In this article, we’ll delve deeper into mushroom benefits for skin and ideas about how to add them to your skincare routine.

When it comes to skincare, we’re always on the lookout for the latest and greatest ingredients that will give us that radiant glow.

Lately, there’s been a lot of buzz around mushrooms. Yes, you read that right – mushrooms! These humble fungi have been used in traditional medicine for centuries, but now they’re making their way into our skincare routines with promises of nourished, hydrated skin. 

What Are Mushrooms?

Mushrooms are fascinating organisms that belong to the fungi kingdom. 

They come in various shapes, sizes, and colors, ranging from small button mushrooms to large portobellos and even exotic species like lion’s mane or shiitake. 

While some mushrooms are edible and used as ingredients in culinary dishes worldwide, others can be toxic or hallucinogenic.

Vector collection of hand drawn medicinal mushrooms, lichens and seaweeds

Interesting Facts about Mushrooms:

  • Fungi Kingdom: Mushrooms are not plants but rather part of the fungi kingdom. They lack chlorophyll and cannot produce their own food through photosynthesis like plants do. Instead, they obtain nutrients by breaking down organic matter around them.
  • Structure: The visible part of a mushroom is called the fruiting body or mushroom cap. It is composed of a stalk (stem), a cap (the top part), and gills or pores underneath the cap where spores develop.
  • Reproduction: Mushroom reproduction occurs through spores. These microscopic particles are released from the gills or pores under the cap when matured mushrooms reach their reproductive stage.
  • Diversity: Over 10,000 species of mushrooms have been identified so far, with many more yet to be discovered. Each species has its distinct characteristics, including taste, texture, aroma, and medicinal properties.
  • Culinary Uses: Edible mushrooms play an essential role in cuisines worldwide due to their unique flavors and textures. Varieties such as button mushrooms (Agaricus bisporus), shiitake (Lentinula edodes), oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus ostreatus), and portobello (Agaricus bisporus) are popular choices for cooking delicious dishes like soups, stir-fries, pizzas, pasta sauces, and more.
  • Nutritional Value: Mushrooms offer several health benefits as they contain essential vitamins (B-complex vitamins including riboflavin niacin), minerals (such as selenium), dietary fiber, antioxidants, and low levels of fat and calories. They are also a great source of protein for vegetarians and vegans.
  • Medicinal Properties: Some mushrooms have been used in traditional medicine for centuries due to their potential health benefits. For example, the reishi mushroom is believed to boost the immune system, while the lion’s mane mushroom may improve cognitive function.

Mushroom benefits for skin

1. Anti-Aging Properties

Mushrooms are packed with antioxidants such as ergothioneine and selenium. These powerful compounds help combat free radicals and protect your skin from oxidative stress, minimizing the signs of aging like wrinkles, fine lines, and sagging.

2. Brightens Dull Skin

Thanks to their natural exfoliating properties, mushrooms can gently remove dead skin cells and unclog pores. This process reveals brighter and more even-toned skin underneath while promoting a healthy glow.

3. Hydrates & Nourishes

Certain mushroom varieties like shiitake contain high levels of polysaccharides – complex carbohydrates known for their ability to retain moisture within the skin.

Incorporating these mushrooms into your skincare routine can enhance hydration levels and provide nourishment essential for maintaining supple and plump-looking skin.

4. Calms Inflammation

Inflammation is a common underlying cause behind many dermatological issues like acne, eczema, and psoriasis. Mushrooms possess potent anti-inflammatory properties due to various bioactive compounds present within them (e.g., triterpenes). These compounds help calm irritated skin by reducing redness, swelling, and discomfort associated with inflammatory conditions.

5. Fights Acne-Causing Bacteria

Some types of mushrooms have antimicrobial properties due to compounds like beta-glucans

These compounds work against acne-causing bacteria by reducing excess sebum production and preventing clogged pores – leading to clearer-looking skin over time.

Additionally, beta-glucans stimulate the production of white blood cells responsible for fighting off infections and repairing damaged tissues in the skin.

6. Improves Elasticity & Firmness

The presence of copper peptides in mushrooms aids in maintaining skin elasticity and firmness. 

This is because copper plays a vital role in the production of collagen and elastin, two proteins responsible for keeping your skin plump and youthful.

Woman cooked and pours chaga mushrooms infusion in glass cup.

7. Protects against UV radiation

UV radiation is known to cause various harmful effects on the skin, including premature aging, wrinkles, sunburns, and even an increased risk of skin cancer. 

By consuming mushrooms regularly, you can potentially enhance your body’s natural defense mechanisms against these damaging effects.

This is because mushrooms contain ergothioneine, which has been found to have potent antioxidant and photoprotective properties.

Not only do mushrooms offer protection from within, but also when applied topically. 

In fact, certain mushroom extracts are being used in skin care products due to their ability to enhance the skin’s natural defenses against UV-induced damage. 

These extracts can help reduce inflammation caused by excessive sun exposure while promoting collagen production for healthier-looking skin.

Remember that while mushrooms may offer some level of protection against harmful UV radiation damage, it should never replace traditional sun protection methods such as wearing sunscreen and protective clothing.

Instead, think of mushrooms as a complementary addition to your overall skincare regimen.

8. Promotes a more even complexion

Mushrooms are rich in various compounds that can help balance pigmentation. Some of these include kojic acid, arbutin, vitamin D, selenium, polysaccharides, and antioxidants like ergothioneine.

  • Kojic acid: This powerful ingredient inhibits the production of melanin in the skin. It helps fade existing hyperpigmentation while preventing new ones from forming. It has also been shown to fade sunspots and acne scars. One of the best sources of kojic acid is shiitake mushroom.
  • Arbutin: Arbutin has been shown to lighten dark spots by blocking tyrosinase activity – an enzyme necessary for melanin synthesis.
  • Vitamin D: Mushrooms are one of the few plant-based sources of vitamin D. This nutrient plays a crucial role in maintaining healthy skin cells and regulating pigmentation levels.
  • Selenium: Selenium helps protect the skin against oxidative stress caused by free radicals. It also promotes elasticity and firmness while reducing inflammation.
  • Polysaccharides: These complex carbohydrates found in mushrooms enhance hydration levels within the skin cells, leading to plumpness and smoother texture.
  • Ergothioneine: A potent antioxidant present that helps neutralize damaging free radicals that contribute to premature aging and uneven skin tone.

How to incorporate mushrooms into your skincare routine:

Here is how you can incorporate mushrooms into your skincare routine and unlock their potential for radiant skin.

1. Mushroom-infused Cleansers

Start your skincare routine by cleansing away impurities with mushroom-infused cleansers. 

Look for products that contain extracts from medicinal mushrooms, such as Reishi or Chaga. 

These powerful ingredients help purify the skin while promoting hydration and reducing inflammation.

2. Exfoliating with Mushroom Enzymes

For a gentle yet effective exfoliation, consider incorporating mushroom enzymes into your routine. 

Products containing enzymes derived from shiitake or oyster mushrooms help remove dead skin cells, unclog pores, and brighten dull complexions.

3. Hydrating Mushroom Toners

Treat your skin to a refreshing boost of hydration with mushroom toners infused with extracts like Tremella or Snow Mushroom. 

Rich in polysaccharides, these toners provide deep moisturization while improving the skin’s elasticity and plumpness.

4. Nourishing Serums & Ampoules

Enhance your skincare regimen by adding nourishing serums or ampoules enriched with mushroom extracts like Cordyceps or Lion’s Mane. 

These potent formulations deliver vital nutrients to the deeper layers of the skin, helping improve texture, reduce fine lines, and promote an even complexion.

5. Calming Facial Masks

Combat redness and soothe irritated skin with calming facial masks featuring mushroom varieties like Maitake or Turkey Tail extract. 

These masks possess anti-inflammatory properties that assist in reducing redness, combating acne, and promoting a more balanced complexion.

6. Anti-aging Eye Creams

Don’t forget to care for the delicate skin around your eyes! Incorporate mushroom-infused eye creams into your routine to address signs of aging, such as fine lines, wrinkles, and dark circles. 

The antioxidant-rich compounds in mushrooms help protect the skin from free radicals while promoting firmness and elasticity.

Organic chaga mushrooms infusion in glass teapot on rustic white wooden board.

Mushroom DIY Recipes for Skin:

​​​​​​​If you’re not able to get the above mushroom-based products, you can make your own formulations at home. 

Here are some recipes you can prepare at home.

Mushroom Face Mask:


– 2 tablespoons mushroom powder (shiitake, reishi, or Chaga)

– 1 tablespoon honey

– 1 tablespoon plain yogurt


  • Mix all the ingredients in a bowl until you obtain a smooth paste. 
  • Apply the mask evenly onto the clean, damp skin, and leave it on for about 15 minutes.
  • Rinse off with lukewarm water and pat dry. 
  • This mask will nourish and hydrate your skin while providing antioxidants for a healthy glow.

Mushroom Toner:


– 1 cup distilled water

– ½ cup witch hazel

– A handful of dried porcini mushrooms


  • Boil the dried mushrooms in distilled water for approximately 20 minutes until they release their beneficial compounds into the liquid. 
  • Strain the mixture into a bottle and add witch hazel as a natural preservative. 
  • Apply this toner after cleansing your face to balance pH levels, tighten pores, and promote cellular renewal.
  • Also, remember to shake before use.

Mushroom Eye Cream:


– 2 tablespoons almond oil

– 1 tablespoon shea butter

– 1 teaspoon beeswax pellets

– A few drops of vitamin E oil

– A pinch of mushroom extract (cordyceps or lion’s mane)


In a double boiler, melt together almond oil, shea butter, and beeswax pellets until fully combined. 

Remove from heat and add vitamin E oil and mushroom extract. 

Stir well and transfer the mixture into a small container. Apply this nourishing eye cream nightly to combat dark circles, reduce puffiness, and protect the delicate skin around your eyes.

Mushroom Body Scrub:


– 1 cup of dried mushrooms (such as Reishi or Chaga)

– ½ cup of organic cane sugar

– ¼ cup of coconut oil (or any carrier oil of choice)

– 1 tablespoon of honey (optional)

– 5 drops of essential oil (e.g., lavender or tea tree)


  • Grind the dried mushrooms into a fine powder using a blender or coffee grinder.
  • Combine the powdered mushrooms, organic cane sugar, coconut oil (melted), honey (if desired), and essential oil in a bowl. Mix everything well until all ingredients are evenly incorporated.
  • Depending on your preference, you can adjust the consistency by adding more sugar if you prefer a thicker scrub or more oil if you want it to be more liquid. 
  • Transfer the mixture into an air-tight container to preserve its freshness. Make sure it is stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
  • Before applying the mushroom body scrub, wet your skin thoroughly under warm water. This helps to open up the pores and make exfoliation more effective.
  • Take a small amount of the mushroom body scrub in your hands and gently massage it onto your skin using circular motions. Focus on areas prone to roughness or dryness, such as elbows, knees, and heels.
  • After scrubbing for a few minutes, rinse off with warm water and apply your preferred moisturizer.

Mushroom-infused Bath Soak


– 1 cup Epsom salt

– ¼ cup dried mushroom powder (such as reishi, chaga, or shiitake)

– 10 drops of essential oil of your choice (lavender, eucalyptus, or chamomile work well)

– 2 tablespoons carrier oil (almond or jojoba)


  • Combine the Epsom salt and dried mushroom powder in a mixing bowl. Mix well to distribute the mushroom particles evenly throughout the mixture.
  • Add in your chosen essential oil drops and carrier oil to the bowl. Stir until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
  • Transfer the mixture into an airtight container for storage. A glass jar works best to preserve its freshness.
  • To use your mushroom-infused bath soak, add the mixture to warm running water in your bathtub.
  • Allow yourself to relax in this aromatic blend for at least 20 minutes while soaking up all its goodness!

Safety and Precautions

Always remember to perform a patch test. A patch test involves applying a small amount of product containing mushroom extract on a discreet area of your skin to determine any adverse reactions or allergies beforehand.

It helps identify sensitivity issues such as redness, itching, inflammation, or rashes that may occur upon contact with mushrooms.

Take a pea-sized amount of the mushroom product and apply it to the inner part of your forearm. Let it sit on the skin for 24 hours and look for any reaction.

More About Skincare:

Final Thoughts

Mushrooms offer a multitude of benefits for our skin. Their rich antioxidant content helps protect against environmental damage and premature aging, while their anti-inflammatory properties soothe irritated skin and promote healing. 

Mushrooms also possess hydrating capabilities, keeping the skin moisturized and maintaining its elasticity. 

Furthermore, their natural antibacterial properties make them effective in combating acne-causing bacteria. 

With their abundance of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients, mushrooms prove to be a valuable addition to any skincare routine. 

​​​​So why not harness the power of these incredible fungi and give your skin the nourishment it deserves?

If you enjoyed this post about Mushroom Benefits for Skin Health and would love to see more, join me on YoutubeInstagramFacebook & Twitter!

Get discounted copies of my cookbook here.

Fortunately, because of the ads on our website, readers and subscribers of Healthier Steps are sponsoring many underprivileged families. Thank you!

Also, please leave a star rating! ;-)