This advice you always hear from the magazine ads, numerous guests of morning and daytime shows.
Great advice, no doubts.
But how to turn a dull, dry adult skin into soft, radiant and obviously well-moisturized young skin? Well, there are numerous products on the market: from relatively cheap drug-store products to expensive skin care from the department stores. I tried, and tried and tried. First, from medium price level – such as Lancome, Clarins. The result I even could not tell because my skin just immediately became irritated. I tried cheap ones such as well-advertised Olay Regenist. My skin pores became nearly permanently clogged, it was hard to clear them. Most recently I tested Channel’s moisturizer but, surprisingly for such excellent line of products, the cream is not absorb well.
I decided to stop experimenting with expensive products and started looking for the natural products, focusing on natural oils with century old excellent reputation.
Why oil? Babies and kids skin is the best of all ages because their skin produces specific oily compounds, which are optimal to keep the skin moist.
With honorable reference to Cleopatra I started my trials with the Moroccan Argan Oil. After couple of days I realized that I couldn’t begin my day without application of this oil to the face, neck and hands. My skin became fresh and skin tone increased. I bought the oil to my friends and later they reported the same effect. So what is the secret of the Argan oil that makes it a good moisturizer? My quest to find the magic ingredient of the argan oil led me to a very interesting finding.
There is a unique molecule called squalene. It is a very long hydrocarbon with 6 unsaturated bonds. This structure indicates that this very hydrophobic molecule is capable to accept hydrophilic (water-soluble molecules) and transfer them across the cellular lipid layer. Our skin sebum naturally contains 10-12% of squalene thus helping the skin to absorb moisture and oxygen. Some essential oils contain squalene including the Moroccan Argan. I did not find yet how much squalene is in Argan oil but it is around 0.7% in olive oil, a very well established natural source of squalene. Squalene was discovered a century ago in the liver of the pacific shark. Indeed in humans, squalene is synthesized in exclusively in the liver and in the skin. The high-end very expensive skin care products contain squalene extracted from the shark liver as a major moisturizing ingredient. Squalene is oxidizes very easy when expose to air. In some skin care products squalene is substituted with its chemically modified saturated form called squalane. This squalane is extracted from some squalene-rich varieties of olive oil. Both compounds are safe for human skin application and consumption.
Thus squalene of Argan oil can serve as a good natural moisturizer for the skin. Additionally, its ability to transfer oxygen across the skin epidermis can revitalize the skin and maintain its health. Other active components of the Argan oil will be discussed in next post.