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licorice root extract
Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract

Plant extract known for its brightening, anti-inflammatory, and hyperpigmentation-fading properties.

Type of Ingredient


Why we use it

Derived from the same plant that gives licorice candy its flavor, licorice root extract has been used for thousands of years, starting in ancient Egypt, Greece, and China. In treating certain skin conditions, licorice extract performs on par with corticosteroids, making this humble plant extract a true skincare superstar.

What it’s in

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Licorice root extract has a huge range of positive properties for the skin: anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, hyperpigmentation-fighting, soothing, and calming.

Perhaps its best-studied effect on the skin is its ability to fade hyperpigmentation, which are dark spots of melanin caused by irritation, inflammation, or hormones. (Think sun spots, or the dark spots left behind by healed blemishes.) Licorice root extract inhibits an enzyme called tyrosinase, which is crucial in the skin’s production of melanin. By interfering with this enzyme, licorice root stops your skin from making too much melanin, thereby helping to fade the melanin deposits that cause dark spots.

In addition, multiple studies have demonstrated licorice root extract’s ability to reduce inflammation and suppress inflammatory activity. This is due to the presence of several types of chalcones present in licorice root extract called “licochalcones”, which have been found to reduce the concentration of inflammatory markers in the skin.

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