For the benefits of my readers, I have compiled a list of my favorite botanical oils, from Avocado Oil through to Cocoa Butter.
And you can join me here tomorrow, where I will take a look at oils from Evening Primrose to Tamunu Oil.
Natural Skin Care Oils
Almond Oil (Prunus Amygdalis)
Source: Extracted from the seeds of the almond tree.
Properties: The unsaponifiable content of around 1.5% includes Beta-Sitosterol, Alpha-Tocopherols, and Squalane.
Benefits. Sweet Almond Oil is rich in Essential Fatty Acids. It is not easily absorbed into the skin, so slippage is provided for some length of time.
Follow the link to find out more information about the wonderful, skin-loving benefits of Almond Oil.
Apricot Kernel Oil (Prunus Armeniaca)
Source: Extracted from the nut of the seed.
Properties: Apricot kernel oil contains more Polyunsaturated Acids for edible purposes, than most other commercially available oils. This natural skincare oil has a high Linoleic Acid and Vitamin A content and is readily absorbed by the skin, providing our skin with the essential elements it requires for health.
Benefits: In natural skin care formulations, it’s a valuable face oil and an excellent softener for the delicate skin around the eyes, mouth, and neck. Due to its light texture, it’s typically suited to dry and sensitive skin.
Argan Oil: (Argan Spinosa)
Source: Cold press production and refining.
Properties: Argan Oil has good resistance to oxidation and is a free radical scavenger due to its Vitamin E content, in the right form of Alpha Tocopherol. It also contains Carotene and Phytosterols, making this a wonderful anti-ageing oil.
Benefits: This natural skin care oil is being touted as one of the best natural skin care ingredients of late, due to its skin loving properties. It is suitable for damaged, mature skin, and when used around the eye area, it has good restructuring activity due to the seeds yielding an unsaturated oil. This oil is also rich in Oleic and Linoleic acids which yield up to 35%. Argan Oil associates well with Rose Hip Seed Oil for anti-scarring and stretch mark reduction, making it also an excellent body oil.
Avocado Oil (Persea Americano)
Source: Extracted from the oily flesh of the fruit from the Avocado Pear Tree.
Properties: It has a high sterol content and contains more Vitamin D than eggs. The oil is bright green due to its Chlorophyll content, but this quickly turns to brown in sunlight; occasionally, a green colouring agent is added to refined oil to make it look natural. The composition of the oil varies tremendously, depending on the variety.
Benefits: In our opinion, it is a superior facial moisturising oil due to the skin-softening and protective properties of Avocado. This oil is often included in anti-ageing formulas, because it helps to promote cellular regeneration and has a well-known action on dry, fragile, and distended skin that has a tendency to damage easily.
For further reading on Avocado Oil, follow this link.
Blackcurrant Seed Oil (Ribes Nigrum)
Source: Extracted from the seed.
Properties: Loaded with Fatty Acids, especially GLA.
Benefits: Like Borage Oil, it supports the reconstruction of damaged skin and other cell membranes. A pleasant, mobile oil that has anti-ageing and moisturising properties.
Borage Seed Oil (Borage Officinalis)
Source: Extracted from the Borage plant, the seeds yield about 40% of their weight in lipids. It produces blue star flowers, which have given this oil the nickname, “Star Flower Oil”.
Properties: This oil is high in GLA, a Fatty Acid that maintains healthy skin and repairs tissue damage.
Benefits: Used in cosmetic preparations for its soothing and moisturising properties on dry and sensitive skin, Borage Seed Oil is most useful for dry, mature, and ageing skin.
Camellia Oil (Camellia Japonica)
Source: Extracted from the oil of the nuts.
Properties: Rich in Oleic and Linoleic acid, the virgin form is a soft yellow colour.
Benefits: This is an excellent ingredient in body oils and hair conditioning treatments, due to its restructuring and moisturising benefits. It is also a good active ingredient in after-sun products, eye gels, and skin care creams for mature, damaged skin.
Carrot Oil (Daucus Carota)
Source: Many get confused with Carrot oil. The herbal oil is actually based on the Wild Carrot, which has a small white root and no resemblance to the cultivated red carrot root. It yields a lovely fragrant essential oil from the seed, which has a low oil content below 12%. Fresh, edible carrot root is nearly all water and its colour comes from Carotenes. The carrot root contains only very small amounts of lipids, so crushing a carrot does not yield oil.
Properties: Fresh Carrot Pulp is very healing and analgesic. Rather than pressing the Carrot, it has to be either macerated in another oil, or the Carotene has to be extracted in a solvent to yield the Oleoresin, which is then diluted to make it workable. Various grades exist and over-the-counter products can be little more than coloured oil. The best quality specifies a 0.2% concentration of Beta-Carotenes.
Benefits: This natural skin care oil is intensely yellow and can be used to colour creams. Rich in Vitamin E, Carotene offers strong Free Radical blockers, so it is especially useful in many anti-ageing and after-sun lotion products.
Coconut Oil (Cocos Nuciferus)
Source: Extracted from the kernels of the coconut, by centrifuge.
Benefits: Coconut oil is a stable fat that is softening, moisturising, and easily absorbed by the skin, thus making it one of the most effective natural body moisturisers.
There is a lot to know about coconut oil, which you can read about here.
Cocoa Butter (Theobroma Cacao)
Source: A well-known skin lubricant, Cocoa Butter is the solid fat from the roasted seed of the Cocoa Plant.
Properties: It is composed of up to 40 to 50% solid fat butter. Cocoa Butter has a distinct smell, similar to chocolate.
Benefits: We love Cocoa Butter; it’s a wonderful natural skin care ingredient due to its healing and regenerating properties and although this is a fat, we think it deserves a special mention.