A mysterious tree with many names, benefits and traditions. Used from the Pre-Hispanic era till today.
Since ancient times, Mimosa hostilis has been part of traditional medicine recipes in the Americas. Pre-Hispanic cultures, such as the Mayan and Nahua, among others, have used it to heal damaged tissues –like skin burns—and in cosmetic routines.
Mimosa hostilis grows from the tropical deciduous forests of Southern Mexico to the tropical forests of Northern Brazil. Its capacity to adapt to extreme conditions make it a resilient and strong tree.
The full scientific name of this tree is Mimosa tenuiflora (Willd) Poiret, and Mimosa hostilis is used as a synonym. In Brazil, it is popularly known as “jurema”, and in Mexico as “tepezcohuite”.
The meaning of tepezcohuite is unclear. Nevertheless, there are two main theories proposed by historians:
- “Tree of the hill”
From the sum of the words, from Nahuatl, the original language of the Aztecs:
Tepetl (hill) and, cuahuitl (tree).
- “Tree hard as iron”
From the Nahuat, a variant of Nahuatl:
Tepos (iron) and, kuouit (tree, wood or log).
Nowadays, Mexican herbalists usually call it “skin tree” because most of its usages are related to the treatment of skin illnesses. By grounding the Mimosa tenuiflora bark, traditional doctors in different indigenous communities produce infusions, balms, and soaps, specially designed to regenerate the skin, but also to treat stomach illnesses, and fungal infections.
Indigenous women and traditional herbalists use tepezcohuite root bark powder as a great anti-aging and beauty ally. Tepezcohuite is the main ingredient in many cosmetic products for the treatment of acne, wrinkles reduction, spots and stretch marks from pregnancy. It is also used for controlling dandruff and stimulating hair growth. The famous Mexican actress, Salma Hayek, has advocated for the use of Tepezcohuite in beauty treatments and she even created a skin care product line with it.
We, The Mimosa Company, want to offer you the best Mimosa hostilis from the Americas and share the knowledge and traditional uses that surround this wonderful tree!
Learn more about and discover the story behind the Mimosa Hostilis tree