by Anna Maria Giambanco DiPietro, Contributing Beauty Editor
"It was June, and the world smelled of roses. The sunshine was like powdered gold over the grassy hillside."
―Maud Hart Lovelace
We’ve all enjoyed cucumbers in salads, as crudité and even as a garnish in cooling aperitifs, but what do you know about these green goodies? For starters, they’ve been around for at least 3,000 years and were originally cultivated in India. It’s no surprise that they eventually made their way across the globe, thanks to their myriad healing attributes. Refreshing, green fruits that most of us mistakenly classify as veggies, cucumbers are packed with antioxidants, soluble fiber, and let’s face it, they’re pretty tasty.
Cukes’ high water content makes them a life-saver on excessively hot days, aiding with hydration. Locked and loaded with a veritable shopping list of vitamins and minerals like calcium, phosphorus, zinc, B1, B2, B3, B5, and B6, you can eschew the store-bought vitamins when you’ve got a cucumber on your plate. They also contain Vitamin K, which aids calcium absorption, as well as stress-busting magnesium. Need more reasons to add them to your shopping list? A member of the Cucurbitaceae family, cucumbers are rich in potassium, which can reduce the risk of kidney stones, and help reduce blood pressure.
Ever heard the phrase “cool as a cucumber”? It comes from these emerald beauties’ anti-inflammatory and cooling properties, making them a sought-after ingredient in skincare products. The phytochemicals in cucumbers help freshen breath, so should you find yourself out in the world sans mints, get your hands on a slice and hold it pressed into the roof of your mouth for 20-30 seconds.
Check out a few of our fave products featuring cucumbers, then scroll down for our super easy cooling DIY face mask.
Set the stage with this gentle-yet-effective, facial toner that cleanses and removes residual oils, dirt and makeup for healthy-looking skin that’s ready for treatments and moisturizer. Formulated with Cucumber Extract, Witch Hazel and Aloe Vera, this alcohol-free cocktail of pH balancing powerhouses, helps tone, hydrate and nourish without stripping or drying out sensitive skin. Best used after cleansing and just before moisturizing.
This luxurious 3 in 1 ultra-hydrating body cream works to smooth, hydrate and tone the skin
A unique bio-certified formula of cooling Cucumber combined with powerful natural extracts including Rosemary, Centella and Witch Hazel lock in much-needed moisture to help maintain a radiant, youthful glow throughout the day.
This ultra-gentle gel helps soothe, hydrate and de-tox™ the look of skin with botanical extracts of Cucumber, Papaya, Chamomile, Pineapple, Sugar Maple, Sugarcane, Orange, Lemon, Bilberry and Aloe Vera.
Coco Eco Cool as a Cucumber Hydrating Mask
1 Tbsp Fresh Orange Juice
1 tsp Olive Oil
Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender until a paste forms. You may add a bit more cucumber if it’s too thin. Apply to face and neck and leave on for 10-15 minutes. Rinse with a warm, wet facecloth.