Everyone, it seems, is into natural oils these days. Many women, myself included, use oils in place of creams to hydrate their body and face. We've gone ga-ga for extra virgin coconut oil and argan oil. We love the smell of sweet almond oil and we know olive oil is great in a pinch even if it leaves you smelling like a salad.
But what about the many, many natural oils on the market that you sometimes read about but have never tried? Oils like rosehip and grapeseed, both oils that Skincare Gurus in the Know Swear By. To read about these oils (and others I've included here) makes you feel like you've discovered gold -- and you don't know nearly enough about it.
In an effort to educate myself and you, I've done a deep dive into the world of natural oils and which ones are worth trying.
But first, check out this guide to choosing, buying and keeping natural oils: How to Apply Oils to Your Skin.
Grapeseed Oil: Wonderful for Oily Skin
Grapeseed oil, known as a great oil for dressing salads, is also wonderful for oily and sensitive skin.
It's particularly wonderful for oily skin because it helps regulate your natural sebum production. Yes, you can use oils on oily skin. It's also a great carrier oil, which means you can combine it with other oils, and it will help penetrate the skin more deeply than if used on their own.
Plus, it's very affordable.
DIY tip: Grapeseed is a wonderful base for homemade masks and moisturizers. Try this Grapeseed & Rose Lotion Recipes for the Face and Body.
Chamomile Oil: Great for Soothing Rosacea, Eczema, Psoriasis
You can use chamomile oil on your skin much in the same way you use it in tea. Just as chamomile tea soothes and relaxes you, the oil can soothe the skin.
While it can be used on its own due to its therapeutic properties, both as an anti-inflammatory helping to relieve common skin problems including rosacea, eczema, psoriasis, and rashes.
If you do try chamomile, make sure to test it first on a small area of skin to ensure you don't have an allergic reaction. People who are allergic to plants in the daisy family may have adverse reactions to chamomile. If you can drink the tea, you should be able to handle the oil.
DIY tip: Chamomile oil works especially well as a carrier oil. Use it to create gorgeous oil blends by adding essential oils like lavender, cinnamon, rose, and eucalyptus. See this list of The Best Essential Oils By Skin Type.
Some great bets:
Rosehip oil is made from the seeds of the Andean rose hip. This oil is high in linoleic acid (a fatty acid) making it great for dry, mature, aging, sensitive and inflamed skin. It's a wonderful option for sensitive skin and anyone with a tendency towards rosacea. It can also be used on scars.
This oil absorbs quickly into the skin, leaving your face super soft, but not greasy. It's one of the most delicate oils and should be kept in a dry, cool space or refrigerated.
Rosehip oil tends to be pricier due to the extraction methods and the fact that it's not a common oil. In fact, rose oil is one of the most expensive essential oils in the world. Expect to pay about $16 for 4 ounces.
Don't miss What is Rosehip Seed Oil? And Is It Good for Your Skin?
DIY tip: You can mix in rosehip oils with other oils to create your own blends. Mix into a bottle with a stopper: a tablespoon each of rosehip, olive oil and aloe vera juice, 2 drops of calendula essential oil, 1 drop of chamomile oil (see below) and shake. This blend will leave your super dry skin soft while helping with any inflammation.
My favorite rosehip products:
Dilo Oil: A Great Restorative Oil for Mature and Damaged Skin
Dilo oil comes from the oil of the Fijian dilo tree and was discovered by skincare pro Kate Somerville on a trip to Fiji. The locals, the story goes, had incredible skin despite working outside all day. The dilo oil was their secret and now it's Somerville's as she is making big bucks off her Dilo Oil Restorative Treatment, which is full of omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids and loads of other goodies.
Dilo oil hasn't caught on yet with other skincare companies, according to Somerville's Website, the oil is "exclusive" to her brand. But you can find pure dilo oil on Amazon at cheaper prices than Somerville's blend and with good reviews.
Jojoba Oil: Moisturizing and Great for All Skin Types
Jojoba oil penetrates the skin very well and leaves no oily residue, it is also non-fragrant, making it a popular base in many luxury creams and oil blends. More than any other oil, it most closely resembles human sebum, which sounds weird, but basically means it absorbs very, very well into the skin without clogging pores.
This oil is a rich source of fatty acids and is great for all skin types.
Jojoba comes from the beans of a plant and is actually a wax, not an oil. It will become waxy as the temperature drops and liquid as temperatures rise (much like coconut oil). Because it's a wax, it won't become rancid fast and doesn't need to be refrigerated.
Pure jojoba oil is one of the pricier carrier oils.
DIY tip: Jojoba oil is one of the most popular base oils in homemade scrubs, massage oils, bath oils and facial elixirs.
I swear by Jojoba Company Australian Golden Jojoba Oil, which is the only jojoba oil I use.
Argan Oil: Great for Anti-Aging & Dry Skin
100 percent natural argan oil comes from the Essaouira region in Morocco and is beloved for its healing and anti-aging properties. It's deeply hydrating, making it a great option for dry and dehydrated skin.
Look for fair-trade companies that source their oil from the women cooperatives in the area. These coops employ Berber women who crack the nuts open by hand in a process that can take up to 12 hours to produce just 1 liter of oil.
Don't miss Argan Oil: Your 8 Most Burning Questions and 9 Amazing Beauty Uses for Argan Oil.
- Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil Light
- Acure Organics - 100% USDA Moroccan Argan Oil (some women swear by using the Acure Organics Facial Toner Balancing Rose plus Red Tea toner to mist their faces first, before massaging the oil in).
Sweet Almond Oil: Super Moisturizing and Great for All Skin Types
Sweet almond oil is extracted from the nuts of (you guessed it) almonds. It's one of the more popular, commonly used carrier oils, and is well known for its skin repairing properties. It contains fatty acids as well as vitamins A and E and penetrates easily into the skin leaving no greasy residue. It can also be used on the hair.
Because it contains nuts, it's not recommended for those with almond allergies.
Don't miss What is Sweet Almond Oil? How it's made, cosmetic uses & my favorite recipes.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Great for Dry Skin
Extra virgin olive oil is known as the absolute best oil for cooking and salad dressings. But its high fatty acid content also makes it a wonderful moisturizer for dry skin and even hair.
Unlike other oils, which don't have strong scents, olive oil has a strong aroma.
You can buy extra virgin olive oil to be used on your skin at the grocery store. Just look for the words, "first cold press" on the bottle, which means the oils will be higher in antioxidants.
Tamanu Oil: Heals Skin Damaged From Scars, Acne, Eczema & More
Tamanu oil comes from a tree native to tropical Southeast Asia and is known for its amazing ability to heal skin damaged from scars, acne, eczema, stretch marks, minor cuts, rashes, and psoriasis. Whether these properties are anecdotal or proven by research is up for debate. But it is definitely safe to be used on the skin.
Like other oils, tamanu oil will solidify in cold temperatures.
Recommedation: Majestic Pure Extra Virgin Tamanu Oil
Camellia Oil: Great for Sensitive and Blemished Skin
Camellia Oil is a wonderful pick for people with sensitive skin. It also works well for those of us prone to pimples. The oil is lightweight and doesn't feel greasy.
Recommedation: Russell Organics Camellia Oil
Marula Oil: Wonderful for Irritated Skin
Marula oil comes from the East African marula nut and is known for its extremely soothing qualities, making it an excellent oil for irritated skin (think after-sun care).
It soaks in beautifully and is high in antioxidants.
Some great picks:
Evening Primrose Oil: Great for All Skin Types
Evening primrose is a common wildflower that has historically been used for medicinal purposes.
Sea Buckthorn Oil: Great for Damaged Skin
Sea Buckthorn oil is used to treat damaged skin but when applied directly to the skin, should be used sparingly because it's super concentrated. You can dilute it with other oils.
I hear amazing things about Living Libations oil below. It contains a blend of Seabuckthorn oil, golden jojoba oil, virgin coconut oil, tamanu oil, lavender, vetiver, grapefruit, and palmarosa essential oils.