Vegetal oils, also known as Vegetable oils or plant oils, are extracted from oleaginous plants, i.e. plants whose nuts, fruits or seeds contain lipids. These oils contain many antioxidants, vitamins and fatty acids essential for the proper functioning of the body.
How are vegetal oils made?
There are many plant oils on the market but not all of them are of very good quality. In order to choose a better quality oil, it is important to look at how it is grown and extracted. In fact, it is the choice of extraction method that defines whether a vegetable oil is of the highest quality. There are several methods: cold pressing, hot pressing, maceration or solvent extraction. In order to obtain a very pure oil of maximum quality, extraction must be done by cold pressing or maceration for oils coming from plants.
Cold pressure extraction: In order to retain all its nutrients, nuts, seeds and dried fruit are sorted to retain only the best pieces. They are then passed through mechanical presses which crush the oleaginous fruit until a pure, high-quality oil is obtained that contains no foreign substances. The oil thus obtained is labelled "first cold-pressed oil".
Extraction by maceration: this method is reserved for plant oils obtained from a plant. In this case, the fruits, flowers or roots are used and placed for several weeks in a neutral vegetable oil (e.g. olive or sunflower oil). The oil thus obtained is filtered to preserve only the oily macerate.
The best cosmetic plant oils in aromatherapy
There are many different vegetable oils, each with different benefits for the body. Here are four of the best known and used oils.
Sweet Almond Vegetal Oil
Sweet almond oil is extracted by first cold pressing. It is composed of fatty acids and omega 6 and 9.
This oil has soothing, softening, moisturising and nourishing properties for dry and fragile skin and hair. Sweet almond oil is therefore very suitable for sensitive people such as children, babies and pregnant women.
Sweet almond oil is also indicated to relieve
stretch marks, cracks, cracks and scars
digestive disorders (oral)
Jojoba vegetal oil
Jojoba oil is obtained by first cold pressing and is rich in vitamins A, B, C, D, E. Used for centuries for its virtues on the skin and hair, jojoba oil has softening and protective properties. This vegetable oil also participates in the regulation of sebum and the pH of the skin, allowing the skin to remain neither too oily nor too dry.
Jojoba oil is used to
for oily and dandruffy hair
for dry and brittle hair
to reduce hair loss
as a deodorant
Argan vegetal oil
Argan oil is obtained by cold pressing from the argan tree, a well-known and very present tree in Morocco. This country is also considered a specialist in the production of argan oil.
Argan vegetable oil is known for its moisturizing and nutritive properties for skin and hair.
It can be found in several forms, each with a different use.
- The virgin oil is obtained by cold pressing and is used in cosmetics for skin and hair.
- The toasted oil for which the almonds are first toasted before cold pressing. This oil is particularly appreciated in cooking.
- The deodorised oil is subjected to an additional filtration stage to reduce the odour. It allows cosmetic care to have all the benefits of argan with the advantage of a neutral smell.
Castor vegetal oil
Castor is a shrub of tropical origin whose seeds are used for their nourishing and strengthening properties for hair and nails. This oil, obtained by cold pressing, is regularly recommended to accelerate hair growth or to strengthen damaged ends and brittle nails.
Castor oil also has many other properties such as :
Anti-inflammatory and analgesic (to calm and relieve skin inflammations)
Immunostimulant (increases the body's defences)
Antibacterial, antiviral (helps fight against flu, warts, gastro, fungus)
Digestive, laxative (favours digestion and transit and is useful in case of constipation and food poisoning)
Guide for the use of oils in aromatherapy
Most vegetable oils do not present any danger, but for safety reasons it is always advisable to be aware of possible contraindications before use.
It is also important to read the instructions for use of vegetable oils as some cannot be cooked and others are photo-sensitising and therefore cannot be exposed to the sun after application.