Do you have a spoonful of roasted fennel after your meals? A staple at Indian restaurants, fennel is a sweet-smelling spice that’s well known as a digestive aid. Want to de-bloat? Boil some fennel seeds in water, strain and sip while warm. In India, it’s also tradition to include these in diets of nursing mothers to promote milk production. However, the benefits of fennel go much beyond helping you get fresh breath and your digestion back on track. In fact, fennel is the understated herb which can heal and purify your skin!
What is Fennel?
Fennel, or saunf as it is called in Hindi, is an aromatic herb belonging to the parsley family which possesses a taste quite similar to star anise. All parts of the plant – the pale green bulb, long stalks, seeds, and leaves – are edible. Though with Asian origins, fennel was popular in Europe as well. As the folklore goes, it was hung over doors during the middle ages to ward off evil spirits. Roman warriors were said to chew fennel seeds to strengthen their bodies. In ancient Greece, fennel was called marathron, which translates ‘to grow thin’, points out to its ability to help reduce weight. In Ayurveda, fennel seeds have been used in skincare remedies because of their cooling and sweet properties.
Fennel seeds contain loads of antioxidants and nutrients which work like magic for our skin and hair. Here are 4 reasons why u should look for fennel in your skincare?
1. Fennel decongests puffy eyes:
Because of its the anti-inflammatory properties and antimicrobial properties, fennel is a pretty good ally in banishing a case of morning-eye puffiness. The cooling and soothing sensation of this herb calms the area around the eyes. Fennel is a great ingredient to look for in an eye cream. Some find relief if they put a cold compress of fennel seed powder on puffy eyes.
2. Fennel controls acne:
It is a natural multivitamin, with a combination of vitamins A, C and E which also help to arrest the action of free radicals. This means fennel helps to control the cell damage caused due to exposure to environmental stressors. As a result, skin appears smooth, supple and clearer. Its antiseptic side keeps germs and bacteria at bay while its anti-inflammatory properties help reduce acne swelling. The compounds in it, such as limonene, anethole and myrcene, are especially potent in treating acne.
3. Fennel is a natural exfoliator:
Being a natural exfoliator, fennel seeds are gentle yet effective on the skin and help to slough off dead skin. In Ayurveda, fennel seeds have been used in many anti-cellulite skin formulations which promise to leave the skin smooth, hydrated and satin-soft. Depending on the potency, in which it is used, fennel seeds can help flush out fat and toxins from the tissue. So, if you are using a fennel scrub to fight that cellulite, we suggest you also sip on some fennel tea infusion to kickstart your metabolism from within.
4. Fennel stimulates hair growth:
Topical application of fennel seeds gives your skin a direct source of iron, copper, potassium, and zinc which helps to strengthen the roots. They are loaded in antioxidants such as quercetin and kaempferol and compounds like limonene and anethole which are all do their bit in maintaining the thickness and shine of hair. Drinking fennel seed water regularly is said to delay premature greying of hair.
Make your own ‘Glow Tea’?
Fennel seeds contain numerous vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, and are rightly called the ‘beauty super-herb’. While you look for products that help bring these aromatic seeds to your dressing table, do include fennel in your daily diet as well. Our in-house expert and co-founder Just Herbs, Dr Neena Chopra, believes that infusion made of fennel seeds helps in improving the overall texture of the skin making it glowing and blemish-free. “In Ayurveda, fennel seeds are used to detoxify the skin inside out. To make an easy fennel infusion, add 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds into a pan of hot water. Let it steep for 20 minutes. Drink this infusion on an empty stomach regularly.”
Will you like to try skincare products with fennel? Here are some of our best sellers which pack in the goodness of fennel!