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April 11, 2020 4 min read

Carrier oils are known as vegetable oils or base oils. They are derived from the seeds, kernels, and nuts of different plants. In the contexts of aromatherapy and natural skin and hair care recipes, these base oils are referred to as carrier oils. Carrier oils have properties of viscosity, lubrication, absorption, and acceptability. These oils are used in diluting essential oils, which are volatile and evaporative liquids extracted from different parts of plants and flowers. Essential oils quickly dissipate when applied directly onto the skin and can cause an allergic reaction. Carrier oils help absorb essential oils into the skin, increasing their distribution and lubrication without altering their aroma and therapeutic properties.

Each of the carrier oil has different constituents and characteristics that offer many benefits to the skin's health. Carrier oils can be used by themselves or in combination with essential oils or other natural ingredients for skincare. They naturally contain nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that improve skin's overall health and appearance. Carrier oils moisturize, hydrate, soothe irritated skin and help protect it from environmental damage with their nourishing properties. Here are the best carrier oils for promoting skin's health:

Castor Oil

Castor oil is extracted from the seeds of castor plants native to Mediterranean and tropical regions of India and Africa. Historically, the castor plant had been used for medicinal purposes since ancient times. Castor beans were made into a paste to treat several skin conditions. The oil and other derivatives from castor plants are still utilized for preparations of many cosmeceutical products and medicines. Today, it is a popular carrier oil around the world due to its many benefits for healthy skin. It is known to soothe skin irritation, inflammation, and dryness because of its moisturizing properties.

Castor oil contains healthy fatty acids in its chemical composition that promote skin's health in many ways. It has ricinoleic acid, oleic acid, linoleic acid, palmitic acid, and stearic acid. Ricinoleic acid makes up 90% of castor oil's composition. It exhibits antimicrobial properties that fight acne-causing bacteria and soothe skin inflammation and redness. Moreover, castor oil has oleic acid that cleanses the skin and helps brighten skin's complexion with its antioxidant properties. Linoleic and palmitic acids promote moisture retention in skin and enhance its elasticity, leaving it with a youthful and glowing appearance. Furthermore, due to its cleansing properties, stearic acid helps purge dirt, bacteria, and excess sebum from the skin that causes acne. 

Almond Oil

Sweet almond oil is derived from the almond tree that also sprouts edible almonds. The almond trees are native to Iran, but its cultivation has now been spread all over the world.  Almonds have held a scared religious, medicinal, and cultural value around the world in many civilizations. Ancient Chinese, Ayurveda, and Persian school of medicines have been using almond oil to treat several skin conditions. Almond oil has emollient and antioxidant properties that promote the skin's health and brighten complexion. Today, almond oil is widely used as a carrier oil in aromatherapy, skin, and hair care because of its many therapeutic properties.

The main constituents of almond oil include oleic acid, linoleic acid, stearic acid, and palmitic acid. Oleic acid, which is also known as omega 9 acid, exhibits antioxidant properties that help eliminate dirt-buildup from the skin's surface. It is known to promote skin's suppleness, softness, and natural radiance with its moisturizing properties. Furthermore, it contains linoleic acid, which is soothing for acne-prone and irritated skin because of its purifying properties. In addition, stearic and palmitic acids have emulsifying and cleansing properties that support younger, clearer, and softer looking skin. 

Argan Oil

Argan oil is one of the most valued carrier oil in the skincare industry because of its versatile benefits. It is sometimes referred to as the 'Liquid Gold' due to its color. Argan oil is derived from the fruits' kernels of the argan tree, which is native to Argana, Morocco. It has been used for beautifying and therapeutic purposes for centuries. Historically, it was used for reducing the appearance of blemishes and discoloration by Moroccan women. In recent decades, argan oil has gained a lot of popularity around the world because of its beautifying properties for healthy and glowing skin.

Argan oil's chemical composition comprises of oleic, palmitic, stearic, linoleic, and linolenic acids. Oleic acid has moisturizing properties that enhance the skin's firmness and leave it looking young and supple. Its antioxidant properties promote even skin tone and help in fading the appearance of blemishes, scars, and dark spots. Linoleic acid, on the other hand, exhibits purifying and clarifying properties. It helps calm acne-affected skin and prevents it from future outbreaks, whereas stearic acid promotes smoother, softer, and brighter skin's texture due to its cleansing characteristics. It provides a protective layer to the skin against harmful environmental toxins that damage its health. Moreover, palmitic acid moisturizes the skin without leaving a greasy residue and helps soothe dryness, irritation, and itchiness. 

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