As predicted in 7 Exotic Ingredients That You'll Be Seeing More Of, moringa oil is being praised as the new wonder oil. It's hardly new. It has been used for health and beauty for centuries.
The moringa tree is also called the "Miracle Tree" and "Tree of Life" because of its many benefits and uses. It is a food source. Most, if not all, of the tree is edible and nutritious. In fact moringa is being to used to combat malnutrition in poor countries. It has been written up in scientific journals because of its nutritional and medicinal properties.
Moringa Tree - Multi Names, Multi Uses
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, 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 idagbo monoye ("tree which grows crazily").
In addition to being used for food and traditional medicine, various parts of the tree have numerous uses including being a source for fuel and lubricant for machinery.
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 is a nutrient dense, high in palmitoleic, oleic and linoleic acids, moisturizing fatty acids and vitamins A and C.
An Age Old Beauty Secret
In ancient Rome, Greece and Egypt it was used in making perfume and to protect the skin. The oil is still used for effleurage to extract flower fragrance and is used for hair oils because it absorbs and retains scents.
In Egypt it was used to make medicinal ointments and salves and to protect the skin from the desert environment. A daily skin treatment for wrinkles and sun damage combined gum of frankincense and ground Cyprus grass mixed with fermented plant juice. A venerated oil, vases of moringa oil were found inside ancient tombs.
Skin care benefits
Moringa oil is found in numerous cosmetics due to moisturizing, cleansing and emollient properties. It’s used in shampoos and conditioners and other hair care products, lotions, body oils, lip balms, anti-aging and wrinkle creams, face creams, soaps and body wash, perfume and deodorants. It’s used for aromatherapy and massage oils because it blends well with essential oils and is a good carrier oil.
Moringa oil absorbs easily into the skin, improving the appearance and radiance of skin. It has skin healthy nutrients like 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.
Help for dry skin
- It softens dry skin and maintains moisture in the skin.
- It is good for conditioning dry, chapped lips.
- It’s beneficial to treat rough, dry skin conditions like dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis.
- 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, which 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 & dark spot prevention
- Moringa oil helps clear blackheads and pimples. When used regularly helps prevent the reoccurrence of blemishes.
- Helps minimize dark spots from acne and hyperpigmentation.
Buying and using moringa oil for skincare
Purchase cold pressed moringa oleifera, which has the most beneficial nutrients.
Moringa Oil Beauty Recipes
Cuticle strengthener: Massage moringa oil into cuticles and nail beds to moisturize cuticles and strengthen nails.
Moisturizing skin toner*: This skin toner is good for all skin types. Mix 1 tablespoon of raw coconut oil and 2 teaspoons of moringa oil with 1 cup of witch hazel. Store in a sterile bottle. Use in the morning and evening to tone and moisturize skin.
For an exfoliating scrub*: Mix raw brown sugar with moringa oil for a gentle scrub for heels, elbows and knees. Apply with circular motions. Rinse with warm water.
Easy makeup remover*: Mix ½ cup of coconut oil and ½ cup of moringa oil with 5 drops of tea tree oil. Store in a bottle. Massage into skin with a cotton ball or pad to remove makeup. (Cotton pads are better to avoid getting cotton fibers into the eyes.)
(*Recipes from It’s Moringa, It’s For Life Blog/It’s Moringa Natural Food Company).
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 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.
- 1-ounce moringa oil
- 1-ounce rosehips oil
- 1 ½ tablespoons evening primrose oil
- 4-5 drops (or 2 teaspoons) castor oil
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.)