For some people, surgical nips and tucks are ideal for keeping their youthful looks. But here, at Modern Aging, we prefer to go the natural route. From exercise and breathing to mushrooms and CBD, we are all in when it comes to growing older, healthier, wiser, and better naturally. So, it should come as no surprise that we are big fans of anti-aging Ayurvedic herbs.
A Note About Anti-Aging
Although the term anti-aging is popular (and for the purposes of this article we will use that term since that is what most people are familiar with), it doesn’t sit very well with us. Since we can’t do much to prevent aging, we prefer to age well. And that means feeling and looking our best naturally. So, we are pro-aging, but aging well and feeling fabulous as we do it. And Ayurvedic medicine and herbs support that mindset.
Definition of Ayurveda
A quick and simple definition is a traditional 5,000+ year old Hindu system of medicine used to live in harmony with the universe. It’s about balancing the mind, body, and spirit using nutrition, herbs, yoga, massage, and breathing with a holistic approach.
In Sanskrit, ayus means life, and veda means science or knowledge. So in other words, Ayurveda is the science of life.
How Can Ayurveda Reverse Aging?
More than 200 Ayurveda herbs are thought to support and enhance healthy skin. Some of these anti-aging herbs have antioxidants that impede the growth of free radicals in the body. Free radicals damage cells and cause premature aging, so anything that inhibits their progress is a bonus.
Other herbs are anti-inflammatory and anti-stress superstars.
Here is the list of the best anti-aging Ayurvedic herbs to give your skin that healthy boost it so deserves.
So, let’s get herby…
Anti-Aging Ayurvedic Herbs
- Turmeric (Ayurvedic name: haridra)
There is a reason turmeric is found in every Indian kitchen, and it’s not just for flavor. In fact, it has a very mild flavor which means you can toss a little into a lot of dishes. Of course, meals like curry are full of turmeric, but add it to sauces, stews, dressings, and mayo to brighten up a sandwich.
Just be careful because it turns everything yellow, including your fingertips, countertops and clothing.
The primary compound in turmeric is curcumin—a total powerhouse known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which in turn leads to anti-aging. Curcumin fights free radicals and damage caused by the sun’s harmful rays.
If there is one herb you can easily incorporate into your daily nutrition, it’s definitely turmeric.
- Giloy (also knowns as guduchi)
In Hindi, the plant is known as a heavenly elixir that keeps celestial beings from aging and eternally young.
In Sanskrit, it translates to the root of immortality. So, giloy has clearly made a name for itself.
The leaves have significant anti-inflammatory properties to revive your skin, fight inflammation and keep it firm.
There are a few ways to get giloy into your daily skincare routine. You can juice the leaves and stem if you have a plant. Otherwise, look for a powder you can make into a mask with honey or aloe.
- Moringa (Ayurvedic name: shigru)
Moringa is showing up more and more in natural skin care lines.
It’s rich in vitamins C and E, which boost collagen and reduce fine lines and sagging skin. Vitamin C is known to fade dark spots and pigmentation. And its anti-bacterial properties can help reduce acne marks. Additionally, it is emollient and super nourishing.
Moringa can be eaten, but unless you have a tree, it’s probably easier to find in an oil.
Gotu-kola is another big hitter of an anti-aging Ayurvedic herb. It’s high in amino acids, beta carotene, fatty acids, phytochemicals and flavonoids that protect the skin. It also boosts collagen production. That’s why it is a powerhouse.
Gotu-kola can be found in serums, creams, balms and even tablets. It is also good for hair loss as it increases circulation, boosting oxygen and nutrients to the scalp.
- Neem (Ayurvedic name: nimba)
Neem is another showstopper of an anti-aging Ayurvedic herb.
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- High levels of antioxidants
- Vitamin E
- Anti-microbial compounds
- Essential fatty acids
Those goodies help increase cell turnover and stimulate collagen production over time. In addition, the fatty acids increase moisture absorption making neem an anti-aging wizard.
Neem oil can be massaged into the skin. Or, if you can get your hands on the leaves and flowers, they can be stir-fried with your veggies and rice.
- Eucalyptus (Ayurvedic name: taila parni)
The leaves of the eucalyptus are an incredible source of flavonoids, which are antioxidants and protect skin from those dastardly free radicals. They also help maintain collagen levels to slow the formation of fine lines and wrinkles. That superset duo of benefits keeps your skin looking like a youthful 20-year-old!
However, eucalyptus has a powerful scent. If you have sensitive skin, give it a pass. Just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it’s suitable for everyone. If you want to give it a go, use a drop of the oil and do a patch test before slathering it all over your face.
- Myrobalan (Ayurvedic name: haritaki)
Myrobalan is cultivated from the berries of a terminalia chebula tree. It is also known as Indian walnut or Indian hog plum. It’s been taking the western skincare world by storm since it came on the scene. However, it’s been a go-to Ayurvedic herb for a millennia.
Haritaki is a natural toner, so it flushes toxins from the skin. It hunts out the free radicals and reduces oxidative damage. It also corrects aging by evening skin tone, smoothing, firming, and brightening.
Serums are the easiest way to apply myrobalan, but it is also found in creams, so choose the best product for your skin.
- Indian Ginseng (Ayurvedic name: ashwagandha)
We are big fans of ashwagandha for its hormonal balancing properties. And now we love it even more. It boosts rapid cell regeneration, which delays the signs of aging. Cell turnover means firm and dewy skin, so ashwagandha for the overall win!
The whole plant can be used, so find a formula that works best for you. For example, try a serum, oil, or powder that can be made into a mask.
- Ginseng, not the same as Indian ginseng or ashwagandha
When skin is exposed to pollution or the sun, free radicals accumulate. Ginseng has phytochemicals that stimulate the skin’s metabolism and protects it from damage. That’s why ginseng is so prevalent in Korean skincare.
You can find ginseng in many skincare forms—serums, moisturizers, eye creams, and masks.
- Amla (Amalaki)
Amla is a power-packed anti-aging Ayurvedic fruit loaded with Vitamin C and antioxidants. Even though it’s not an herb per se, it had to be included on this list because it’s so good for your skin.
It promotes healthy skin and slows the signs of aging as it tightens and boosts your glowy self. In addition, vitamin C is known to brighten and fade any brown spots or pigmentation.
The fruit is super tangy and citrusy, and you can eat it in its natural form. Or you can juice it with some honey to sweeten the pot. Otherwise, you can find it in every imaginable skincare form, from serums to powders.
It’s also known as Indian gooseberry.
- Tulsi, also called holy basil
Tulsi has a lot of wonderous assets and is known as an anti-aging Ayurvedic herb for longevity. Tulsi means the incomparable one in Sanskrit and is a skin-friendly superfood.
For starters, it’s full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Both do wonders for your skin. Additionally, it is adaptogenic, meaning it can help balance the body to help it better adapt to stress.
You can cook with the leaves, make tea, or juice them. Or opt for creams, serums and oils to add topically to your face.
The Last Leaf
These 11 anti-aging Ayurvedic herbs are the cream of the crop powerhouse plants. But don’t use them all at once. Instead, start slowly with one at a time so you know what works for your skin and what doesn’t.
Want to learn more about Ayurveda and its benefits for the body? Check out our health resources here.