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Hello everyone! My name is Emma and I’m back with another blog post discussing natural skincare remedies. This time around, I wanted to delve deeper into one ingredient in particular that has been gaining a ton of popularity in the beauty world – argan oil.
As someone who suffers from dry skin nearly all year round, I’m always on the hunt for nourishing moisturizers that can replenish moisture without clogging my pores or causing breakouts. In recent years, I found that argan oil checks all the right boxes as a multi-purpose facial moisturizer. Its lightweight texture absorbs quickly into skin without feeling greasy, it’s non-comedogenic so it won’t exacerbate acne-prone skin, and regular use has noticeably softened fine lines and improved my complexion’s radiance.
I became so smitten with argan oil that I decided to do some in-depth research on its skin benefits, where it comes from, and how to properly incorporate it into a skincare routine. In today’s post, I want to share everything I’ve learned about this magical oil so you too can experience its rejuvenating effects. By the end, I hope you’ll understand why argan oil has rightfully earned its superstar status in the natural beauty world!
Let’s begin by learning about argan oil’s origins and what makes it so unique from other plant oils. Stick with me – once you understand its background, you’ll gain a greater appreciation for why it’s so effective for your skin.
The Origins of Argan Oil
Argan oil comes from the argan tree, which is native to the arid regions of Morocco. Believe it or not, argan trees are the only plant source of argan oil – no other tree produces this special oil. They have been growing in Morocco for centuries and are deeply ingrained in the country’s culture and economy.
What’s interesting is that argan trees mostly grow in a specific geographic location known as the “Argan Forest Biosphere Reserve.” This semi-arid region has hot temperatures and low annual rainfall, making it an unlikely place for many plants to thrive. Yet, the hardy argan trees have found a way to survive there due to their deep root systems that seek water from underground.
The production of argan oil is truly a labor of love by Moroccan women known as “arganiers.” Here is the step-by-step process:
- Argan fruit ripens on the tree from June through August. The prickly green fruit has a hard shell protecting the seed and pulp inside.
- Women gather the argan fruit by shaking branches or collecting fallen fruit from the ground. They then crack open the shells by hand using stones to reveal the seeds.
- Seeds are collected and roasted to enhance flavor. The intense heat pops the nut shell away from the kernels inside.
- Kernels are ground manually between two millstones into a creamy paste. This paste contains the precious argan oil trapped within.
- Oil is separated from the paste by vigorously kneading it and allowing the liquid to rise to the surface. The remaining argan cake can be fed to livestock as a healthy snack.
- Finally, argan oil is filtered to remove any remaining solids or impurities. The finished oil is either consumed locally or exported worldwide for its luxurious cosmetic and culinary uses.
As you can see, argan oil production is an entirely manual, labor-intensive process from start to finish. The painstaking efforts of arganier women allow them to conserve argan trees while also earning a living from a valuable natural commodity. It’s truly one of the most sustainably-sourced plant oils out there thanks to their dedication and traditional knowledge passed through generations.
Now that you understand argan oil’s unique origins, let’s dive into what exactly makes it so extraordinarily beneficial for your skin and appearance. Its components are what give it almost magical properties when applied topically.
The Skin-Loving Properties of Argan Oil
Argan oil derives its reparative qualities from highly concentrated antioxidants, vitamins, and plant compounds within. Here are some of its star skin-nourishing ingredients found in abundance:
- Vitamin E (Tocopherol): A powerful antioxidant that protects skin from environmental damage caused by free radicals and pollution. It prevents premature signs of aging.
- Oleic acid: This essential fatty acid found in olive oil as well helps restore lipid levels in skin, warding off dryness and roughness.
- Linoleic acid: Another important fatty acid that supports the skin’s natural moisture barrier. It soothes inflammation and redness.
- Squalene: A precursor to your skin’s natural sebum production boosts suppleness and elasticity. Squalene is similar to sebum your skin naturally secrets.
- Sterols: Plant-based compounds that have anti-inflammatory qualities to calm irritated skin. They facilitate wound healing too.
- Phenols: Antioxidant polyphenols like ferulic acid and p-coumaric acid neutralize nasties like UV rays before they can degrade collagen.
You’ll notice many similarities between argan oil’s components and those found naturally in healthy skin. This is why it provides such an ideal emollient effect when massaged onto the face or body – your skin recognizes these nourishing lipids, fatty acids, and antioxidants as “food” it needs daily.
Additionally, argan oil has an ideal 0.30 refractive index very close to sebum, making it ultra-absorbent. It mimics sebum’s ability to form a protective, moisture-binding semi-occlusive layer on skin without feeling heavy or oily behind.
All of these powerful skin-loving properties of argan oil have been identified as contributors to the following skin-revitalizing effects:
- Smoothes away fine lines and wrinkles
- Firms, tightens, and lifts sagging skin
- Hydrates, softens, and soothes dryness and irritation
- Shields against free radical damage and premature aging
- Evenly tones complexion and improves scarring/pigmentation
- Reduces inflammation associated with conditions like acne and eczema
- Speeds healing of minor cuts, wounds, and stretch marks
- Strengthens nails and adds shine to hair
It’s no wonder that numerous clinical studies reflect argan oil’s ability to significantly increase skin elasticity, hydration, and lipid content after only 4 weeks of regular use. Those lovely ladies in Morocco have been benefitting from this goldmine growing right in their backyard for ages!
Now that I’ve shared argan oil’s incredible journey and skin-enhancing superpowers, I hope you’re just as eager as I was to start reaping its rewards yourself. Here is how to incorporate it into your personalized skincare regime.
Using Argan Oil for Your Skin Type
Incorporating argan oil into your skincare routine is simple but does depend on your specific skin type and needs. Here are some tailored recommendations:
For Normal/Combination Skin
- Add 2-3 drops of argan oil to your moisturizer and blend well before applying all over face as the last step at night. This boosts its hydrating effects without adding extra oiliness during the day.
- Massage 2-3 drops onto damp skin after cleansing as a light moisturizer. Its absorbency works well for normal/oily T-zones needing balance rather than heavy creams.
For Dry Skin
- Directly massage 3-5 drops of argan oil onto clean, damp skin after bathing/showering as your primary moisturizer. Reapply as needed, especially in winter.
- Add 2-3 drops to your regular face cream or lotion to supercharge its hydration levels for parched patches or seasonal dryness.
For Mature/Aging Skin
- -Apply 5-7 drops directly morning and night, concentrating on lines/wrinkles, neck, chest, and hands. Massage in upwards motions to naturally lift skin.
- Consider a heavier formulation like an argan oil cream or balm for very dry, lined skin needing deep moisture overnight or during colder months.
For Sensitive Skin
- Start with 1 drop diluted in your cleanser or serum and slowly increase concentration as tolerated. Test a small patch first if new to oils.
- Use after facial treatments like chemical peels, extractions or dermaplaning to soothe inflammation and redness.
For Acne-Prone Skin
- Spot treat smaller blemishes by dipping clean finger in oil and dabbing directly on pimples.
- Apply sparingly as the last step, avoiding very oily areas that may worsen breakouts initially. Dab excess oil off T-zone if needed.
- Can help heal blemish scars or hyperpigmentation when used consistently over time.
As you can see, there’s flexibility to customize argan oil use depending on your particular concerns. Always listen to your skin’s feedback – some find it causes breakouts so adapt as needed until you dial it in right. Within a couple weeks, you.
FAQ 1: Is argan oil comedogenic or likely to clog pores?
Argan oil has a comedogenic rating of 0, meaning it is considered to be non-comedogenic and very unlikely to block pores or cause breakouts. Its molecular structure allows it to easily absorb into skin without leaving behind any residue. Those with acne-prone skin can try patch testing a small amount first, but in general argan oil is well-tolerated and won’t worsen existing blemishes for most people.
FAQ 2: How often should argan oil be used?
Most experts recommend applying argan oil to your face either once or twice per day for maximum benefits. Morning and night is ideal for dry skin types looking to intensely hydrate and nourish. Normal to combination skin may only need it once a day, either in the morning or at night. Consistency is key – aim for using argan oil regularly at least 4-5 times per week long-term to notice dramatic improvements in texture, radiance and fine lines.
FAQ 3: Can argan oil help with scarring or discoloration?
The high antioxidant content in argan oil makes it a good natural remedy for fading scars and pigmentation issues over time with regular application. Its ability to increase collagen production may help reduce the appearance of indented or raised scars. For pigmentation like melasma or dark spots, argan oil will brighten skin’s tone and protect against further damage. Its anti-inflammatory properties also aid the healing process. Be patient as scarring/discoloration takes time to improve fully, but argan oil can definitely help diminish their look with usage.
FAQ 4: How should argan oil be stored?
Since argan oil is prone to oxidation the longer it’s exposed to air and light, it’s best kept in an amber bottle away from direct sunlight or heat sources. Store at room temperature rather than in the bathroom as warmth can cause more rapid spoilage. The oil maintains best quality up to about 6 months after opening if properly sealed away in its container when not in use. It’s worth noting that argan oil darkens slightly over time as it oxidizes, but this does not diminish its efficacy.
FAQ 5: Can argan oil be used on other areas besides the face?
Absolutely! Argan oil works wonders all over the body as a multi-purpose moisturizer. It can be massaged onto rough elbows and knees, cuticles, brittle nails, and dry heels. Many also use it on their scalp to fight dandruff and condition hair, as well as on stretch marks and surgical scarring. Its lightweight texture makes it an ideal all-natural body oil that absorbs fast no matter where you apply it!
FAQ 6: What other skin concerns can argan oil help treat?
In addition to hydration and wrinkles, argan oil has merits for other skin issues like eczema and psoriasis by soothing itchy, inflamed patches. It may assist with reducing stretch marks during pregnancy or after weight loss/gain. For diabetics prone to skin breakdown, argan oil facilitates wound healing. Some find it calms down rosacea reddening as well. Due to its potent anti-inflammatory and restorative benefits, argan oil is worthy of trying in your routine to tackle various minor skin irritations or ailments topically.
To conclude, as a natural skincare lover, I strongly believe that argan oil deserves its superstar reputation in beauty circles. Its unique composition delivers intense moisturization and anti-aging benefits unlike any other plant oil. With regular use, argan oil can truly transform your complexion into a healthier, more radiant version of itself. Whether you have normal to very dry skin, acne, scarring or other concerns, argan oil is a versatile and nourishing addition to any skincare routine. I hope my insights today have convinced you to give this amazing oil a try – you won’t regret it! Please let me know if you have any other questions.