Argan Oil


Argan oil is a plant oil produced from the kernels of the argan tree (Argania spinosa L.) that is endemic to Morocco. It is used for nutritive and cosmetic properties.

Health Benefits

Various claims about the beneficial effects on health due to the consumption of argan oil have been made. Researchers have concluded that daily consumption of argan oil is 'highly likely' to be one factor helping the prevention of various cancers, cardiovascular diseases and obesity. The results of a nutritional intervention study, in which volunteers were given either argan oil or animal fats (butter) in their diet, were published in 2005. The results showed that regular dietary intake of argan oil led to reduced levels of harmful cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood, compared to a diet with regular intake of animal fats.

Culinary uses

Culinary argan oil (argan food oil) is used for dipping bread, on couscous, salads and similar uses. Amlou, a thick brown paste with a consistency similar to peanut butter, is produced in Morocco by grinding roasted almond and argan oil using stones, mixed with honey and is used locally as a bread dip.

Cosmetic uses

Argan oil has become increasingly popular for cosmetic use. The number of personal-care products on the US market with argan oil as an ingredient increased from just two in 2007 to over one hundred by 2011. Argan oil has traditionally been used in Morocco as a treatment for skin diseases and as a cosmetic oil for skin and hair. This oil also has medicinal uses against rheumatism and the healing of burns. Argan oil boasts anti-aging and natural healing properties. It is credited with helping to repair damaged hair, reducing wrinkles and acne, diminishing the appearance of age spots and healing dry scalp and diaper rash. Since Argan oil is full of vitamins and antioxidants, it is commonly used in hair shampoos and conditioners to repair damage caused by coloring and straightening treatments, hair care tools, and even the sun. If you want to de-clutter your cabinet and simplify your beauty routine, argan oil can become your go-to beauty elixir from head-to-toe.

How it works

Argan oil is naturally rich in antioxidants, essential fatty acids, carotenoids, ferulic acid, sterols, polyphenols, vitamin E and squalene. Together, these elements help to heal skin, reduce inflammation and fend off free radicals. They promote your overall health by moisturizing, softening and protecting your face and hair from sun damage without harmful toxins and Parabens.

Beauty Benefits

Below are some ways to use organic argan oil in your daily life. Apply to any area of the body to relieve dryness, itchiness, inflammation or any other skin, hair or nail ailment. It has fast-absorbing, ultra-moisturizing properties.
  1. Face Moisturizer - After cleansing morning and/or night, massage a few drops of argan oil directly onto your face and neck. Since argan is considered a dry oil, it absorbs quickly and is not greasy. If you want to use it as a serum, apply your night cream after the oil absorbs into the skin.
  2. Hydrating Toner - Add a few drops of argan oil to your favorite facial toner to hydrate and tone simultaneously. You can make your own toner by adding a few drops of argan oil to Rose or Orange Blossom water.
  3. Rejuvenating & Brightening Face Mask - Add a few drops of argan oil to your store-bought mask. Alternatively, make your own mask by mixing 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, 3 teaspoons of Greek-style yogurt, 1 tablespoon of honey and 3 drops of argan oil in a bowl. Apply on a clean, dry face and leave on for 10 minutes. Rinse off with warm water.
  4. Exfoliating Lip Scrub and Moisturizer - To smooth and moisturize your lips, add a few drops of argan oil and vanilla extract to fine brown sugar. Lightly massage into lips using circular motion and rinse off.
  5. Face Glow - Add a drop or two of argan oil to your foundation, bronzer or tinted moisturizer for a dewy, luminous glow.
  6. Leave-on Conditioner - Argan oil is a great product to calm frizzy ends, add moisture to dry hair as well as add a little shine. After the shower, while your hair is still wet, add a few drops of argan oil to your hair, ends and scalp to hydrate and moisturize. It's especially nourishing if your hair is dry from daily use of a blow dryer, straight-iron or curling iron.
  7. Hair Styling Shine - When your hair is dry, use as a styling product by adding a few drops of argan oil to the palms of your hand. Rub your hands together and run your fingers through your hair to create shine and tame frizz. You can also apply it just to your dry ends. You only need a small amount. It lasts a long time.
  8. Overnight Hair Treatment - Massage a generous amount of argan oil into your hair, ends and scalp. Wrap your hair and leave it on while you sleep. In the morning, wash your hair and you'll have luminous, soft locks.
  9. Scalp - If you're dealing with dry scalp, apply some argan oil to a cotton ball and dab your scalp with the oil. If you do this before bed, you'll give the oil plenty of time to moisturize your scalp before you wash your hair in the morning.
  10. Cuticle and Heel Softener - Argan oil is a great oil to use on your hands. Massage a few drops of argan oil into your cuticles to soften, moisturize and encourage nail growth and help heal cracking and peeling of nails and cuticles. Use as an overnight treatment to nourish cracked heels by working a good amount into your feet and toes. Cover with socks and wake up to supple feet.
  11. Body and Bath Oil - You can use argan oil for a full body moisturizer, applying just as you would a body lotion or cream. Add a few drops of argan oil directly onto your skin, into the bath or body lotion. Apply the oil right after you get out of your shower for best moisturizing results. It's safe to use on a baby and to help minimize stretch marks on a pregnant belly too.

References

  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argan_oil
  2. http://skincare.about.com/od/skin101/a/Argan-Oil-Benefits-For-Skin-Hair-And-Body.htm
  3. http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-6826/10-Simple-Beauty-Uses-for-Organic-Argan-Oil.html
  4. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/fashion-and-beauty/beauty/is-argan-oil-really-as-good-as-liquid-gold-for-skin/article4100165/