Is It Worth Its Weight? – Beautiful With Brains

Is gold in skincare the secret to looking 20 years younger?

It seemed to have worked for Diane De Poitiers, the mistress of King Henry II of France. She was years older than her royal lover, yet they looked the SAME age.

Her secret? Gold. Diane drank a cuppa every day. Gold is the same shiny colour as the sun and, like the sun, it was thought to give you life. Youth. Beauty.

In the end, her golden elixir killed her (not surprised. Humans aren’t meant to drink gold).

Fast forward a few centuries, gold is still a beauty elixir. You’ll find flecks of gold in outrageously expensive skincare creams promising to firm your face and erase your wrinkles.

Does it work? Is gold worth its weight or is just a glistening gimmick to attract skincare magpies? Let’s see what science says:

What Is Gold?

Gold is one of the densest of metals. A precious metal, it’s been used historically in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine for centuries to cure arthritis and other ailments.

There are two types of gold used in skincare. Normal gold flakes that do little more than hiking the price tag and colloidal gold. “Colloidal gold refers to gold particles that have been nanosized so that they remain dispersed evenly throughout a solution,” says Paula Begoun. This type of gold seems to have better benefits for your skin:

Gold Benefits For Skin

Joshua Zeichner, the director of clinical and cosmetic dermatology at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City, shares: “Gold skin care may help reduce inflammation, improve the appearance of wrinkles, and brighten dark spots.”

MAY is the key word here. So far, experts are borrowing medical (NOT skincare) studies to tout gold’s horn.

The British Journal of Radiology says gold nanoparticles are emerging as a promising treatment for cancer. It seems it works for rheumatoid arthritis, too.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory disease. Inflammation is one of the main causes of aging. So it makes sense that gold can fight any problems caused by inflammation.

But we don’t know how it does this. Scientists have discovered it helps treats arthritis but don’t know why or how yet.

Some theories propose it works by deactivating the proteins involved in inflammation, while others suggest it’s merely a carrier that helps the active ingredients reach their intended destination.

One study on the effects of gold on rheumatoid arthritis found it can boost collagen production. In theory, that’s a good news. In practice, you have to consider how gold is delivered to your skin.

A few flecks of gold in a moisturiser are unlikely to be enough to firm your skin. What they do, instead, is catch the light and make your face glow. (FYI: a highlighter does the same and is cheaper. 😉 )

THE VERDICT: There’s NO proof that gold has any benefits for your skin yet.

It’s not just my opinion. Dermatologist Mara Weinstein says: “The truth of the matter is we haven’t seen any controlled scientific studies looking at the effects and absorption of gold when used in skin care.”

Struggling to put together a skincare routine that minimises wrinkles, prevents premature aging, and gives your complexion a youthful glow? Download your FREE “Best Anti-Aging Skincare Routine” to get started (it features product recommendations + right application order):

Colloidal Gold Benefits In Skincare

Colloidal gold has more uses in skincare products:

  1. Colorant: In the European Union, gold is an approved colourant under the INCI Name CI 77480. But it can’t be used in this way in the USA.
  2. Delivery enhancer: It helps enhance the delivery of active ingredients (like Vitamin C) into your skin, so they work better and faster.
  3. Preservative: It has mild preservative properties that hep the formula last longer.

Gold Side Effects

Yep. Gold is a common allergen. If you’re allergic to gold jewellery, avoid it in your skincare, too.

What Are The Best Skincare Products With Gold?

I do NOT recommend you spend a lot of money on a product that contains gold. But, if a great product also happens to contain gold, give it a try and see how it works for you. Here are the best skincare products with gold on the market right now:

  • Peter Thomas Roth 24K Gold Mask Pure Luxury Lift & Firm ($85.00): This mask can’t lift and firm skin. It’s just super hydrating and it contains colloidal oatmeal to plump up fine lines and wrinkles and soothe inflammation. Available at Cult Beauty, Dermstore, Peter Thomas Roth, Sephora, and Ulta
  • Revolution Skincare Gold Eye Hydrogel Hydrating Eye Patches with Colloidal Gold (£15.00): These hydrating eye patches plump up crow’s feet and soothe inflammation. Available at Beauty Bay, Boots, Look Fantastic, Revolution Skincare, and Superdrug

The Bottom Line

Get your gold fix from jewellery for now. Gold in skincare may be promising, but those flecks will only give you a beautiful glow. Said that, if you’re curious, opt for products that happen to have gold. If it works, great. If gold is just a fad, you’ll still get the benefits from the other actives in the formula.

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