A Look at Pure Jojoba Oil in Natural Skincare

May 16, 2019

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This post is sponsored by Vantage

I was hosting an event the other night with Dr. Sarah from OSMIA and someone asked, What would you recommend for a body oil, something I can pick up from the grocery store? I immediately jumped to jojoba oil. Dr. Sarah (master formulator of body oils) agreed with jojoba and raised me one recommending sunflower oil as another great option.

I love this question because if you are a purest at heart and on a budget, this is a great way to save. Oils like jojoba oil and sunflower oil are often used as primary components in our natural skincare. So by buying and using these oils straight up, we are getting their active benefits without paying for all the additives. More budget recommendations here!

This Organic Girl applying OGEE Sculptured Lip Oil while looking into the camera wearing a black tank dress against a white background

Each oil brings something special

Each oil brings its own properties and benefits to the body. For example…

Sunflower Oil is one of the more affordable oils which is why you will see it used in a lot of budget formulas. It also may be effective in treating irritated and inflamed skin due to it’s linoleic acid content (1). You can find it in One Love Organic’s Gardenia + Tea Antioxidant Body Serum and also in high end formulas too like de Mamiel’s Salvation Body Oil.

Olive Oil is excellent as a skin + hair cleanser and moisturizer and it also has antibacterial properties (5). This is probably why you see components of it in the OSEA Malibu Ocean Cleanser – one of my all time favorite cleansers.

Coconut Oil is traditionally used as an emollient to improve skin hydration and to strengthen hair. This is why you will see a lot of hair masks formulated with coconut oil like Innersense’s Hydrating Hair Masque for example. Coconut oil has also been proven in clinical studies to improve dryness, roughness, scaling and itching (1). This is probably why you will see it in formulas like One Love Organics’ Skin Savior Multi-Tasking Wonder Balm. Plus it has antimicrobial properties and works to reduce the colonization of Staphylococcus aureus (Staph) on skin (1).

Jojoba Oil has anti-inflammatory properties and is therefore great for inflamed, irritated and acne-prone skin (1). And as far as application goes, it doesn’t leave skin feeling greasy AT ALL. The non-greasy factor is really the main reason I love when brands formulate with jojoba because I don’t want to walk around feeling like Slick Rick. Can I get an amen!?

Jump to the bottom of this post to see some clean beauty products that formulate with jojoba oil.

What is Jojoba Oil?

First of all let’s clear the air. It’s HO-HO-BA or HA-HO-BA ya’ll. Don’t be out there saying JA-JO-BA unless you are also ordering KAY-SA-DILLAS instead of quesadillas and blackened SAL-MAN FAJ-ETAS instead of salmon fajitas.

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Jojoba oil is produced from the seed of an evergreen shrub called the jojoba plant which is native to the desert regions of Mexico, southwest United States, the Middle East and Argentina (5). And its seed contains 50-60% pure oil (1).

Native Americans near the border of Arizona and Mexico were the first to use jojoba. They knew the plant by hohowi, which in Spanish became “jojoba.” Indigenous people used jojoba as medicine and also in food – similar to how olive oil was used in Europe. And they attributed mystical powers to it claiming jojoba oil could alleviate a host of ailments and cure cuts, scratches and open sores (5).

And how about this. Jojoba is actually not an oil at all. Chemically speaking it’s 97% liquid wax – although you may see it named as either an “oil” or a “wax” on an ingredient label. In fact, there are actually two INCI names for jojoba but they can be used interchangeably as The CosIng Database does not provide a detailed difference in composition between the two ingredients (1). They will look like either of these:

And in case you were wondering, the CIR (Cosmetic Ingredient Review) Expert Panel concludes both jojoba wax and jojoba oil are both safe to be used as cosmetic ingredients (2). If you are accustom to looking at the EWG Skin Deep Database to determine ingredient safety you will see the EWG uses the CIR’s recommendations/data to set EWG toxicity scores. Jojoba oil rates a 1 on EWG.

Benefits of Jojoba Oil

When you list them together, the benefits of using jojoba oil are pretty impressive and it’s easy to understand why jojoba oil is such a popular cosmetic ingredient.

To get technical, it’s loaded with fatty acids (linoleic, oleic, arachidic, 11-eicosenoic and palmitic acids). Fatty acid plays an essential role in the cosmetic industry as emollients, texture enhancers and as a cleansing agent. Deficiency of fatty acids can cause severe damage to the skin. Fatty acids serve as cosmetic base and prevent water loss from the skin, mainly by making a protective layer of the epidermis (4).

Along with delivering a cornucopia of fatty acids, here’s how all the benefits shake out…

  • Especially useful for moisture control, protection and emolliency (softening and smoothing) (3).
  • It has a long shelf life because it does not oxidize, become rancid or breakdown under high temps or pressures (3).
  • Improves skin’s elasticity and alleviates dryness (5).
  • Unclogs pores and lifts impurities from the skin (5).
  • Components like tocopherols reduce wrinkles, stretch marks, lighten + heal scars (5).
  • It’s biomimetic meaning jojoba’s chemical composition is similar to sebum which is secreted by human sebaceous glands to lubricate and protect skin and hair (3).
  • Nontoxic and hypoallergenic (3).
  • It has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-degenerative properties (5).
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How to buy and incorporate Jojoba Oil

several clean beauty products displayed open on a white background

When you start checking out ingredient labels you will see jojoba used in almost everything including shampoos (oil dissolves oil so it can be highly effective as a cleanser), conditioners, lotions, cuticle and nail care, baby lotions, lip care, facial cleansers, moisturizers, bath oils, soaps, sunscreens lotions, makeup products and perfumes.

If you are buying jojoba from the store, look for one that is 100% organic (free from GMOs and harmful insecticides), cold-pressed and unrefined (which ensures the oil doesn’t lose any of its beneficial properties), and 100% pure (not cut or mixed with another low quality oil). Unrefined jojoba oil is a clear golden liquid with a faint nutty odor.

Jojoba oil is sustainable

In general, jojoba oil is considered a sustainable resource. It naturally grows in the desert and requires very little water compared to other high-water consuming crops like olive, almond and more. Vantage is a major jojoba oil supplier here in the United States sourcing their jojoba domestically from the Sonora Desert region in the US. Sourcing local means a resource does not need to be shipped from across the globe before it reaches your beauty cabinet.

Jojoba oil is found in the clean beauty products below including One Love Organics, Grace + Tonic, OGEE and more. Vantage owns every step of their jojoba supply chain from harvest to extraction and they follow sustainable practices from seed to bottle. Vantage supplies organic jojoba oil and they close the loop by using the remnants to fertilize soil or be used as compost.

Clean beauty products that formulate with Jojoba Oil

If you are pumped about jojoba oil and want to get in on the action, here are a few places to start.

OGEE Sculpted Lip Oil

The OGEE Sculpted Lip Oils are insanity. Formulated with jojoba oil, coconut oil, shea butter, olive oil and castor oil – they are super moisturizing and won’t dry out lips. It’s like a color infused conditioner and I can’t get enough.

This Organic Girl applying OGEE Sculptured Lip Oil while looking into the camera wearing a black tank dress against a white background

This formula comes in SEVERAL shades but my all time fave is Gardenia. It’s a peachy nude that looks stunning on my olive toned skin (shown above). Understated but polished. Apply a little for a hint of color or build it up to really make lips pop.

And there’s more! The Sculpted Lip Oils are actually formulated with a touch of peppermint oil too so they even taste good. Check out more of my favorite lip balms here!

One Love Organics Vitamin C Facial Serum

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.Vitamin C is crucial to all skincare routines! You will sometimes see it listed on an ingredient label by its INCI: ascorbic acid. Or you may identify it by it’s derivatives: ascorbyl palmitate, sodium ascorbyl phosphate and magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (1).

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This Organic Girl holding One Love Organics Vitamin C Serum out in the foreground smiling, wearing a black tank dress against a white background

Why do we need vitamin c in our skincare? On the daily, exposing skin to ultraviolet radiation causes oxidative stress. This can lead to the degradation of collagen, the formation of inflammatory factors and more. The skin defends itself against the effects of oxidative stress by using antioxidants. These neutralize or prevent the harmful effects of oxygen and other free radicals (1).

Ascorbic acid (vitamin c) is an antioxidant found naturally in our skin. When we apply it to our skin topically, it:

  • Promotes the synthesis of collagen
  • Has anti-inflammatory activity
  • Protects against ultraviolet light
  • Has a positive effect on acne-prone skin
  • Can also have a skin-lightening effect (1).

One Love Organics Vitamin C Facial Serum houses vitamin c in a base of joboba oil and is formulated to do just that with 88.45% of it’s total ingredients coming from organic farming.

EO Love & Flowers Essential Oil Perfume

Jojoba oil is one of the most popular carrier oils for aromatherapy products. It’s nourishing for the skin and hair, resistant to rancidification and can help extend the shelf life of costly essential oils (5) which is most likely why we see it as a base in EO’s Love & Flowers Essential Oil Perfume.

This Organic Girl laughing and holding the EO natural fragrance at her breast bone wearing a black tank against a white background

This fragrance is a match made in heaven for all the sandalwood lovers out there; woodsy, earthy and mellow.

Grace + Tonic Moisture Cream and Eye Serum

Grace + Tonic’s Moisture Cream and Eye Serum are also formulated with jojoba oil. I discovered this line earlier this year which can exclusively be found at Target. It’s clean, luxe, packaged in glass and a step in the right direction for Target who is making really good skincare available to the masses. In fact The Zoe Report names Grace + Tonic one of the Drugstore Skincare Launches you need in your life in 2019.

This Organic Girl holding and looking at Grace + Tonic Moisturizer and smiling

Grace + Tonic currently has three products: Moisture Cream, Eye Serum and Cleansing Mud. And you can actually try samples of the entire line in their Discovery Set that goes for $29.99 at, you guessed it; Target.

What about you? Do you have any products you love that are formulated with jojoba oil?

Xo, lisa

References

1.Janeš, D. and Kočevar Glavač, N. (Ed). (2018) Modern Cosmetics Ingredients of Natural Origin, A Scientific View. Velenje: Širimo dobro besedo, d.o.o.

2. Winter, R. (2009). A Consumer’s Dictionary Of Cosmetic Ingredients. New York: Three Rivers Press

3. Jajoba Oil (2005). https://www.encyclopedia.com/places/africa/somalia-political-geography/jojoba-oil#3435100440

4. Comparative fatty acid and trace elemental analysis identified the best raw material of jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis) for commercial applications (2018). https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0570178318300071

5. Shaath, N. (2017). Healing Civilizations. The Search for Therapeutic Essential Oils & Nutrients. Petaluma, CA: Cameron + Company

By Lisa

Lisa is the founder of This Organic Girl. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!