Moringa oil has rapidly become one of the most popular oils in skin care. The countless positive benefits of Moringa oil in skin care are constantly praised. I decided to take a deeper look at the properties of moringa oil. I found the oil quite different than we may infer from the praise of beauty oil traders. Read on to know what kind of oil you can get from moringa and for what kind of use it is really good.
Moringa oleifera is a climate friendly plant
Moringa oleifera is a tree that is native to Asia. During thousands of years the plant has spread around Africa, the Middle East and Mid- and South America. Moringa grows only in tropical and subtropical regions. In terms of soil, Moringa oleifera is really modest. It does not require perfect conditions to grow. A nutrient-poor, dry land is good enough. Moringa grows very fast. Indeed, it is being rejected in some countries as an invasive alien species.
A savior of arid areas
The modesty of Moringa makes it a very climate friendly plant. Moringa succeeds well on dry land. It will easily rot if there is too much water. That’s why moringa has been planted in the harshest areas of the world to combat desertification. Fighting famine in dry areas and the survival of humans and livestock are also supported by planting moringa in the area.
Moringa is one answer to the world’s food supply
All parts of the plant can be consumed by the local population and their cattle. Moringa leaves, crude seeds, flowers, ripe seeds, pressed oil and roots are good for nourishment. They are very healthy, delicious and full of good quality protein, vitamins, fatty acids and trace elements. Moringa leaves and seeds have a high protein content. The proteins in Moringa contain all the essential amino acids that are rare in the world of plants. There is a plan to replace olive oil by moringa oil in dry and hot areas where olive tree fails to grow or produce any crop. It is absurd to transport olive oil from Europe to countries where moringa is growing. Moringa oil is equivalent to olive oil and is even healthier than olive oil.
Moringa and water purification
After pressing Moringa oil from the seeds, the seed cakes are made into a product used to purify wastewater in developing countries. Seed cakes can also be used as an organic fertilizer for fields.
Moringa is very helpful in desertification, wastewater treatment and the food problem of the poor and arid regions of the world. That’s why it’s an important tree and that’s why moringa oil has begun to conquer the world. People in poor, dry areas grow moringa and make a living from it. Some moringa products also end up in export and cosmetics markets.
Moringa oil or Ben oil
Moringa oil has a historical name of Ben oil or Behen oil. Moringa oil contains high levels of a rare fatty acid called behenic acid (about 6-9%). That’s what the name is ben oil. Moringa seeds contain up to 40% oil. Moringa is indeed one of the best oil plants in the world.
History of Moringa Oil
Moringa oil, or ben oil, is an ancient oil. The earliest observations of moringa oil are from ancient Egypt 6000 years ago. Even the Egyptians in those times knew the properties of moringa oil.
- Moringa oil was the most important base oil in perfume production 6000 years ago. Moringa oil was usually blended with Indian cardamom and myrrh. Such an oil was a precious fragrance oil used by the upper class.
- Moringa oil was an important ingredient in embalming in ancient Egypt.
- Moringa oil-based fragrance oils were also placed in the graves.
- Moringa oil was used for many different purposes for centuries
- Moringa oil was the best perfume oil because it absorbed the aromas of essential oils (natural equivalent to phthalates). Moringa oil-based fragrance did not lose its aroma so quickly.
- Moringa oil was used in lanterns and flares because it does not smoke at all.
- Moringa oil was used to lubricate fine mechanics as it is one of the most stable oils. Moringa oil does not age easily and does not lose its agility. It can remain good for up to 5 years. Of course, this applies only to refined Moringa oil.
- Refined clear moringa oil was used as a valuable watch lubricant because it stays fluid and does not solidify.
- Moringa oil, or petrol oil, is early petrol. It was once used as fuel in internal combustion engines like jojoba oil. The suitability of Moringa oil as a biofuel is being seriously studied.
Features of Moringa oil
In fact, Moringa oil, or bene oil, is equivalent to olive oil. Its oleic acid content is almost as high as olive oil (73.59%). Moringa oil does not contain very well absorbable fatty acids such as linolenic acid or alpha-linolenic acid. Therefore, it feels oily and heavy on skin.
Currently, only cold pressed, unfiltered moringa oil is available to consumers. Such oil is rich in antioxidants. It is green-yellow in colour and has a strong aroma.
Refined moringa oil has little odour. It suits therefore very well to its original purpose as a base oil for perfumes. The problem is availability, it is very difficult oil to find – even from online stores.
How moringa oil can be used in cosmetics
Moringa oil behaves like olive oil on the skin. Cold pressed moringa oil is rich in antioxidants. Unfortunately, the oil contains so much oleic acid that I do not recommend it as a raw material for creams and skin oils.
Moringa oil is currently advertised as a miracle oil for skin care.
I think this is due to the same thing as the over-praising of olive oil and coconut oil. Oil producers want to make their oil a success and keep the price high. In reality, moringa oil is overpriced. Moringa is a very high-yielding, fast-growing tree. Moringa seeds produce an incredible amount of oil. Moringa oil is even used as biofuel. It really is bulk-production product. Therefore, I am wondering the relatively high price of oil.
Moringa oil, on the other hand, is absolutely ideal for the following:
Hera are some ideas for using Moringa oil.
- Perfume as a base oil; Moringa oil retains aromas much better than other oils. Use only refined Moringa oil for perfumes (if you find it somewhere). Moringa oil has been the base oil for natural perfumes for thousands of years. Its original purpose should therefore be utilized.
- For rinsing products such as shampoos and hair care products. Moringa’s behenic acid is used in commercial hair care products to increase moisture in the hair (LOC or LCO methods). Especially if you want a fragrant hair care product, moringa oil is the best choice.
- Aromatherapy oil; use moringa oil as a carrier oil for essential oils and use in aromatherapy.
- Soap making; Moringa oil should be used in soaps. It can be added up to 15% to the soap mass. Some sources say it is equal to olive oil as a raw material of soap. I have never tried this but if this is true, then the whole soap could be made from moringa oil. If I would try, I definitely would choose cold pressed, unrefined moringa oil.
- Aroma oil; you can mix moringa oil and essential oils in a perfume bottle. Add few scent sticks into the bottle and enjoy your favourite scent.
Moringa oil should be preferred in cosmetics simply because of its ecological effects. Although moringa oil is not the best oil for lotions, it has other priceless features. Moringa could be used much more in soaps if its price was more reasonable.
In particular, the features of moringa oil as a scent holder should be promoted more widely. Many home cosmetics makers dream to make natural fragrances themselves. Refined, clear moringa oil is optimal, state of the art base oil for organic perfumes – even it is thousands of years old product.
Have you used moringa oil? Please tell us about your experiences in the comments section!
The introduction of the cosmetic treasures of Amazon rainforest continues. Andiroba oil is still a very unknown cosmetic raw material from Amazon area. Amazon rainforests are bursting with useful ingredients. Andiroba is one such treasure. It belongs to the mahogany family. Andiroba tree is a traditional medicinal plant. Its bark, oil and leaves have been used in ancient indigenous medicine. In this article, I will tell about the benefits of andiroba oil in cosmetics use.
Andiroba is a traditional tree in the Amazon rainforest
The Andiroba tree, (Carapas guianensis), is a typical tree of the Amazon rainforest. It belongs to the plants used by the indigenous people of Brazil. The greenery of Andiroba is dense and the tree is very tall. It grows riverside in tropical rainforests. Andiroba is one of those trees that is preferably logged from the rainforest into lumber. The tree belongs to the mahogany family, although it is not classified as genuine mahogany.
The popularity of Andiroba as sawn timber is due to the terpenes it contains. The tree naturally repels mold, fungi and other microbes. It is a durable wood and therefore highly sought after as a building material. Andiroba also has an insect repellent property. Pests do not thrive on andiro boards. Andiroba oil is also commonly used to make insect repellents.
Andiroba oil production
An adult tree can produce up to 120 pounds of seeds. The average output is about 50 pounds. The seeds contain 40% fat. 12 kilos of seeds are needed to make one litre of oil produced by solvent technology. If produced by mechanical cold pressing, considerably more seeds per litre of oil are needed.
Traditionally, andiroba oil is made by boiling nuts. After boiling, the nuts are fermented for 25 days. The soft core is removed from the fermented nuts. The core is left to drain for a few weeks. This naturally removes oil from the seeds without pressing. The process is completely natural. No chemicals or compression equipment is required. Such andiroba oil is rare. Andiroba oil sold for cosmetics is usually cold pressed.
Why is it important to favour andiroba oil in cosmetics?
I am writing this series of “Rainforest Treasures” for ecological and ethical reasons. Of course, we have to favour domestic products, that’s for sure. However, Amazon’s rainforests are the lungs of the world. The world’s rainforests are threatened by massive logging. Many trees are utilized as sawn timber. Once the rainforest is felled, it will be replaced by a corn field or perhaps soybeans. The destruction of a natural rainforest biotope is catastrophic for many different reasons.
If we diligently use the natural products of Amazon’s rainforests, there is no need to cut down the trees at all. The indigenous people earn their living by selling the products that the jungle produces and there will be no need to log the trees anymore. Andiroba nuts is a good example of this.
Andiroba trees have also been cultivated in rainforests, with large plantations. With this cultivation, the problems are same with the monoculture. The biodiversity of the rainforest is disappearing. Trees are exposed to pests and the crop suffers. Chemicals are needed to destroy diseases and insects. Chemicals destroy other organisms in the rainforest. The circle is ready. It is worth researching carefully that the rainforest products you buy are sustainably produced.
What is andiroba oil?
Andiroba oil is also called crab oil although it has nothing to do with crabs. Andiroba oil is a 100% vegan product that is pressed from the nuts of the andiroba trees. The oil is rich in hard fatty acids. It is thick and slightly reminiscent of Vaseline when cooled. The oil is pale yellow in colour and very bitter. The bitterness is due to a group of terpenes called Meliacines. Andiroba oil solidifies at 25 degrees like coconut oil.
One of the Meliacines in andiroba oil is called Gedunin. Gedunin has been shown to have similar anti-malarial properties to quinine. In chemical analyses, andiroba oil has been found to be highly curative and anti-inflammatory. These properties are due to the limonoids in the oil, called andirobins.
Fatty acids from andiroba oil
Andiroba oil is rich in hard fatty acids. However, the main fatty acid in andiroba oil is oleic acid. Palmitic acid in andiroba oil is up to over 30%. It is the rich palmitic acid that makes andiroba oil very firm and thick. Stearic acid is also abundant in oil.
The main fatty acids in andiroba oil
- Oleic acid 45-58%
- Palmitic acid 25-32
- Stearic acid 6-13%
- Linoleic acid 6-14%
Comedogenic classification 2
The aroma is strong, muscular
Andiroba has numerous medicinal properties
Andiroba oil is one of the best-selling medicinal oils in the Amazon rainforest. Andiroba oil is usually mixed with honey and used internally for many ailments. Honey is included not only as a health-promoting product but also because the andiroba oil tastes very bitter. With a mixture of honey and oil, locals have always fought flu and sore throats.
Fatty and thick andiroba oil doesn’t sound very good for acne prone skin. However, local people in Amazon have successfully used andiroba oil for acne prone skin. The oil is very antimicrobial. Therefore, it soothes inflammation well.
Andiroba oil is well absorbed into the skin. Therefore, it can affect the deepest parts of the skin. Local people have also used andiroba oil to treat bruises and sore joints. Andiroba oil is especially popular as a massage oil. It’s like made to relax sore muscles.
Benefits of Andiroba Oil in Cosmetics
Andiroba oil contains a huge number of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. It is a very useful oil to regenerate the skin. The nutrients in andiroba oil are especially suitable for aging skin. The oil contains ingredients that have a beneficial effect on collagen production. Andiroba oil reduces wrinkles on the skin.
Andiroba oil is worth trying for many skin problems. It has plenty of skin rejuvenating and protective effects. Please bear in mind, however, that this particular oil is very strong and contains terpenes. Terpenes can cause severe allergies, especially to people who are allergic to resins. First, test if you tolerate andiroba oil at all. If you suffer from eczema, be really careful when trying new products. Although andiroba is specifically recommended for eczema and psoriasis, I would still be careful.
Andiroba oil has been used with success in the treatment of hair and scalp. As an antimicrobial oil, andiroba oil is well suited for treating scalp problems. For example, dandruff or itching of the scalp could be cured with a serum containing andiroba oil.
Andiroba oil also supports hair follicles and stimulates blood circulation to the scalp. This will make your hair grow better.
Andiroba oil is rich in palmitoleic acid, which protects the skin from drying out as well as external factors.
What products can andiroba oil be used for?
First of all, Andiroba oil seems to be a specialty oil suitable for body products. However, its use range is much wider. Andiroba oil, despite its heaviness, is a relatively fast-absorbing oil. That is why it is also worth trying for facial skin and hair care.
Prepare from andiroba oil
- Massage oils to treat sore joints and muscles
- Night creams and protective day creams to treat aging skin
- Creams for impure skin
- Creams for irritated skin
- Antimicrobial creams for foot care
- Oil treatment serums for the scalp
- For soap making; special care soaps
Due to its bitter taste, andiroba oil should not be included in lip products.
Try andiroba oil as an insect repellent. Andiroba oil has a strong, musky scent that repels insects. If mosquitoes are being fought in the Amazon rainforest, why not in other areas as well. Did you know that neem oil is also quite an effective mosquito repellent?
Kukui nut oil is the next one to be presented in my rainforest cosmetics series. The products of the rainforest do feel quite exotic to us. However, indigenous people in rainforests have always exploited kukuinut and the oil from it. At the same time, by using the natural products of the rainforests we will be able to reduce the world’s deforestation. Local people do not cut down very productive kukui trees. This is how the rainforests remain thriving and vibrant. Kukui Nut oil is an excellent ingredient in cosmetics. This story is quite interesting and It was a real pleasure to write it. Read more about the history and benefits of kukui oil in skin care.
A Kukui Nut tree
The Kukui Nut tree (Aleurites moluccanus) is a tropical rainforest tree. The Kukui Nut tree has many names. One of the most popular names is Candlenut. Indian kukui nut is also the name used.
The origin of the kukui nut tree is not fully known because the human has taken it with him everywhere he has ever moved. The first kukui nut tree was found in the tropical islands of Southeast Asia. The kukui nut tree has always been a valued plant in India as well as Hawaii. The name Kukui comes specifically from the Hawaiian language.
Kukui nut are mildly toxic. Indigenous people did not care about this and made food by roasting and steaming the nuts.
In Borneo, Malaysia, Kukui nuts, or godou in their language, have been used to make traditional tattoos.
In Hawaii, kukui nut and the oil made from them were an important product
According to tradition, kukui nut has come to Hawaii from Asia. The tree has always had a very profound and religious significance in Hawaii. In Hawaii, the kukui nut are highly valued.
Hawaiians use kukui nut to make lei (Hawaii’s famous flower wreath). Once upon a time, only masters and kings were allowed to use leis made from kukui. The chief was called Ali’l. Each island had its own Ali’l. They were respected autocrats and decided about everything. Ali’l ruled using divine power, Mana, which in other cultures is called chi or prana. Mana was a cosmic life force. The magic was originated in Mana. Mana lived in all living things. Ali’l used kukui lei to prove his position. Today, kukui nut lei is used by everyone and they are also offered to visitors when arriving to Hawaii.
In Hawaii, oil was also made from kukui nut. Kukui nut oil was used to oiling traditional boats and canoes. Kukui nut oil was also used as lamp oil. Hawaii sought to make life simple. Why squeeze oil if you can ignite the oily kukui nut yourself. The natives of Hawaii placed five kukui nut side by side and set them on fire one at a time. The flaming kukui nut were like tealights. For this reason, kukui nut oil is commonly referred to as candle oil.
There is a famous dish called poke in Hawaii that is always made from kukui nut and fish.
Kuku inut oil has always been used in folk medicine
Kukui nuts have an excellent fatty acid composition. The oil is well absorbed into the skin but still moisturizes it thoroughly. Therefore, Kukui nut oil has been used in Hawaii to moisturize the skin. The climate in Hawaii is ruthless to the skin. The sun, wind and salty seawater afflict the skin. Kukui nut oil soothes irritated skin and promotes natural skin healing.
Kukui nut oil is also used in Hawaii for eczema, acne and sunburn. The oil is also said to promote hair growth.
Fatty acid profile of Kukui nut oil (Hawaiian KukuI nut oil)
- Linoleic acid 40%
- Alpha-linolenic acid 27%
- Oleic acid 15%
- Palmitic acid 6%
- Stearic acid 2-3%
- Comedogenic value 2
Kukui nut oil from India and Southeast Asia contains slightly less linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid. Accordingly, there is a little more oleic acid in these oils.
The benefits of Kukui nut oil in skin care
Kukui nut oil is a natural vegetable oil. The difference between kukui nut oil and other nut oils is that it does not feel greasy. It is a light and well-absorbed oil. The secret of kukui nut oil lies in its fatty acids and high content of vitamins E and A.
The fatty acids in kukui nut oil are ideal for the well-being of the skin. It is rich in linoleic and alpha-linolenic acid and low in fatty oleic acid. Therefore, kukui nut oil is classified as a non-greasy oil, meaning it does not leave a greasy feel on the skin. Kukui nut oil leaves the skin soft, moisturized and silky feeling. This is, of course, a great thing for the cosmetic user and manufacturer. There are very few easily absorbed oils.
Kukui nut oil is well suited for many needs
Kukuinut oil is an excellent base oil. It is an almost odourless and tasteless oil. Its colour is bright light, slightly yellowish. You can use Kukui nut oil as such or mix it with other oils or essential oils.
Acne skin treatment
The comedogenic value of kukui nut oil is 2. It does not clog pores very easily. For very sensitive, easily clogged skin, kukui nut oil can cause problems. The alpha-linolenic acid in kukui nut oil may dry out skin already too dry. Linoleic acid, on the other hand, is well absorbed and treats the skin deeply. The antioxidants in kukui nut oil also help prevent and treat acne scars.
Treatment of eczema skin
As a light and well-absorbed oil, kukuinut oil is well suited for treating eczema. Eczema skin benefits from the linoleic and alpha-linolenic acids contained in kukui nut oil. Often dry eczema skin is unable to receive very oleic oils.
For eye products
The skin around the eyes is very thin. Therefore, as light oils as possible are recommended near the eyes. Kukui nut oil is just such an oil. It is well absorbed and does not leave a greasy layer on the skin. Kukui nut oil contains also suitable amount of palmitic acid, which protects the skin from dryness.
Traditionally in Hawaii, kukui nut oil has been used for hair care. And who has the most amazing hair in the world, if not Hawaiians. Sure, genome greatly affects hair quality, but natural hair care products also play a role.
Kukui nut oil is known to increase hair growth. The oil is rubbed into the scalp and left to act for about an hour. Some keep oil in their hair even overnight. There are so many different ways to do oil treatments on your hair. It is worth thinking about what would suit your own scalp. Perhaps you can try?
Kukui nut oil has traditionally been used for massaging. The oil’s oleic acid and linoleic acid ratio is perfect for massage oil. After the oil massage, the skin stays silky soft. The skin feels dry and not oily at all. If you wish, you can mix other oils as well as essential oils into the Kukui nut oil.
Storage of Kukui nut oil
Freshly pressed kukui nut oil lasts for about a year. However, you should always keep it in the refrigerator. Kukui nut oil is very rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, which decompose very quickly under the influence of heat, light and oxygen.
When making products from kukui nut oil, add vitamin E to the product. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that prevents oils from oxidizing too quickly.
Only obtain small amounts of oxidizable oils at a time. This will ensure that you always have access to first-class fresh cosmetics.
From where can I get Kukui nut oil?
Kukui nut oil is not yet very widely available. As the kukui nut tree grows in tropical rainforests, its availability in Europe is still poor. You can find authentic, fresh kukui nut oil in the US or India. I myself have ordered Hawaiian kukui nut oil from the Amazon online store.
There is also a vegetable butter available which is made of Kukui nut oil. It is made by hydrogenating process (so-called pseudo butter). Kukui nut butter is more easily found in shops selling cosmetics. Hydration substantially improves the shelf life of sensitive oils. Hydrogenation, of course, also changes the structure of fatty acids in a more refined direction. Hydrated oil is not the same thing on the skin as a natural, fresh oil. If you accept refined oils, you can also try hydrogenated Kukui nut butter.
Because kukui nut oil contains a large amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids, it is quite perishable. This is why manufacturers often add vitamin E and ascorbyl palmitate to the oil to improve the shelf life. Ascorbyl palmitate is called fat-soluble vitamin C. However, it is not vitamin C (ascorbic acid) but its own compound. Ascorbyl palmitate is not harmful to the skin and is in no way toxic. It is very often added to foods and skin care products to improve the shelf life of fatty products.
When choosing cosmetic raw materials, not much attention is paid to the ethical side of the ingredients. It is true that the needs of your own skin are always a priority number one. It is not worth applying just anything on your skin, no matter how ethical it would be.
Many natural cosmetic certificates also pay attention to production methods and other ethical issues. This is a really great thing and a good reason to use natural cosmetics. The ethics of raw materials can also be viewed differently, ethics is not a very self-clear thing. An uncertified product can also be very ethical. In this story, I will tell you how to choose the most ethical oils. Let’s get acquainted with the world of zero waste oils.
The range of cosmetic oils is very wide
For me, the most beloved group of ingredients in cosmetics are oils and fats. I research and test new oils all the time. The wholesalers have a huge selection of oils available. You can easily find a selection of hundreds, even over a thousand oils. New oils are constantly entering the market.
The range of oils in cosmetics has grown not only due to demand but also due to the supply of raw materials.
The best cosmetic oils are made from waste from the food industry
Have you ever wondered the origin of strawberry seed oil, raspberry seed oil or blueberry seed oil? Why make oil from these tiny little seeds. The reason for this is the food industry. Because the raw material for the oil is inexpensive and so abundant, it is also economically profitable to press the oils.
The food industry produces a great deal of waste. As the industry revolves around money, everything is looked at to find utilization. Nothing is wasted. The pulp left over from the production of berry and fruit juices contains a lot of seeds, which contain valuable oils. This pulp is used to make cosmetic oils. The food industry and the cosmetics industry have found each other and we are enjoying a rich supply of oil.
Next, I will introduce you to a few oils made from waste materials from the food industry. It has not been necessary to plant any plants separately for the production of these cosmetic oils.
Grape seed oil
Grape seed oil is really an old base oil for cosmetics. It was used in skin care by the ancient Etruscans thousands of years ago. Apparently, they too made their oil from the grape seeds left over from winemaking.
The popularity of wine has grown exponentially around the world. That is why grape seed oil is also available everywhere.
Read more about grape seed oil: Grape seed oil
Rice bran oil
Base oil made from rice bran has been popular, especially among Japanese children. Rice is really abundant in the world. Therefore, rice bran is also available for oil production. Rice oil is found specifically in bran. Rice bran can also be used to make rice wax, which is popular in cosmetics.
Read more about rice bran oil: Rice Bran Oil is one of the Most Useful Skincare Oils
Raspberry seed oil
Raspberry seed oil is a special oil with a high antioxidant content. About 822 tons of raspberries are produced annually for the needs of the jam and juice industry. The largest producer countries are Russia, Mexico and Serbia. The food industry wants to utilize best possible way this precious berry. Therefore, the pulp left over from the production of raspberry juices is used to make oil.
Similar oils are made from blueberry, lingonberry, cranberry, cloudberry and strawberry.
Apricot kernel oil
Apricot is a very popular fruit in Central Europe. When we eat fresh strawberries, the French and Germans are enjoying the taste of apricots. Apricots are usually used to make jams and marmalades. They are also preserved by drying. In all these cases, the stone is removed from the fruit. Apricot stone is pressed into oil, which is very popular in cosmetics. Apricot kernel oil is used because of its high antioxidant content.
Not all oils are ethical
However, there are plenty of oils available which production consumes a huge amount of natural resources. If a plant is grown only for cosmetic purposes, it is not always sustainable. Growing plants for cosmetics alone occupies land area from food production.
It is also uncertain whether all the plants used in the production of oils can be fully utilized. Especially plants that are not suitable for food or fibre are a problem. Once the oil is pressed, the rest of the plant is thrown away. The use of toxic or otherwise inedible plants in oil production is questionable.
Many plants consume water excessively. If a water-intensive plant is grown in a dry area, there may be a water problem ahead.
Even if the plant used for oil production is unfit for human consumption, it can be beneficial to bees and other pollinators. An example of them is sunflowers. They bloom for a long time and provide food for insects.
Consideration of biodiversity is also important
It is not the same whether the plant is grown in monoculture or in a small family farm. Monoculture means that only one and the same plant can be found in thousands from an area of hectares. Monoculture reduces biodiversity and destroys pollinators.
There is also a socio-economic aspect of the production of cosmetic raw materials. Production is a vital condition for a particular group of people. Such an oil is, for example, argan oil. Nuts harvested from Brazil’s rainforests are also an important source of income for the indigenous people. The rainforest will be saved from logging if people learn to take advantage of the fruits/harvest of the trees.
The ethical side of raw materials is a very complex matter. It is impossible to draw a clear line between an ethical and an unethical product. I think I will come back to this topic again. It is impossible for the consumer to know the growing conditions of all the plants used for the production of oils. It would therefore be great if the cosmetics industry paid more attention to this important issue.
Are you interested in ethical cosmetics?
Black cumin seed oil is an ancient product used in ancient cultures such as India and the Middle East. Black cumin oil has multiple uses. In this article, I will tell you how you can use black cumin oil for hair and skin care. Black cumin oil is a quite unknown product. All of its features are not yet known. Black cumin oil is clearly different from all other oils. Therefore, its use must be properly studied. Next, I will tell you about the history of black cumin oil and its benefits for the skin and scalp.
Black cumin oil was a cosmetic for Cleopatra
Black gum, or Nigella sativa, is originally coming from Southwest Asia. Black cumin should not be mixed with spice caraway or Roman cumin, aka jeera. Black cumin belongs to a completely different plant family: Nigella is a member of the buttercup family. Its flower looks like the flower of a buttercup but is azure in colour.
Black cumin is getting along well in the extreme heat of the Middle East. It has been cultivated in the territory of Egypt since the time of the Pharaohs thousands of years ago. Black cumin seeds have been found in the tombs of the pharaohs. That is why it is also called Pharaoh’s oil.
The oil made from black cumin is almost black and smells slightly like tar. The scent can be quite intense but still pleasant.
Black cumin oil is rich in antioxidants
In skin care, the popularity of black cumin oil is based on its really rich antioxidant content. Antioxidants protect the skin from oxidation thus also reduce the signs of aging.
Black cumin oil contains an antioxidant called thymoquinone. Thymoquinone is an anti-inflammatory and curative compound. Thymoquinone has even been studied in the treatment of cancer. It may have a reducing effect on squamous cell tumours.
Other highly effective antioxidants in black cumin oil are carvacrol, t-anethole and 4-terpineol.
Black cumin oil also contains calcium as well as numerous vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin D, folic acid, vitamin B3 and niacin.
Due to its rich content of antioxidants and vitamins, the effect of black cumin oil has also been tested on several skin diseases such as
- Eczema, you can find the study here. Black cumin oil has been tried for eczema in the hands with encouraging results.
- Psoriasis, research can be found here. The study has only been done in mice, so in humans, the effect may be quite different.
- Acne, research can be found here. For acne, studies have been done in humans and the results have been encouraging.
Black cumin oil has a very rich and versatile fatty acid composition
Black cumin oil is a very old and popular product. Therefore, it has been studied very thoroughly. Oleic acids have also been carefully studied and analysed many times.
Black cumin oil mainly contains linoleic acid, which is a very good fatty acid for the skin. Linoleic acid is not pore-clogging. There is little oleic acid in black cumin oil. EPA and DHA fatty acids have mainly nutritional importance.
- Linoleic acid 42.76%
- Oleic acid 16.59%
- Palmitic acid 8.51%
- Stearic acid 2.22%
- Eicosantric acid 4.71%
- Eicosapentaenoic acid EPA 5.98%
- Docosahexaenoic acid DHA 2.97%
Black cumin oil is antiseptic
Black cumin oil is very effective for skin problems where microbes have succeeded. One typical microbial problem is dandruff. Dandruff is often caused by overgrowth of yeast. An oil treatment on the scalp containing black cumin oil can control the dandruff problem.
The antioxidants in oils are never strong enough to cure the actual inflammation or acute fungal disease of the skin. They only work as maintenance treatment or as a preventative measure. If you have a clear, acute skin condition or inflammation of the skin, always consult a dermatologist.
Black cumin oil protects the skin from infections. Especially in summer, the skin can easily become inflamed and get fungal infections. I have used black cumin oil in foot creams to protect my summer feet in advance. foot cream should always be applied to damp feet after a foot bath and possible scratching
Black cumin oil shrinks pores
Black cumin oil has been found to have pore-reducing effects. Open pores are not just a cosmetic problem. Open pores collect dirt and contaminants in air more efficiently than closed pores.
Black cumin oil activates hair follicles
In India, black cumin oil is one of the best products against hair loss as well as promoting hair growth. Black cumin oil increases blood circulation in the scalp. When you apply black cumin oil to the scalp, you will feel a pleasant feeling of warmth. It means that the blood circulation starts to wake up. Increased blood circulation brings more oxygen and nutrients to the hair follicles and gives your hair new growth.
Black cumin oil supports the health of the scalp and prevents scalp problems.
Black cumin oil keeps skin elastic and moisturized
The oils do not actually moisturize the skin. If you already have very dry skin, applying the oil to the skin does not bring it more moisture. Moisture always means water. Therefore, oils must be applied to damp skin. The best humidification is clean water. Of course, you can add a little glycerine to the water to bind moisture to the skin.
Black cumin oil effectively locks moisture deep into the skin so that the skin feels very elastic and soft. Black cumin oil is well absorbed and does not leave greasy feeling on surface of the skin.
Black cumin oil removes darkening of the skin
The best way to remove darkening from your skin is to use antioxidant skin care products. The antioxidants in black cumin oil work well on dark spots caused by skin aging. You may need to use black cumin oil for a while before getting results and the darkening fades.
How do you use black cumin oil?
Always choose 100%, pure, cold pressed black cumin oil. Of course, organic quality is always the recommended option.
Black cumin oil is sold in very small bottles. It is not a base oil but a very strong specialty oil. Black cumin oil should always be mixed with a base oil such as sunflower oil or safflower oil. The mild base oil dilutes black cumin oil to suitable level for the skin.
Black cumin oil is well suited as a skin oil
Use black cumin oil at a dilution of about 5-20%. A stronger, 20% dilution is best used in case you have a skin problem. Normally a 5% dilution is just enough to maintain the condition of the skin. You can use black cumin oil diluted with mild base oils directly on the skin. The same oil applies to the face, body and scalp.
Use black cumin oil for anhydrous ointments
Black cumin oil is suitable for anhydrous creams containing beeswax. In ancient Greece, black cumin oil was always used in conjunction with beeswax and propolis. Propolis is a beeswax. It contains a huge number of antibacterial agents such as resins. If you are allergic to resins, do not use bee products. At least not propolis.
You can also make an effective caring cream with about 5-20% black cumin oil. Antibacterial cream made from black cumin oil is well suited for foot care. You can also make a face cream containing black cumin oil for problem skin.
It is highly recommended to use black cumin oil in hair care products. Add a few drops of black cumin oil to the conditioner before applying the conditioner to your hair. Leave on for a few minutes and rinse off the conditioner normally.
Black cumin oil is an interesting specialty oil worth trying
Black cumin oil is a very exceptional oil that is less commonly used in cosmetics. However, it is a highly nutritious and antioxidant product. Thanks to its antioxidants, black cumin oil also retains better than other oils with a high linoleic acid content. A good feature of black cumin oil is its suitability for cooking as well. You can also use healthy black cumin oil in the kitchen to give a full-bodied taste to, for example, vegetarian dishes and salad dressings.
I have written many articles about cosmetic oils. There are many useful oils but I have chosen the most popular base oils. Many oils differ only slightly. This time the subject is a specialty oil that is very decisively different from all other cosmetic oils. Pomegranate oil is a very exceptional oil. You should definitely read this article, it will give you important information for choosing cosmetic oils.
Pomegranate is native to the Middle East
Until recently, the pomegranate has been a fairly unknown fruit. Originally, the pomegranate is native to Iran. From there, its cultivation has spread throughout the Mediterranean area, India and the rest of tropical Asia. In many cultures, pomegranate has been a very popular fruit. Juice and various dishes are made of it.
Pomegranate oil is a very precious product
Pomegranate is not really an oil plant. Pomegranate seeds are low in oil. Nearly 200 kilograms of fresh pomegranate seeds are needed to make one kilogram of oil. This is the reason why pomegranate oil is a very expensive product. This precious oil is suitable for both internal and external use.
Pomegranate oil has a very special fatty acid composition and it is rich in antioxidants
Most vegetable oils contain mainly four different fatty acids; oleic acid, linoleic acid, stearic acid and palmitic acid. Pomegranate oil is an exception. It contains mostly Punicic acid. The Latin name for pomegranate is Punica granatum.
Punicic acid is one of the polyunsaturated Omega-5 fatty acids. Omega-5 fatty acids also include the rather rare myristoleic acid.
Pomegranate oil also contains a huge number of effective antioxidants. As the most important antioxidant, I can mention vitamin C. Of the other vitamins and trace elements, the most important ones are vitamins B1 and B2, potassium and magnesium. Pomegranate oil also contains large amounts of various polyphenols such as anthocyanins, ellagic acid and tannins.
Fatty acid profile of pomegranate oil
- Oleic acid 4-6%
- Linoleic acid 4-6%
- Palmitic acid 3-4%
- Pomegranate acid 75-85%
- Comedogenic value 1
- Color; the deep, golden yellow color is a sign of high-quality, cold-pressed oil. A very light, orange tint is a sign of poor quality (may be impure, heat-treated and contains fruit flesh)
- Good quality pomegranate seed oil is a thick, smooth oil. A well-flowing oil is a sign of a quality defect or heat treatment.
- Shelf life, store in a cool place, protected from light. Close the bottle tightly. The oil will survive for a maximum of 24 months from the moment of pressing.
The benefits of pomegranate oil for the skin
Punicic acid has incredible effects on skin condition and health. It is a very versatile oil that is well suited for the treatment of skin problems. However, you can also use it on normal skin to prevent signs of aging or just to brighten tired looking skin.
- Pomegranate oil is a highly moisturizing oil.
- Pomegranate oil does not clog pores
- Pomegranate oil is a thick but still well-absorbed oil that does not leave the skin oily. However, it is not a so-called dry oil.
- Pomegranate oil brightens the skin. Its numerous antioxidants (vitamin C) and polyphenols fade the pigment changes on the skin.
- Pomegranate oil strengthens the skin to better withstand the effects of UV rays on the skin. Of course, this oil does not replace the actual sunscreen.
- Pomegranate oil is an anti-aging oil. It is able to effectively regenerate the skin by transporting nutrients deep into the skin.
- Pomegranate oil has a positive effect on skin collagen production
- Pomegranate oil soothes irritated skin. The oil has anti-inflammatory effects
- Thanks to tannins and ellagic acid, pomegranate oil shrinks pores and makes the skin look smoother
For which products should you use pomegranate oil?
Pomegranate oil is a specialty oil that is best suited for serums. Only a small amount of this effective oil is enough to make your serum a good, treating product. You can use pomegranate oil up to 20-50% of the total amount of oil in the product. Mix pomegranate oil with neutral base oil.
Although I classify pomegranate oil as a specialty oil, it has a special ability to carry other nutrients to the deepest layers of the skin. Therefore, you should combine pomegranate oil with products that contain other active ingredients. This is how all the ingredients in the product will work for your skin. So, add a couple of drops of pomegranate oil to your night cream. The therapeutic agents are delivered more efficiently.
Pomegranate oil is also suitable for the treatment of hair and especially the scalp. The oil has some antimicrobial properties. Try it to treat your scalp. You can add a few drops of pomegranate oil to the conditioner and leave the oil to affect your hair for a while.
Prefer cold-pressed, organic pomegranate oil
Pomegranate oil is available both cold-pressed and heat-extracted. Cold pressing is a process in which the temperature of the oil never rises above 49 degrees Celsius. In this way, the phytochemicals and other nutrients in the oil remain functional.
I always prefer organic quality in all products and raw materials I buy. In organic production the use of glyphosates and neonicotinoids is completely banned. Organic production is also regularly quality controlled. In this way, residues of plant protection products carried elsewhere with the wind are also detected.
I recommend you to try pomegranate oil. If you have already tried everything possible, here is an effective oil for you that is completely different from all the others.
Mustard oil is a warming, oriental oil that is rarely found in cosmetic products. Mustard oil is an excellent oil to be used during the winter frost season. It is not exactly a suitable product for facial skin care. However, mustard oil has its own specific uses. Mustard oil is used in India as a spice as well as in Ayurveda, an alternative medical system used in India. It has a very long tradition. In Western countries, mustard oil is a lesser-known product.
Traditional use of mustard oil
Mustard oil is an old traditional Indian spice that is still used in cooking. It has a pungent, slightly nutty taste. Even a small amount of mustard oil is enough to season food. In India, mustard is a very important medicinal plant. Ayurveda is the oldest medicine in use in the world. You can already find mustard oil in the oldest Ayurvedic texts. Mustard oil has a warming effect. It has been used as a massage oil to relax muscles and improve digestion. In India, mustard oil also has religious meaning. Mustard oil is used in many Hindu ceremonies. Mustard oil is an integral part of Hindu weddings. Mustard oil is also dripped around the house and guests are thus welcomed.
Mustard oil is not recommended for human consumption in the EU
Mustard oil is rich in erucic acid. Therefore, its use in the EU is limited to external use only. Erucic acid in high concentrations is harmful to heart functioning. All mustard oils sold in the EU area are therefore only intended for cosmetics or massage oils.
Mustard oil is a particularly nutrient-rich oil
Why is mustard oil so popular in India and the rest of the world? The popularity is based on the beneficial properties of mustard oil and the nutrients it contains. Let’s see what nutrients are in mustard oil
- Retinol, vitamin A, is a skin vitamin. Retinol has anti-aging effects. It increases collagen
- production. Collagen is an important amino acid that is very much responsible for the aging
- phenomenon. Retinol also reduces skin pores and brightens the skin.
- Mustard oil is one of the few plants that contains natural plant origin vitamin D. Vitamin D is very
- important for maintaining the condition of the skin.
- Fatty acids; linoleic acid 10-12%, oleic acid 20-28%, alpha-linolenic acid 9%, erucic acid 30-40% 11-
- eicosenoic acid 6%
- Tocopherol, vitamin E, is one of the most powerful antioxidants. Vitamin E protects the skin from
- oxygen species by preventing aging changes.
- Pyridoxine, Vitamin B6, is important for the development and keeping up healthy skin. Vitamin
- B6 deficiency has been linked to dermatitis and other skin conditions. When applied topically,
- pyridoxine may increase the skin’s sensitivity to the sun’s UV rays. Therefore, you should only use
- mustard oil in products intended to rinse away.
- Plant sterols are the secret of mustard oil in skin care. Many plant sterols speed up wound
- healing. Plant sterols accelerate cell renewal. This is useful if the skin is dry and dull.
Mustard oil is a warming oil
Ability to create a warm feeling is the most important property of mustard oil. Mustard oil is rich in ingredients that stimulate the skin’s surface blood circulation. This feature has benefits but also disadvantages in skin care. Mustard oil is not suitable for facial skin care. It is too warming and makes the face red very easily.
How do I use mustard oil in cosmetics?
Mustard oil is suitable for all products intended to stimulate the surface blood circulation. As one of the ingredients in massage oil, mustard oil is excellent. Mustard oil improves the blood circulation and helps when having cold feet. However, use mustard oil with caution because it may cause an allergic reaction. One of the most popular uses of mustard oil is to add it to scalp care oils and scalp masks. Mustard oil does not treat the hair but it stimulates the blood circulation in the scalp. This way, the hair follicles get more nutritious blood and are able to grow good quality hair. Hair loss is also reduced thanks to mustard oil treatment. Mustard oil treatment can be done on the scalp in about every 4 weeks.
How to make mustard oil treatment for your hair?
Rub 2 teaspoons of mustard oil directly on the scalp using your fingertips. Continue massaging for another 5 minutes. You can rub longer if you can. Put the cap on your head and let the mustard oil stay under the cap for about 30 minutes. Wash your hair and scalp gently with a mild shampoo or egg yolk as usual.
Where should you get mustard oil?
Mustard oil is not easily found in regular supermarkets. Mustard oil is widely used in Asian kitchens. That’s why you better look at ethnic grocery stores. Especially stores that sell Indian food may have mustard oil in their stock. My own mustard oil is from Pakistan and a very good quality.
How do you take care of your winter-dried scalp?
Carrot oil is a very popular product in cosmetics. Many different manufacturers are making it and it is available in almost every shop selling beauty products. Carrot oil is a product that you could make at home, if you have the time. As a multipurpose product, you can use home-made carrot oil in many ways.
Choose the right carrier oil for your carrot oil
Commercially available carrot oils often contain many different ingredients. Their oils are blended with many different oils suitable for skin care. Now you can choose the best oils for your own carrot oil.
In fact, I use sunflower oil most often to extract carrot oil. Other suitable oils are
- rice bran
- Soybean Oil
- Safflower oil
- Avocado oil
It is never a good idea to choose expensive oils for making extracts. Light, mild oil is the best carrier oil. Always choose organic oil that has been produced by cold pressing (Virgin quality). If you need to choose between organic or cold pressed oil, prefer the cold pressed. Cold pressed oil is rich in vitamin E. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that also affects the shelf life of the final product. If you cannot find cold pressed oil, you have to add vitamin E to improve the shelf life of the oil extract.
With special oils you’ll get additional healing ingredients to oil extract
You can use special oils rich in antioxidants for the herbal oil. There is no need to use only expensive special oils, you can make a mixture. If you wish, you can make several small batches of carrot oil using a variety of special oils. I personally prefer very simple products with up to two different oils. However, if you wish, you can mix 4-5 different oils together to create your own oil.
Special oils are often expensive. Therefore, use them with caution. Below I have listed some particularly good special oils.
- Rosehip Seed Oil
- Carrot Seed Oil
- Jojoba oil
- Argan oil
Carrot is the most important ingredient in carrot oil
You cannot use just any carrot for carrot oil. I use organic, dried carrot myself. Dried carrots are much easier to handle in oil extractions than fresh carrots.
If you make an oil extract using a fresh carrot, there is too much water in it. Water is not a good thing in oil extracts. You must definitely get the water out of the oil to prevent the oil from spoiling. Dehydrating the oil takes several days and is laborious. Therefore, I recommend using only dried carrots for this product.
I drained the carrots I am using by myself. Dried carrots are hard to find, especially in late winter.
The carrot is easy to dry
- Grate two large carrots (no need to peel) and sprinkle evenly on baking sheet. Use baking paper
- turn on the oven to 100 degrees Celsius.
- Put the carrot plate into the oven and leave the door slightly open
- Allow the grated carrots to remain in the oven until dry (about 2-3 hours)
- Turn the grated carrots around, it helps them to dry
Dried and grated carrots can be used as such for extraction.
Making of homemade carrot oil
Now that you have selected the right oil and have dried, grated carrots, you can start making the oil extract
- Pour grated carrots into a steel bowl
- Add 3 decilitres of your oil, your choice (enough to cover all carrots)
- Lift the bowl into the water bath (double boiler) on top of the pot.
- Do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water.
- Heat up the water bath so that the water is bubbling and steamy but not yet boiling
- Allow the carrot oil mixture to remain in the water bath for 1½ hours, stirring occasionally
- Remove the carrot oil mixture from the water bath and let it cool down for a while
- Filter the oil mixture through a gauze cloth.
Now you have the homemade carrot oil extract ready to use for skin care. It is ready to use but if you want to tune it up you can add other ingredients into it.
How to make homemade carrot oil?
- 60 ml of carrot oil
- 20 ml of special oils of your choice
- 10 ml glycerol to provide moisture (optional)
- Essential oils to have a scent (optional)
- Vitamin E drops in case the oil you used was not cold pressed
Do like this:
You can add am. ingredients to the carrot oil without using a preservative or emulsifier. However, to improve shelf life, you need to heat the whole mixture (no essential oils or vitamin E) for 30 minutes at 80 degrees. This will ensure the shelf life of the product.
Bottle the ready-made product immediately into clean, sterilized bottles and seal using cork stoppers. Remember to label your products! Remark the ingredients (INCI) and the date of manufacture and expiry date on the bottle.
To calculate the expiration date of your carrot oil, look at the expiration dates of the oils you used. Deduct 2 months from the date of the oil whose expiry date is nearest in the future.
Your homemade carrot oil is now ready
It likes a very cool place, protected from light. Carrot oil does not tolerate light at all.
Use carrot oil as a skin serum with night cream. You can also mix carrot oil with your daily cream you use.
Are you inspired to make your own carrot oil? Please let me know me how you did it!
Now it is time to have an introduction to Castor oil. Castor oil is a very well-known oil in cosmetics. Castor oil cannot be used in the same way as other vegetable oils. Castor oil is a well-known natural medicine. It is also an essential part of Indian beauty care. How is castor oil different from other oils and how is it used in cosmetics? That’s what I’ll tell you next.
Castor oil is produced from the seeds of the castor plant (Ricinus communis). Castor oil is from East Africa. It belongs to the Euphorbiaceae family. The seeds of castor plant are very rich in oil, about 40-60%. The seed contains a triglyceride called ricinoleates. In addition, castor plant seeds contain small amounts of a very potent poison, also called ricin. The ricin poison is water soluble so it is not present at all in castor oil. So, you don’t have to worry about using castor oil.
Castor oil is a very special kind of oil
Castor oil is a kind of oil that cannot be compared to other cosmetic oils. The reason is the fatty acid composition of castor oil. As I told you earlier, fatty acid compositions of vegetable oils do follow the same pattern mostly; they contain mostly linoleic acid and oleic acid and just few percent of palmitic acid and stearic acid. Other fatty acids vary in very small quantities. These four fatty acids are present in varying concentrations in almost all oils.
The composition of castor oil differs significantly from other oils
Castor oil does not follow the traditional vegetable oil formula at all. Castor oil consists almost exclusively of risinoleic acid. This type of fatty acid found only in castor oil and some rare mushrooms and a few other rare plants. Risinoleic acid is an omega-9 fatty acid. There are only a few percent of the four conventional fatty acids in castor oil. That’s why castor oil is in a class of its own.
Properties of castor oil in cosmetics
- Castor oil inhibits bacterial activity. One of the uses of castor oil is for preventing spoilage during grain storage. Castor oil is used in India to prevent the mould and rot of grains, lentils and dried beans in hot and humid climate.
- Castor oil prevents fungal infections of the skin. This is good to know if you are making for example foot cream. A small amount of castor oil in the foot cream will drive away the infection.
- Castor oil reduces acne on the skin. This is based on the moisturizing and cleansing effect of castor oil. Castor oil also fights harmful bacteria on the skin. This will soothe and brighten your skin.
- Castor oil is particularly cleansing oil. Indeed, castor oil is widely used in soaps, shampoos and detergents. Oils used in oil baths also often contain some castor oil. Because castor oil effectively cleanses, it also dries the skin, even if it is oil.
- Castor oil is very useful in hair care. Indians believe in the castor oil. That is why they are very happy to use castor oil in their hair masks. Castor oil binds moisture to the hair and reduces dandruff.
- Castor oil improves blood circulation in skin’s surface layers and stimulates skin functions. Therefore, castor oil is recommended for skin problems.
What castor oil is used for
Castor oil has a wide variety of uses. It is used in the food industry, the pharmaceutical industry and even in the manufacture of lubricants. Castor oil is a well-known laxative. Therefore, castor oil is not suitable for food. An important use of castor oil is, of course, cosmetics.
Castor oil promotes wound healing
Castor oil helps the skin to regenerate by increasing moisture and blood circulation and stimulating skin functions.
Castor oil is a very good incredient for facial cleanser
Castor oil is added to detergent cosmetics such as shower soaps and shampoos. The purifying effect of castor oil is very useful especially in washing products. In addition, castor oil also suppresses skin infections and yeast growth. Therefore, castor oil in shampoo suppresses yeast dandruff. If the dandruff is caused by dry skin only, castor oil may have opposite, a dandruff enhancing effect. Castor oil dries the scalp.
Castor oil is said to increase hair growth
Castor oil is often used as an ingredient in hair masks. Along with all the other benefits, castor oil increases hair growth by activating hair follicles. Castor oil increases the circulation of the scalp. The hair grows out of the hair follicles on the scalp. Therefore, the scalp should be especially well taken care of. A healthy scalp is rich in healthy hair. So why not try castor oil in hair care.
There is a fine article in the Hairbudda blog about the use of castor oil in hair care. In that article, Minaz from Hairbudda blog gives many great hair mask instructions using castor oil. https://www.hairbuddha.net/castor-oil-for-hair-growth/
Castor oil helps to increase lashes
This is said to be an urban legend. Believe it or not but this statement is quite true. I actually tried it for 6 months castor oil to my lashes. My eyelashes became denser and more increased in length quite clearly. Eyelashes do renew faster than hair. That’s why castor oil has a very quick effect on the lashes.
Eyelash treatment with castor oil is done as follows:
- Put castor oil in an empty mascara package
- Apply castor oil to cleansed eyelashes every evening and let it stay overnight
- Repeat the treatment in the morning
- Continue for at least 2 months. You will notice the growth of your eyelashes
You can purchase empty mascara packages at one of the stores selling home cosmetics. If you do not have one right now, you can simply apply castor oil to the lashes with a cotton swab.
Castor oil is an important ingredient in face cleansing
There is no effective oil spray cleanser existing without castor oil. The purifying effect of ricin is very clear. Some time ago, it was recommended to always use 50/50 castor oil and regular carrier oil for oil purification. However, such a mix is unnecessarily drying. Personally, I mix 1 tablespoon of castor oil and 1 cup of carrier oil in a facial oil cleanser. Find the right dosage for yourself just by trying.
Watch out for these mistakes when using castor oil
- Castor oil is a laxative. Never use castor oil for food. It is not suitable for internal use.
- Castor oil must always be diluted. Castor oil is extremely drying oil. Never use castor oil as the only oil in the product. Also, do not add castor oil as such to the skin. It’s too strong. Castor oil is a very thick, gel-like substance. That’s why castor oil should always be diluted. 20% is the maximum percentage of the castor oil in your oil mix for cleansing your skin. In shampoos and hair masks, you can use castor oil alone as they also include other ingredients.
- Castor oil is not toxic unless laxative is taken into account. However, keep castor oil out of the reach of small children.
I’m really happy telling you about the oils. I hope you will become familiar with all the most common cosmetic oils. There are enough stories about castor oil in cosmetics, however. However, I just wanted to tell you the most important facts about castor oil.
We hope you are excited to try castor oil.
You might also be interested:
- Natural oils in cosmetics – how important fatty acids are for the skin
- Sunflower oil in cosmetics,7 good reasons to use it as a basic ingredient
Tell me what you did and what the impact was! Particularly, growing hair with castor oil would be of great interest.
Natural oils in cosmetics are very important in skincare. Vegetable oils in cosmetics are really the foundation of skincare. Most cosmetic products are based on oils and fats. The influence of vegetable oils and fats cannot be overemphasized when choosing skincare products.
Vegetable oils are currently produced from the seeds of almost all known plants. There are some exceptions, like the avocado that is very oily. Avocado oil is made from fruit flesh. Oil can be squeezed from almost any seed.
Is exotic and expensive cosmetic oil better than the regular oil?
You have certainly noticed how the manufacturers praise their creams for very special and exotic oils. In case you thought that these oils have a very special effect on the skin it may not be true. However, some special oils contain phytochemicals that have a positive effect on the skin. That is why oil is blended in the product, it is because of its active ingredients. The purpose of base oil, or carrier oil, is not to bring any new chemicals into the skin. The purpose of carrier oil is to strengthen the amount of naturally occurring fatty acids on the skin. This is why these two types of oil, base oils and special oils must be separated. This article is concentrating especially on base oils. Let’s talk about natural oils in cosmetics.
Get to know the world of oils
When making homemade cosmetics, you should pay particular attention to the secrets of oils. Natural oils in cosmetics contain precisely those very important components. By learning the properties of vegetable oils, you can make more effective and skin-friendly products. You can also save you a lot of money. By learning the basics of the structure of oils, you can avoid buying expensive and ineffective special oils for your skin. You can find effective skincare alternatives even from the most common oils.
The most common fatty acids of oils
The basic structure of oils consists of two components; glycerol, or glycerine, and fatty acids. In addition, oils contain varying amounts of vitamin E and other antioxidants. Dark green oils contain more antioxidants. Glycerol is generally the same in all oils (there are some exceptions). Instead, the fatty acids do vary greatly. It is worth paying attention to the fatty acids of oils when formulating the product for your own skin. It is also good to know the properties of oils when choosing a product from the range of natural cosmetics.
The most common fatty acids in cosmetic oils are
- Oleic acid, (omega 3 fatty acid), a monounsaturated liquid fatty acid
- Linoleic acid (omega 6 fatty acid), a polyunsaturated, liquid fatty acid
- Palmitic acid which is a saturated, solid fatty acid
- Stearic acid which is a saturated, solid fatty acid
These four fatty acids are the most common in most vegetable oils. The more common ones are linoleic acid and oleic acid. In addition, there are two very important omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that are only found in very small amounts in the base oils.
Two very important fatty acids are:
- Alpha-linolenic acid (an omega-3 fatty acid of plant origin) which is a so-called essential fatty acid. The human body cannot produce it so it must be supplied with food. For example, from flax seed, hemp oil or hemp seed and walnuts.
- Gamma-linolenic acid (omega-6 fatty acid) which is a polyunsaturated fatty acid. Gamma linolenic acid is a very rare fatty acid. It is found, for example, in the seeds of evening primrose. The human body is able to make enough gamma-linolenic acid from alpha-linolenic acid. The exceptions are the ageing people and some illnesses.
Varying amounts of alpha-linolenic acid can be found in many vegetable oils. Oils rich in alpha-linolenic acid are so called dry oils. These two fatty acids are natural in varying amounts in human skin. Of course, there are many other fatty acids in human skin that are not covered in this text. All naturally occurring fatty acids on the skin also have their own functions on the skin. Older people and those with abnormal skin conditions, should pay special attention to alpha-linolenic acid and gamma-linolenic acid, and use them both internally and externally.
How to Find Optimum Fatty Acids for Your Skin
When looking for the best oil for our skin, we must first find out the fatty acid content of the different oils. It is not an easy task. Vegetable oils in cosmetics do vary a lot depending on the source. The fatty acid content of natural oils can vary really a lot. For example, sunflower oil may contain between 28% and 89% linoleic acid, depending on the variety of sunflower seed and growing location. Unfortunately, manufacturers do not always tell the fatty acid content of oils. This makes it very difficult to choose the right oil.
The most important external fatty acid for human skin is linoleic acid
Human skin has an incredible number of different fatty acids. Some of the fatty acids human body produces itself. Some fatty acids are mainly found only on the skin. Linoleic acid is one of them. Linoleic acid is an important component of cell membranes. If someone has a deficiency of linoleic acid, the deficiency is immediately apparent with scaling and hair loss. That’s why vegetable oils are so important in cosmetics
The downside of linoleic acid is its quick oxidation. Therefore, it is not very popular in industrial cosmetics. Often products, containing linoleic acid, are rich in preservatives to prevent oxidation. This has been necessary to extend the product’s shelf life.
Linoleic acid prevents inflammation of the skin
Linoleic acid has anti-inflammatory effects when applied to the skin. Overconsuming of linoleic acid with nutrition may increase inflammation in the body. If linoleic acid is applied topically to the skin, it in reduces inflammations such as acne and eczema.
The oils that are good for our skin may not be suitable for nutrition and vice versa. This is a very good rule of thumb to keep in mind when choosing oils.
This is very typical functioning of the human body. The skin is often a mirror image of the internal functioning of the human body. The human body is always alkaline from the inside but acidic from the outside. This is one of the body’s defence mechanism. If your skin becomes alkaline, you will most certainly get sick.
Linoleic acid is high in the following easily obtainable oils
- Sunflower oil about 66% (can also be as low as 28%) Always get cold pressed oil, not frying oil at Market
- 74% Safflower Oil
- Poppy Seed Oil 70%
- Hemp Oil 54%
You can read more about sunflower oil here. There are also exotic vegetable oils with very high levels of linoleic acid. However, they are difficult and expensive to obtain. You can try to spot the linoleic acid content of different oils online
Skin does not like excess oleic acid
Cosmetic industry generally uses oils that are very high in oleic acid. It is very preserving oil that does not oxidize and deteriorate in the same way as linoleic oils.
The most important fatty acid in the skin is linoleic acid. The skin can also use oleic acid. However, oleic acid is just some kind of emergency aid for skin. If your skin is dry after the shower, and you do not have body lotion containing linolenic acid available, you can use lotion containing oleic acid as a replacement. The problem with oleic acid is that, when used for a long time and abundantly, it eventually clogs the pores. However, if the skin is always rich in linoleic acid, this may not be the case.
The main source of oleic acid is olive oil. Olive oil often contains almost 90% oleic acid. Oleic acid is a very healthy nutrition. For the skin it should not be used in very large quantities. So olive oil is not the best oil in skin care.
Palmitic and stearic acid are useful in cosmetics
Although vegetable oils are often fluid in cosmetics, you should not forget about solid fats. Palmitic and stearic acids are fatty acids that are found in small amounts in all oils. If you want to find large amounts of these hard fatty acids you can use shea butter or some other solid vegetable fat. Palmitic acid and stearic acid make these vegetable fats solid.
Palmitic acid is common in animal fats
Animal fat is the most abundant source of palmitic acid. Some animal fats contain up to 25% palmitic acid. Among vegetable oils, rice brand oil contains 21%, macadamia oil contains 20% palmitoleic acid and 20% palmitic acid, corn oil 10%, shea butter 9% and coconut oil 8%.
Animal fats (25%) and shea butter (up to 20%) also have the highest levels of stearic acid. Corn oil is also high in stearic acid.
All oils contain some palmitic acid and stearic acid. If your skin does not need protection against dehydration, you can be confident with making your product, for example, from rice bran oil. It has a very optimal blend of different fatty acids (37% linolenic acid, 37% oleic acid and over 20% palmitoleic acid) for the skin. Rice bran oil also contains a lot of vitamin E, which is a very important antioxidant.
Palmitic acid and stearic acid also occur naturally in normal skin. The skins own sebum contains these fatty acids just for protection. Palmitic acid and stearic acid form a protective, natural film on the skin surface that protects the skin from drying out. Therefore, all these fatty acids are very important and necessary in their own way.
Use herbal omega-3 fatty acids for intensive skin care
Alpha-linolenic acid and gamma-linolenic acid are essential herbal omega-3 acids. Omega-3 acids also exist as animal origin fatty acids. Fish oil, for example, is such an oil. Fish oil is good for the skin but only for internal use. Because of its odour, fish oil is never used externally, although it may otherwise be suitable for the skin.
These two fatty acids, alpha-linolenic acid and gamma-linolenic acid, are so-called dry fatty acids. They are very absorbent on the skin and leave no greasy feeling at all. However, these fatty acids have their drawbacks. When used excessively and too often, they dry the skin too much. So use herbal omega-3 oils very carefully.
Where can I get alpha-linolenic acid and gamma-linolenic acid?
You will find alpha-linolenic acid in seeds such as linseed and hemp seeds. Gamma linolenic acid is less common. It can be found very small amounts in vegetable oils. Only evening primrose seeds and blackcurrant seeds contain more gamma-linolenic acid.
After all, gamma-linolenic acid is produced by the body itself. However, if you suspect a deficiency, you can find it, for example, in evening primrose oil or black currant oil. You will also find evening primrose oil in the form of capsules. Gamma linolenic acid is easily oxidized so capsules are really the only way to buy proper oil. You can open the capsule one by one at a time and use shea butter instead of night cream.
This story was my gift for you. Thanks again for taking the time to read my post. I will open this oil issue more widely in the future. Natural oils in cosmetics is always very interesting topic to me and there are so many things I will share with you later on.
What is your favourite natural oils in cosmetics? Do you use only one oil or do you also mix different oils?