History of the mastic
From antiquity already (1st century AD) Dioskouridis in his book “On the Material of Medicine” mentions the cosmetic properties of mastic since it “gives radiance to the skin” as he mentions. But also in Byzantium, mastic was the necessary ingredient of aromatic soaps and doctors of emperors such as Aetius and Mountaineer recommended it to the empresses because it gave shine and kept the youth in the faces. the Genoese rulers of Chios (14-16 centuries AD) applied a monopoly regime in its trade. The same tactics were applied by the Turkish conquerors until the liberation of Chios (1912). The 24 communities of sage growers enjoyed significant benefits in return. The cultivation continues uninterruptedly until today, while since 1997 it has been characterized as a product of Protected Designation of Origin (POD)
What is it?
The mastic plant, the spinach, scientifically Pistacia lentiscus, thrives throughout the Mediterranean, from the Iberian Peninsula and France to Turkey and Israel. However, on the island of Chios and more specifically in the southern part of the island, a special variety of shin is cultivated, Pistacia lentiscus (more specifically, Pistacia lentiscus varChia), from which mastic is produced. Only when this plant is cultivated in southern Chios, the ‘tears’ of mastic when engraved, dry and coagulate with exposure to air to produce mastic. This property gives the uniqueness to Chios and was known since antiquity, while The mastic tree, is an evergreen shrub 2-3 meters high, which grows slowly and gets its full growth after 40-50 years, reaching up to 5 meters height in older plants. The special features of the soil and of the microclimate, and the traditional cultivation they finally bring such an impressive result and shape the uniqueness of this special resin. The aromatic resin is secreted in the form of tears from the trunk and large branches of the mastic tree, with superficial incisions of the producers.
Mastic has clinically proven antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and healing properties.It guarantees deep cleansing of the skin and has anti-aging properties. Controls sebum secretion and reduces oily skin problems. At the same time it ensures greater elasticity and deeply moisturizes. In conclusion, cosmetics containing mastic give healthy skin, confirming the ancient beliefs about the contribution of chian resin to beauty. Since 2015, mastic has received the monograph from the European Medicines Agency as a natural medicine, among other things, for the treatment of skin diseases.
SEAMUSE handmade soap bars ‘Mastic, the Tears of Chios’’
Seamuse is proud of its soap bars ‘Μastic, the tears of Chios’ (‘Mastic, Tears of Chios’) with main ingredient the mastic. Enriching our natural, handmade soap with mastic, we give a special texture while at the same time the natural resin diffuses throughout the mass, so the beneficial properties of mastic are present and ready to have a beneficial effect. We avoided the easy solution of simply flavoring the soap with essential oil or aromatic mastic oil and insisted on incorporating the resin into the body of the soap. This treatment is quite complex and requires special care in order to maintain the properties through the saponification process.