Whether you sip it from your favourite mug, or slather it on your skin, caffeine is a natural stimulant and antioxidant. From exfoliating scrubs to sunless tanners and even cellulite creams, it is becoming a popular cosmetic ingredient choice across the board.
And, like a traditional caffeine hit, the energy in which the trend is circulating social media is palpable.
With a celebrity studded Instagram profile and more than half a million followers, Melbourne coffee scrub brand, Frank Body is at the centre of the brew.
Leading up to the release of a new product – a shimmery version of their original caffeinated body exfoliator – the hype was palpable. By the time it dropped (online) on the 1st of May, there were 50, 000 on the waitlist.
Coffee granules effectively but gently exfoliate, making it an excellent choice for reactive skin, but there are other reasons for the popularity surge.
Firstly, it’s in line with the global green beauty market where many consumers believe 60 percent of what we put on our skin is absorbed into our bloodstream.
As a result, more and more people are opting for personal care products that are not only free from harmful chemicals, but are safe enough to eat.
SPA+CLINIC explore the skin benefits of caffeine as a cosmetic ingredient.
Luxury Australian spa brand, Uspas’ Coffee & Sea Kelp Rejuvenating Contour Scrub works in two ways to slough away dead skin.
“The caffeine in coffee is excellent as an ingredient to purify the skin. The manual scrubbing of the coffee grounds also stimulates blood and lymphatic circulation,” says Lelien Hang, marketing and graphics manager at Uspa.
“When caffeine is used on the skin in a product such as our scrub, blood is stimulated, which brings oxygen and nutrients to the area and feeds the cells.
“This creates an increase in lymphatic circulation and, in turn, promotes smoother, brighter, softer and healthier looking skin.”
Bader Hamwi, created of all-organic, eco-luxe Australian skincare brand, Chateau Ambiance, has formulated a coffee infused face exfoliator with fair-trade Arabica beans and cocoa. It’s since become one of the best sellers in the range.
“Because caffeine is a potent antioxidant, including it in a face scrub formula helps fight the signs of premature ageing such as fine-lines and can help slow the development of wrinkles.” he says.
“Our scrub is also gentle enough to work apply under the eyes – when it’s applied there, the caffeine encourages the blood vessels to constrict and thus reduces the swelling or puffiness.”
It’s not just waking up to the smell of coffee that’s made Mine Tan’s Coffee Scrub and Coconut Coffee Foam (a next generation sunless tanning product) best sellers.
“Caffeine stimulates skin cell regeneration, so it smooths and targets imperfections such as uneven skin-tone and stretch marks,” says Kim Oliver, celebrity tanning artist and distributor of the brand.
Coffee seed extract is included in the Pevonia Phyto-Elite Intensive Body Corrector, a product that works to diminish the appearance of cellulite.
It makes sense as an antidote to orange peel skin as it’s believed to dehydrate fat-cells.
“The caffeine in coffee is excellent as a detoxifying ingredient to purify the skin as it stimulates blood and promotes lymphatic circulation,” says Lelien Hang. “That’s because it draws fluid away from fat cells, essentially tightening skin.”