Beauty Oils

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It seems that every year, a new beauty buzz word hits the market and begins being touted by every company and magazine.  This year is no different, but instead of it being a “new beauty breakthrough,” it’s actually something that’s been around a very long time – oil.

That’s right, oil.  You know, the thing that I’ve always tried to wash off, blot off and keep off my skin.    For as long as I can remember, especially as a teenager, I searched for oil-free skin products and makeup.   I’ve always believed oil was the enemy.

Well, it turns out the opposite can be true. 

Perhaps you’ve heard all the talk about Argan Oil, Moroccan Oil and lately, Coconut Oil.    It aroused such a curiosity in me, that I had to seek out information about this and try some out.

Here’s what I’ve learned about oil and your body in general, what to look for in the products you buy and then the types of oil you may want to consider:

Overall when purchasing, regardless of the type of oil, look for these key words – pure, 100%, virgin, first-pressed and possibly organic.  This is important especially when an oil becomes a media darling – many products will begin saying things like “contains precious Argan Oil,” etc.   Even though a little can be beneficial, the real benefits come from using the oils in their purest form as an individual product.  Also, be aware of other ingredients in the product that aren’t necessarily bad but can limit the use of the oil itself.  In their purest form, the oils are quite multi-purpose – from facial and skin care to hair care.  But when other ingredients are added, it changes the dynamics of the oil and limit’s the use.  Moraccan Oil is an example – this brand of hair product contains Moraccan oil but also has quite  a few added ingredients like silicone products.  Moraccan oil is touted to smooth and de-frizz hair and the additives help with that.  I found it to be really nice on my hair, but when I thought I could also use it on my skin, I found out that the additives wouldn’t be good on my face. 

It turns out your skin NEEDS oil.  It does not clog pores, it helps clean them.  It’s not good to strip your skin of oil, adding it aids in the aging look of skin and it’s a wonderful moisturizer.  NOW they tell me!

Prices vary greatly and the more popular an oil becomes the higher the price.  Price doesn’t necessarily mean better.  Right now you’ll find that with Argan Oil vs. Coconut Oil prices.  And also,  you’ll prefer the “weight” of some oils over others.  Feel them between your fingers before you buy – you’ll feel the difference quickly.

As I learned more, I remembered our show’s makeup artist, Karen Hall, years ago telling me that she used Olive Oil on her face as a moisturizer.  At the time, I wrote it off as something that only worked for her – but if you ever see her, you’d see the benefits – she’s gorgeous and defies age!

Check out the oils I’ve explored:

Coconut Oil – the most popular oil in the news right now.  Largely because of Dr. Oz’s discussions about its benefits.  This one, like Olive Oil, but unlike other beauty oils, can be ingested AND used externally  to great benefit.  I have found I LOVE this oil.  It’s light and beautifully moisturizing without irritation like a lot of body moisturizers.  I’ve found it at Trader Joe’s ($6!) Costco and online.

Argan Oil – this also is one of the new darlings of the cosmetic companies.  It’s oil from the ancient Argan Nut grown in Morocco.  People say it has wonderful skin care and hair care benefits from moisturizing and smoothing.   It’s also light and works nicely but it’s pricey.  Josie Maran Argan Oil at Sephora runs about $45.

Jojoba Oil – This is a hidden gem, revealed to my by Karen Hall herself.  She recommended it to me years ago as a moisturizer and a great thinner for makeups that are too heavy.  It’s affordable – Trader Joe’s ($8).

Squaline Oil – the most exotic of the oils I’ve found and by far the lightest.  It’s from Japan and is a nice facial moisturizer. Popular in Japan, it’s also known as shark oil.  United Beauty Supply 7th Street ($12).

Moroccan Oil – available at high end salons and beauty retailers.  For the hair only but is a great smoother and de-frizzer.  Expensive - $40 - $50.  Salons.

And of course, there’s always Olive Oil that many people just love internally and externally. 

After months of experimenting, I must say, give oil on your face, body and hair a try.  You’ll find a favorite and amazingly you may be like me and notice a  benefit quickly.

Live and Learn.