Remember that warm and fuzzy feeling whenever you received a box of chocolates from a loved one? Or how a pint of chocolate ice cream was always there by your side when you were going through a rough time and needed a mood booster? Yes, chocolates have a special place in our hearts (and refrigerator) as a result of what they represent, and the feel-good factor it induces in us. But beyond that, there are numerous scientific studies that show that frequent, moderate consumption of dark chocolate can improve your skin and even cardiovascular health by lowering your risk of high blood pressure and heart disease, thanks to the high levels of antioxidants and flavanols found in cacao beans (from which cocoa and chocolate are derived from).
And while we certainly never needed any justification to satisfy our sweet tooth with some chocolate, it could be time to rework this age-old remedy into our beauty routine. As a rich source of antioxidants, minerals and fatty acids, cocoa butter (another product derived from cacao beans) and other cacao-derived ingredients have been widely used for their skin-conditioning properties for centuries.
However, it has largely stayed out of the limelight in recent years amidst a cluttered marketplace that constantly focuses on new marketing buzzwords and ingredients.
So since the 7th of July is International Chocolate Day, we shine the spotlight on this humble ingredient as we round up our favourite products that pack the goodness of cocoa.