Often referred to as the “tree of life,” the baobab tree is native to Africa, and the nickname certainly makes sense considering that a single tree can live for over 500 years. Part of its appeal is that the pulp of baobab fruit—extracted from baobab pods and then transformed into raw powder—has been a favorite ingredient in wellness and beauty treatments for millennia. Keep scrolling to discover nine of our favorite baobab benefits to transform your hair, skin, and nails, along with a range of products that all boast the ingredient as one of its active properties.
Believe it or not, baobab boasts the highest antioxidant content of all superfoods per serving (even surpassing goji berries and matcha). This, along with its ability to fight free radicals, makes it a perfect ingredient for aging skin.
Heals Dry Skin
Baobab’s moisturizing properties have been well-documented in scientific research. As a result, body oils and lotions formulated with baobab are the ideal addition to your skincare routine.
Not only is baobab rich in antioxidants but it also has an impressive amount of vitamin C, which is known to boost collagen production. This, paired with the oil's omega fatty acid content, makes baobab a vital substance for radiant, youthful-looking skin.
One of the most impressive benefits of baobab is its ability to heal cracked and dry nails. This is because baobab contains high amounts of protein and calcium, which both aid in healing and maintaining strong, healthy nails.
With the exceptional moisturizing and collagen-producing properties of baobab, it should come as no surprise that healthy, silky hair is one of our favorite baobab benefits. Baobab oil itself is abundant in vitamin E and antioxidants, which means that it's the perfect antidote for dry scalp and damaged hair.
For the perfect DIY at-home remedy, combine a 1/3 cup each of jojoba and baobab oil, add 10 to 12 drops of lavender oil, warm the mixture slightly (about 30–40 seconds), then apply all over your scalp and strands. After leaving the treatment on for about half an hour, rinse and indulge in your shiny, healthy hair—all thanks to baobab!
Reduces Stretch Marks
Packed with vitamins and nutrients, baobab oil can be directly applied to the skin to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and stretch marks. Its high vitamin C content (about six times more than that of an orange) promotes collagen formation, boosting the skin’s natural elasticity and smoothness.
Soothes Chapped Lips
For an alternative to standard lip balm, dab a few drops of baobab oil onto dry lips to help heal cracks and restore softness in record time. Or, grab a baobab-infused product to get all the benefits in a convenient package.
One of the best baobab benefits is its ability to alleviate irritation from common skin conditions. Baobab naturally has anti-inflammatory properties and can reduce redness, itchiness, and dryness both when applied topically and when ingested. (Note: Oil is for external use; powder is for internal.)
Provides Gentle Cleansing
Like many natural oils (tea tree, jojoba, and sea buckthorn—to name a few), baobab oil is not only nourishing but cleansing as well. Gently massage the oil into damp skin and rinse thoroughly with warm water for a healthy, natural glow.
Up next, read on to see our editors' favorite hair masks for dry hair, including picks formulated with baobab oil.