Ingredient Focus: Argan Oil
If you’ve stepped into any salon, drugstore, or perused hair products on Amazon, you’ve probably seen an array of products boasting the effects of argan oil. Cleansers, lotions, serums, and conditioners have all jumped on the argan oil bandwagon, and you really should too. Let me explain. But first, a quick overview of the oil.
Extracted from a small fruit resembling an olive, it grows on the Argan tree, native to Morocco. Frequently referred to as “liquid gold” the oil has been used for centuries for its healing and restorative properties and is also used in Morrocan cuisine. Its sudden (and profitable) rise in the cosmetic industry takes us by no surprise given all the skin-nourishing benefits.
The extraction process is a lengthy, arduous one as the kernels are still gathered, dried, and pressed by hand. After a thorough cleansing, some are roasted and turned into culinary grade argan oil and the unroasted kernels turn into cosmetic grade oil. The entire process can take up to 65 pounds of fruit, with four pounds of kernels to make 1 liter of argan oil! It’s no wonder that argan oil in its pure form can cost a pretty penny.
It boasts a handful of skin benefits for all skin types (a rare find considering how finicky skin can be!) and is also is a great addition to any hair care routine.
Dry, flaky Skin
This nutrient-rich, lightweight moisturizer is the perfect addition to those with eczema, psoriasis, or just normal dry and tight skin. Vitamin-E and fatty acids nourish the skin to help with skin repair and protection.
Argan oil is rich in hydrating oleic and linoleic acids which provide for a more softened and moisturized skin barrier. It’s full of antioxidant effects to protect from free radicals and sun damage. These nourishing ingredients help restore elasticity and plumps, while the appearance of youthful skin is revived by relieving dryness and dullness.
Usually when the word oil is muttered our acne-prone friends make a run for the hill, dreading clogged pores and more breakouts. It turns out that argan oil is a great middle of the road oil for all skin types. It’s been shown to lower sebum production which can help control oil and reduce breakouts. Vitamin E acts as an anti-inflammatory for irritated, acne-prone skin, and the light moisturizing properties nourish the skin without clogging pores.
Argan oil for hair has many of the same moisturizing and softening benefits for your hair as it does for skin! It can be used as a conditioning agent, a hair treatment, or as a styling add on to reduce frizz and enhance shine. An easy and effective hair treatment is to apply some warmed argan oil from root to tip, wrap the hair in a towel, and then leave on for 20-30 minutes. Make sure to cleanse thoroughly in the shower afterward. Your hair will be noticeably smoother and more hydrated.
What to ingredients to look for
Often times it will just be labeled as Morrocan oil so it’s always best to read the full ingredient list. “Argan Spinosa Kernel oil” is just the same as “argan oil” so if you see either of those on the label you are in the clear. If you are purchasing the oil in its pure form take a peek at the ingredient list to make sure that there are no additives or chemicals snuck in there. Try looking for a brand that is 100% Cold-pressed, organic argan oil for pure and high-quality oil. Because it is prone to oxidation, make sure it comes in a dark or tinted bottle.
It’s often added into other products, like our Microlumina Exfoliating Facial Scrub, for it’s softening powers.
All in all, this ingredient is one that you can’t go too wrong with so it might be worth it to add a few drops to your moisturizer and see if it works for you!