An article on by Sophie Brame on NaturallyCurly.com called “5 Ways to Use Coffee for Beauty”, points to the fact that coffee grounds can serve as a natural scrub when directly applied to the face. Although it is great on its own, olive oil and sugar may be added to the coffee grounds to create a stronger, more moisturising exfoliator. Due to its coarse texture, coffee polishes off dead skin, leaving it glowing radiantly. Not only is this a cheap alternative to body scrub, but according to 3FatChicks.com, “Coffee body [scrub] can be invigorating, helping you wake up on those difficult mornings.”
Scrubbing away dead skin is not the only service that a caffeine-rich solution can render to your skin. According to TheBeautyInsiders.com, although drinking coffee is not advisable for people who have cellulite, applying coffee grounds is thought to do wonders for your skin.
However, Dr Whitney Bowe, a New York dermatologist who specialises in skin rejuvenation, acne therapy and laser technology, says, “When applied directly to the skin, caffeine can quickly constrict blood vessels … Although in a test tube caffeine appears to break down fats, I have yet to see an anti-cellulite cream with caffeine really make a visible difference for my patients.”
Dermatologic surgeon at Art of Dermatology in New York, Dr Jessica Krant, agrees that although application of caffeine to the skin may reduce the appearance of cellulite, it is not a permanent solution. She says, “Caffeine causes dehydration, causing local fat cells to physically shrink … This may make cellulite appear smoother temporarily because the puffy tissue in between the tight fibrous connective tissue strands gets flatter, so everything looks better. But in reality the cells are still there and will eventually expand again.”
Even though the granules of our favourite brewed drink may not get rid of cellulite, they do possess anti-ageing properties. Dr Krant says that this power to help you age gracefully can be attributed to both the caffeine and anti-oxidants contained in coffee. She says that coffee also has a dehydrating effect which helps to combat puffy eyes, giving you a rested and youthful appearance.
Coffee may be particularly useful to men for maintaining a youthful appearance. As the title of an article published in Mail Online suggests, “Coffee could hold the cure for baldness”. Dr Tobias Fischer, a professor at the University of New Mexico, carried out a study in Germany at the University of Jena in which he found that massaging coffee into the scalp can prevent men from going bald by stimulating the growth of follicles in the scalp.
This is not the only positive effect that caffeine has on the hair. According to Kirsten Hudson, blogger of Organic Authority, if you’re looking for soft and shiny hair, coffee grounds and granules can act as a conditioner. Hudson suggests that the coffee be rubbed into wet hair before rinsing thoroughly. She is adamant that this will “leave your locks glossy and smooth”. According to HowStuffWorks.com, coffee grounds and granules can also be used to darken the colour of your hair.
Coffee drinkers will be happy to learn that caffeine is mostly kind to their figure, especially with regards to appetite suppression and calorie burning. Katherine Zeratsky, a dietician at Mayo Clinic in Rochester says, “Caffeine may reduce your desire to eat for a brief time.” She also says that, “Caffeine may stimulate thermogenesis – one way your body generates heat and energy from digesting food.”
Photo: Charlotte Bastiaanse