Well it seems we’ve found the fountain of youth, right here in our backyard! We’re talking about Kakadu plum of course, the world’s richest source of Vitamin C which is pretty impressive considering we’re talking about one single fruit. It’s exploded in popularity for skin and hair care recently so we’re taking a deep dive on this super fruit ingredient.
Where Does Kakadu Plum Grow?
The Kakadu plum, also known as the billygoat plum or green plum, is a small almond-size fruit that’s native to the northern Australia outback. It takes less than five years for a tree to bear fruit from a seed in the Kimberly region, Arnhem Land and Kakadu National Park. Growing in the harsh Australian climate the yellow and green fruit produces powerful antioxidants that protect itself from heat, drought, flood and sun exposure.
Interest in Australian native ingredients has meant the fruit has gone viral, giving Indigenous communities the opportunity to create business on Country. With it growing in some of the most inaccessible areas of Australia, the fruit is handpicked from March to May by Aboriginals who draw on generations of traditional knowledge when it comes to caring for the land and this flowering plant.
Is Kakadu Plum A Superfood?
Kakadu plum is a super antioxidant that has amazing benefits for your hair, nails and skin. It has some of the highest recorded levels of Vitamin C of any fruit in the world as well as containing antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, potassium and dietary fibre.
Traditionally, the fruit was eaten raw as part of the Aboriginal diet but their flavor is a little on the sour side. These days you can get Kakadu plum that’s been freeze dried and crushed into a concentrated powder as a nutritional supplement. Due to its strength, you only need 1g of freeze dried Kakadu plum powder to match the Vitamin C content found in an entire orange. Oh and before we forget, it also has the same amount of folate and iron as broccoli, now that’s what we call edible beauty.
What Is Kakadu Plum Used For?
This vitamin bomb has been wild harvested by First Nations people for tens of thousands of years where it was used as a traditional medicine to boost the immune system, treat ailments like skin inflammation, soothe aching limbs and bug bites, and rid headaches and colds. The leaves and inner bark from the Kakadu plum tree were also boiled in hot water as a bush tea to relax and help the digestive system. How does that age old saying go, a plum a day will keep the doctor away?
This Top End wonder is now commonly used in cosmetics as it can reduce the skin’s inflammatory response to light which helps dark spots, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and overall dullness. This leaves you with a balanced skin tone so you’re glowing with radiance and luminosity!
What Are The Benefits Of Kakadu Plum?
The humble orange can move right over because there’s a new kid on the block called Kakadu plum. It contains 55 times more Vitamin C than an orange with Kakadu plum containing 3700 mg of Vitamin C per 100g, talk about an overachiever! Your body doesn’t naturally produce or store Vitamin C so it’s essential that you regularly get it from other sources, such as your diets and skincare. It’s a necessary component in the building blocks of collagen which increases skin suppleness while also improving iron absorption and heart health, boosting immunity, reducing oxidant stress and encouraging cognitive function.
A single Kakadu plum also has five times the amount of antioxidants found in blueberries so it plays an important role in protecting your skin from environmental damage, such as UV radiation and pollution. When used in skincare it helps fight free radical damage by supporting your skin’s natural regeneration process to help your body repair damaged skin cells that can lead to fine lines and other signs of aging. It’s thought that free radicals often cause oxidative stress in the body too which can increase the risk of developing health conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Just to top it off it’s also packed with ellagic acid which is a powerful antioxidant that contains anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and prebiotic properties.
What Does Kakadu Plum Extract Do For Skin?
We’ve mentioned what a winner Vitamin C is for the body but we’ll let you in on another secret, it’s one of the top anti-ageing ingredients you can apply to your skin. Kakadu plum contains ellagic acid which sounds scary but actually plays a huge role in your skin health and collagen production thanks to it putting a halt on wrinkles and inflammation from UV exposure. It works to increase skin elasticity and firmness through collagen synthesis where Vitamin C is the essential factor for two important enzymes:
- Prolyl hydroxylase which balances the collagen molecule.
- Lysyl hydroxylase which provides structural strength.
As an anti-aging treatment you can see why it’s one of our favourite ingredients! If you want to add a little more to your diet you can also get ellagic acid from strawberries, almonds and walnuts.
Your skin is your body’s first line of defense so homegrown Kakadu plum can help restore your skin’s natural barrier that protects it from harmful toxins. The active nutrient ellagic acid gets to work by putting the brakes on melanogenesis which reduces pigmentation and dark spots. Its anti-inflammatory properties are also useful when you’re trying to treat psoriasis, eczema and rosacea. Overall it improves your skin texture and renews your complexion which will leave your skin feeling nourished and restored so it appears more supple and youthful.
How To Add Kakadu Plum To Your Skincare Routine
Although you’re probably getting enough Vitamin C in your diet, there’s no way to guarantee it’s going straight to your skin. Vitamin C can be as unstable as Rachel and Ross’ relationship so being sensitive to light and air means it can break down quickly. This makes it best used in facial oils and serums, like esmi’s Pomegranate Brightening Serum and Sunrise Skin Energising Acai Duo, as these products tend to be absorbed more deeply into the skin thanks to how lightweight they are.
We’re not beating around the bush when it comes to adding Kakadu plum to Sun Skill’s sunscreen because your skin is the most exposed organ you have. Kakadu plum has developed a natural resistance to the harsh effects of the sun that can be passed on to your skin, giving you an SPF-booster against harmful UV rays. The natural ellagic acid properties also prevent UVB rays from destroying collagen while putting a stop to the enzyme tyrosinase which is the first step in melanin production. Our Sun Skills for ALL SPF 50+ face and body sunscreen is formulated with enriching vitamin E and native Kakadu plum to protect against free radicals while high aloe vera content boosts hydration and moisturisation, perfect for the whole family. The lightweight and fast-absorbing sunscreen leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth, drying without a white cast for a natural finish that makes it ideal for daily use.
Is Kakadu Plum Good For Acne?
If Kakadu plum extract is formulated in your cosmetics, it can make all the difference when it comes to healing post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and brightening your skin. Gallic and ellagic acid are two polyphenols that have antibacterial properties which can work to reduce redness and remove acne-causing bacteria while calming and hydrating your skin. The high concentration of Vitamin C means it can combat acne scarring with its brightening and anti-aging properties which makes it an ideal ingredient for your favourite everyday SPF.