Summer is here, and with it comes the need to protect our skin from the harsh rays of the sun. While sunscreen is a must-have, there are other natural options that can provide additional protection.
One such option is argan oil, a popular ingredient in many skincare products. But does argan oil really have UV protection?
In this article, we’ll explore the research behind argan oil’s sun-blocking properties and how you can incorporate it into your summer skincare routine.
So, grab a cold drink and let’s dive in!
Does Argan Oil Have UV Protection?
Research has shown that argan oil does indeed have natural sunscreen properties. It works by blocking the melanocyte (skin pigment cells) proliferation of the skin, protecting it from UV radiation. This is due to the high content of tocopherols, vitamin E, antioxidants, and omega oils found in argan oil.
Unlike many commercial sunscreens that contain toxic chemicals, argan oil’s UV protection is completely natural and free of harmful substances. It not only protects the skin from damage to collagen and premature aging but also lightens dark spots associated with sun damage.
A 2013 study found that the antioxidant activity in argan oil protected the skin against free radical damage caused by the sun. This benefit may also extend to the hair, helping to prevent drying and other damage from ultraviolet rays.
While argan oil does provide some protection against harmful rays, it is best to use it in combination with an organic mineral sunscreen for extra protection. Look for mineral sunscreens that are free from petrochemicals and parabens.
What Is Argan Oil?
Argan oil is a natural oil that is derived from the kernels of the argan tree, which is native to Morocco. The oil has been used for centuries by Moroccan women for its numerous health and beauty benefits. It is rich in vitamin E, antioxidants, and omega oils, making it an excellent moisturizer for skin and hair.
Argan oil is also known for its natural sunscreen properties, as it works to protect the skin from UV radiation by blocking the proliferation of skin pigment cells. The high content of tocopherols and antioxidants in argan oil helps to defend against damaging ultraviolet rays and free radicals caused by sun exposure.
Argan oil is a versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of ways, such as a moisturizer for face and body, a hair conditioner, a cuticle oil, and even as a cooking oil. It is important to note that pure and natural argan oil should be used for best results, as some commercial products may contain additives or preservatives that can diminish its effectiveness.
The Science Behind UV Protection
The science behind argan oil’s UV protection lies in its high content of tocopherols, vitamin E, antioxidants, and omega oils. These compounds work together to block the proliferation of melanocyte cells in the skin, which are responsible for producing skin pigment. By doing so, argan oil provides a natural barrier against harmful UV radiation.
Tocopherols, also known as vitamin E, are powerful antioxidants that protect the skin from free radical damage caused by UV radiation. Antioxidants work by neutralizing free radicals, which are unstable molecules that can damage cells and contribute to premature aging.
Omega oils found in argan oil, such as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, also play a role in protecting the skin from UV damage. These fatty acids help to maintain the skin’s moisture and aid in cell regeneration, making it an ideal choice for natural sun protection.
In addition to its natural sun protection properties, argan oil has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects on the skin. This helps to reduce redness and irritation caused by sun exposure.
Argan Oil’s UV Protection Properties
Argan oil’s UV protection properties are due to its high content of tocopherols, vitamin E, antioxidants, and omega oils. These components work together to protect the skin from UV radiation by blocking the melanocyte proliferation of the skin.
One of the benefits of using argan oil as a natural sunscreen is that it is completely free of toxic chemicals that can harm the skin. It not only protects against damage to collagen and premature aging but also lightens dark spots associated with sun damage.
A 2013 study found that argan oil’s antioxidant activity protected the skin against free radical damage caused by the sun. This benefit extends to the hair as well, helping to prevent drying and other damage from UV rays.
While argan oil provides some protection against harmful rays, it is recommended to use it in combination with an organic mineral sunscreen for extra protection. Look for mineral sunscreens that are free from petrochemicals and parabens for optimal results.
In addition to its UV protection properties, argan oil also has highly active antioxidants that eliminate the effects of free radicals caused by sun UV rays, pollution, and other daily surrounding factors. It supports melanin production and helps remove dead skin layers, giving the skin an incomparable tan color and glow.
How To Use Argan Oil For Sun Protection
If you’re interested in using argan oil for sun protection, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, it’s important to note that pure argan oil should not be used as a substitute for sunscreen. Instead, it should be used in combination with a mineral sunscreen for maximum protection.
To use argan oil for sun protection, start by applying a small amount to your skin before heading outside. Massage the oil into your skin until it is fully absorbed. You can also mix a few drops of argan oil into your regular sunscreen for added protection.
For best results, apply argan oil to your skin at least 30 minutes before going outside. This will give the oil time to absorb into your skin and provide maximum protection.
If you do happen to get sunburned, you can also use argan oil to help soothe and heal your skin. Simply apply a small amount of oil to the affected area and massage gently. Argan oil has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce redness and swelling, while its moisturizing properties can help prevent peeling and dryness.
Other Benefits Of Argan Oil For Skin
Argan oil has numerous other benefits for the skin besides its natural sunscreen properties. It has been used by Moroccan women for centuries to protect their skin from sun damage, and recent studies have shown that it may provide various health benefits for the skin and overall health.
One of the benefits of argan oil is its ability to reduce sebum levels in individuals with oily skin, making it an effective treatment for acne. Argan oil’s essential fatty acids help to reduce inflammation caused by acne, while also soothing damaged skin cells. It can be used as a moisturizer, and a drop can be dabbed onto problem areas to fight stubborn whiteheads.
Argan oil is also full of fatty acids, which provide a softening, emollient layer and protective skin barrier. It contains polyphenols, which are antioxidants that destroy pollutants or free radicals that can damage the skin. The presence of vitamin E in argan oil is an anti-inflammatory and helps lighten, brighten, and heal skin while fighting the effects of aging and the sun. This makes it an effective treatment for reducing inflammation, hyperpigmentation, and scarring.
In addition to its topical benefits, argan oil may also provide health benefits when ingested. People have traditionally used argan oil as an ingredient and condiment for foods in Morocco. Researchers have investigated the potential health benefits of argan oil and found that it may help treat dry skin, minor burns, inflammation, and manage dermatitis.
Precautions When Using Argan Oil For Sun Protection
While argan oil is a natural and effective way to protect your skin from harmful UV rays, there are some precautions to take when using it for sun protection.
Firstly, it is important to note that argan oil should not be used as a replacement for sunscreen. While it does provide some protection, it is not enough to fully shield your skin from the sun’s rays. It is best to use argan oil in combination with a mineral sunscreen for optimal protection.
When using argan oil, make sure to apply it generously to all exposed areas of skin before going outside. It is also important to reapply every two hours, or more frequently if you are sweating or swimming.
If you have sensitive skin or are prone to breakouts, be cautious when using argan oil on your face. While it is non-greasy and lightweight, it can still clog pores and cause breakouts if not properly absorbed by the skin.
Lastly, make sure to store your argan oil in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to prevent it from going rancid. Using expired or rancid oil can cause skin irritation and may not provide adequate sun protection.