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An enzyme is a substance which acts as a catalyst to create a specific biochemical reaction. In regards to skincare, enzymes can help produce chemical changes, including breaking down the skin’s keratin proteins, and clearing away dead cells to reveal soft, glowy skin (much like chemical exfoliants). They are also helpful with anti-inflammation, breaking down foreign proteins in the blood that cause it.

We obtain natural digestive enzymes that benefit multiple parts of the body through consuming raw foods that contain them (i.e. pineapples, blueberries papaya) and by using topical products that incorporate these foods.

Bromelain, the enzyme found in pineapples is great for exfoliating skin and ridding it of dead cells. It can also help to unclog pores and reduce irritation. Papain, which is found in papaya, is not only a great source of vitamins B, C, and carotenoids (all of which contribute to healthy, glowing skin), it is also a great exfoliant.

When used properly, enzymes can play a major role in changing the texture and composition of your skin. Uneven skin texture can be the result of excess dead skin cells built up over time and enzymes are the perfect remedy because they gently slough away that build-up without damaging skin in the process.

Pumpkins are packed with fruit enzymes that allow it to treat various issues including enhancing cell turnover, brightening dark spots, and smoothing uneven skin texture. Its levels of vitamin A and C help boost collagen production. One of my go to products is Protective Nourishment Pumpkin Peel which works as both a terrific spot treatment and a mask.

Other great products that utilize the benefits of enzymes include:

MBR Enzyme Cleansing Booster

A combination of gentle and deep-pore-cleansing components, this cleansing booster revitalizes, radiates, and purifies for an even complexion once mixed with lukewarm water. Continuous use will also show refinement of skin’s structure, including a more-balanced hydration.

Sturm Darker Tones Enzyme Cleanser

A foam and enzymic peel all in one, this cleanser also contains vitamin C. When mixed with lukewarm water, it becomes a soft foam that invigorates as well as cleanses. The enzyme peel removes dead and rough skin as well as oil, leaving you with a fresh, radiant appearance.

Meder Masque Enzy-Peel

This mask exfoliates, nourishes, minimizes pores, evens skin tone, and moisturizes. And since it’s gentle and non-irritating, it can be used on both sensitive and oily skin.