Medicinal Mushrooms for Acne: 3 Types to Add to Your Skin Routine

February 20, 2024 | Dr. Silvana Jakupovic, ND

• What is Acne?

Types of Acne

What Causes Acne

• Medicinal Mushrooms for Skin Rejuvenation

• Bio-compounds in Medicinal Mushrooms to Help with Acne

• Skin Benefits of Medicinal Mushrooms

• Where to Buy Medicinal Mushrooms for Acne


What is Acne?

Understanding acne can be difficult. Acne is a common skin condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It is characterized by the presence of pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, and other types of blemished skin on the face, neck, chest, and back. Acne causes are often related to when hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells, leading to the growth of bacteria and inflammation. Various factors, including hormonal imbalances, genetics, stress, and certain medications can cause the condition. 

Although it is often associated with adolescence, acne can affect people of all ages and significantly impact self-esteem and quality of life. Topical therapy with tretinoin, benzoyl peroxide, or antibiotics is widely used today, but many individuals are branching out to find more natural alternatives and dermatology insights on acne.

Types of Acne

While there are many acne variations and different types of acne, acne vulgaris is the most common form of acne and can present in four grades of severity:

• Grade 1 = Open or closed comedones presenting on or below the skin surface, respectively 

• Grade 2 = Inflammatory lesions develop with redness 

• Grade 3 = Pustules develop, which are small, inflamed, pus-filled lesions on the skin surface

• Grade 4 = Many pustules coalesce to form nodules or cysts [1]

What Causes Acne? 

While the factors causing acne are still considered a complicated process, genetic predisposition, having too much oil on your skin, too many bacteria on your skin, and increased activity of certain hormones may all play a role [2]. Often, acne triggers include hormonal changes, stress, diet, cosmetics, and even medications. 

Medicinal Mushrooms for Skin Rejuvenation 

Medicinal mushrooms have been used for centuries for their health-promoting properties, and recent studies have suggested that they can also help rejuvenate skin cells. Certain types of mushrooms, such as Reishi, Shiitake, and Oyster, are rich in antioxidants, polysaccharides, and other compounds that can improve skin health and appearance.

Antioxidants are essential for skin health because they protect against damage from free radicals, which can accelerate aging. Conversely, polysaccharides have anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce redness, irritation, and puffiness. Additionally, medicinal mushrooms can help boost the immune system, further promoting skin health.

Bio-compounds in Medicinal Mushrooms to Help with Acne

Beta-glucans in Medicinal Mushrooms

Beta-glucans are natural cell wall polysaccharides found in fungi identified as biological response modifiers as they possess many biological activities that can modulate the immune system [3]. 

In dermatology, beta-glucans have been recognized for improving wound healing due to their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, rejuvenating and regenerative effects [3]. Additionally, some beta-glucans have potential antibacterial activity against a broad spectrum of bacteria [3]. 

Antioxidants in Mushrooms for Skin 

Oxidative status has been implicated in the development of acne, and studies show that those with severe acne have lower total antioxidant capacities and levels of necessary antioxidant enzymes [4]. Medicinal mushrooms are a significant source of antioxidants that can assist in preventing the development of oxidative stress.

L-Ergothioneine and Acne Treatment

L-ergothioneine is a potent and stable low-molecular-weight antioxidant that tends to accumulate in cells that are usually subjected to high levels of oxidative stress [5]. However, L-ergothioneine function is limited to cells that carry a specific receptor, including epidermal keratinocytes (skin cells) [5].

Skin Benefits of Medicinal Mushrooms

Shiitake Mushroom Benefits for Acne

Shiitake contains high levels of beta-glucans, which possess potent anti-inflammatory and immunomodulating activities beneficial to treating or preventing the development of acne.

Oyster Mushroom Benefits for Acne

The fruiting body of Oyster contains high levels of L-ergothioneine, making the fruiting body extract a powerful force against the development of oxidative stress. L-ergothioneine has been shown to reduce the levels of reactive oxygen species and DNA, protein, and lipid damage in skin cells [5]. This is important in acne development as correlations have been found between increased oxidative stress markers and acne severity [4].

shop Reishi mushrooms

Reishi Mushroom Benefits for Acne

As mentioned, local increases of androgenic activity may play a role in acne development. Anti-androgens are compounds that can reduce the levels or activity of androgen hormones in the body [6].  

In a research study exploring the anti-androgenic effects of 20 species of mushrooms, Reishi had the most substantial impact in inhibiting testosterone [6]. Reishi exhibited the ability to reduce 5-alpha reductase levels, preventing the conversion of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a more potent androgen [6]. Reishi also contains high levels of antioxidants and beta-glucans, as well.

Eversio medicinal mushrooms

Where to Buy Medicinal Mushrooms for Acne

Although the market for medicinal mushrooms is broad, it is essential to be mindful of what is inside the products you are buying. If a mushroom supplement contains grain products, this should be listed in their “other ingredients.” Full spectrum is often advertised as a beneficial aspect of the product by some companies. Still, under the surface, this means that the product is watered down, and you’d need to consume much more of it to achieve the same benefits as you would from a product containing 100% fruiting body. It is important to remember these things to ensure you are purchasing the most powerful mushrooms.

Eversio Wellness carries 100% fruiting body only mushroom extracts, and they consistently practice transparency to their consumers by sharing the COAs (Certificate of Analysis) of each product. The COAs reassure consumers that the percentage of compounds claimed to be in the products is scientifically confirmed through lab testing. Not only does the COA confirm the percentages of the beneficial constituents, but it also tests the heavy metal and microbial contents to ensure you’re getting the best mushroom supplements possible. 

If you are interested in learning more about medicinal mushrooms, take a look at this page and you can find all the products that Eversio Wellness has to offer here.




[1] Sutaria AH, Masood S, Schlessinger J. Acne Vulgaris. [Updated 2022 Aug 1]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan-. Available from:

[2] Whiting DA. Acne. West J Med. 1979 Dec;131(6):551-7. PMID: 161830; PMCID: PMC1271924.

[3] Majtan J, Jesenak M. β-Glucans: Multi-Functional Modulator of Wound Healing. Molecules. 2018 Apr 1;23(4):806. doi: 10.3390/molecules23040806. PMID: 29614757; PMCID: PMC6017669.

[4] Al-Shobaili HA. Oxidants and anti-oxidants status in acne vulgaris patients with varying severity. Ann Clin Lab Sci. 2014 Spring;44(2):202-7. PMID: 24795060.

[5] Markova NG, Karaman-Jurukovska N, Dong KK, Damaghi N, Smiles KA, Yarosh DB. Skin cells and tissue are capable of using L-ergothioneine as an integral component of their antioxidant defense system. Free Radic Biol Med. 2009 Apr 15;46(8):1168-76. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2009.01.021. Epub 2009 Feb 3. PMID: 19439218.

[6] Grant P, Ramasamy S. An update on plant derived anti-androgens. Int J Endocrinol Metab. 2012 Spring;10(2):497-502. doi: 10.5812/ijem.3644. Epub 2012 Apr 20. PMID: 23843810; PMCID: PMC3693613. 

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