The benefits of white willow

Did you know that aspirin is formulated with transformed salicylic acid, and that salicylic acid is the major active ingredient in white willow? It was in the 19th century that it was isolated and synthesized to enter into the composition of aspirin. But willow bark was known at least since Antiquity for its healing properties, and Hippocrates already recommended it to relieve pain and fevers!

On the cosmetic side, white willow is not to be outdone, since its extract, obtained from the leaves of Salix alba, has very interesting antioxidant and soothing properties.

A white willow in summer

White willow extract protects skin and hair from oxidative stress

White willow extract has antioxidant properties. Indeed, the leaves of the tree are particularly rich in phenolic compounds such as flavonoids and phenolic acids. They are capable of directly neutralizing free radicals, reactive species derived from oxygen or even oxidized lipids damaging cell membranes. These molecules thus inhibit oxidative stress, which induces cell and tissue damage, thus accelerating the mechanisms of skin aging.

White willow extract helps soothe irritated skin

Thanks to its salicylic acid content, white willow regulates the inflammatory response, particularly in the case of acne, which allows it to help soothe skin irritations.

What cosmetic uses for white willow extract?

Thanks to its antioxidant and soothing properties, white willow extract is a very interesting active ingredient in skin care: anti-aging range and care for oily skin and skin with imperfections.

Bibliographic references

  • Bassino et al., “Pleiotropic Effects of White Willow Bark and 1,2-Decanediol on Human Adult Keratinocytes,” Skin Pharmacology and Physiology 31, no. 1 (2018): 10-18, https://doi.org/10.1159/000481690 .
  • Kanlayavattanakul and Lourith, “Therapeutic Agents and Herbs in Topical Application for Acne Treatment: Therapeutic Agents and Herbs in Topical Application for Acne Treatment,” International Journal of Cosmetic Science 33, no. 4 (August 2011): 289-97, https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2494.2011.00647.x .
  • Piatczak et al., “Identification and Accumulation of Phenolic Compounds in the Leaves and Bark of Salix Alba (L.) and Their Biological Potential,” Biomolecules 10, no. 10 (September 29, 2020), https://doi.org/10.3390/biom10101391 .
  • Tegelberg et al., “Dry-Air Drying at Room Temperature – a Practical Pre-Treatment Method of Tree Leaves for Quantitative Analyzes of Phenolics?,” Phytochemical Analysis 29, no. 5 (September 2018): 493-99, https://doi.org/10.1002/pca.2755 .