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Dragon’s Blood Might Be the Secret to Amazing Skin—Here’s Why


What is Dragon’s Blood?

Of all the buzzy skincare ingredients we’ve tried, this one stands out for one simple reason: it’s called dragon’s blood (yup, like the flying, fire-breathing kind), and it sounds more science-fiction than something you’d see in the skincare aisle. We’ve certainly had our fair share of skincare adventures—from vampire facials to hair-removing lasers—so when this ingredient came across our desks in the form of some pretty cool products (more on those later), we couldn’t resist diving in.

We took our questions to Dr. Dendy Engelman, MD, dermatologist and Mohs surgeon at Shafer Clinic in New York City, and discovered that dragon’s blood (to our slight disappointment) has little to do with mythical, winged creatures. The source, in fact, is way more down to earth. Dr. Engelman says, “Croton lechleri, known colloquially as dragon’s blood, is a bright-red resin oil derived from the South American Croton Lechleri tree (also called the dragon tree).”You may see it referred to as sangre de drago. Dragon’s blood has also been used in traditional Chinese medicine for ages to treat injuries and pain thanks to its healing properties. Its many benefits—from fighting inflammation to minimizing acne scars—have made it a popular addition to skincare products as of late. “Dragon’s Blood is best known for aiding in wound healing and has several properties that make it appealing in skincare,” Dr. Engelman adds.

Want to know if dragon’s blood is the secret to transforming your skin? Continue reading to learn all about this super unique skincare ingredient.

About the Expert:

Dendy Engelman, MD, is a dermatologist and Mohs surgeon at Shafer Clinic Fifth Avenue in New York City.

Benefits of Dragon’s Blood

So, what can dragon’s blood do for you? First, according to Dr. Engelman, “It’s important to note that there is not a huge body of evidence to support the efficacy of dragon’s blood in skincare. Traditional medicine and some recent studies have shown it to be effective in soothing and helping heal injuries.” She adds that “Dragon’s blood is generally known to be suitable for all skin types, but those with latex allergies may also be allergic to dragon’s blood as they are derived from similar trees. As with any new ingredient, consult your dermatologist to see if it may be right for you.” Here are some of the best-known dragon’s blood benefits:

1. It’s anti-inflammatory

Dragon’s blood is known to have anti-inflammatory properties that according to Dr. Engelman, “reduce redness and inflammation.” If your skin is prone to rashes, dragon’s blood can help calm and soothe them. Plus, its anti-inflammatory properties mean it can help ease inflammation associated with acne.

2. It’s got antimicrobial properties

Struggling with breakouts? We’ve been there. And we’ve tried just about everything under the sun to keep them at bay. Enter: dragon’s blood. It has antimicrobial properties that can help acne-prone skin by preventing and killing acne-causing bacteria. Combined with its anti-inflammatory effects, dragon’s blood can help clear up blemishes and fade stubborn acne scars.

3. It’s healing

Anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial properties also make dragon’s blood a great skin healer. Dr. Engelman says, “It soothes and heals wounded skin and strengthens the skin barrier, which helps lock in moisture and keep out external aggressors.” Dragon’s blood also helps shorten inflammation time, which is key in wound-healing.

4. It’s rich in antioxidants

While it may not be the fountain of youth, dragon’s blood can help prevent wrinkles and fine lines. Its antioxidant properties also help protect skin from environmental stressors and free radicals that can contribute to signs of aging.

Where Can You Find Dragon’s Blood?

“If you want to start using dragon’s blood for skincare, you can find it in a variety of products including creams, serums, lip products, and even under-eye masks,” says Dr. Engelman. “Since it is used so broadly, look for products that address your specific skin type and concerns. For example, if you have dry skin, you may want to seek out a moisturizer or hydrating serum that contains dragon’s blood.” Want to add it to your routine? Here are our picks:

RODIAL Dragon’s Blood Eye Gel helps brighten, refresh, and restore tired under-eyes with a healthy dose of skin-calming dragon’s blood, plus hyaluronic acid and arnica to hydrate and reduce puffiness.

RODIAL Dragon’s Blood Hyaluronic Mask gives skin a healthy moisture boost thanks to a complex of hydrating actives. Use it to nourish, condition, soothe, and rejuvenate dull, dry skin.

RODIAL Dragon’s Blood Micellar Cleansing Water gets rid of dirt, makeup, and excess oils without stripping your skin of moisture. It’s made with refreshing rosewater and micellar oil, plus dragon’s blood and hyaluronic acid to comfort and hydrate skin.

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Article Last Updated September 28, 2021 12:00 AM