Olive oil is a natural powerhouse when it comes to skin care! Rich in antioxidants and fatty acids, olive oil is known for its soothing, moisturizing, and regenerative properties that can help restore your skin's softness, suppleness, and glow. Learn more about the seven incredible benefits of using this gentle yet effective ingredient in your daily skincare routine.
What is Olive Oil?
The fruit of the olive tree is pressed to produce olive oil, a type of vegetable oil. In addition to being a common ingredient in cooking and beauty products, it is a key component of Mediterranean cuisine.
Most Mediterranean nations, including Greece, Italy, Spain, and Turkey, have produced olive oil for thousands of years. The United States, Australia, and South Africa also produce oil.
Olive oil is available in various forms, each with a distinctive flavor and aroma. Following are a few of the most typical varieties of olive oil:
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: This is the best and most flavorful variety of olive oil. It has a maximum acidity of 0.8% and is only created from pure, cold-pressed olives.
- Virgin Olive Oil: While manufactured from only pure, cold-pressed olives, virgin olive oil has a higher acidity content (up to 2%). Comparatively speaking, extra virgin olive oil has a milder flavor.
- Regular Olive Oil: Virgin and refined olive oils are combined to make this olive oil. It is frequently used for frying and cooking because it has a softer flavor than pure olive oil.
- Pure Olive Oil: Virgin and refined olive oils are combined to create pure olive oil. It is frequently used for high-heat cooking and has a neutral flavor.
- Light Olive Oil: This highly refined oil has a very faint flavor. It is frequently employed in baking and cooking.
Olive oils flavored with herbs, spices, or other additives are available alternatives, and they are often drizzled over foods right before serving as a finishing oil.
Olive Oil & Skincare
Due to its ability to moisten skin by preventing water loss, olive oil is a common component in skincare products. Vitamin E and squalene, both found in olive oil, can delay and prevent aging onset. In addition, olive oil has occlusive qualities, making it an additional emollient that functions best when moisturizing skin.
However, olive oil is comedogenic, which can easily harbor bacteria and clog pores. Therefore, it's not ideal for acne-prone skin.
If you use them topically, select only extra virgin, cold-pressed, unrefined olive oils. You will obtain all the antioxidants and health benefits of olives in their natural state this way, free of harmful preservatives.
- Extra virgin Olive Oil: Due to its high antioxidant content, which can help shield the skin from oxidative damage from free radicals, this olive oil is frequently used in skincare products. In addition, oleic acid, a fatty acid that aids in moisturizing and nourishing the skin, is also present in large amounts.
- Olive Oil Extract: Due to its anti-aging properties, this concentrated olive oil is frequently used in skincare products. Polyphenols, potent antioxidants that can help lessen fine lines and wrinkles, are abundant in olive oil extract.
- Olive Oil Soap: Natural soap frequently contains olive oil because of how soft it is on the skin and how well it moisturizes and nourishes it. Olive oil soap is frequently advised for those with dry or sensitive skin.
- Olive Oil Moisturizer: Moisturizers containing olive oil are frequently used to moisturize and nourish the skin. Due to its high vitamin E content, olive oil can aid in preventing skin damage from UV rays and other environmental toxins.
- Olive Oil Lip Balm: Olive oil-based lip balms are frequently used to hydrate and shield the lips. Olive oil has a lot of fatty acids, which can assist in maintaining the lips soft and supple by preventing moisture loss.
Top 7 benefits of using Olive Oil
Olive oil has been used for centuries as a natural remedy for various skin conditions and as a skincare product. Below are the top 7 potential benefits of using olive oil as a skincare ingredient:
- Moisturizes the skin: Olive oil is rich in vitamin E, which helps to moisturize and nourish the skin. It is an effective emollient, which means it can help to soften and smooth the skin.
- Helps fight age: Olive oil contains antioxidants that can help to neutralize free radicals and reduce the signs of aging, such as fine lines and wrinkles.
- Helps reduce inflammation: Olive oil has anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce inflammation and redness in the skin. This makes it a popular ingredient in skincare products for people with sensitive or acne-prone skin.
- Helps improve skin elasticity: The vitamin E and other antioxidants in olive oil can help improve skin elasticity, reducing the appearance of stretch marks and other skin imperfections.
- Helps soothe sunburn: Olive oil has anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties that can help to soothe and moisturize sunburned skin.
- Helps heal wounds: Olive oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties that can help to protect the skin from infection and promote the healing of wounds and other skin irritations.
- Helps remove makeup: Olive oil can be used as a natural and effective makeup remover, helping to gently dissolve and remove makeup without drying out the skin.
Moisturizes the skin
Olive oil is known for its ability to moisturize and nourish the skin. In addition, it is rich in fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants that can help to hydrate and protect the skin, leaving it soft and supple.
The high concentration of vitamin E in olive oil is exceptionally beneficial for the skin. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals and environmental stressors. Further, its anti-inflammatory properties help soothe and calm irritated or inflamed skin.
In complement to vitamin E, olive oil also contains other antioxidants, such as polyphenols, that can help to protect the skin from oxidative stress and improve its overall health and appearance.
Olive oil is also an effective emollient, which can help soften and smooth the skin. When applied topically, it forms a protective barrier on the skin that helps to prevent moisture loss, keeping the skin hydrated and moisturized.
Helps fight age
Olive oil contains antioxidants, such as polyphenols and vitamin E, that can help to fight the signs of aging in the skin. Antioxidants work by neutralizing free radicals and unstable molecules that can damage the skin and contribute to developing wrinkles, fine lines, and other signs of aging.
In addition to its antioxidant properties, olive oil is a rich source of squalene, a natural moisturizing agent that helps keep the skin soft and supple. Our skin produces less squalene as we age, which can lead to dryness and wrinkles. Using olive oil products can help restore the skin's natural moisture and improve its overall texture and appearance.
To incorporate olive oil into your skincare routine, use it as a natural moisturizer by applying a small amount to your skin after cleansing. You can also look for skincare products that contain olive oil, such as facial oils, moisturizers, and serums.
It's worth noting that while olive oil can offer potential benefits for the skin, it's essential to use caution when applying any new ingredient to your skin. For example, if you have sensitive skin or are prone to acne, you may want to patch-test olive oil on a small area of skin before applying it to your face or body. Additionally, choose high-quality, cold-pressed olive oil to ensure you get the most benefits for your skin.
Helps reduce inflammation
Often believed olive oil has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce inflammation in the body. Inflammation is a natural response of the immune system to injury or infection. Still, chronic inflammation can contribute to many health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
Olive oil contains polyphenols and antioxidants that can help neutralize free radicals and reduce oxidative stress in the body. In addition, these antioxidants have been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects, which may help to reduce inflammation in the body.
One study published in the journal Nutrients found that consuming extra-virgin olive oil was associated with reduced inflammatory markers in the blood. Another study published in the European Journal of Nutrition found that consuming olive oil was associated with reduced inflammation and oxidative stress in the body.
While the evidence is not conclusive, these studies suggest that consuming olive oil may have anti-inflammatory effects on the body. However, it's important to note that olive oil should not be used as a replacement for medical treatment for inflammatory conditions. If you have a health condition causing inflammation, you must talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment options.
Helps improve skin elasticity
Olive oil may help improve skin elasticity due to its high content of antioxidants and vitamin E. Antioxidants protect the skin from free radical damage caused by environmental stressors like UV radiation and pollution. Free radicals can cause skin damage and accelerate aging, including reducing skin elasticity.
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant naturally present in olive oil that helps protect and repair the skin by neutralizing free radicals and reducing inflammation. Vitamin E also helps promote collagen production, which is essential for maintaining skin elasticity.
Collagen is a protein that provides structure and elasticity to the skin. As we age, collagen production naturally decreases, which can lead to a loss of skin elasticity and the formation of fine lines and wrinkles. However, consuming or using products containing vitamin E, such as olive oil, may help to promote collagen production and improve skin elasticity.
Adding olive oil may also help improve skin hydration, enhancing skin elasticity. In addition, olive oil is a natural emollient, meaning it helps to soften and soothe the skin, which can help to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improve overall skin texture.
Overall, while more research is needed to fully understand the effects of olive oil on skin elasticity, its high antioxidants and vitamin E content make it a promising natural remedy for maintaining healthy, elastic skin.
Helps soothe sunburn
Olive oil can help soothe sunburned skin due to its anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties. Sunburned skin can become inflamed and dry, and applying olive oil to the affected area can help reduce inflammation and provide moisture.
It's worth noting that while olive oil can potentially help soothe sunburned skin, it may not be suitable for all skin types. For example, people with oily or acne-prone skin may find that olive oil exacerbates their skin concerns. Additionally, it's vital to keep sunburned skin protected from further sun exposure, so be sure to wear protective clothing and use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher when spending time outdoors.
Helps heal wounds
Olive oil has properties that may aid in wound healing, such as anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, moisturizing, and antioxidant. While olive oil may have some potential benefits for wound healing, it's important to note that it should not be used as a substitute for professional medical treatment. If you have a wound or injury, it's essential to seek medical attention and follow your healthcare provider's instructions for proper wound care.
Helps remove makeup
As it can help dissolve makeup and pollutants without removing the skin's natural oils, olive oil can be used as a mild and efficient makeup remover. Those with dry or sensitive skin may find this especially helpful because traditional makeup removers can be abrasive and dry.
As a makeup remover, olive oil may efficiently remove makeup and pollutants while hydrating and nourishing the skin.
How can Olive Oil be applied?
Olive oil can be used as a natural skincare ingredient in various ways. Here are some directions on how to use olive oil on the skin:
- Moisturizer: Apply a small amount of olive oil to clean the skin and massage gently until fully absorbed. For added benefits, you can use olive oil alone as a moisturizer or mix it with other ingredients, such as essential oils or honey.
- Makeup remover: Apply a small amount of olive oil to a cotton pad or cloth and gently wipe over the face to remove makeup. Rinse with warm water and follow up with your regular cleanser.
- Body oil: Apply olive oil to damp skin after showering or bathing to lock in moisture and leave skin feeling soft and smooth.
- Hair treatment: Apply olive oil to the hair and scalp, massage gently, and leave for 30 minutes to an hour before washing out with shampoo; this will help to moisturize and condition the hair and scalp.
- Sunburn relief: Apply olive oil to sunburned skin to help soothe and moisturize. Mix it with aloe vera gel or lavender essential oil for cooling and soothing benefits.
- Facial mask: Mix olive oil with other ingredients, such as honey, yogurt, or avocado, to create a nourishing and moisturizing facial mask. Apply the mixture to the face and leave it on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing off with warm water.
When using olive oil on the skin, it's essential to use high-quality, extra-virgin olive oil and patch test the oil on a small skin area before using it on a larger area. Additionally, if you have oily or acne-prone skin, you may want to use olive oil sparingly or avoid using it altogether, as it may clog pores and lead to breakouts.
Other major benefits of Olive Oil
Olive oil is a healthy and versatile oil derived from the fruit of the olive tree. Here are 12 potential benefits of olive oil:
- Heart health: Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which can help to lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Anti-inflammatory properties: Olive oil contains anti-inflammatory compounds, which can help reduce inflammation throughout the body.
- Antioxidant properties: Olive oil is rich in antioxidants, which can help to neutralize free radicals and protect the body against oxidative damage.
- Brain health: Some studies suggest that consuming olive oil may improve cognitive function and reduce the risk of age-related cognitive decline.
- Digestive health: Olive oil can help to lubricate the digestive tract and improve bowel movements, which can help to reduce constipation and other digestive issues.
- Weight management: The healthy fats in olive oil can help keep you full and satisfied, which may help reduce calorie intake and promote weight loss.
- Skin health: Olive oil can be used as a moisturizer and natural remedy for various skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis.
- Hair health: Olive oil can help moisturize and condition the hair and scalp, reducing dandruff and promoting healthy hair growth.
- Bone health: Some studies suggest that olive oil may improve bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
- Cancer prevention: Some studies suggest that consuming olive oil may reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, such as breast cancer and colon cancer.
- Diabetes management: Olive oil can help to regulate blood sugar levels and reduce insulin resistance, which may help to manage diabetes.
- Anti-bacterial properties: Olive oil has been shown to have anti-bacterial properties, which can help to fight harmful bacteria and reduce the risk of infections.
Olive oil is a healthy and versatile oil that can offer a range of potential benefits for the body and mind. However, as with any food or supplement, it's crucial to consume olive oil in moderation and as part of a balanced diet. More on how health benefits on another post.