Morocco is a beautiful country and, as if you needed another reason to love it, let us introduce you to Argan oil. If you’re a beauty junkie, you’ve likely heard of (and tried) Moroccan oil. But, have you heard of Argan oil? If not, you’re not alone. Moroccan oil is simply the Americanized name for Argan oil.
Arg the nut within the small fruit grown in the Argan Forests of Morocco, has been celebrated for centuries. Revered for its healing properties and ability to soothe wounds and rashes, this oil also provides nourishment for the skin and hair. Its origins trace back to 600 BC when the Phoenicians first harnessed its healing capabilities and recognized its beauty benefits.
While it may come at a cost, this oil’s versatility makes it a worthwhile investment. Not only can it enhance the appearance of your skin and hair, but it can also contribute to the overall health of your heart. This “liquid gold” has much to offer, whether used cosmetically or in culinary endeavors.
Discover everything there is to know about this precious elixir of nature.
1. Rich In Vitamins
Not only is Argan oil filled with vitamins A, C, and E, but it’s also loaded with antioxidants, linoleic acid, and omega-6 fatty acids. When applied to the skin, it can help boost skin cell production, resulting in healthier-looking skin.
Argan oil is high in both oleic (omega 9 monounsaturated nonessential) and linoleic (omega 6 unsaturated) fatty acids. Linoleic acid helps to reduce inflammation in the skin and increase moisture levels, and oleic acid helps improve the skin’s permeability. Additionally, when looking at the comedogenic rating of Argan oil (or, how easily it clogs pores), this oil rates as a zero.
2. Keeps Your Skin Hydrated
Argan oil helps ensure that the skin stays hydrated and healthy. In 2007, the Department of Dermatology at the Medical University of Vienna’s General Hospital in Austria conducted a study on skin health. One group used Argan oil as part of their daily skincare routine for 30 days, while the other group used a placebo. At the end of the study, the group that had used Argan oil had significantly improved skin hydration when compared to the placebo group.
Moisture loss is one of the key reasons for skin aging; when skin is hydrated, it loses less collagen and is protected from the elements like sun, heat, cold, and wind. Thus, by helping the skin keep more moisture, this oil helps combat the signs of aging.
3.) Helps to Fight the Signs of Aging
As Argan oil contains high levels of fatty acids (it’s comprised of roughly 80% fatty acids), it works wonders to erase the signs of premature aging such as crow’s feet and wrinkles. this oil has even been shown to fade age spots, as well as reduce the depth and severity of wrinkles.
It can be used as a toner or moisturizer. For toner usage, simply add a few drops to your favorite toner, or make your own by seeping 1 cup of green tea, adding a drop or two of your favorite essential oil, and then 2-4 drops of Argan oil. To use as a moisturizer, either add a drop to your favorite moisturizer or apply oil directly to the skin.
4. Can Benefit Common Skin Ailments
Argan oil is the “miracle oil” for pretty much every skin condition, from acne to eczema.
Studies have shown that this oil lowers sebum levels in those with oily skin, helping to reduce greasiness and improve overall appearance. It reduces acne-induced inflammation, and can also aid in scar prevention.
Eczema is a common skin condition characterized by inflammation, and dry, itchy patches. Argan oil has been shown to reduce rashes and itchiness. It hydrates the skin so it better performs its barrier function, which in turn reduces rashes and itchiness, and minimizes eczema flare-ups.
5. Lowers Cholesterol Levels
If you’re looking for ways to improve your overall heart health, you can incorporate yoga into your daily routine, as well as more heart-healthy foods into your diet such as coldwater fish, avocados, and even dark chocolate. Argan oil is also a heart-healthy supplement.
As we mentioned above, this oil isn’t just topical, but can also be used in cooking. When used as a substitute for other less-healthy oils, it can help reduce bad cholesterol levels. Argan oil has a unique combination of plant sterols (schottenol and spinasterol). These block the absorption of bad cholesterol from inside the intestinal tract, which in turn leads to better heart health.
6. Aids in Your Overall Hair Health
Just as Argan oil keeps your skin hydrated, it keeps your hair hydrated by coating the hair shaft and sealing in moisture.
Argan oil can make hair less prone to breakage from brushing and styling, and also protect against heat damage. It helps to repair split ends, increase shine, and create an overall healthy appearance. It can also combat hair loss by promoting new growth. The oil can be rubbed into the scalp before bed, or applied to the ends of your hair before styling.
7. Strengthens Nails
Due to its high levels of vitamin E, Argan oil helps promote strong, healthy nails. Additionally, thanks to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities, it can help stave off nail and skin infections.
Argan oil is also a great cuticle softener, which can help to prevent hangnails. To ensure overall nail health, simply rub the oil into your nail beds and leave overnight. Use the excess oil to coat your hands so they stay nice and moisturized as well.
8. Helps Prevent Stretch Marks
This oil improves the elasticity of the skin, which can help to prevent stretch marks. Vitamins A and E help rejuvenate the skin while moisturizing it, making stretch marks less likely to form.
To use, simply warm 2-3 drops of pure Argan oil in the palms of your hands and rub on your stomach, hips, thighs, or other potential problem areas.
While there are many plants with healing properties, Argan oil tops our list.
Do you have a favorite natural beauty product? Tell us about it in the comments.