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Prickly pear oil 30ml / 15ml
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What is prickly pear?
Prickly pear cacti, also called nopal and opuntia, grow across parts of the Americas, Australia, the Middle East, the Mediterranean, and the Caribbean islands.
While people have eaten the sweet pink fruits of this cactus for hundreds of years, prickly pears have only recently been touted as a superfood.
Health benefits of eating prickly pear include reduced inflammation and reduced blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes.
There isn’t a large body of research on prickly pear oil yet. However, early findings suggest the contents of prickly pear oil can indeed boost skin health across different skin types.
Some of the better-studied benefits of prickly pear oil include:
Antioxidant and antibacterial properties
Antioxidants are well known to prevent skin damage from sunlight, aging, and other stressors. Antibacterial substances are known to cleanse skin and stop acne breakouts.
Research has shown that prickly pear oil contains high levels of antioxidants and has antibacterial properties. This suggests it could be used to prevent skin damage and future breakouts.
An effective carrier oil
In another study, scientists combined prickly pear oil with vitamin A and applied the mixture to human and rat skin samples. They found that the fat content of prickly pear oil was highly effective at delivering vitamin A into the skin samples.
Vitamin A has well-studied skin benefits, but when used alone, it often causes skin irritation. The research concluded that prickly pear oil is a suitable and safe carrier for delivering other nutrients that can’t be directly applied to the skin, including vitamin A.
Research on the chemical properties of prickly pear oil also reveals that it contains a high content of linoleic acid. Linoleic acid helps the skin retain water, keeping it hydrated.
More research needs to be done to prove the hydrating effects of prickly pear oil. However, anecdotal evidence suggests that it’s highly effective at hydrating the skin by boosting the skin’s water-retaining properties.
Several reputable brands sell prickly pear oil. You can find this oil in health food shops and online. You should look for products labeled “100% pure prickly pear oil.” Products labeled “unrefined,” “cold-pressed,” “virgin,” and “organic” may be of higher quality than those that are not.
How to use prickly pear oil on its own
To use undiluted prickly pear oil, splash one to two drops of prickly pear oil into your hand, and gently rub the oil into your skin.
How to use prickly pear oil as a carrier
To use prickly pear oil as a carrier oil, mix the prickly pear oil with several drops of a selected essential oil. The amount of essential oil you add will determine the strength of the oil mixture. For example:
- Add 1 drop essential oil to 1 tsp. prickly pear oil to create a 1 percent essential oil solution.
- Add 2 drops essential oil to 1 tsp. prickly pear oil to create a 2 percent essential oil solution.
- Add 5 drops essential oil to 1 tsp. prickly pear oil to create a 5 percent essential oil solution.
To use prickly pear oil as a carrier oil, splash one to two drops of the mixture into your hands and gently rub into your skin.
How to store prickly pear oil
When not in use, prickly pear oil is best stored in your refrigerator. For best results, use it within 1 to 2 years of the purchase date, or by the expiration date printed on the label.
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