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Skin Care Ingredient: Arnica Montana

arnica montana skin care ingredient

Arnica montana is one of the most beneficial additions to nature’s pharmacy, with the power to relieve common aches, injuries, and pain. Doctors and plastic surgeons alike promote and recommend the use of arnica montana after traumas and surgeries to ease patients back into the real world. The main uses of Arnica include alleviating bruising, pain relief, swelling, and arthritis, but has begun to show itself useful in skin care and cosmetic industries.

Arnica montana, a member of the Compositae family, is a relative of the common daisy. Plants in this family, including echinacea and dandelion, are rich in inulin, which is a composite between sugar and starch that the plants store in their roots and lower organs as an energy source. It’s an alpine plant that can grow up to 60cm tall, but given the harsh conditions at high altitudes, it usually stops before reaching that height. It grows best in meadows with altitudes up to 3,000 meters above sea level, where the exposure to strong sunlight is high. The higher the altitude, the more aromatic the plant becomes.

Pure species are found growing wild throughout Europe, which are hard to find.  Most arnica that’s harvested is done so using a hybrid plant grown in controlled environments. Note this plant is unable to grow in any soil tainted with fertilizers, making it an extremely low-pesticide crop.


Arnica montana is especially beneficial for injuries to soft tissue. It can reduce pain and swelling from sprains, sore muscles, fractures, bruises, strains, overexertion, and more.  Arnica montana is rich in manganese and selenium, making it a powerful antioxidant essential for healthy bones and wound-healing.  It also assists with metabolizing proteins, cholesterol, and carbohydrates.

Skin Infections

Arnica extracts are used in several lotions designed to treat eczema, skin infections, itchiness, and open wounds. Due to its anti-bruising properties, arnica montana reduces swelling and bruises due to wounds and infections on facial tissue. The antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties of this herb help prevent inflammatory skin disorders from occurring.

Skin Nourishment

This flower contains sesquiterpene lactones, flavonoids, coumarins and volatile oils, all of which benefit the skin. The main restorative compound, sesquiterpene lactone, along with flavonoid, soothes and renews skin after stress is present and is effective in reducing inflammation of tired, puffy eyes.  These restorative compounds also accelerate healing by stimulating the formation of granular tissues. Use on the skin to effectively heal bruises, sunburns, and minor burns.

Stretch Marks

Topically rubbing arnica montana on the stomach four times a day reduces the appearance of pregnancy-related stretch marks. Applying this extract on wounds and facial outbreaks reduces the chance of scar tissue developing.

Hair and Scalp

Using arnica montana on the hair and scalp rejuvenates your scalp and stimulates hair follicles, strengthening hair and preventing it from falling out prematurely. Arnica can be combined with other ingredients like calendula and jaborandi to create homeopathic shampoos that aid in soft, manageable hair. Because it cleanses excess oil and sebum from the scalp, arnica montana returns hair to its natural shine while also combating dandruff and itchiness.

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