Face oils have been used by humans for centuries throughout the world to treat skin, our early ancestors knew and understood the benefits of plant oils developing powerful concoctions to treat and protect their skin. French Queens - Wild Carrot Seed Oil was considered the beauty elixir. Cleopatra and the wealthy Egyptians used Moringa, Sesame and Castor Oil to fight wrinkles and preserve their youth. Geisha’s in Japan relied on Camelia Oil extracted from the antioxidant-rich green tea seeds to maintain their skin luminescence. Natives of the amazonian forest refer to Buriti Oil as the “tree of life” as they claim it brings skin back to life.
It is a misconception that an oil will make skin oily, skin is lipid based and loves oils, all skin benefit from including facial oils into a beauty regime even oily skin! Facial oils in essence are concentrated drops of essential fatty acids, rich in Omegas 3/6/7/9, nutrients, fat soluble vitamins and antioxidants all of which have skin changing properties in just a few daily drops.
FACE OILS - A SNAPSHOT OF BENEFITS
- Balance Sebum production with skin loving lipids
- Detoxify + stimulate circulation
- Dismantle free radicals + reduce inflammation
- Increase resilience to environmental stressors
- Powerful antioxidant protection - polyphenols
- Regenerate // restructures + nourishes the skin
- Rejuvenate tired // damaged // sensitive skin
- Restore hydration - locks in moisture
Many oils are extracted from seeds, but can also be extracted from fruits, nuts, kernels and roots. Symbolically seeds are the essence of life, charged precious oils that are loaded with potent nutrients, that have the power to create a full plant. Oils can be extracted in different methods:
Steam Distillation - Is used in the manufacture and extraction of essential oils. The botanical material is placed in a still and steam is forced over the material. The hot steam helps to release the aromatic molecules from the plant material since the steam forces open the pockets in which the oils are kept in the plant material. The molecules of these volatile oils then escape from the plant material and evaporate into the steam. The temperature of the steam needs to be carefully controlled - just enough to force the plant material to let go of the essential oil, yet not too hot as to burn the plant material or the essential oil.
Cold Pressing - The cold pressing of delicate plant oils maintains the highest extraction of essential fatty acids potent nutrients like vitamins, antioxidants, omega 3-6-7-9 and vital minerals as they are processed without chemical extraction, solvents or heat.
CO2 Extraction - Also known as supercritical CO2 extracts or supercritical fluid CO2 extracts, are extremely pure plant extracts produced from a relatively new and highly efficient extraction process. CO2 extraction produces superior herbal extracts.
Why They Are So Effective?
Oils can be used either on their own or can be layered for example after cleansing and adding a few drops to your moisturiser to intensify the benefits. Sebum is our own natural built in moisturiser despite this as we age our bodies naturally produce less sebum and collagen. Botanical Oils have the ability to penetrate deeply and offer many different properties:-
- Anti-inflammatory - Phytonutrients
- Skin-firming - Phytoceramides
- Essential Fatty Acids - Topical EFAs have been shown to improve the structure and function of cell membranes and improve skin barrier function. Improving skin barrier function reduces trans epidermal water loss, leaving the skin more hydrated, moisturized and protected
- Antioxidants - Protect against free radicals and boost skin radiance
- Minerals - The prowess behind healthy, optimally functioning skin are minerals, helping to strengthen, tone, boost collagen production, decrease inflammation, heal, maintain moisture levels and detoxify the skin. They allow cells to maximize the application of vitamins and anti-oxidants to encourage strong, healthy and resilient skin
- Omegas - Have a number of positive effects on the skin, the most important being, boosting lipid content and the repair of the skin's barrier function. This helps protect delicate skin, improves moisture levels, helps the skin retain it’s own moisture which all leads to improved softness and elasticity. Omegas are particularly beneficial to dry skin, conditions such as eczema and during extreme weather conditions, such as cold and wind, both of which can strip away at the skin's protective lipid barrier.
- Vitamins - Vitamin D - Essential for glowing, healthy skin, helps retain serious moisture, reviving skin for a smoother, softer and more radiant appearance. Elasticity is boosted while fine lines are plumped and minimized.
- Vitamin K - A fat soluble vitamin, helps even out skin tone and reduce spider veins and broken capillaries.
- B Vitamins - B1,2 +6 all beneficial for skin health - A study demonstrated that a topical form of vitamin B was shown to dramatically reduce the effects of ageing in human skin.
7 BOTANICAL OIL FACTS
- Oils derived from plants (botanical oil) contain skin friendly compounds such as polyphenols, phytosterols and carotenoids [Antioxidants] which are metabolised by the skin
- Oils that are denser [have a high viscosity] – they typically penetrate a bit slower into the top layers of the skin. Examples: avocado oil, meadowfoam oil and macadamia nut oil.
- Oils that offer natural anti-inflammatory properties – Example: Pomegranate seed oil does everything from fighting UV damage, increasing the barrier function, combating acne, to softening skin
- Oils that have been infused with anti-inflammatory herbs – these properties will help to treat inflammation of the skin. When oils have been infused with botanical matter, they are generally called ‘Macerated’ or 'Infused' oils. Examples: Calendula oil // Nettle oil // Chamomile oil.
- Botanical oils offer great moisturising properties - Oils are emollients [ingredients that soften or soothe the skin] and which help to keep the skin moist and flexible. If skin is dry, oils produce a layer over the skin’s surface which traps water beneath it [dry skin can look more wrinkly because it has less inbuilt moisturiser] however when you apply a botanical oil it makes the skin look more hydrated and less wrinkled.
- Botanical oils can soothe - the inflammation and irritation normally associated with dry skin. The protective layer they create prevents the penetration of irritants, allergens and bacteria thereby reducing or preventing the development of dermatitis.
- Skin pollution – air, water, stress, fatigue, cell phone radiation, UV and makeup - is the main source of damage to the skin. These factors create millions of toxins and free-radicals that accumulate on the skin, suffocating your complexion, causing breakouts and expediting the aging process.
Certified Organic Facial Oils [serums] are the fastest way to fortify and strengthen our own natural skin barrier, restoring the skin first defence against skin pollution. They have the ability absorb quickly and deeply into the skin, think of them as being a delivery system that allows for all the antioxidants, vitamins, and omega fatty acids to be working right at the heart of the skin issue. Oils have the capacity to deliver their 'active compounds' deeper into the skin, delivering results you will most likely notice after the first application. It is important to understand that each oil has a very specific composition that will make it more suited for a specific skin concern, notice I do not refer to a 'skin type' as skin can and does change depending on so many intrinsic and extrinsic factors.
Until next time..
be human | be kind | be you
- US PAT 4,997,657. Method for improving skin smoothness,. DF Horrobin and JCM Stewart, assigned to Efamol Holdings (Mar 5, 1991)
- David F. Horrobin, DPhil, BM Kentville. Essential fatty acids in clinical dermatology J. of Am. Acad. of Dermatol. Vol 20 (6), 1989.
I had no idea that oils were used so far back in our history! Thank you for such a detailed post, I loved reading everything about face oils, very cool.
I love using oils! Thanks so much for sharing! xx
I love oils since using them and switching to a natural skin care regime my skin has drastically improved !!
As always, a great article, very informative. Thanks :)
I love face oils and have been using them for a couple of years now as my evening face treatment. My skin loves them, I didn’t really understand what CO2 extract really was so thank you for explaining!
I appreciate the detailed information you have given. I love using Serums and this gives more understanding of why. Thank you.