Almonds aren’t just for snacking on or adding to trail mix. This nutty oil may also benefit your skin in a number of ways.
Ancient Chinese and Ayurvedic practices have used almond oil for centuries to help soothe and soften the skin and to treat minor wounds and cuts. Today, it’s not uncommon to find almond oil in a wide variety of cosmetic and beauty products.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the benefits of almond oil and the ways it can be used on your skin.
What nutrients does almond oil have?
There are two types of almond oil: sweet and bitter. Sweet almond oil is the kind that’s better suited to your skin. It contains the following nutrients:
- Vitamin A: The retinol in vitamin A has the ability to stimulate the production of new skin cells and smooth fine lines.
- Vitamin E: This nutrient has antioxidant properties that may help prevent cell damage and help reduce ultraviolet (UV) damage to the skin caused by the sun.
- Omega-3 fatty acids: These nutrients may help prevent premature aging and safeguard against sun damage.
- Zinc: This is an essential nutrient for healing acne or other facial scars. However, it’s worth noting that zinc is more effective for this purpose when taken orally.
What are the benefits of using almond oil on your face?
Although there’s plenty of research that touts the benefits of eating almonds, there’s less scientific evidence on the benefits of using almond oil on the skin.
However, according to some clinical studies and anecdotal evidence, applying almond oil to the skin may have the following benefits:
- Reduces puffiness and under-eye circles. Because almond oil is an anti-inflammatory, it may help ease swelling of the skin.
- Improves complexion and skin tone. Due to its emollient properties, almond oil has the potential to improve both complexion and skin tone.
- Treats dry skin. Almond oil has been used for centuries to treat dry skin conditions, including eczema and psoriasis.
- Improves acne. The oil’s fatty acid content may help dissolve excess oil on the skin, while the retinoids in the oil may reduce the appearance of acne and improve cell turnover.
- Helps reverse sun damage. Animal studies have shown that vitamin E, one of the nutrients in almond oil, may help reduce damage to the skin caused by UV exposure.
- Reduces the appearance of scars. In ancient Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine, almond oil was used to reduce scarring. The vitamin E content may contribute to helping smooth the skin.
- Reduces the appearance of stretch marks. According to a 2016 study, sweet almond oil may be an effective treatment for preventing and reducing stretch marks.
Is it safe to use almond oil on your skin?
Almond oil is generally considered safe to use on your skin. However, there are some safety precautions to keep in mind.
- If you’re allergic to nuts, avoid using almond oil on your skin.
- If you’ve never used almond oil on your skin before, do a patch test before applying to your face.
- You can do a patch test by dabbing a small amount of almond oil on the inside of your wrist or elbow. If there are no signs of redness, itching, burning, or swelling within a few hours, the oil is likely safe to use on your skin.
How to use almond oil?
There are a few different ways to use almond oil on your face.
Some people like to use it as a makeup remover. In fact, it’s a common ingredient in many natural makeup remover products.
Almond oil can also be used in a cleanser or moisturizer.
As a makeup remover
To use as a makeup remover, apply a small amount — about the size of an M&M candy — into your palm. Using your fingertips, gently apply the oil to the areas where you want to remove makeup.
Then, use cotton balls or warm water to remove the oil. Follow by washing your face with your favorite cleanser.
As a cleanser
Almond oil is known as a carrier oil, which means it has the ability to carry other essential oils more deeply into the skin.
You can mix almond oil with an essential oil that’s known to benefit the skin, like rosehip, lavender, rose geranium, or lemon oil. Be sure to patch test the essential oil on the inside of your elbow or wrist before applying to your face.
Add a few drops of the essential oil to each ounce of almond oil and mix well. Apply the oil mixture to damp skin and rinse with warm water. Because it’s an oil cleanser, you may need to rinse twice to remove any residue.
As a moisturizer
You can also use almond oil as a moisturizing oil.
To do so, wash and dry your skin as usual. Then, gently pat a small amount of almond oil — about half the size of a dime — onto your face with your fingertips, and let it absorb into your skin. If you’re using it as a moisturizer, you don’t need to rinse it off.
The bottom line
Almond oil has been used for thousands of years to soothe, soften, and repair the skin. Due to its anti-inflammatory and emollient properties, as well as its high nutrient content, it’s still a popular skin care ingredient today.
It’s generally considered safe, but if you’re allergic to nuts, don’t use almond oil on your skin. If you’ve never tried almond oil before, do a patch test before applying it to your face.
If you’re unsure if almond oil is right for your skin, talk to your doctor or dermatologist before using it.