Papaya is one fruit, which has countless benefits not only when used topically, but also when consumed. It is rich in Vitamin A, C, E and has excellent antioxidant properties. We all know that papaya contains papain, which is a protease enzyme. It has the properties of loosening up the clogged cells making it an excellent exfoliating agent. I firmly believe that exfoliation is the corner stone of exquisite skin care. The fruit not only takes off the topmost layers of dead skin, it also gets rid of the build up of dirt, sebum (oil secreted by the sebaceous glands) and other germs and bacteria that are trapped in our pores and helps reveal a glowing and radiant skin. Also, in exfoliation, it is the agent being used which is more important than the method or pressure used. Papain, because of this excellent exfoliating quality, is found in various skincare products such as scrubs, cleansers, facial masks and peels.
Papain is also known for its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it a good healing agent. It is, therefore, beneficial to heal acne, soothe an irritated skin condition and use it as a calming agent.
The pulp of papaya is used by many as a part of homemade natural face masks to improve skin texture and tone. It helps to heal a sunburned skin and fight free radicals. Thereby, it lessens the damage caused to the skin by sun exposure, stress, exposure to pollutants etc.
To get instant glow and rejuvenated skin, take two big slices of papaya. Remove the skin and make a thick pulp. To it add ½ tea spoon of honey and 1 tea spoon milk powder. Mix it well and apply on face and neck. Leave it for 10 minutes. Rinse it off with cold water. It brightens and softens your skin instantly (especially in normal and dry skin types).
Being rich in beta-carotene, papaya is a great immune booster when taken orally. It also contains potassium, which helps to control blood pressure. (but do not stop medication for hypertension just because of this benefit).
All in all, this fruit has multiple benefits where skin care and overall health is concerned.
The writer is a Celebrity Cosmetic Physician at Blush Clinic