There’s no underestimating the power of nature. From miracle medicines to unparalleled health aids, some of the most incredible ingredients around are products of the plants, flowers, herbs, seeds, nuts, and berries that cover the globe, and skin care is no exception. There’s more demand than ever for clean beauty right now, but it can be difficult to know which botanicals are actually worthwhile. “Everything we use medically was, at some point, derived from some kind of botanical ingredient, but there are so many now, and it’s not like the weed growing off the parasite of the dandelion in your backyard is going to be the miracle cure for all your skin ailments,” says Dr. Shereene Idriss, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City.
Botanicals should have a place in every skin-care routine. “They’re nature’s pharmacy,” says Beverly Hills, California, board-certified dermatologist Dr. Ava Shamban. But choosing which of these ingredients to introduce to your skin is about knowing both their legitimacy as actives and the benefits they can offer. “It really depends on what you’re looking to do and to achieve,” Dr. Shamban explains. “When harnessed in the right way though, they can do serious wonders for our skin.”