If you’re already familiar with heartleaf or Houttuynia Cordata, welcome back! If you’re not all that familiar yet — you’re welcome! We’ll be breaking this beneficial plant extract down in terms of skincare benefits, and you’re guaranteed a surprise or two… let us begin:
In this article we discuss the following:
- What is Heartleaf (Houttuynia Cordata)?
- Houttuynia Cordata Uses
- Houttuynia Cordata Brands
- Where to Buy Houttuynia Cordata
What is Heartleaf (Houttuynia Cordata)?
Toby Dash, a skincare blogger over at Five Star Skincare, gave us one of the best breakdowns of heartleaf and its role in the world.
According to Dash, “Heartleaf, or houttuynia cordata plant, is one of the raved skin care ingredients nowadays, particularly in Korean skin care. Heartleaf is a popular plant in Southeast Asia, and it’s been traditionally used for various conditions such as high blood sugar levels. But it’s been found that heartleaf can do so much more, thanks to the flavonoids it holds, which many experts have dubbed as an elixir ingredient. These compounds are prized for their anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-aging functions.”
Houttuynia Cordata Pronunciation
Heartleaf goes by various names. In the western world, it is commonly known as houttuynia cordata chameleon plant, and in other parts is fondly referred to as fish mint, fish wort, fish leaf, or Chinese lizard tail.
It’s scientific name, houttuynia cordata can look like a daunting mouthful to pronounce, compared to more common plant ingredients such as lavender or mugwort.
Houttuynia is pronounced: “hoot-tiny-ya”.
Cordata is a lot simpler, and is pronounced just as it looks: “core-data”.
Houttuynia Cordata Benefits
Dash continues by stating that “Because of heartleaf’s unique composition, the plant has been used in skin care, especially for those who have dry, acne-prone, and sensitive skin.”
For those who have suffered with any of these mentioned skin conditions, you’ll know just how valuable finding any kind of remedy can be. Heartleaf has numerous skin benefits that seem to soothe or totally reverse adverse skin reactions, and has thus become a sought after natural ingredient across the globe.
The total list of benefits that heartleaf can offer to the skin is extensive, and seems to be unique to each individual who opts to give it a try. We’ll delve a lot deeper into this list as this piece unfolds, so stay with us to learn of all the potential benefits that this plant may be able to bring to your life.
Houttuynia Cordata on Skin
Damian Karnas is the founder of Quizondo, and both he and his wife are big fans of houttuynia cordata extract as a skincare ingredient. He tells us of how “Houttuynia Cordata is used in the garden and herbal medicine and has not been denied its presence in cosmetics. And so, on its basis, creams, essences, serums, tonics, shampoos, and other products are created that
have two tasks in one application – heal and beautify.”
According to Karnas, “Houttuynia Cordata lightens freckles and discoloration, evens out the
color, prevents wrinkles and improves skin elasticity, supports healing and regeneration. It has a soothing and calming effect. Used in ointments and protective lipsticks, healing blisters and viral ulcers, and in various cosmetics for all skin types.”
Houttuynia Cordata on Hair Loss
Before the houttuynia cordata herb crept its way into skincare, it was being used as a traditional medicine across different parts of Asia for the treatment of the common condition known as alopecia.
Sufferers of alopecia will lose their hair in random, spontaneous patches due to autoimmune dysfunction. It is usually brought on by stress, but this is not always the only condition.
Nevertheless, heartleaf proved to be widely successful in regrowing hair for these individuals, and possibly even preventing further hair loss in some cases.
Hair growth serums containing heartleaf are becoming more and more widely accessible, despite the fact that there is currently no western scientific studies to back these results or plant abilities.
If it works for you — let it!
Houttuynia Cordata Health Benefits
Yes, you can take heartleaf orally, and ingest the nutritional benefits that this plant has to offer the inside of the body. Heartleaf’s healing abilities are not limited to skincare, houttuynia cordata seeds offer great benefit to the internal systems of the human body, and this is not new news!
Throughout Asia, heartleaf has been ingested for centuries for the treatment of conditions such as pneumonia, constipation and hypertension. The plant is also said to have a reducing effect on diuretic action and the sensation of overheating (hot flushes, etc).
Many use it to totally detoxify the body, which can result in hyperglycemia. Houttuynia cordata edible also made waves when it showed unbelievable results in treating the dreaded SARS virus.
Houttuynia Cordata on Lyme Disease
Natural healers around the world have been recommending the use of heartleaf to patients who come to them with lyme disease.
Lyme disease is an illness that is spread by certain species of ticks. It brings rashes and physical illness to the individual affected, including symptoms of flu and joint dysfunction. Usually, intense courses of antibiotics are administered to reverse the effects of the tick bite, however heartleaf offers a less invasive and more natural solution.
If you’re not the kind of person who likes to poison their body with antibiotic formulas, then this effective alternative is something to keep in mind when entering environments where ticks are widely present.
Houttuynia Cordata Side Effects
The adverse effects of heartleaf are difficult to narrow down, as this is not something that has been widely looked at by western medicine up until very recently. Different people report different things, and it can be difficult to decipher if their adverse experiences were 100% due to consumption of heartleaf, or if something else was at play.
For the most part, a lot of the negative side effects seem to be physical ones, at skin-level. Pruritus, dermatitis and general skin irritation are the most common in those who experience anything negative from the use of heartleaf.
Toby Dash goes on to state that “If you’re trying a product with heartleaf for the first time, I suggest doing a patch test to ensure you won’t have any adverse reactions to it.”. This goes for any new skincare product, natural or not!
Houttuynia Cordata Uses
We’ve touched on the main uses of heartleaf in terms of skincare and health, but this dynamic plant extends into other various forms that make it more easily consumable or usable by the general public.
We’ll unpack a few of these shortly, but it’s important to note that there seems to be no right or wrong way to both use and consume houttuynia cordata. Being a plant medicine, it’s really up to your personal preference how you get this extract onto your skin, or into your body.
Explore all your options and simply find what works best for you and your lifestyle. For example, for some people, taking plant extracts orally is no problem, while others may need to blend them into smoothie ingredients to mask the aromas.
Houttuynia Cordata Tea
One of the best ways to deliver the healing benefits of heartleaf into the body, is through tea.
Heartleaf tea is now widely available, though it can be difficult to identify as few tea brands market it as such. It is usually found in blends, and might be accompanied by licorice root, or other stronger herbs to mask the taste.
If you can get your hands on organic, dried heartleaf, you can turn it into a tea all on your own. Heartleaf should be boiled in water for about 15 minutes, for the healing properties to be released. You can mix some honey or lemon into the brew to make it more palatable, if so desired.
Houttuynia Cordata Tea Benefits
So, what does one get out of drinking heartleaf tea?
Well, anytime a plant is used in tea form, it is usually intended for gradual, long term benefit as opposed to instantaneous healing. Teas are a great way of delivering the benefits of the herbs into the body on a daily basis, without having to stick to a strict regime of self-care or supplement intake.
The benefits of drinking a cup of heartleaf tea, daily, will slowly reveal themselves when conditions such as chronic constipation or general digestive disorder seem to dissipate day by day.
More than this, there is great benefit in consuming heartleaf orally for the purpose of bettering the condition of the skin. Day by day, small quantities of the plant will be delivered to the body’s biggest organ, the skin, and one will start to see all of the listed improvements that make this such a sought after plant.
Houttuynia Cordata Soap
Like other herbs and plants, heartleaf can be delicately formed into soap for external use on human skin. This is a more direct way of delivering the benefits of the plant to the skin surface, and will likely result in more rapid action in terms of effect, compared to consuming the plant orally.
Daily use of a heartleaf soap would be a wonderful treatment option for those suffering from eczema or other dry skin conditions. It’s consistent exposure to the properties of the plant, so poor quality skin can’t help but be gradually improved in a very short period of time.
Houttuynia Cordata Supplement
Finally, there is always the option of taking natural herbs in supplement form. This treatment option is generally best for individuals who want a much higher concentrate of the plant, possibly for more intense treatment of internal or skin-based concerns.
Through supplementing, heartleaf becomes an integral part of one’s daily healthcare routine, the same way taking a daily vitamin would be. Results are likely to reveal themselves a lot faster via this route, because of the higher concentration of the plant that is available in these small capsules.
If your daily healthcare routine has space for another supplement, then heartleaf is a really great plant to work with for extensive periods of time.
Houttuynia Cordata Brands
There is one specific brand of heartleaf that we want to put the spotlight on shortly. Before we do that, we’d like to advise all our readers to not be too swayed by consumerism when it comes to this kind of natural treatment.
Plants and herbs are products of the Earth, and are thus abundant resources that are here to help each and every human being who happens to call this planet home. Consequently, any brands who have commodified this resource should be very critically examined before you fork out any money.
Heartleaf is not a difficult plant to grow or harvest. It is widely available throughout Asia, however there are brands that are importing this plant into the west who are exploiting consumers by charging outrageous prices.
Always use your discretion, and decide if you feel what you are being asked to pay is a fair exchange for the product.
Zymogen Houttuynia Cordata Ferment Serum
Every so often, a skincare product comes along that simply blows us away. This is what the ferment serum by Zymogen has done with heartleaf.
This serum is intended for use on the face, neck and décolleté. It is intended for all skin types, and seems to be safe on the most dry to the most oily skin. This makes it ideal for people suffering from acne, as the serum itself works to control sebum production and bring active acne under control.
Heartleaf is the key ingredient in this serum, but it also contains a hearty dose of tea tree oil. Blemishes are reduced over long term usage, and skin if exfoliated with each application.
Where to Buy Houttuynia Cordata
At the moment, heartleaf is not really a product that is available in western drugstores or cosmetic departments. You’ll probably have to resort to the internet to find the best heartleaf for you, but that’s fine!
For existing skincare products containing heartleaf, we’d recommend sifting through Korean and Japanese skincare brand websites and seeking out those who are making use of the plant in their products.
If you can’t find any, you can then do a general search for ‘houttuynia cordata’ on Amazon or Ebay. These e-commerce platforms have heartleaf products in abundance, and generally ship worldwide.
Houttuynia Cordata Seeds for Sale
If you’re looking to invest in some actual heartleaf seeds for home use, you’ll again need to resort to platforms such as Amazon or Ebay. There are some Asian wholesale sites where you can purchase bulk quantities of these seeds, but this will likely be too much for home use for a single person.
Similarly, if you’d like to get your hands on some dried heartleaf for the purpose of tea making, you can find this on the aforementioned platforms. Expect to pay roughly $10 per every 100g of dried heartleaf that you buy.
Did You Enjoy This Article?
If you enjoyed this article, you might also like our articles discussing skin and hair care such as Mineral Versus Chemical Sunscreen: Which is Better?, Top 14 Skin Care Ingredients to Avoid, and Top 10 Ingredients to Avoid in Hair Products.