You are currently viewing Everything you need to know about nutricosmetics

Everything you need to know about nutricosmetics

True beauty comes from within – especially with nutricosmetics, a new breed of supplements designed to nourish your skin, hair and nails from the inside out. Here’s everything you need to know about the latest beauty trend. 

Far more than just a marketing catchphrase, the concept of ‘beauty from within’ has gained traction in the last few years. No longer is beauty just about what you put on your skin; it’s about what you put into your body, too.  

With an increasing interest in health and wellness, and a shift towards skin-friendly diets, people are looking for new ways to boost their beauty routines – so it’s no surprise that there’s been a notable influx in the ingestible beauty supplement industry. From gummies that promise long, shiny hair and strong nails to collagen-packed drinks and powders, there’s always something new to try.   

But with such an overwhelming number of products on the market, where should you begin? To help you better understand the benefits of these glow-giving consumables, we break down the basics of nutricosmetics, from what they do to what ingredients to look out for. 

So, what are nutricosmetics? 

‘Nutricosmetics’ refers to the fusion of nutrition and cosmetics, a trend that has surged in popularity as more and more individuals seek holistic approaches to skincare and beauty, recognising the profound impact of internal well-being on external radiance”, explains Nicole Sherwin, the founder and director of Eco Diva Natural Superfood Skincare.  

Designed to nourish from within, the resulting beauty potions can come in the form of pills, powders, liquids and functional foods. They’re usually bursting with Mother Nature’s finest active ingredients, minerals and nutrients, resulting in gorgeous skin, hair and nails. 

How do they work?  

Of course, a solid skincare routine, a well-rounded diet and a balanced lifestyle form the foundation for everything from shiny hair to glowing skin… but a supplement can provide a targeted boost. The logic is that by feeding the skin from the inside (with ingredients absorbed in the gut and delivered via the blood to the skin) there should be a more obvious and longer-lasting effect showing on the outside – more so than what can be achieved by only applying various creams and lotions.  

“This holistic approach addresses skin-, hair-, and overall beauty concerns, promoting cellular repair, collagen synthesis, and protection against oxidative stress, resulting in a radiant and youthful appearance of your skin,” explains Nicole. 

The benefits of nutricosmetics  

While topical skincare such as serums and moisturisers are still important, incorporating ingestible beauty into your routine enables you to feed your skin from within – thus complementing and optimising your current beauty routine.

Harnessing the power of vitamins, minerals and superfood ingredients, these products are able to address nutritional deficiencies, provide the nutrients required to maintain a healthy rate of skin renewal, and protect your skin from environmental stressors that cause premature signs of ageing.  

While scientific research on nutricosmetics is ongoing, there are several exciting benefits attributed to their use, which Nicole highlights:  

  • Cellular protection and antioxidant support
  • Collagen production 
  • Hydration and moisture retention 
  • UV protection 
  • Inflammation reduction
  • Skin brightening 
  • Wound healing 
  • Long-term skin health

How are nutricosmetics different from other vitamins? 

“Nutricosmetics are categorised as dietary supplements or as functional foods. They are designed to promote and enhance the health of skin and hair, as well as overall appearance. They’re often marketed as a combination of nutrients, antioxidants, and bio-active compounds that provide beauty benefits when taken orally,” explains Nicole. “On the other hand, vitamins are essential nutrients that are required by the body in small amounts to maintain normal physiological functions.”

Edwin Govender, Registered Pharmacist and Lead Formulator of supplements developed by Neurologica SA and Torus Health Care, adds that, “Regular vitamins give your body many different nutrients for good health, while nutricosmetics are targeted to enhancing your skin, hair, and nails.”  

When it comes to choosing quality nutricosmetics, Edwin highlights the importance of making informed choices: “Check for scientific evidence, scrutinise the ingredients, and aim for high-quality products for optimum results.” 

Nutrients to look out for in your nutricosmetics  

“Good skin care really starts in the gut. Having a balanced gut microbiome makes all the difference in the world to get truly healthy, glowing skin,” says Nicole. Many experts agree that while there is no such thing as a miracle pill or powder for any ‘skin glow’ shortcut, there are certain ingredients that are known to play essential roles in skin functions and overall health: 

Key to the skin’s structure and elasticity, collagen is the powerful protein that makes up most of our largest organs. Unfortunately, as you age, your collagen production slows down and supplementing your diet with more could help repair your skin, hair and nails. 

Hyaluronic acid
Oral forms of HA have also been shown to support skin hydration, making it plumper and more even-toned. 

Vitamins A, B, C and E all play a vital role in skin health. Vitamin A promotes faster cell turnover, Vitamin B has both anti-ageing and anti-inflammatory properties, while Vitamin C contributes to collagen formation and its antioxidant status (just like Vitamin E) can help to protect and balance your skin. 

Calcium and magnesium
These essential minerals are vital when it comes to supporting your bones, teeth and overall well-being, as well as protecting your skin from external damage. 

Turmeric is a potent anti-inflammatory agent and immune booster, and is known for its glow-giving abilities.  

Probiotics are extremely beneficial in restoring and maintaining the balance of your gut, which is important if you want your body to function at its peak, your skin to look its best and your immune system to be at its strongest. 

Take note
Not all supplements are equal, so it’s best to read labels and be informed. Remember that supplements are just that – an addition to a healthy diet and not a substitute for eating well. Unlike topical skincare, nutricosmetics aren’t a quick fix but a sustainable long term solution, and should ideally become part of your daily skin and beauty routine along with your other skin-, hair and nail care products.  

Many supplements contain active ingredients that can have strong effects on the body, so if you’re not sure which to take, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider or dermatologist before taking beauty supplements of any kind. 


Words by: Leila Petersen 

Photography: Shutterstock

Subscribe to: