Contains 50% almond oil, as well as camelina oil. Melts into the skin without leaving behind a greasy residue. Can firm, smooth, and moisturize the skin. Has a subtle almond scent.
Doesn’t feature pure almond oil. A pricey body oil, and some users don’t find it effective for very dry skin.
Professional-grade formula. Great for moisturizing dry hair and skin. Helps promote hair growth and add volume and shine. Available in a generous 16-oz bottle with a pump.
Oil consistency is very thin. A few reports of the pump arriving faulty.
Non-GMO, expeller-pressed sweet almond oil that is great for hair, skin, and making your own skincare products. Absorbs well into the skin—not greasy or heavy.
Plastic squeeze cap can leak and some have had issues with mold growing in the lid.
Works as a natural moisturizer for hair and skin. Can also be used as a makeup remover. Free from preservatives and mineral oil. Comes in a bulk-sized 64-oz bottle.
Some user complaints of the safety seal being open upon arrival.
Use alone or mixed with other oils. Lightweight and scent-free. Moisturizes for soft, smooth skin. Large quantity for the price.
Goes on thick, and some have said it's a little sticky.
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A handful of almonds makes a great mid-afternoon snack. These tasty treats are packed with monounsaturated fat (the good kind), fiber, minerals, and phytonutrients. Everyone agrees that eating almonds is good for you, but is putting almond oil on your skin good for you, too? The answer is a resounding yes.
Almond oil might sound like a New Age beauty treatment, but it has been used for centuries by Chinese, Greco-Persian, and Ayurvedic practitioners for everything from soothing abrasions to moisturizing skin. Filled with vitamins, zinc, proteins, and fatty acids, almond oil is a beauty powerhouse with many uses, from removing makeup to protecting skin from damaging UV rays to reducing under-eye puffiness to softening hair. With its pleasant, sweet scent and silky, nongreasy texture, almond oil makes a great carrier oil for homemade lotions, too.
Sweet almond oil is a fixed oil, which means it doesn’t evaporate readily at room temperature. It’s an emollient used as a carrier oil, or base, in beauty products. Sweet almond oil comes from Prunus amygdalus var. dulcis. These are the almonds you enjoy eating raw, cooked in recipes, and as vegan beverages and flour. Sweet almond oil is the type discussed here.
Bitter almond oil is an essential oil, or volatile oil, extracted from plant material. Unlike sweet almond oil, it is not an emollient and evaporates easily. It’s used for scent, flavor, and aromatherapy. Bitter almonds come from Prunus amygdalus var. amara, and because they contain hydrogen cyanide, they can be toxic. Bitter almond oil is refined to remove the naturally occurring toxins. You can find bitter almond used for its almond scent in body lotions, soaps, and other products used topically.
Almost half of an almond’s weight is oil. Ripe hulled and dried almond kernels are expeller-pressed — slowly broken down with mechanical pressure — to extract the oil. Cold-pressing separates the oil from the fibrous cells without the use of heat or chemicals that could destroy the nutrients and spoil the oil. It’s basically expeller-pressing at low temperatures.
Refined almond oil is processed with high heat and chemicals and lacks the nutritional value of unrefined oil. However, it can withstand higher temperatures for cooking and is cheaper than unrefined almond oil.
Sweet almond oil is loaded with good-for-your-skin components, including the following:
Copper: This essential micronutrient has antibacterial, antifungal, and antimicrobial properties. It promotes collagen production, stimulates melanin production, and is a powerful antioxidant.
Vitamin A: Retinol stimulates new skin cell production and minimizes fine lines. It’s also used to treat acne.
Vitamin B7: Biotin helps keep nails and hair strong and healthy.
Vitamin E: Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps reduce the sun’s damaging effects on the skin, diminish signs of aging, and fade scars.
Vitamin K: This nutrient is crucial for protein function and coagulation. Vitamin K is also a powerful antioxidant, protecting skin against the harmful effects of environmental pollutants and UV rays. It can help reduce bruising and speed healing. It also has a function in cell growth and skin renewal for a softer, younger-looking complexion.
Magnesium: Magnesium is an important mineral that can ease redness and rosacea in skin.
Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids: Fatty acids protect the skin against the sun damage that can prematurely age skin.
Phosphorus: You’ll find this mineral in every cell. It helps promote the growth and repair of tissues and filters out toxins to help new cell growth in skin, hair, and nails.
Zinc: This vital nutrient helps keep hormones in balance, and it has antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties, which means zinc may have some benefit when it comes to relieving redness and irritation in acne-prone skin. It can also help reduce skin’s oil production.
As a skincare product, sweet almond oil sounds almost too good to be true. It is anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, emollient, and has immunity-boosting effects. It can improve the condition and tone of all types of skin, from dry to combination to oily, and help ease conditions like acne, eczema, and psoriasis.
Cleanser oil: It might sound counterintuitive to use oil on oily skin, but almond oil’s fatty acids help dissolve the excess sebum that can lead to breakouts. The oil’s vitamin A can also help reduce pimples.
Makeup remover oil: Just as almond oil can clean skin, it can also remove stubborn makeup, even waterproof eye makeup. You’ll find that almond oil is an ingredient in lots of natural makeup removers. Simply apply a small amount of oil to the skin and then wipe off with a cotton ball or rinse off with water.
Moisturizing oil: Almond oil absorbs easily and quickly. It is highly emollient, which means it balances the absorption of moisture and the loss of moisture. After washing and drying your face, dab a small amount of almond oil onto your skin. No need to rinse. It can be used on the body to reduce stretch marks, as well as the lips to soften and smooth.
Anti-aging oil: Almond oil’s retinoids can help reverse sun damage, reduce the appearance of acne scars, and improve cell renewal. It can also soften crepey skin on the arms and legs.
Eye brightening oil: Are you sleep deprived? The delicate skin under tired and puffy eyes can benefit from the application of a little almond oil. Lack of sleep, illness, or allergies can cause the skin under the eyes to darken or retain fluid. Almond oil’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties help alleviate these under-eye circles without irritating the skin.
Hair and nail treatment oil: Soften and strengthen hair as you tame frizz and add shine. Because of its fungicidal and antibacterial properties, you can use almond oil as a treatment for dandruff and to hydrate the scalp. Massage organic oil into the scalp, put on a shower cap, and leave on overnight. Almond oil can help restore the protective oil barrier that many products strip out of hair. Almond oil’s proteins can help strengthen brittle nails.
Mixing/carrier oil: You can see by now that almond oil is a great beauty product used on its own, but you can also add it as a moisturizing component to other mixtures. You can make your own beauty lotions and cleansers using almond oil to “carry” other oils and ingredients into the skin. For example, mix almond oil with a small amount of lemon essential oil, which has antioxidants that can help brighten skin tone.
Massage oil: Light, nongreasy almond oil makes a great massage oil that absorbs well into the skin. Because it has virtually no scent, you can mix it with a few drops of a favorite essential oil for a full aromatherapy treatment.
Cooking oil: Almond oil is packed with monounsaturated fatty acids and so can raise levels of high-density lipoproteins (HDL), or “good” cholesterol, and lower low-density lipoproteins (LDL), or “bad” cholesterol. The oil’s antioxidants can help decrease inflammation and so lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Some studies indicate it can be useful for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Unrefined almond oil isn’t stable at high temperatures, though, so it’s best used for things like salad dressing.
Almond oil, and other oils that contain polyunsaturated fats, have a shorter shelf life than other types of oil that contain monounsaturated fats. You’ll find sweet almond oil in plastic and glass containers, some clear and others dark amber. Exposure to UV light can break down oils like almond oil, so the amber glass or plastic helps protect it from light. The oil’s natural vitamin E content offers some protection against turning rancid. Under proper conditions — well-sealed and cool — almond oil can last a couple of years. That said, only opt for a half-gallon or gallon jug of almond oil in a clear container if you know you can use it up in a reasonable amount of time.
Read the product labels. Some almond oil products are not pure almond oil and can include peanut oil, olive oil, apricot oil, lanolin, or added vitamin E and essential oils, such as lavender, bergamot, or rose. Be sure to choose an unscented oil if you want to use it as a carrier oil for your own creations. Some almond oils specifically indicate they are free of parabens and phthalates, too.
Organic: Unlike many other food labels, such as “natural,” the designation of “organic” has real meaning. Products with the “USDA Organic” seal must be made without industrially produced weed killers, fertilizers, and pesticides. While organic products aren’t necessarily more healthful, purchasing them does encourage better stewardship of the environment.
Non-GMO: This means that the oil doesn’t contain any ingredients from crops that have been genetically modified in the lab. It doesn’t mean the product is environmentally friendly or better for your health.
Essential oils: Add a calming or energizing fragrance to your almond oil before your next massage.
Mixing bowl: You need the right tools if you want to make your own face masks with almond oil, honey, and other ingredients.
Many of these oils come in 16-ounce bottles with prices that vary from about $0.50 to $2.50 per ounce, with specialty or designer names at the higher end of that range. Note that smaller bottles of about 2 to 4 ounces cost $1 per ounce or more.
If you’re a masseuse or an enthusiast who plans to make a lot of almond oil products, you can find inexpensive large containers of food-grade almond oil, such as a pair of 1-gallon jugs for $0.35 per ounce, and more expensive 1-gallon jugs of certified USDA Organic almond oil for $1.25 per ounce. You’ll want to make sure you can use up that much oil before it goes rancid, however.
A. It’s best to stick to products designed for use on babies because you don’t know if your child has an allergy to nuts or other foods.
A. Unrefined almond oil is best used at room temperature for salad dressings or for drizzling over a dish to finish, such as fish or creamy soups. Refined almond oil has a high smoke point and can be used for sautéing, stir-frying, and other high-heat cooking.
A. No, sweet almond oil has virtually no scent, which makes it ideal for mixing with your favorite essential oils. Bitter almond oil, which comes from a different variety of almond, is used to give soaps, lotions, and other products an almond scent.