A skincare silver bullet?
The precious metal could help with an array of conditions, from acne to eczema, says KATIE WRIGHT YOU may have heard that silver is a growing trend in beauty - but that doesn't mean shimmery eyeshadow or metallic highlighter.
We're talking about colloidal silver, an ingredient that's been used for medical purposes for centuries.
"Colloidal silver is the generic term for substances with tiny particles of silver suspended in water," explains Joy Isaacs, founder of Argentum skincare.
"The ancient Romans used to put silver coins in milk to keep it fresh and Hippocrates, the 'Father of Medicine', taught [people] that silver supports healing processes.
"It's soothing to any skin trauma and is still used extensively in the world of medicine."
So why should we be adding this medicinal metal to our beauty routines? "Colloidal silver is an exceptional skincare ingredient that helps to calm the skin by reducing inflammation, and fights bacteria without destroying the natural fauna of your skin," Joy says.
"A good quality colloidal silver will increase the process of tissue protection and decrease irritant effects caused by oxidative stress, making it an extremely effective skincare ingredient for treating and soothing common conditions like acne, rosacea and eczema."
That's why we're now seeing serums, moisturisers, mists and soap infused with the precious particles.
If you have a tendency to break out with spots or get flare ups of rosacea or eczema, incorporating one of these products could make all the difference - as long as the active ingredient is sufficiently potent.
"Although many products on the market contain silver, not all are created equal," Joy warns.
"The colloidal silver that we use in our Argentum products is silver hydrosol - positively charged silver ions - made of 99.99% pure silver - suspended in pharmaceutical grade purified water.
"If you are going to incorporate silver as a part of your skincare routine, I would recommend investing in the highest quality and purest form you can find."
Even if you don't suffer with a particular condition, the anti-inflammatory properties of silver can calm a stressed out complexion and it's suitable for all skin types.
So whether you're looking to target spots or soothe your skin, here's our pick of the best colloidal silver products on the market...