Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil, Argania Spinosa (Argan)
The Argan tree is part of the Sapotaceae family and is located in north Sahara, southwestern Morocco. Its extreme power of resistance against dryness and drought enables it to provide shade from the sun. Its roots, that can reach up to 30 m in depth are important to protect the ground from erosion. Due to the fact that the Argan tree was formerly native to the south of Europe and northern Africa, it is under the protection of UNESCO and may be used in southwestern Marocco but not deforested. The oil is extracted using a traditional method, that is extremely time consuming and labour-intensive and entails the removal of the soft pulp and the cracking by hand, between two stones, of the hard nut that has fallen off the tree and been collected. The seeds are then removed and gently roasted. The roasted seeds are then ground to paste, using a little water in a stone rotary quern. The paste is squeezed by hand to extract the oil. The traditional extraction of oils is being replaced by a more modern method called cold pressing/oil pressing.
Argan oil shows a very balanced composition of oleic acids, linoleic acid and palmitic acid and thereby covers a wide spectrum of fatty acids. It supports the natural functions of the skin and has antioxidant effects. Due to it having the ability to stimulate the cells, Argan oil has become a popular anti-aging product. It is not only suitable for mature skin but due to its intensively caring properties, it may be used for dry and sensitive skin types and improves the barrier function of skin in the long run. This oil is well-suited for diseased skin (dermatosis, allergies). However, the unroasted kernels are optimal for cosmetic use. Due to the high price of Argan oil, many alternated oils can be found on the market - as a result, attention should be paid to the approved certifications on the product.
- antioxidant, ideal for mature skin
- protects and supports the barrier function of the skin
- intensively caring and smoothing, especially for dry skin types
- ideal for diseased skin
see Heike Käser 2010, "Naturkosmetische resources", Linz, Freya Verlag, 3rd Edition 2012