Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Moringa Oil

Experts say it's a jack-of-all-trades ingredient.

Moringa oleifera. Photo: © Pedro Acevedo Rodriguez/USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

Moringa oil is being praised as a new wonder oil, but it's hardly new on the scene. In fact, it has been used for health and beauty for centuries.

The moringa tree—also known as the "Miracle Tree" and "Tree of Life"— has many benefits and uses. First and foremost, it's a food source. Most, if not all, of the tree is edible and nutritious. Moringa is being used to combat malnutrition in poor countries and has also been written about in various scientific journals due to its nutritional properties. In addition to being used for food and traditional medicine, various parts of the tree have numerous uses including being a source of fuel and lubricant for machinery.

  • Type of ingredient: Oil.
  • Main benefits: Reduces fine lines and wrinkles, improves the overall appearance of the skin, soothes inflammation.
  • Who should use it: In general, all skin types can benefit from using moringa oil.
  • How often can you use it?: Usage varies depending on the specific product, but in general, moringa oil can be used daily, both AM/PM.
  • Works well with: In general, moringa oil works well with most ingredients.
  • Don't use with: In general, moringa oil can be used with most ingredients.

What Is Moringa Oil?

Moringa oil comes from the seeds of the moringa oleifera tree, the most common species of the genus moringa in the flowering plant family moringaceae. The tree is native to India and countries in the Himalayan region. In India, it is used in ayurvedic medicine, as well as in cuisine. The tree is now cultivated in several countries, including Thailand, the Philippines, and Africa. It's called the drumstick tree (UK) because of the shape of its seed pods, horseradish tree (US) from the taste of its roots, benzolive tree (Haiti), and nebeday (Senegal). It is a fast-growing tree that thrives even in harsh environments and poor soil and is drought resistant. In Nigeria, it is called the idagbo monoye ("tree which grows crazily").

The seeds of the moringa tree are pressed to produce pale-yellow non-drying oil. The oil is known as "ben oil" or "behen oil" because it has a high concentration of behenic acid, a fatty acid. Due to antioxidants that act as natural preservatives, it is a stable oil, resistant to rancidity, giving it a reported shelf life of five years. It's nutrient-dense, high in palmitoleic, oleic, and linoleic acids; moisturizing fatty acids; and vitamins A and C.

Benefits of Moringa Oil for Skin

Moringa oil is found in numerous cosmetics due to its moisturizing, cleansing, and emollient properties. From shampoo and conditioner to body care products, facial creams, and even perfumes and deodorants, moringa oil is a jack-of-all-trades ingredient that is beneficial from head to toe. It also is commonly used for aromatherapy and in massage oils because it blends well with other essential oils and is a good carrier oil.

  • Emollient: Moringa oil absorbs easily, while also softening and soothing the skin.
  • Includes skin-healthy nutrients: Moringa oil has vitamin A, which helps build collagen in the skin, vitamin C to help reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and the healing and anti-inflammatory benefits of vitamin E.
  • Beneficial for dry skin: Moringa oil softens dry skin, maintains moisture in the skin.

Use moringa oil to condition dry lips and other rough, dry skin conditions such as dermatitis, eczema, and psoriasis.

Anti-Aging Properties

  • It rejuvenates dull, tired, and aging skin.
  • Antioxidants and nutrients help fight free-radical damage that can cause skin tissue damage and lead to the formation of wrinkles.
  • Moringa oil helps improve the appearance of wrinkles and prevents sagging of facial muscles.
  • Plant hormones called cytokinins help promote cell growth and delay damage and destruction of skin tissues.
  • Vitamin C stabilizes collagen and helps reduce fine lines and repair damaged skin cells.

Antiseptic and Anti-Inflammatory Properties

  • Moringa oil has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties and has been used to treat and heal minor skin abrasions, minor cuts and scrapes, bruises, burns, insect bites, rashes, and sunburn and skin infections.

Acne and Dark Spot Prevention

  • Moringa oil helps clear blackheads and pimples. When used regularly, it helps prevent the reoccurrence of blemishes.
  • Helps minimize dark spots from acne and hyperpigmentation.

Moringa Oil Beauty Sleep Treatment

In addition to the benefits of moringa oil, rosehips oil has anti-inflammatory and antioxidants for anti-aging and vitamin C to help reduce dark spots, scars, and fine lines. It rejuvenates the skin, helping to keep it smooth and blemish-free. Castor oil contains ricinoleic acid (an unsaturated omega-9 fatty acid); it moisturizes the skin and is also a treatment for wrinkles and helps reduce dark under-eye circles. Evening primrose oil contains linoleic acid with anti-inflammatory and skin-healing properties, making it beneficial for skin disorders like eczema, psoriasis and acne (it helps keep pores clear). It also improves blood circulation to rejuvenate tired skin and eyes.

Ingredients

  • 1-ounce moringa oil
  • 1-ounce rosehips oil
  • 1 ½ tablespoons evening primrose oil
  • 4-5 drops (or 2 teaspoons) castor oil

Directions

Purchase a dropper bottle. You can put the ingredients directly inside the bottle and blend with a stirrer.

Use this treatment before bed. Gently massage onto your face. You can also use it on your neck. (For additional antioxidant benefits, you can add vitamin E from a gel capsule.)

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