Vibrant foliage and delicious syrup for our pancakes and waffles: You could say we're already fans of maple, but soon there might be another unexpected reason to love the autumnal leaf.
New studies show that red maple leaf extract may help prevent wrinkles (and even improve the appearance of existing ones) by protecting your skin's elastin, aka one of the elements that keep your complexion bouncy and smooth.
According to one of the researchers involved in the study, the phenolic compounds in the leaves known as glucitol-core-containing gallotannins—or GCGs for short—could inhibit the activity of elastase, which is the enzyme responsible for breaking down elastin. Prior studies show that the GCGs might also be able to shield skin from inflammation and lighten dark spots.
The researchers are currently testing the ingredient in a patent-pending formulation, which they've named Maplifa ("mape-LEAF-uh" to reflect its origin). In the meantime, you can get in on the maple-y goodness with Dr. Brandt's new resurfacing foam or May Coop's gentle toner.