desperate, thinking he had to throw away that little treasure, he had tried to add it to water and drink it, feeling very guilty. Then, sadly, he had gone to his usual nocturnal meditation session and had seen that, for the first time, he hadn't felt drowsy but, on the contrary, he had meditated with even more vigor. The man immediately understood that he had to thank that strange drink, which, from that moment on, was also immediately appreciated by the other Buddhist monks. Thus it was that one of the most powerful and famous green teas in the world was born in that Buddhist monastery. Do you understand what we are talking about? About matcha tea! Matcha tea is characterized by a high content of antioxidants, which are not lost, not even in part, as can happen with other types of tea which need to be filtered after the infusion. All the power of matcha therefore remains in its fine powder, of a beautiful bright green, which then brings to us who use it important properties for the health of the body but also of the skin! Today we will see how to make a face mask and a scalp mask using matcha tea and in addition we will also analyze what science says about the properties of matcha as a beauty cosmetic. But first, close your eyes and imagine yourself in an atmosphere between dream and reality, in a muffled silence interrupted only by the mantras of Buddhist monks. The magic begins thanks to small, precious cosmetics!
Matcha tea for the skin, what science says
Drinking green tea protects the skin from premature aging, but also the topical application of green tea, and even more so of matcha, is beneficial for the skin. In fact, studies have shown that the external application of green tea is able to act with a powerful antioxidant action, useful for counteracting the damage of free radicals induced by UV rays. The antioxidants in tea rapidly repair DNA and thus help prevent aging processes and cellular degeneration. Indeed, the topical application allows, even more than the oral intake of green tea, to increase the amount of antioxidants, and in particular of epigallocatechin gallate, the most important active ingredient of green tea, in the skin tissues. More antioxidants in the skin also means more protection with more potent action when it comes to fighting wrinkles, dehydrated skin and dark spots (Katiyar et al, Arch Biochem Biophys, 2011). Green tea is anti-inflammatory, modulates the skin's natural defenses and helps regulate the production of sebum, thus proving to be useful in the case of atopic dermatitis, rosacea and acne, in the latter case reducing the number of lesions by almost 60% after a month and a half of treatment (Katiyar et al, Arch Dermatol, 2000 - Di Sotto et al, Nutrients, 2022). Finally, green tea applied to the scalp has also been shown to counteract dandruff and baldness (Pazyar et al, Skinmed, 2012). All these properties are maximum in matcha green tea.
Matcha tea face and hair masks
So let's see how to make a powerful anti-aging face mask that is useful against photoaging. In a small bowl mix 1 teaspoon of matcha powder together with two tablespoons of oatmeal. Quickly heat a little water, but you can also use coconut milk, which is moisturizing and anti-inflammatory, and add the chosen liquid a little at a time, until you get a creamy consistency. Apply to cleansed face for 10-15 minutes, then continue with your usual treatment. An extra idea if you have acne-prone skin? Then you can add a little lotus extract to the mask, it can be found in specialized stores. In fact, studies have shown that there is a powerful synergy between green tea and lotus that, when used together, maximize their properties by reducing sebum secretion (Mahmood et al, Hippokratia, 2013). But matcha is also good for hair. Mix a tablespoon of matcha powder with warm water, as much as needed to obtain a fluid mixture. Mix and apply to the scalp with a massage. Leave on for 15-20 minutes, then proceed with shampoo and conditioner.