Why are argan and argan oil desirable in body skin care, but also hair care?
Everyone has heard of argan oil and many enjoy its benefits, but few of us actually know anything about argan. What exactly is argan and where does it grow? (Lat. Argania spinosa, syn. A. sideroxylon Roem. & Schult.) is an endemic tree of the limestone semi-desert valley of Sous in southwestern Morocco and the Tindouf region of Algeria.
It is the only species in the genus Argania. The argan tree grows 8 to 10 m in height and can live for 150 to 200 years. The tree is thorny with a bumpy trunk, the leaves are small, 2 to 4 cm long, oval with a rounded top. The plant blooms in April, with small flowers with five yellow-green petals. The fruit is 2 to 4 cm long and 1.5 to 3 cm wide with a thick, bitter rind that surrounds the pericarp with an unpleasant taste and sweet smell. In the center of the fruit is a very hard nut that contains one to three small, oil-rich seeds.
The fruits ripen in June and July and take more than a year to ripen. Argan forests in North Africa cover approximately 8,280 km2 and are protected by UNESCO as a special biosphere reserve. The area on which argan grows has decreased by 50% in the last 100 years, primarily due to coal production, livestock grazing and intensive cultivation of other crops.
Argan oil is today a lucrative export product and the growing scope of cultivation of this plant gives hope for its survival. The fruits of argan ripen in July when they are dark and dry. Before harvesting, goat herds are kept away from plantations that are very often guarded. The right to collect fruits is conditioned by the law and tribal traditions of the Berbers. Goats are released on the trees at harvest time. The oil from the fruits that have passed through the digestive tract of goats has an unpleasant taste and is not used for food purposes, but in this way separates the soft part of the fruit that is used as animal feed.
You’ve all probably seen photos of goats on a tree? It's an argan tree.
The most physically demanding action in the process of traditional production of argan oil is breaking the core (walnut), most often with the help of two stones. The seeds stand out and are slightly fried (in modern production for the cosmetics industry, the highest quality oils are from unroasted argan seeds). Roasted seeds are ground into a paste with the addition of a little water in stone presses. The paste thus obtained is squeezed by hand, thus extracting the vegetable oil.
It is a very demanding and time consuming process which makes this oil a valuable and rare final product. The beauty industry has recognized the charms of argan and today is considered one of the highest quality cosmetic vegetable oils, and women around the world do not hesitate to set aside money for a bottle of this liquid gold.
Composition of argan oil
Argan oil is one of the most powerful anti-aging oils in the world, thanks to its rich nutrient composition. It contains saturated and unsaturated fatty acids (linoleic, alpha linolenic, oleic), sterols, vitamin E, minerals and carotenoids.
- Tocopherols, better known as vitamin E, are the most valuable ingredient in argan oil. Strong antioxidant properties are attributed to this vitamin. It is indispensable in the fight against scars, eczema and dry scalp.
- Another important ingredient in argan oil is carotene, which protects the skin from UV radiation.
- Essential fatty acids from argan oil prevent inflammatory processes on the skin by hydrating and strengthening it at the same time.
- Argan oil has a high content of squalene, a natural compound that protects against skin cancer and helps soothe irritated skin.
- Ferulic acid from argan oil is a very strong stabilizer of vitamins C and E, so it doubles their action.
- It also contains polyphenols - natural compounds from plants that have anti-inflammatory and regenerative effects on the skin.
- one of La PIEL's bestsellers - Beach BABE multi-purpose butter-oil with shimmer, a product that contains argan oil with hyaluronic acid, coconut oil and walnut oil.
- Hydra BABE body milk and Sugar BABE body scrub also contain argan oil in their composition.
- The face mask from our LAB collection contains 7 active ingredients (ceramides, niacinamide, copper peptides, hyaluronic acid, collagen, panthenol, vitamins (E and F)), 10 plant extracts and 6 oils, including argan oil which allows the skin to hydrate, soothes it and reduces redness and irritation.
Argan oil is very rich in unsaturated fatty acids and vitamin E. Due to its rich composition, argan oil is used:
- in the treatment of rheumatic and arthritic diseases
- to prevent cancer
- in cosmetics
Anti-aging and skin renewal
Protector of the heart and blood vessels
Hair careYou can apply pure argan oil on your hair instead of conditioner, but pay attention to the amount of oil. After washing, apply 2-3 drops of argan oil on your hair instead of conditioner by rubbing them between your fingers and applying to the tips of your hair. No more drops are needed because in that case your hair will become excessively greasy.
- nourishes the hair and gives it shine
- nurtures cracked tops
- protects hair from wind, hair dryer, sun and sea salt
- helps to comb the hair
- reduces the secretion of sebum (oil)
- prevents dandruff
- stimulates hair growth
Face and body care
- can serve as a facial care serum
- cleans dead skin cells
- hydrates the skin
- gives the skin a glow
- relieves wrinkles and nourishes the eye area
- it can also serve as a face scrub if you mix it with brown sugar
- addresses dry skin on elbows and heels
- reduces the amount of sebum and inflammatory processes
- reduces acne
- reduces stretch marks
- helps with inflammatory skin diseases
- helps with burns, irritated, damaged and cracked skin
- stimulates elasticity and deeply nourishes the skin
- nourishes lips (see our lip balm which contains argan oil among other ingredients)
- nourishes the nails and prevents them from cracking
- facilitates digestion
- lowers cholesterol and lipid levels
- has a beneficial effect on liver function, rheumatic and cardiovascular diseases
- strengthens the body's defense system
- useful for joint inflammation and rheumatic problems
- a powerful antioxidant
- stimulates circulation
- improves brain capacity
- acts as a natural aphrodisiac