Honey and chamomile are known for their antioxidant effects but a recent study published in Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology delves into the underlying mechanisms.
According to the article abstract, within skin, the Kelch-like erythroid cell-derived protein with cap-n-collar homology-associated protein 1 (KEAP1)/NF-E2-related factor 2 (NRF2) system maintains barrier homeostasis. Here, a honey and chamomile extract was shown to inhibit KEAP1-NRF2 interaction and induce the production of antioxidant small proline-rich protein.
The results suggest honey and chamomile are potent inducers of innate antioxidative responses, which could promote skin barrier recovery. The authors caution, however, that excess NRF2 activation can initiate other skin conditions, so care must be taken.
In conclusion, the authors believe this study affords opportunities for the development of cosmetic products that boost NRF2-mediated antioxidative/anti-aging, epidermis-intrinsic bio-responses.