Eggs are common ingredients in our diets. If they are not incorporated in cakes or stir fry rice, they are eaten alone as omelets.
However, the use of eggs is not confined to the kitchen only as it can be used as a skincare product. Egg white to be specific is touted to be a beneficial face mask.
It is claimed to reduce excess oil, tighten and tone skin, and provide anti-aging benefits. Read on to find out if these claims are true.
How Many Times a Week?
Supporters of the DIY egg white mask recommend using it once or twice a week. Using the mask daily could strip the skin of its natural oils and cause protein build-up.
Egg White Basics
Egg white, also known as albumen or glaire, is the clear liquid found in an egg. The egg white is responsible for providing proper nutrition to the embryo. It is made up of 90% water and 10% protein. Some of the proteins found in the egg white are albumins, globulins, and mucoproteins.
Egg White Face Mask Benefits
Egg white is popularly used in facial masks because of purported benefits such as;
- Improved skin hydration
- Temporary skin plumping
- Destruction of acne-causing bacteria
- Facial hair removal
- Blackhead removal
- Wrinkle reduction
- Detoxifies the skin
- Reduced skin oiliness
- Lightens and brightens skin
Does Science Support These Claims?
Although beauty hack gurus swear by egg white masks, we cannot take their word for it. Scientific studies agree that egg whites;
Can treat acne
According to a study conducted in Our Lady of Fatima University, respondents agreed that egg whites were effective in treating their acne. Egg whites reduce skin oiliness which in turn prevents appearance of pimples and cysts. Egg whites also contain lysozyme enzymes which destroy acne-causing bacteria.
Can improve skin hydration
Dr. Marie V. Hayag, a dermatologist in Manhattan, claims that egg whites have moisturizing properties. According to her, the proteins present in egg whites work as humectants thus binding moisture to the skin. For that reason, fine lines and wrinkles may be temporarily plumped up.
Can lighten and brighten skin
In a study by Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine, patients with burn wounds were placed under ointment-based egg white to support healing. The study concluded that the burn wounds improved in terms of wound depth and surrounding skin color.
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What This Mask Can’t Do
However, this mask cannot improve shrink or tighten pores as claimed by some blogs. Pores do not have muscles at their openings to allow this shrinking or tightening process.
Potential Risks Associated with Using Egg Whites
- Salmonella infection- raw eggs may contain salmonella which if accidentally ingested can cause infection. To avoid this ensure to use pasteurized eggs only.
- Allergic reactions- if you are allergic to egg whites, chances are applying it topically will also cause severe itchiness, hives, or breathing difficulties.
- Skin irritation- regardless of whether you are allergic to egg white or not, you may develop skin irritation after using this mask. It may appear in form of redness, mild itching, or bumps.
- Secondary infection- if you have recent cuts or wounds, raw eggs could cause secondary infection.
- Surface contamination- when applying egg white mask, you may contaminate surfaces such as sinks and counters. If not careful, you may put others at risk of getting infected.