We love using high quality botanical ingredients in our skincare products, and one hidden treasure that's quickly gaining momentum is prickly pear seed oil. Let's take a look this unique resource with it's extraordinary anti-aging and soothing properties and discover why we love it so much.
What is prickly pear seed oil?
Prickly pear seed oil (also known as barbary fig oil or Indian fig oil) is sustainably derived from the prickly pear cactus, native to the Americas but also found in Africa, Australia and the Mediterranean. The plant has been known to survive during adverse conditions like drought and famine, while still producing healthy fruits.
Usage throughout history
Prickly pear was commonly present in many ancient civilizations and its usage varied from culinary to medicinal, due to its amazing versatility and miraculous healing properties. It was considered sacred amongst the Aztecs who used it to treat burns, the Chinese used it to alleviate inflammation and pain and the Native Americans applied the fruit to open wounds on both humans and animals. It has also been used as a detoxification agent for snake bite.
Why prickly pear seed oil is so expensive
The production of prickly pear seed oil is incredibly labour intensive and time consuming. It is conducted manually by Moroccan women at cooperatives where the seeds are painstakingly separated from the pulp and dried. Each seed, which is extracted by hand, contains only about 5% oil and it takes approximately 1000 kilograms of fruit to yield 1 litre of oil!
The superior method of cold pressing takes these air dried, raw seeds and literally squeezes the oil out, resulting in a pure, unadulterated product. This type of extraction also ensures the precious natural antioxidants and vitamins remain within the oil.
It's no wonder that this oil is the most expensive oil used in the beauty industry today!
Skin benefits revealed
- Prickly pear seed oil contains a huge 88% of unsaturated fatty acids, the highest concentration of any plant oil, resulting in its profound moisturising, hydrating and rejuvenating properties. These natural fatty acids are essential to stimulating collagen production and cell turnover, improving signs of premature aging, making it a great anti-aging ingredient.
- Richly endowed with antioxidants, offering skin protection against free radicals and environmental stressors, which are a leading cause of aging. Also contains high levels of betalains, a group of powerful antioxidants found in other dark red fruits such as dragon fruit and beets. They assist the body in neutralizing toxins and supporting the cell's natural detoxification process
- Contains the highest levels of Vitamins E and K found in any other fruit. These vitamins promote cellular regeneration and hydration, reduce hyperpigmentation and under-eye circles and promote wound healing. This improves our skins firmness, elasticity and vitality. The vitamin E levels found in prickly pear are an impressive 150% more than argan oil!
- It's non comedogenic meaning it absorbs immediately and penetrates deeply without clogging pores or leading to breakouts.
- It offers remarkable anti-inflammatory and anti viral properties properties, making it perfect for calming irritated or acne prone skin. It may also be effective with helping to heal minor wounds, cuts and burns.
- Suitable for all skin types, including mature, oily and sensitive skin.
Discover the incredible benefits of prickly pear seed oil in our anti-aging serum, also containing acai, sea buckthorn and rosehip oils, all working synergistically to intensely restore, revitalise, balance and protect the skin.