Meet the Mushrooms

Tremella - The Beauty Tonic


Tremella fuciformis is an edible fungus, and unlike your typical stem and cap mushroom, it resembles a beautiful underwater coral. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Tremella is known as a Yin tonic. This fitting nickname relates to Yin energy which is understood to cool the fire (Yang energy) and provide hydration and moisture to the body. Yin tonics are thought to help the accumulation and storage of energy and support for the lungs, brain, stomach, heart and immune system. In this blog, we will bridge the gap between ancient remedies and modern science to better understand the true healing potential of Tremella for your skin and beyond!

This jelly-like translucent mushroom is ruffled and made up of branching frond-like parts supported by a central base and is generally found on fallen branches of broad-leaved trees. Tremella is also known as snow fungus, silver ear, snow ear, white wood ear, and white jelly mushroom. It enjoys humid tropical conditions and is found worldwide, from South and Central America, the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand, Asia and parts of North America. 

For thousands of years, Tremella has been used in TCM reserved for royalty and the wealthy. It was used to help boost the immune system, reduce inflammation and treat asthma and a dry cough. However, it was its impressive hydrating and skin-rejuvenating properties that made it incredibly popular.

To learn more, let’s briefly cast our minds back to the Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD). In this period, there was an imperial consort named Yang Guifei who was believed to be the most beautiful women in Chinese history. Legend has it, this incomparable beauty was thanks to her consistent use of Tremella. Her appearance and exceptional beauty brought her admiration, honourable status, countless treasures, and a luxurious life. She was often described her as having “a face that would put flowers to shame.” Today, science allows us to rediscover what Yang Guifei understood all those years ago about the beauty hacks Tremella has to offer. 


Skin Health

Recently, hyaluronic acid (HA) has been heavily praised by beauty experts, giving it buzz-worthy status in the health and wellness industry. It’s getting added to skin treatments, serums, creams and more. This substance is naturally found in the joints, skin, eyes, and synovial fluid however, our HA levels start to decrease as early as 20 years of age and are reduced to half by the age of 50.(1) This impact results in the loss of hydration and can lead to the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The good news is that Tremella can help. The unique polysaccharide compounds in Tremella show remarkable water-retaining properties (2),(3) that are hard to beat. Holding over 500 times its weight in water,(4) the hydrating molecules of Tremella are smaller than those of hyaluronic acid, allowing them to penetrate the skin faster and more effectively. This improves the texture and elasticity of your skin, helping to reduce the symptoms of ageing and cell damage.

Tremella is also known to support our body’s natural production of collagen. Thanks to its high level of polysaccharides and amino acids, tremella can promote skin collagen synthesis which can help to boost elasticity, improve firmness and reduce fine lines and wrinkles. A beauty hack brought to you by Mother Nature!(5)

Reduction of inflammation 

Studies(6) suggest that Tremella has anti-inflammatory capabilities. Tremella’s polysaccharides may also reduce oxidative stress, helping to alleviate the damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable chemicals that cause oxidative stress in our bodies, damaging DNA and leading to diseases like atherosclerosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and Alzheimer disease. Tremella may help to prevent cell damage caused by too many free radicals, and as a result, may help to protect you from certain chronic conditions.(7)


Brain Health 

A few studies have found that Tremella extract may reduce brain toxicity(8) caused by beta-amyloid, a protein linked to the development of Alzheimer's Disease. One randomised, double-blind human study with 75 people also found that Tremella may also improve memory and cognitive impairment.(9) Over eight weeks, participants received either 600 mg of Tremella (low dose), 1200 mg Tremella (high dose), or placebo daily. The outcomes showed that those participants who consumed Tremella improved their subjective memory and cognitive performance (short-term memory and executive performance).

For those of you interested in how fungi may help boost cognitive performance, see our blog on Lion’s Mane. This mushroom has become very well known for its potential to help repair nerve damage, nerve growth factors and improve memory and focus.


Vitamin D

Tremella contains the highest natural Vitamin D ergosterol (provitamin D) level among known food sources. Vitamin D is essential to help skin cell growth and to repair and prevent premature skin ageing. This vitamin plays a pivotal role in keeping skin hydrated and supple. Additionally, it maintains strong bones and teeth by aiding calcium absorption and regulating cell growth. 


Taste Profile

When cooked, Tremella has a delicate flavour profile and a tender, meaty texture. We prefer to drink it though! Our DIRTEA Tremella Mushroom powder has a subtly sweet flavour that’s delicious on its own or mixed into your favourite drinks. Tremella is an excellent source of fibre and vitamin D, B1, B2, and B6, folate, zinc, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and copper. 


1. Can promote the production of natural collagen

2. Tremella molecules can hold 500 times its weight in water

3. May reduce Brain toxicity

4. Contains high amounts of vitamin D

5. Has a subtle sweet taste



      1. Goberdhan, L., (2016). ‘Immediate and Long-Term Effects of a Topical Serum with Five Forms of Hyaluronic Acid on Facial Wrinkles and Intrinsic Skin Moisture Content’,The Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 74 (5), doi:
      2. Ma, X., Yang, M., He, Y., Zhai, C., & Li, C. (2021).‘A Review on the Production, Structure, Bioactivities and Applications of Tremella Polysaccharides’.,International Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology., 35 doi:
      3. Wu, Y., Choi, M.-H., Li, J., Yang, H. & Shin, H.-J. (2016). ‘Mushroom Cosmetics: The Present and Future’Cosmetics. 3 (3), pp.22. doi:10.3390/cosmetics3030022.
      4. Jiang, R.-Z., Wang, Y., Luo, H.-M., Cheng, Y.-Q., Chen, Y.-H., Gao, Y. & Gao, Q.-P. (2012).‘Effect of the Molecular Mass of Tremella Polysaccharides on Accelerated Recovery from Cyclophosphamide-Induced Leucopenia in Rats’., Molecules 17 (4), pp.3609–3617. doi:10.3390/molecules17043609.>/li>
      5. Ma X, Yang M, He Y, Zhai C, Li C. (2021). A review on the production, structure, bioactivities and applications of Tremella polysaccharides.,Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol, Jan-Dec, 35, doi: 10.1177/20587384211000541.
      6. Ruan Y, Li H, Pu L, Shen T, Jin Z. (2018). Tremella Fuciformis Polysaccharides Attenuate Oxidative Stress and Inflammation in Macrophages through miR-155Anal Cell Pathol (Amst), doi: 10.1155/2018/5762371.
      7. Gusman JK, Lin CY, Shih YC. (2014). The Optimum Submerged Culture Condition of the Culinary-Medicinal White Jelly Mushroom (Tremellomycetes) and its Antioxidant Properties.,Int J Med Mushrooms, 16 (3), pp.293-302. doi: 10.1615/intjmedmushr.v16.i3.90.
      8. Park KJ, Lee S-Y, Kim HS, Yamazaki M, Chiba K, Ha H-C. (2007). The Neuroprotective and Neurotrophic Effects of Tremella Fuciformis in PC12h Cells.,Mycobiology, 35 (1), pp.11-5. doi: 10.4489/MYCO.2007.35.1.011.
      9. Oliff, H. S., (2019). Clinical Efficacy of Snow Fungus for Improving Cognitive Function,American Botanical Council (HerbClip)



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