Ergothioneine Serum & Its Benefits for Skin

Ergothioneine Serum & Its Benefits for Skin

Many people have not heard of Ergothioneine, but in the ever-evolving landscape of skincare ingredients, Ergothioneine is an ingredient which has gone relatively unnoticed despite an array of studies indicating that it has one of the widest range of benefits of any single skincare ingredient or technology.

What is Ergothioneine?

Ergothioneine (EGT) is an amino acid with potent antioxidant properties. It is manufactured by a variety of microorganisms, especially fungi (including mushrooms) and it is found in red and black beans, but predominantly it is found in mushrooms. 

Ergothioneine skincare benefits

Research into Ergothioneine for use in serums and creams suggests that Ergothioneine benefits skin even at very low concentrations. Ergothioneine, also known as thiotaine, is similar in its molecular structure to Carnitine, a very good skin energiser, Ergothioneine’s benefits in skincare products include helping to enhance cellular energy used for a variety of processes. This cellular energy is often termed ‘skin energy’. 

Cells require energy to produce collagen and elastin, as well as to enhance cell turnover, helping to produce fresh new cells to replace existing ones. This process, called desquamation, helps to keep skin healthy, glowing and smooth. Cells also require energy for metabolising the nutrients which enter the cells, ensuring antioxidants are available constantly to protect skin, and to try and prevent dehydration. 

Ergothioneine in skincare acts to protect skin against free radicals due to its powerful antioxidant properties and is deemed to be more powerful than Ubiquinone, Co-enzyme Q10, all of which are often used in skincare.1

Ultraviolet rays in sunlight, UVA, can penetrate the dermal layers in skin and affect the growth of the outer skin cells, making surface cells die, which can cause the premature ageing of skin. Several studies indicate that Ergothioneine, even at low concentrations, may help to protect the skin against UV damage. One study concluded that EGT is effective for the treatment of UVA-induced skin damage and should be used in the development of new skincare products and healthier sunscreen products, which is rather interesting. 2

It is also thought that Ergothioneine skincare products may help to protect other antioxidants from degrading which helps to maintain their protective action for an extended period. Maintaining antioxidant levels in cells is crucial for protecting our genetic material from the by-products of cell metabolism.

Inflammation hinders cell function and when skin cells are inflamed from environmental factors or from inflammatory and damaging free radicals, skin begins to look dull, lacklustre and is prone to infection. Studies have shown that Ergothioneine’s antioxidant activity helps to protect against inflammation, which is a major factor in the ageing of skin. 

DPPH is a stable free radical used to measure an ingredient’s antioxidant capacity and Ergothioneine has been shown to mop up the DPPH radical effectively and has shown to be  thirty times greater than Coenzyme Q10. This important activity helps to improve the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and crow’s feet. 

Skin comprises of the epidermis, dermis, and subcutaneous tissue which all form a line of defence against dehydration from within and help to protect skin against external pollutants. Ergothioneine has been found to play a significant role in the remodelling of the skin barrier function helping to keep skin hydrated and helping to prevent dehydration.3

Ergothioneine is known to inhibit the collagen destructing enzyme MMP-1. This action helps preserve collagen structural fibres and improves skin’s firmness and elasticity.4 

Ergothioneine in skincare will help inhibit the production of tyrosinase, which is an enzyme required to manufacture melanin, the skin's pigmentation. The more melanin you have, the darker the colour of your skin. The use of Ergothioneine in this circumstance will help to brighten and freshen the appearance of skin and will also help improve the appearance of an uneven skin tone, including age spots. 5

Ergothioneine harnesses the power of nature

Nature has gifted us many compounds which are beneficial in face serums and other skincare products. Some notable examples include Bakuchiol, a natural alternative to retinol, Neurophroline which is a peptide from the Wild Indigo plant, working to reduce stress hormones in skin, and of course Vitamin C which provides multiple benefits for skin. 

I believe that Ergothioneine is one such natural ingredient, derived from mushrooms, which plays a big role in skin health. Ergothioneine is already being regarded as a super antioxidant and with good reason.

Cells need energy to perform their roles of division, fresh cell production and of course repair. To do this, they require energy in the form of ATP. To create ATP, the mitochondria, which are the energy factories within cells, need fatty acids; however, when you produce energy, damaging free radicals are produced, so Ergothioneine performs the role of transporting fatty acids to the cells and protecting these cells from the free radicals produced when they burn fatty acids for energy production. Additionally, in studies, Ergothioneine has been found to out-perform Idebenone, Coenzyme Q10, and Vitamin C in its antioxidant properties. 

In summary, DoSe Ergothioneine Serum helps improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, it enhances the skin’s energy for healthy cell production, it protects skin against both free radical and oxidative damage, it maintains skin barrier function to help keep skin hydrated, it helps to calm inflamed skin and it targets uneven skin tones. 

DoSe Ergothioneine Serum is suitable for all skin types including oily and/or combination skin and is the ideal anti-ageing serum to help fight against the signs of dermal maturation where numerous processes occur. Ergothioneine Serum is generally without side effects.



  1. Cosmetic Ingredients Directory
  2. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2020; 2020: 2576823.
  3. Safe and Effective Antioxidant: The Biological Mechanism and Potential Pathways of Ergothioneine in the Skin.  Hui-Min Liu,1,2 Wei Tang,1 Xiao-Yi Wang,1 Jing-Jing Jiang,1 Wei Zhang,3 and Wei Wang1,2,* Molecules. 2023 Feb; 28(4): 1648
  4. Obayashi K., Kurihara K., Okano Y., Masaki H., Yarosh D. B. L-Ergothioneine scavenges superoxide and singlet oxygen and suppresses TNF-alpha and MMP-1 expression in UV-irradiated human dermal fibroblasts. Journal of Cosmetic Science . 2005;56(1):17–27.
  5. Kinetics of Ergothioneine Inhibition of Mushroom Tyrosinase November 2011Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology 166(2):259-67 DOI:10.1007/s12010-011-9421-x

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