Neem oil is gaining in popularity for natural skin care and other uses. It is an exotic, slightly mysterious sounding oil, hailing from the Neem tree indigenous to India and Burma. The special properties in neem seed oil are beneficial for a number of skin conditions both as prevention and treatment.
Here we look at 3 ways that Neem oil will be your new skin care best friend.
But first, what is Neem oil?
Neem oil is pressed from the seeds of the Neem tree. This tree is common in tropical climates. Similar to the production of olive oil, the seed is better cold pressed as heating destroys its positive ingredients. The smell of Neem oil on its own takes a bit of getting used to, but it is often combined with other pleasant essential oils in natural beauty products so this isn't a problem. When extracted, neem oil looks like a clear yellow liquid.
Why is Neem oil good for skin?Like other botanical oils neem oil is literally packed full of goodies, but with a couple of differences. Neem oil contains:
- A high level of antioxidants such as carotenoids
- Essential fatty acids (EFA's) such as oleic acid, linoleic acid, palmitic acid and stearic acid.
- Natural triglycerides
- Vitamin E
- Anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties
- Anti-inflammatory compounds nimbidin and quercetin
- Fighting acne
- Calming dry skin conditions
What are the benefits of neem oil for skin
Use neem oil for helping to maintain elasticity
The high essential fatty acid levels ensure that the goodness of neem is absorbed deep into your skin's epidermal layers to fill in lines and deeply moisturise. It helps cell turnover and increases elasticity. Combined with the extremely effective antioxidant action of carotenoid and Vitamin E as well as moisturising triglycerides for your skin, neem also stimulates collagen production with regular use. What's not to love?
You can also mix a few drops of neem oil into your chosen face oil on skin. For example, many of our customers use jojoba oil or rosehip oil daily.
Caution: always patch test first to ensure the neem does not irritate your skin.
You can find skin care products that already have the neem oil incorporated at the correct amounts, for example, Mokosh Rich Face Cream that is ideal for mature and dry skin types. It's concentrated formulation delivers potent, active botanicals and a broad range of collagen-protective, barrier-building and cell supporting nutrients for your skin. Formulated with 10 precious oils including rosehip, avocado, pomegranate, neem, hemp and prickly pear blended with our unsurpassed unrefined shea butter. It leaves your skin feeling extremely nourished, protected and nurtured from day to night.
Use neem oil for acne treatment
Send the pimples packing. Parents of stressed-out teenagers or sufferers of adult acne have more natural choices these days when it comes to fighting the pimples, by going back to what has traditionally been used for centuries and using neem oil to complement any treatments. You do not only have to bring out the chemical ‘big guns', neem oil has been traditionally been used in Ayurvedic medicine as a particularly effective antidote to acne. Because Neem oil is anti-bacterial it is a more soothing way of killing the acne causing bacteria. But the big take home is that Neem oil contains aspirin-like substances that help calm inflammation and redness associated with acne. The aspirin like substances also help kill the bacteria.
While it will not cure the hormonal origins of acne, it will help ameliorate some of the appearance and keep skin free of pimple-causing bacteria.
The fatty acids present in neem oil also help with scar reduction and it is thankfully non-comedogenic.
Caution: As aspirin can cause you to become more sun sensitive, it makes sense that you should always wear sunscreen.
Neem oil for dry and scaly skin conditions
Eczema, Psoriasis and Dermatitis are not curable by Neem Oil but they can abate a great deal with regular use. Western medicine treats these conditions with anti-inflammatory creams and medicines that can thin the skin and cause other far-reaching side effects. Not only is Neem a great emollient, which is incredibly important for these conditions, but is packed with natural anti-inflammatory properties. These anti-inflammatory compounds include the antioxidant quercetin. This wonder ingredient is also a natural antihistamine, a major part of the dry-skin arsenal. This ingredient alone is a major fighter of redness, swelling and hives often associated with these conditions.
Wrapping up, we have covered the 3 main ways that Neem will improve your skin. Also, check out our vegan skincare, natural skin care and DIY skin care products. A fourth is that it is a safe and natural pesticide and is actually very effective at preventing insect bites.
This oil is such a winner in every way, it will soon be a staple in everyone's bathroom cabinet! Other products that use neem oil: