In just a few seconds of scrolling through the #JungalowStyle hashtag, you will realize how Houseplants can transform any space from fine and functional into a transformative piece of nature. Research has shown that houseplants aren’t just the stuff of interior decoration, they’re also good for us in a number of ways, including improved mood and decreased pain perception.
But you know what’s going to really convince you to hit the greenhouse? Houseplants may be the best natural way to moisturize your skin. According to a recent study, plants with high transpiration rates (the amount of water lost by their leaves) may help to add moisture to the air and prevent dry skin during winter. Even a few new additions to the collection, such as peace lilies, can transpire more water than a teacup every day.
Another interesting finding? Plants with high transpiration rates remove toxins and purify indoor air the best. Studies also found that plants reduce levels of formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds in the air, which are toxic compounds found in common household items (mattresses, paints, candles) that promote oxidative stress and accelerate the aging process.
The idea that more plants equals better skin and overall health is not a surprise to plant enthusiasts. I have a very simple skin care routine that doesn’t involve 15 steps or expensive products. “I get a lot of compliments on my skin,” says Bryana Sortino, COO of Brooklyn’s Horti, proud parent of over 100 plants. “And caring for all these babies makes me feel nurtured and calm.”
So, what plants should you buy to boost the hydration and overall health of your skin? With the help of Sortino and Horti’s CEO, Puneet Sabharwal, we’ve rounded up some of the most visually appealing, high-transpiration picks:
According to Sortino, “Snake is actually an all-around winner as it performs well in low light plus it’s one of the few plants that release oxygen at night, making it ideal for your bedroom.”
In addition to being unbelievably hardy (meaning: hard to kill! ), snake plants remove harmful toxins from their surroundings
Vining Plants (Satin Pothos, Philodendron Brasil, English Ivy)
According to research, ivy is one of the best plants to increase the relative humidity in a room, as well as Satin Pothos and Philodendron Brasil. All of these plants increase airflow and moisture in a room, says Sortino.
Satin Pothos thrives in direct light and is even known as the cubicle plant due to its ability to grow in such a small space. English ivy thrives in moderate sunlight and Philodendron Brasil thrives in bright light.
Areca Palms + Bamboo Palms
Palms tend to prefer bright indoor spaces, meaning they are a bit challenging to maintain in apartments, but don’t let that stop you from growing these beautiful plants if you have windows. In Sabharwal’s living room, there is a big palm tree that adds lots of moisture to the otherwise dry heated air. Since bamboo palms and areca palms grow fast, they are among the trees with the highest transpiration rates.
A peace lily is especially good at boosting the moisture content of indoor air, along with English ivy. These plants are known to insulate against many pollutants in the air, like benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xylene, toluene, and ammonia. Indirect sunlight is ideal for peace lilies.
Boston Ferns thrive in moderate indirect sunlight and high humidity. They can be hung in a basket or placed in a pot on top of a shelf. Boston Ferns help clean the air just like the spider plant and reduce indoor air pollutants.
In addition to releasing an ample amount of moisture, spider plants have been shown to remove dangerous toxins from the air, like formaldehyde, xylene, and toluene. You can propagate spider plants in almost any room in the house, since they thrive in moderate, indirect sunlight and moderate temperatures.
But before you get all hung up on buying “the exact right plants,” you might want to consider purchasing more. Plant cuddle puddles, as Sabharwal calls them, are also a good way to increase the humidity in the air.
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