A lit­tle in­dul­gence over the hol­i­days never hurt any­body, but in­cor­po­rat­ing caviar and other tempt­ing in­gre­di­ents like co­coa and sugar into your skin­care reg­i­men can grant beau­ti­ful ben­e­fits. Jayne Ash­ley Heaton re­ports.

S/ - - BEAUTY -

Nu­tri­tion, we know, plays an im­por­tant role in the state of our skin. We can of­ten see this re­flected in the glow emit­ted by the most health-con­scious peo­ple among us—you know the ones: their skin is dewy and flaw­less, and they look years younger than their birth cer­tifi­cate states. But cos­met­ics com­pa­nies are tak­ing an ex­tra step, har­ness­ing these ed­i­ble com­pounds, and ap­ply­ing them to the skin through creams, serums, and more. And yes, of course we still need to eat well to look and feel our best, but if the ic­ing on the cake of great skin is the ic­ing-like tex­ture of the lat­est lip balm or body scrub, we will gladly slather it on, thanky­ou­very­much.

Caviar—be­fore the salt-cur­ing process en­dured by the roe we nib­ble be­tween sips of cham­pagne—is ac­tu­ally quite good for us. It’s packed with vi­ta­mins, min­er­als, pro­tein, and omega-3 fatty acids that, when ap­plied to the skin in our cos­met­ics, can help boost its elas­tic­ity, and pro­tec­tive bar­rier. Lux­ury skin care brand La Prairie, boasts caviar ex­tract from the Baerii stur­geon, as the star in­gre­di­ent in its Skin Caviar and White Caviar lines, and ex­plains that the ex­tract has been shown to boost the skin’s pro­duc­tion of ce­ramides—an im­por­tant lipid com­po­nent that makes up the skin’s out­er­most layer—by a whop­ping 25 per cent, boost­ing its ap­pear­ance, and its re­siliency. That outer layer is, after all, the bar­rier be­tween our com­plex­ions and ex­ter­nal ag­gres­sors.

Skin­care, thank­fully, gives our less-thanhealthy in­dul­gences a chance at re­demp­tion. We wouldn’t ex­actly con­sider choco­late a health food (though we cling to any news that a daily square of dark might be guilt-free), we’ll gladly bathe in its key in­gre­di­ents. Co­coa’s high flavonoid con­cen­tra­tion of­fers a pro­tec­tive an­tiox­i­dant shield, its co­coa but­ter is the ul­ti­mate hy­dra­tor, and sugar—a nat­u­ral humec­tant—locks in mois­ture. Fresh has re­cently launched a rich choco­laty body scrub that in­cludes crushed co­coa beans for ex­fo­li­a­tion, and a sugar-in­fused lip treat­ment to keep win­ter skin at its best. And while a post­din­ner espresso habit (paired with that daily dark choco­late square?) might rob its sip­per of beauty sleep, the beans them­selves work won­ders on the body. Rad­i­cal Skin­care uses cof­fee seed ex­tract in many of its for­mu­la­tions, which has been shown to im­prove col­la­gen lev­els in the skin. The high con­cen­tra­tion of caf­feine con­tained in the cof­fee also boost cir­cu­la­tion, which, used in an eye cream, can help to im­prove dark cir­cles and re­duce puffi­ness.

So when the hol­i­days spark those in­evitable crav­ings for sin­ful treats, de­tour to your beauty cabi­net and in­dulge with­out a morsel of guilt. And then, maybe, go and have that square of dark choco­late and a taste of caviar, too.

La Prairie Skin Caviar Luxe Cream in Lim­it­edEdi­tion Bac­carat Crys­tal Caviar Spec­tac­u­laire, $2,500.

Fresh Co­coa Body Ex­fo­liant, $54, and Fresh Sugar Nour­ish­ing Lip Balm Ad­vanced Ther­apy, $35.

Rad­i­cal Eye Re­vive Crème, $135.

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