Insider Picks writes about products and services to help you navigate when shopping online. Insider Inc. receives a commission from our affiliate partners when you buy through our links, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.
- Dandy Blend
- Dandy Blend, an herbal coffee substitute, features dandelion root, chicory root, barley, and rye and tastes just like the real thing.
- Coffee, with its high acid content and diuretic properties, can lead to dry, inflamed skin, but Dandy Blend is packed with vitamins and nutrients that aid in the overall health of the body – including skin health.
Quitting coffee is one of those things I dabble in, without fail, at the beginning of every new year.
Intellectually, I know the habit isn’t great for my body – but I always go back to it because, as researchers have shown, caffeine addiction is real. Some of the symptoms of coffee withdrawal prove it: Headaches, fatigue, and irritability set in when the caffeine-spiked morning Venti goes away.
I have another theory about coffee addiction, though. In my experience, the habit of making, pouring, grabbing, and sipping on a cuppa is just as addictive as the caffeine itself. When my hand is grasped around a warm mug and that sweet-bitter taste hits my tongue, I feel like the day has officially begun. So when I made up my mind to quit coffee once and for all, I knew I needed a replacement habit – something that would easily fit into my already-established morning routine and trick my body into perking up.
Enter herbal coffee, or more specifically, Dandy Blend.
Dandy is an herbal blend featuring dandelion root, chicory root, barley, and rye. It looks strikingly similar to instant coffee and is just as easy make; you simply scoop a heaping tablespoon or two into a hot cup of water and stir. Voilá! “Java” is served. But where Dandy differs from other herbal coffee alternatives I’ve tried is that it actually tastes like the real thing. Chicory root mimics that full-bodied coffee taste I’ve grown to love, but in a slightly earthier way.
With Dandy Blend in my cup, my first two coffee-free weeks flew by without any of the headaches and irritability I anticipated… probably because Dandy Blend is more than just a coffee substitute – it’s actually healthy. Whereas coffee is highly acidic (which can cause heartburn and stomach issues) and a diuretic (which leaves the body dehydrated), Dandy Blend can reduce inflammation in the body (thanks to dandelion root) and regulate digestion (courtesy of barley and chicory root).
But the biggest change I noticed from cutting out coffee? My skin started to G-L-O-W.
“Coffee may cause insulin resistance, which is your body’s ability to process sugar, and that can stimulate your sebaceous glands to produce extra oil,” Jill Therese, a skin and nutrition specialist and the founder of Heal Your Face With Food, tells Business Insider. “Excess oil can lead to blocked pores on the skin and potential breakouts.” Additionally, the caffeine content in coffee directly stimulates the adrenal glands. “This overstimulation of the adrenals over time can lead to dehydration and premature aging down the road,” Therese says. So if you struggle with problem skin and consume coffee on a daily basis, you may want to cut back to see if caffeine is the culprit.
My improved skin tone wasn’t just a result of eliminating coffee – it turns out, Dandy Blend is full of glow-inducing vitamins and minerals, too. “Dandelion root is like the nectar of the gods for your skin because of its ability to support the liver’s detoxification process,” Therese notes.
The liver has long been connected to skin issues, since it’s basically the body’s detox center. When the liver isn’t functioning properly, it doesn’t filter toxins out of the body, and these toxins can show up on your skin in the form of pimples, rashes, and even eczema and psoriasis. “Dandelion increases the flow of bile in the liver and as a result, all excess hormones and toxins are efficiently processed out of the body,” Therese explains. “This leads to better digestion, less stress, and much clearer skin.”
The chicory root in Dandy Blend helps as well. It’s packed with antioxidants to neutralize the effects of pollution on the skin (like wrinkles, fine lines, inflammation, and age spots) and features high levels of Vitamins A and K – two of the most important vitamins for skin health. Vitamin A is famous for its anti-aging and anti-acne properties, while Vitamin K boosts the body’s ability to heal, so skin issues clear up faster and don’t leave scars behind.
As soon as I realized that ditching my daily cup of joe in favor of Dandy Blend would lead to better skin, I knew I’d be off coffee for good. I’ve even altered my go-to Dandy recipe to include additional skin-boosting benefits.
Want my clear skin recipe?
In an eight ounce cup of hot water, I mix together one tablespoon of Dandy Blend, a half tablespoon of bone broth collagen (for plumper, firmer-looking skin), and one tablespoon of coconut oil (since healthy fats help to keep skin moisturized from the inside out). You can also make this with cold water and add ice cubes, if you’re into a cold brew-esque experience.
After a week of Dandy, I promise you won’t miss coffee – or the inflammation, dehydration, and dull skin that come with it – at all.