Au Naturale Eye Essentials Kit

How Chocolate Benefits the Skin

Could your favorite sweet treat improve your skin?

Wouldn’t it be fabulous if something most of us find irresistible could possibly make our skin look younger? I don’t know about you, but if you give me permission to indulge in a bit of chocolate, I am more than happy to oblige.

Could it be true? Yes! While it may not turn back the clock, chocolate--especially dark chocolate-- is highly beneficial to the skin. Why is chocolate so good for the skin?

  • Dark chocolate contains an abundance of flavonols. You may have heard about these antioxidants commonly found in red wine. They are also present in dark chocolate and provide many benefits. Flavonols have been shown to reduce inflammation and protect the skin from UV damage. We know now that UV damage is one of the leading causes of aging, so this is one reason to reach for some chocolate.
  • Dark chocolate consumption helps to lower the amount of stress hormones such as cortisol. When your body produces excess cortisol, collagen breaks down. This collagen breakdown causes fine lines and wrinkles. Chocolate, though, reduces stress hormones which may help to prevent collagen from breaking down in the first place.
  • Dark chocolate is rich in nutrients believed to improve skin clarity and texture. You’ll find Vitamins A, B1, C, D, E, iron and calcium in dark chocolate.

Eating chocolate isn’t your only option when it comes to reaping the skin benefits. There are many products on the market with antioxidant-rich cocoa and dark chocolate to help improve the appearance of your skin and reduce the signs of aging. I am particularly drawn to the new wave of chocolate-based masks to reduce the signs of aging. All of the ones mentioned below are free of harmful chemicals. Let’s take a look at some of my tried and true favorites.

1. The Best Chocolate Face Mask to Brighten the Skin

Josh Rosebrook Cacao Antioxidant Mask

This rich mask may resemble a decadent ganache, but it feels like heaven on your face. It’s thick and a bit sticky, but you will adore how fresh and renewed your skin looks once you have tried it. Josh Rosebrook has crafted a truly spa-worthy facial product in this little jar. Your skin will drink in the benefits of Coenzyme Q10, bladderwrack, grapeseed oil, and essential fatty acids. Skin is left plumper, brighter, and nourished.

2. The Best Chocolate Face Mask for Dry Skin

Eminence Organics Chocolate Mousse Hydration Masque

Available at many spas for purchase, Eminence Organics is a Hungarian skin care line used by estheticians. This mask is ideal for women with parched, dehydrated skin in need of serious moisture. Made with macadamia nut oil, almond oil, and multiple vitamins, cocoa is the key ingredient in this treatment.

3. The Best Chocolate Face Mask for Oily Skin (Plus, it is the best bargain!)

Lush Cupcake

This dessert-like gem wins the best mask for oily skin, and it is also the most affordably priced. First of all, it smells like mint chocolate chip ice cream and is my favorite summertime mask. My skin tends to go from one extreme to the other -- super dry in the winter and an oil slick in the summer. I love how the Lush mask is cooling (thank you, Peppermint Essential Oil) and I am a big fan of the mask's #1 ingredient: Rhassoul Clay. This clay is gentle, yet effectively draws out excess sebum.

4. The Best Chocolate Face Mask for Aging Skin

Perricone MD Cocoa Moisture Mask

This higher-end facial mask features many anti-aging and firming ingredients, including DMAE. It contains abundant antioxidants, nourishing hyaluronic acid, and squalane. I have tried this one and it does feel like a classic spa treatment. If you'd like to splurge, grab this one. Know, though, that there are other budget friendly options that work beautifully.

5. The Best Chocolate Face Mask Overall

FarmHouse Fresh Sundae Best Chocolate Softening Mask

Rich and decadent, this mask from FarmHouse Fresh is my favorite of the bunch. It is great for mature skin, as it contains Carrot Seed Oil, Ginseng, and Royal Jelly, which soften and help reduce the look of fine lines. It also is rich in Bentonite and Kaolin Clays to help draw out any "junk" from the pores. It feels luxurious and skin is left smooth as a baby's bottom.