Cornflour for skin: DIY face masks and Benefits for glowing skin


Cornflour is high in vital vitamins and minerals that may help to improve your skin. Check out these DIY cornflour face packs and include them in your skin care regime.

Natural cures using kitchen ingredients are time-tested ways of taking care of skin health. While the benefits of gram flour or besan for skin are widely known, did you know even cornflour can be good for your skin? Cornflour is a substance derived from maize. It serves as a primary component of many skin care products, and is also found in toothpaste, soaps and body scrubs. Cornflour may be beneficial for several skin conditions, including psoriasis, eczema, acne and dry skin. It is may also help to deal with wrinkles and inflammation. Let us tell you more about the skincare benefits of cornflour and how to make cornflour face masks at home.

What are the benefits of cornflour for skin?

While scientific research on the topical application of cornflour for face is limited, it has gained popularity for its potential benefits. Here’s a breakdown of its advantages, as explained by dermatologist Dr Seema Oberoi Lall.

1. Gentle removal of dead skin cells

Cornflour’s fine, gritty texture acts as a physical exfoliant, sloughing away dead cells and impurities for a smoother, brighter complexion. This can be helpful for unclogging pores and preventing breakouts.

2. Soaks up excess sebum

The starchiness of cornflour absorbs oil like a sponge, making it ideal for oily and acne-prone skin. This can help control shine, minimise the appearance of pores, and prevent breakouts.

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Woman applying cream
Cornflour can be used by women with oily skin. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

3. Eases irritation and redness

Cornflour’s anti-inflammatory properties may help soothe sunburns, rashes, and other skin irritations. It can also calm redness and promote a more even skin tone.

4. Vitamin A and antioxidant boost

Cornflour contains small amounts of vitamin A and antioxidants, which may contribute to cell turnover and collagen production. This could lead to a brighter, more youthful appearance and potentially reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

DIY Homemade cornflour face packs for skincare

Here are some homemade face masks you can try with cornflour. These are tailored to different skin concerns.

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For oily and acne-prone skin

1. Honey and cornflour

Mix one tablespoon each of honey and cornflour with a splash of lemon juice. Avoid it if your skin is sensitive. While honey is antibacterial and hydrating, lemon juice helps to brighten and tighten pores.

Woman applying cream on face
Cornflour is found in many skin care products. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

2. Yogurt and cornflour

Combine two tablespoons of plain yogurt with one tablespoon of cornflour. Yogurt’s lactic acid gently exfoliates and balances oil production, making it great for acne-prone skin.

3. Tomato and cornflour

Mash half a tomato and mix it with one tablespoon of cornflour and one teaspoon of sugar. The tomato’s acidity acts as a natural astringent, while the sugar provides light exfoliation.

For dry and sensitive skin

1. Avocado and cornflour

Blend half an avocado with one tablespoon of cornflour. Avocado is rich in nourishing oils and vitamins, ideal for dry, sensitive skin.

2. Milk and cornflour

Mix one tablespoon of honey with two tablespoons of milk and one tablespoon of cornflour. Milk and honey are soothing and hydrating, perfect for calming irritated skin, says the expert.

3. Banana and cornflour

Mash half a banana with one tablespoon of cornflour. Bananas are known for their potassium and vitamin B6 content, which nourish and brighten the skin.

For all skin types

1. Honey, oatmeal and cornflour

Combine one tablespoon each of honey, oatmeal and cornflour. Oatmeal gently exfoliates while honey nourishes and cornflour absorbs excess oil, making it suitable for most skin types.

2. Turmeric and cornflour

Mix half teaspoon of turmeric powder with one tablespoon of cornflour and a little yogurt or honey to make a paste. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory and brightening properties, suitable for most skin types.

3. Cucumber and cornflour

Blend half a cucumber with one tablespoon of cornflour. Cucumber is soothing and hydrating, making it a refreshing mask for all skin types.

How to use a cornflour face mask correctly

• Always mix cornflour with other ingredients for a smoother paste and to prevent dryness.
• Apply the face mask to clean, dry skin.
• Leave it on for 10 to 15 minutes, then rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.
• Pat your face dry and follow it up with a moisturiser.
• Do a patch test first to ensure you’re not allergic to any of the ingredients.
• Use these masks once or twice a week, depending on your skin’s needs.

Things to avoid while using cornflour on skin

While cornflour can be a healthy and budget-friendly addition to your skin care routine, there are some things to keep in mind.

1. Be gentle

Cornflour’s grittiness can be tempting to use for vigorous scrubbing, but remember, your skin is delicate! Avoid harsh rubbing or circular motions, as this can irritate and scratch your face.

2. Less is more

A light dusting or thin paste is all you need. Too much cornflour can be drying and harsh on your skin.

3. Patch test first

Even seemingly gentle ingredients can trigger sensitivities, so always do a patch test on your inner arm before slathering your entire face. Wait 24 hours and check for any redness, itching, or burning before proceeding.

4. Listen to your skin

If you experience any discomfort during or after using a cornflour mask, rinse it off immediately and discontinue use. Don’t hesitate to consult a dermatologist if the irritation persists.

5. Citrus caution

While lemon juice can be a popular addition to acne-fighting masks, avoid pairing it with cornflour. The combination can be overly acidic and irritating, especially for sensitive skin, says the expert.

6. Hydration heroes

Cornflour can be drying, so always pair it with hydrating ingredients like honey, yogurt, or avocado to keep your skin feeling comfortable and nourished.

7. Moderation matters

Don’t get overzealous with cornflour masks! Once or twice a week is plenty, depending on your skin type. Overuse can strip your skin of its natural oils and disrupt its delicate balance.

8. Time is limited

Leave your cornflour mask on for no longer than 15 to 20 minutes. After that, the benefits plateau, and prolonged exposure can dry out your skin.

9. Natural doesn’t always mean safe

Just because it’s from a plant doesn’t guarantee it’s gentle for everyone. Always proceed with caution and listen to your skin’s unique needs. Consult a dermatologist if you have any underlying skin conditions or concerns, consulting a dermatologist before trying any new DIY skincare treatments, including cornflour masks, is always a good idea, says the expert.

What are the side effects of using cornflour for face?

While cornflour offers potential benefits for some skin types, it is not without potential drawbacks. Here are some likely side effects:

1. Harsh texture

The grittiness of cornflour can be irritating, especially for sensitive skin. Over-enthusiastic scrubbing can scratch and inflame the skin, says the expert.

2. Excessive oil absorption

Although great for oily skin initially, cornflour can absorb too much oil, leading to dryness, tightness, and even flaking.

3. Paradoxical acne

While aiming to control oil, excessive use of cornflour for skincare can backfire. Dryness triggered by cornflour can stimulate sebum production, potentially worsening acne for some individuals.

4. Clogged pores

Cornflour’s fine texture can clog pores, particularly on individuals prone to breakouts.

5. Corn allergies

People with corn allergies can experience allergic reactions ranging from mild redness and itching to more severe symptoms like hives, swelling, and difficulty breathing.

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