by CLEF Skincare on Sep 24, 2020


Rumor has it that your caffeine habits (or dependence, more like. It’s okay—we’re there too) could be ruining your skin. But is drinking coffee really that bad? Unfortunately, we can’t give you a simple yes or no, so keep reading to learn more about whether or not coffee loves us as much as we love it. 


The Benefits of Drinking Coffee

Coffee contains caffeine, which is the main reason people drink it in the morning and count on it for a quick energy boost. 

When consumed correctly, coffee is actually a good habit to have. Caffeine has been shown to be beneficial for the skin, thanks to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. An antioxidant-rich diet can improve skin health and slow down signs of aging since antioxidants fight free radicals, which are damaging molecules responsible for the premature formation of fine lines, wrinkles, and brown spots. Studies have shown that coffee is one of the biggest sources of antioxidants for many people. Yay!

Coffee and Breakouts 


One of the biggest rumors surrounding coffee is that it triggers acne. This is somewhat a myth, because caffeine doesn’t directly cause acne. However, the overconsumption of caffeine has been linked to heightened stress levels, which is linked to acne. This is because the stress hormones (like cortisol) that get released can trigger acne by making your body pump out insulin, which causes the skin to produce excess oil, over-generate new skin cells, and increase your body’s inflammation levels.

So, how much coffee is too much? Health experts recommend a maximum of 400 milligrams a day, which equates to roughly four or five cups. If you are acne-prone, try limiting yourself to one or two cups a day. Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing, so always do things in moderation.

Additionally, the way you drink your coffee could be responsible for your breakouts. Studies have found a link between milk with acne. Whey and casein are proteins found in dairy that are known for causing inflammation in the skin, specifically acne. Inorganic milk, white sugar, and syrup can also negatively affect your hormones and create breakouts. So if you struggle with acne and can’t seem to figure out what your triggers are, try cutting out creamers and sweeteners, and start drinking your coffee black. Bonus: it’s better for your health too! If you really can’t give up that milky goodness though, opt for a non-dairy creamer instead.

Is Coffee Dehydrating?


Caffeine is known to have a diuretic effect, meaning it causes your kidneys to flush out water through more frequent bathroom trips, resulting in greater water loss. This could be making your skin dehydrated, which gives your complexion a dull appearance, thereby dampening your glow! Dehydration can also lead to inflammation, dry patches, loss of collagen, and an overproduction of sebum (which causes acne).

While caffeine’s diuretic effect is generally considered mild compared to other diuretics out there, some people might be extra sensitive to it. If this is you, but you simply can’t give it up, remember to stay hydrated by drinking more water, and do give our Hydrating Cleansing Gel a shot. This multifunctional cleanser gently deep cleans your skin without drying it out. It has anti-aging and hydrating benefits too!

Coffee in Skincare

So now that we’ve established that coffee is beneficial for our skin when consumed orally, what about when it's applied directly to the skin? Coffee (or caffeine-infused) skincare products like body scrubs and eye creams have been exploding in popularity. But are they any good?

Caffeine maintains its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties when applied topically, so it does decrease the appearance of cellulite and puffy, swollen under-eyes by dehydrating skin tissue. However, these effects are short-term and only temporary. If you like coffee-based skincare products, there’s no harm in using them, but don't expect any anti-aging miracles or long-lasting results.

If you are on the hunt to maximize your anti-aging routine, why not up your game with our 9-in-1 Anti-Aging Copper Peptide Mask? It boosts your skin’s natural collagen production and nourishes your skin from the inside out. Plus, you’ll be able to see long-lasting results within 21 days!

The Takeaway

When consumed in healthy amounts, coffee is good for your skin and body due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. However, the sweeteners and creamers you add into your coffee could be causing your breakouts. If you simply can’t adapt to plain black coffee, or dislike the taste of coffee in general, you can also enjoy the temporary skin benefits of caffeine by introducing coffee-infused products into your skincare routine.