black background with bananas with title "Do Banana Peels Really Help Acne Scars?"

Do Banana Peels Really Help Acne Scars?

There has been a huge increase in the amount of DIY skincare products that people have tried to cure their acne and acne scarring. While some of these homemade treatments have some potential, many of them will have no effect on the skin. This could be due to low penetration of ingredients, abrasive home treatments, or irritating homemade products. There has been some debate on the use of banana peels for acne scars – Let’s see what science has to say about this DIY scar treatment. 

What Happens If You Rub a Banana Peel On Your Face?

Rubbing a banana peel on your face may actually make the skin irritated.

The friction caused by rubbing can cause redness and inflammation. This can actually lead to acne mechanica, which is a type of acne caused by friction.

In terms of the chemical makeup of a banana peel, your skin may also react to the enzymes present in the banana peel.

This reaction could be good or bad depending on your skin sensitivity.

The skin of the banana contains a wide variety of substances. These include tannins and glycosides. Glycosides can be used as a humectant. Tannins are natural antioxidants.

While these can be beneficial to the skin, the effectiveness of these ingredients when using a banana peel may not be worthwhile. In addition, these substances may not effectively penetrate the skin to have any lasting effects. 

Research Behind Using Banana Peel For Acne Scars

Surprisingly, there is some research on using a banana peel on skin.

In one particular study, a small portion from a type of banana called “lady finger bananas” was extracted in Thailand.

This extraction was used on cells in vitro. This means that this experiment was done in a lab (a controlled setting) and not on a live person.

Regardless, the results seemed positive – The substances in the banana peel were shown to inhibit melanin production.

Melanin is responsible for the pigmentation of the skin. The banana peel did this by inhibiting tyrosinase activity. Tyrosinase is an enzyme that helps convert the amino acid tyrosine into melanin. Therefore, using a banana peel may have whitening properties on the skin.

It was even shown to inhibit melanin production more than Kojic acid, which is used in cosmetics for its lightening effects.

The downside of this experiment is that the banana peel was carefully handled, and the portion used was carefully extracted with chemicals and temperature changes. This would not be applicable in everyday situations. 

Another study explored the relationship between consumption of banana peels and its benefits on the body.

Since banana peels contain antioxidants and phenolic compounds, they can have a positive effect on the skin. It can also provide vitamin A to the body.

The downside to this? Getting anyone to eat the skin of a banana would be pretty difficult. In addition, this study does not suggest that banana peels should be used topically, but rather orally. 

Treatments for Acne Scarring

There are a few well-researched ways to help diminish acne scarring that will likely provide better results than using a banana peel.

1. Chemical Exfoliants

Chemical Exfoliants like lactic acid and glycolic acid can provide exfoliation of dead skin cells. They promote the production of collagen and help to smooth out the skin. Making your way to a dermatologist’s office can provide you with higher percentages of these exfoliants for faster results.

2. Retinoids

Retinoids penetrate deeply into the skin to stimulate collagen production and improve skin elasticity. It is an exfoliator and can help improve the look of indented acne scars and textured skin

3. Microneedling

girl in dermatologist's office getting microneedling done for acne scars

If you have time to take a trip to a medical office that provides microneedling, it may be well worth it. This procedure stimulates collagen production for quick results. It smooths out the look of acne scars by increasing blood flow and encouraging skin healing.

While banana peels may seem like an easily accessible solution to your issues of acne scarring – It isn’t well researched, may end up irritating your skin, and it may give you no results. Shift your focus to well-researched options instead.

References

Effect of Sucrier Banana Peel Extracts on Inhibition of Melanogenesis through the ERK Signaling Pathway – PMC (nih.gov)

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