The Jojoba is an evergreen bush that is indigenous to the deserts of Mexico and the Southwest USA. These days Argentina produces almost half of the world’s Jojoba and its cultivation is very beneficial for the desert environment.
The oil that is extracted from the Jojoba nut is truly a wonder. The first thing that you need to know about it is this: technically speaking, it isn’t actually oil. Jojoba oil is a liquid wax, or to be more specific: ‘a mixture of long chain monounsaturated liquid wax esters’. It is structurally and chemically very similar to the oils produced by the sebaceous glands in our skin, hence it is readily absorbed and leaves no greasy residue. This makes Jojoba oil uniquely suited for use in skincare products – it’s gentle enough to apply to recent scarring and can even be used on newborn babies.
Because it is so similar to our natural skin oils, Jojoba oil actually helps to balance oily skin and can also help to clear blackheads by dissolving the sebum in plugged pores. Curiouser and curiouser.
Packed with vitamins A, D and E, this fine oil is antioxidant, it helps to reduce wrinkles and generally protects the skin from the damaging action of free radicals. It is non-allergenic and can be used to soothe all kinds of dry, flaky and itchy skin conditions including eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis. It also makes a wonderful hair treatment that leaves locks shiny and nourished.
If that is not enough, it’s antimicrobial too. Many bacteria including Staphylococcus aureus and the fungus Candida albicans cannot reproduce when they come into contact with Jojoba oil.
Because it does not contain triglycerides, Jojoba oil will not oxidise and turn rancid over time, unlike most other plant oils. So you can safely keep it on the bathroom shelf for a long time. Look for pure, organic Jojoba oil. This has a bright, golden colour whereas the processed oil is pale. Jojoba oil has to be my one Desert Island cosmetic.
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