It’s officially pumpkin season, which means pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin pie, and–yes–even pumpkin skincare products. It might seem like overkill to use pumpkin-based products on our skin, but pumpkin is a tried-and-true, skincare ingredient that’s packed with nutrients. Keep reading to discover what pumpkin can do for your skin, which pumpkin skincare products we love most, and how to make a DIY pumpkin face mask!

Pumpkin benefits for skin

1. Exfoliation: Pumpkins contain a blend of natural enzymes and alpha hydroxy acids, which are excellent, natural exfoliants. When used in skincare products, pumpkin can help to lift away dead skin cells from the surface of your skin, and stimulate cell regeneration. This process will result in brighter, smoother, healthier-looking skin.

2. Anti-aging: Pumpkin is also an excellent ingredient for mature skin. It contains plenty of antioxidants, including vitamins A, C, and E–which fight free radicals, helping to heal and prevent skin damage. These antioxidants also help to stimulate collagen production, leading to plumper, more youthful-looking skin.

3. Moisturization: Pumpkin also contains fatty acids, which help your skin to lock in moisture, preventing dryness. This makes pumpkin an excellent option for your winter skincare regime.

4. Clarifying: Due to its antioxidant and fatty acid content, pumpkin can also help to fight acne and clarify the skin. Antioxidants and fatty acids work to fight bacteria, reduce inflammation, and heal the skin–preventing future breakouts as well as minimizing existing ones.

Best pumpkin skincare products

Éminence’s Pumpkin Latte Hydration Masque

This face mask contains pumpkin purée, green tea, avocado oil, and aloe vera to deeply hydrate your skin; it’s the perfect product to restore hydration during brutal winter months. All you have to do is apply a thin layer to clean skin, let it sit for five minutes, and then remove it with a warm washcloth.

Peter Thomas Roth’s Pumpkin Enzyme Mask

This heavy-duty, exfoliating mask is intended to deliver benefits comparable to a professional-grade, exfoliating treatment. Along with pumpkin, it contains ascorbic acid (the same natural exfoliant found in lemon juice) to brighten your skin and lift away those stubborn, dead skin cells. To use it, simply massage a small amount into clean skin, let it sit for 5-7 minutes, and then remove it with a warm washcloth.

One Love Organics’ Vitamin B Enzyme Cleansing Oil + Makeup Remover

This vitamin-rich cleanser is ideal for use as the first step in a double-cleansing routine. It gently removes dirt, makeup, and oil without stripping your skin of its natural oil (sebum).

LovelySkin’s Pumpkin Clarifying Mask

This face mask harnesses the powers of pumpkin to clarify acne-prone skin, toning its texture and reducing the appearance of large pores in the process. Pumpkin gently exfoliates the skin and helps to stimulate healing; meanwhile, salicylic acid fights acne at its root cause. Unfortunately, this product doesn’t quite qualify as a natural beauty pick, due to its content of artificial dyes.

How to make a pumpkin face mask

You can also experience the benefits of pumpkin by whipping up a DIY pumpkin face mask, which will smell amazing and brighten your skin. In addition to pumpkin, you’ll need 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of honey, and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon extract. The lemon juice will help to clarify and brighten your skin; the honey, to heal and hydrate; and the cinnamon extract will fight acne-causing bacteria and reduce inflammation. (Note that you may want to skip the lemon juice if you have darker skin, as lemon juice can cause lightening.)

To make the mask, combine ¼ can of pumpkin purée with the ingredients above, and whisk the mixture until it’s smoothly blended. Cleanse your face and use a warm washcloth to open up your pores; then apply an even layer of the face mask onto your skin. Let it sit for 10-20 minutes, then rinse away to enjoy your radiant skin!