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Avocado oil is extracted from the flesh of the avocado fruit and is native to South Central Mexico. Just like avocado itself, avocado oil is packed with valuable nutrients for our skin. The main compound of this oil is oleic acid (50-70%), which is known for its moisturizing properties. The rest of the goodies found in this oil are: vitamins A, B1, B2, D and E, linoleic acid, palmitic acid, Beta-carotene, Pantothenic acid, lecithin, Docosadienoic acid and more.
Benefits of avocado oil:
– Boosts hair growth. Oils rich in oleic acid work great for boosting hair growth. Oleic acid helps to moisturize the scalp and treat dandruff. Together with vitamin D, it helps to regenerate hair follicles this, in turn, promotes hair growth.
– Moisturizer. As mentioned above avocado oil mainly consists of oleic acid. Oleic acid has a very important for skincare quality – it increases skins permeability. This means that avocado oil is capable of penetrating deep into skin layers providing a long-lasting moisturizing effect.
Avocado oil has a high rate of skin penetration and the ability to transport active substances through the outer epidermis of the skin and into the dermis, for increased effectiveness.
– Prevents skin damage from UV rays. Avocado oil has a high amount of mono-saturated fats, which leave a protective layer over the skin and help to protect from harmful UV rays. It is believed that good quality avocado oil alone can provide protection of SPF 5- 10. I, of course, would not recommend, using this oil as a sole protection, but adding this oil to a face cream or body lotion during summer would benefit everyone. Avocado oil also aids in repairing already damaged skin cells, which makes it perfect for applications after sunbathing.
– Anti-aging. Avocado oil contains sterolins – plant steroids. Don’t worry these are the good guys. Together with fatty acids sterolins boost collagen production and reduce the occurrence of age spots.
– Reduces itching and inflammation.
– Improves Psoriasis. Avocado oil has all the necessary properties to help fight psoriasis: it deeply moisturizers, provides a protective barrier for the skin, reduces itching and inflammation.
Color: Unrefined & cold pressed – dark green, with yellow and brown undertones. Exact shade depends on the avocado batch. Refined – pale yellow to golden yellow.
Smell: Unrefined & cold pressed – strong avocado /nutty smell. Refined – almost odorless.
Shelf life: Unrefined – 9-12 months. Refined – 18 – 24 months.
Comedogenic rating: 3, which means this oil will clog some peoples pores.
Note: An important decision needs to be made when buying avocado oil for cosmetic use. Unrefined cold-pressed oil will have all the nutrients and will benefit skin the most. However, such oil comes in a dark color and a strong smell. It can be quite challenging to mask avocado smell even with essential oils and other fragrances added. Unrefined cold-press oil also is less stable and has a shorter shelf life. Refined oil, on the other hand, has a light color, no smell, and a longer shelf life, but loses most of its nutrients. A good solution would be to add just a small amount of avocado oil to the recipe. This would enrich the product with protein and vitamins but not overwhelm with the smell.