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Reasons why papaya enzyme is the latest miracle worker in skincare

While recent times have seen a major shift towards people incorporating a consistent skincare routine in their daily lives, an equally paramount shift has also been welcomed towards harnessing the power of natural ingredients in our skincare products more than ever. Since, turning towards their kitchen to DIY their skin care isn’t a cakewalk for everybody, a lot of people tend to indulge themselves in products that are packed with the goodness of those natural ingredients. One such component that, as the headline suggests, works like a miracle for our skin is papaya.

Papaya is a powerhouse of nutrients that possesses umpteen benefits for our skin, hair and entire body in general. It is already emerging as an essential ingredient in an array of skincare products that are infused with the concoction of the fruit’s extracts and mostly its enzyme, papain.

What are the benefits of using papaya enzyme on skin?

Papaya is a superfood that’s rich in magnesium, potassium, minerals and vitamins like A, B and C which together contribute to its high efficacy and benefits. Furthermore, the papaya enzyme, papain, is a proteolytic enzyme that helps in the breakdown of skin protein to help rid our skin of the dead and damaged skin cells. It is extracted from papaya leaf, bark and fruit and is a major component in skin products for all the benefits that it embraces.

Papain has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that help in treating acne and preventing breakouts. This is one reason why it is present in a lot of exfoliants and cleansers as they reduce acne by removing the pore-clogging dead skin cells. Because it comprises AHAs as well, it also helps in diminishing blemishes and pigmentation that occurs after breakouts.

The papaya enzyme also reduces signs of ageing by working as a great anti-wrinkle treatment stimulated by the presence of antioxidants like lycopene and vitamin C. Because it works as an exfoliator, it removes dead skin and flaky patches from your skin leaving it glowing, bright and healthy-looking.

Since papaya helps in reducing pigmentation and dark spots, it also aids in the treatment of Melasma, a skin disease that causes dark patches on the skin. According to a study, papain also plays an effective role in healing skin wounds.

And now that you’re aware of the impact of the papaya enzyme in skin care, let’s go through our list consisting of some amazing products enriched with papaya.

Here are some products with the goodness of papaya enzyme

(Hero & Featured Image Courtesy: Alleksana/Pexels)

A gentle, versatile serum made for a great base to any mosturiser or cosmetics product, the Malaysian-made skin rejuvenator is enhanced with papain, alongside other proven effective naturally derived ingredients such as goji extract and vitamin C, to help peel away dead skin cells and return the shine to your skin.

Apply a couple of dollops onto a clean, dry face, even it out and let it absorb into the skin naturally, before layering on other skincare products.

Image: Courtesy Lavish Cosmetics

A gentle exfoliator that’s non-abrasive, the Elemis Papaya Enzyme Peel helps in removing dead skin cells without any need for hard physical exfoliation. It’s a rinse-off creamy formula infused with natural papaya and pineapple enzymes that purifies your skin and leaves it feeling revitalised and radiant.

Simply apply it on a clean face and leave it on for 10-15 minutes. Rinse off with lukewarm water afterwards.

Image: Courtesy Elemis

Packed with the properties of papaya in all forms is this cleansing balm by Glow Recipe that removes all makeup, dirt, oil and impurities effortlessly. Its formula is a mix of the papaya extract, its enzyme and even papaya seed oil along with blueberries to lend you a healthy skin. The balm softly exfoliates your skin leaving it clean, glowing, calm and bouncy.

This refreshing cleanser is suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin and is used as a makeup remover. Start by gently massaging it onto dry skin in circular motions for up to 30 seconds. Add some water to it and massage for another 30 seconds for an effective makeup removal.

Image: Courtesy Glow Recipe

A deep cleansing and refreshing face wash infused with papaya and grapefruit, this enzyme cleansing gel is meant for oily and combination skin types. It helps to rid your skin of dullness, impurities and excess sebum to leave it looking bright and fresh.

Use it like your normal face wash by gently massaging onto wet skin in circular motions and then rinsing it off.

Image: Courtesy Sephora

A gentle yet powerful exfoliator that combines the power of AHAs, BHAs and pineapple and papaya enzymes, the Yo Glow Scrub will leave your skin with a super healthy glow. It has a milky and lightweight texture that buffs your skin of impurities and dead cells gently.

The scrub is suitable for all skin types and is sulphate, paraben and cruelty-free.

Image: Courtesy Wishful

Shield your skin against the harmful UVA and UVB rays with the Benton Papaya-D Sun Cream that’s rich in minerals, papaya nutrition and AQUAXYL. While the cream will protect your skin without leaving any white cast, it will also leave it feeling moisturised and revitalised.

The cream is fortified with SPF 38 PA+++, is dermatologically tested and is cruelty free.

Image: Courtesy Benton

Formulated with 2% BHA (salicylic acid), moringa and the papaya enzyme, this pore cleaning toner gently exfoliates and deep cleanses your face. It’s a water-light formula that minimises the look of pores, lends you a healthy-looking complexion and reduces excess oil without over-stripping the skin.

This toner is free from paraben, formaldehyde donor, mineral oil, phthalate and is created sans any cruelty.

Image: Courtesy Look Fantastic

Quite literally loaded with all-things-nourishing, this pore-refining mask comprises ingredients that would do wonders to your skin. While the papaya enzyme gently exfoliates and polishes your skin to unclog pores and remove dead skin cells, the marine collagen helps renew the skin. The presence of seawater extract helps diminish the appearance of blemishes whereas, cucumber extract hydrates and energises your skin with chamomile soothing it down.

The formula of this mask is water-based which makes the absorption of active ingredients faster and deeper into all layers of the skin. The mask is made up of biodegradable stretch cotton fabric and can be used twice.

Image: Courtesy Dermovia

The Ahava Enzyme Facial Peel is a rinse-off peel developed with a mix of potent minerals sourced from Dead Sea, papaya enzymes and Apple of Sodom extracts. From polishing your skin, hydrating it and revitalising it to unclogging pores and minimising fine lines and wrinkles, this peel does it all. It delivers a lit-from-within complexion and an even, plumper looking skin.

Image: Courtesy Ahava

This multi-active serum manages skin concerns like dark spots, pigmentation and other signs of ageing. It’s a lightweight oil for the face that offers a concentrated and high-strength dose of targeted actives to lend you a more even-looking skin.

The serum is made with cold-pressed and virgin-extracted papaya oil produced from papain to help slough off dead skin and reveal a smoother looking skin.

Image: Courtesy Odacité

A three-in-one lip scrub that cleanses, exfoliates and conditions lips, the Agave+ Lip Scrub lends you softer and smoother lips. While it comprises papaya enzymes and fair trade organic golden sugar to exfoliate your lips, the agave nectar and sugarcane-derived squalane nourishes and soothes them.

Image: Courtesy Bite Beauty

A supercharged eye serum formulated with vitamin C, papain and other essential ingredients, the Dermalogica Biolumin-C Serum reduces the visible signs of ageing. It’s a lightweight serum that dramatically brightens and visibly firms the eye area. It further diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while chemically exfoliating and hydrating the skin for a smooth and healthy look.

Image: Courtesy Look Fantastic

The Rice Polish by Tatcha is a water-activated exfoliant curated with Japanese rice bran, papaya enzymes and amino acid-based formula. It offers a non-abrasive exfoliation with a cloud-like foam to reveal a smoother and softer skin. Hadasei-3 — a trio of fermented Japanese superfoods of green tea, rice and algae — helps restore a healthy-looking radiance.

It comes in three variants for different skin types– classic for combination to dry skin, deep for combination to oily and gentle for dry to mature skin type.

Image: Courtesy Tatcha

The Ilia Lip Wrap Overnight Treatment is a mask that lends you smooth and supple lips while you sleep the night away. Its potent, dual-action formula gently exfoliates and moisturises your skin simultaneously (without any manual exfoliation).

Once applied, while the papaya enzymes buff away the dead skin gently, the properties of hyaluronic acid and Salicornia sink into your skin to hydrate the lips from within.

Image: Courtesy Ilia


Is papaya enzyme a good exfoliating agent?

Yes, papain works great as an exfoliating agent which is why it makes up for an essential ingredient in many exfoliators, cleansers, peels and scrubs.

Is papaya good for acne?

Yes, papaya helps in preventing acne since the enzyme papain boasts of anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that helps in decreasing inflammation.

Is papaya enzyme good for oily skin?

Yes, it is safe and suitable for all skin types. In fact, the exfoliating and cleansing properties of papaya enzymes help in removing oil and impurities from the skin and even control excess oil.

Are there any side effects of papaya enzyme on skin?

While using products formulated with papain are safe to use, applying raw papain topically can be harmful and cause blisters and irritation.

Divya Arora
An old-school at heart with a taste for contemporary finery, Divya believes in making the best of both worlds. She's a happy-go-lucky person who spends her time reading, Zentangling, or binge-watching. Hogging food & dozing off often comes naturally to her. Also, chai!
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