We live in a world obsessed with its next caffeine hit. It's humanity's favourite stimulant, and in moderation it appears to be not only safe but even beneficial to our health. Consequently, it's in everything these days - so why would we need more caffeine in our lives?
It's all about how that caffeine gets into you. If it's reaching your bloodstream solely through cups of coffee or tea, you may be missing out on some of its most potent skincare properties. Forego a cup a day, and rub it directly into your skin instead, ideally in the form of a cream, soap or scrub.
Here's why that's not as crazy as it sounds.
1. Antioxidants. Your body is a warzone between two types of molecule: free radicals (the bad guys, causing havoc wherever they roam) and antioxidants, fighting the good fight on your behalf. A well-balanced intake of antioxidants will bolster your natural defences against diseases and body disorders such as age-related eye complaints. You'd be right in thinking that fruit & vegetables are the way to conscript more support for your immune system - but it seems that coffee can be an even richer source of some antioxidants.
2. Anti-inflammatory. One thing antioxidants excel at is reducing inflammation. You know the unslightly puffiness that develop under your eyes? It's due to inflamed skin - and coffee can help, because of those anti-inflammatory antioxidants. It has also been suggested that coffee can lighten & brighten skin.
3. Dehydration. Staying with those puffy eyes - caffeine mildly dehydrates you. Skin gets puffy because of an excess of moisture - and it appears that coffee can draw that excess liquid out of your skin, leaving it smoother and firmer.
4. Basal cell carcinoma. Now for the biggie: there is good evidence pointing to a correlation between caffeine consumption and occurences of basal cell carcinoma, the most common form of skin cancer. This is not to say that you should be replacing your favourite sun-cream with a handful of wet grounds - because it doesn't appear to do anything for squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. Consider coffee just another part of your sunscreen routine, not a replacement for it.