Fresh, juicy fruits don’t just have to be a treat for your tastebuds. There are so many tropical fruits out there which can also do wonders for your skin. This includes papaya (also known as pawpaw), a fleshy fruit that’s native to Central and South America.

As well as having a sweet flavour and an excellent orange colour, papaya is packed with nutrients which are great for the entire body – including your skin!

Papaya benefits for skin

Whether you’re after younger-looking skin or want to reduce redness caused by acne, papaya could be for you. Here are just some of the reasons you might want to add it to your beauty regime.

Papaya is rich in antioxidants

Papaya is rich in several antioxidants, including lycopene, which can help reduce damage to the skin cells that are typically caused by free radicals. Skin that is less damaged tends to look smoother and younger, meaning papaya may help slow down the overall ageing process, too.1

Papaya is full of helpful enzymes

Papaya is often eaten for its digestive benefits which are attributed to the unique enzymes it contains. These same enzymes (namely papain and chymopapain) may be able to bring down sensitvity on the surface of the skin. These can also aid in removing dead skin cells which can clog up your pores and cause skin concerns.2

Papaya is a fantastic source of vitamin A

Papaya is a natural source of vitamin A, an essential nutrient which the body needs to maintain the skin, eyes, and immune system.3

When it comes to the complexion, vitamin A (in the form of retinol) can help stimulate new skin cells. This, in turn, will make your skin appear smoother and less dry. Papaya extract has long been used in skincare products which are designed to hydrate or minimise the appearance of scarring and stretch marks.

Ways to use papaya for your skin

If you’re sold on the benefits of papaya for the skin, why not use it to help nourish and soothe your face or body? Here’s how:

Make a papaya face mask

Combine one cup of mashed papaya with two tablespoons of honey (a natural antibacterial).4 Apply to face and neck. Leave for 15-20 minutes before washing off with warm or cold water.5

Whip up your own papaya body scrub

Blend a spoonful of papaya flesh with some papaya seeds and a little olive oil to create an exfoliating scrub for the whole body.6

Let your skin glow with a papaya facial

Another potential papaya-based mask you can create at home in minutes uses an equally as beneficial ingredient – turmeric! Mash some papaya with a little powdered turmeric and apply to the skin for 20 minutes to achieve a natural-looking glow.7

Buy a natural beauty product containing papaya

Papaya’s bounty of benefits has made it a go-to ingredient for many skincare brands. Check the backs of bottles to see if they contain papaya extract.

Browse our full range of natural skincare products to discover options which have been enriched with fantastic papaya extract. This includes P’URE Papaya Renew Cream, which is 100% natural and perfect for soothing dry or sensitive skin. Shop Natural Skincare

Expertly reviewed by:

Last updated: 30 November 2020

Manisha Taggar

Author: Manisha Taggar, Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate

Joined Holland & Barrett: May 2019

BSc Hons in Pharmaceutical & Cosmetic Science

Manisha started her career at a Cosmetics distributor as a Regulatory Technologist followed by a Regulatory Affairs Officer, ensuring the regulatory compliance of cosmetic products from colour cosmetics to skincare.

After 3 and half years in this role, Manisha joined Holland & Barrett as a Senior Regulatory Affairs Associate in 2019.

Manisha specialises in Cosmetic products, both own-label and branded lines, ensuring that these products and all relating marketing material comply to the EU Cosmetics Regulation.