Photo Credit: facebook.com/marulaoildk
Nature is a bountiful source of beauty-enhancing ingredients, and natural oils are amongst the most beneficial. With plenty of options for all types of skin and hair, they’re already likely part of your daily routine—but beyond widely known oils like coconut, argan and jojoba, here are the newest names you need to know because these oils are on the rise.
Also known as manketti, which is the name of the tree this nut’s oil is extracted from, mongogo oil is indigenous to southern Africa. A staple in the diet of the bushmen of Botswana and Namibia, this oil has long been a traditional remedy for dry skin thanks to its high concentrations of omega-6 fatty acids, linoleic acid and antioxidant vitamin E. Mongogo oil is also known for soothing benefits and providing natural sun protection (but don’t use it in place of your sunscreen)—and it can be used in lieu of hair conditioner as well.
Product to try: Drunk Elephant Lippe Balm ($19) is the only product you need for hydrating, soothing and protecting your lips this winter. In addition to mongogo oil, this all-natural balm also features avocado, cranberry and marula oils along with anti-aging peptides and algae extract.
Another African import—which also goes by the name of mahogany oil—mafura oil hails from Mozambique and other areas of southern Africa. It maintains a “butter” state below 65 degrees, and is a highly moisturizing skin and hair conditioner with anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties thanks to phytonutrients called limonoids.
Products to try: SheaMoisture’s Manuka Honey and Mafura Oil collection lets your hair and body reap the benefits of this super-hydrating oil thanks to shampoo, conditioner, body scrub, hand cream and more. The range also features organic shea butter sourced from 14 women’s cooperatives in northern Ghana to support local communities and improve their quality of life.
This lightweight, fast-absorbing, antioxidant-rich elixir derived from passionfruit has been a long-standing traditional South American remedy for healing dry, cracked skin. In addition to its impressive concentration of essential fatty acids—and 80% barrier-strengthening linoleic acid—this oil is naturally packed with vitamin C to help brighten the complexion and it’s suitable for oily and acne-prone skin.
Product to try: Tarte was one of the earliest adopters of this Amazonian oil, and you can find it throughout their extensive line of skincare and makeup. You can also get it in its purest (and most concentrated) form in the Maracuja Oil ($48), which can be used on its own or layered with moisturizer for extra hydration.
A generations-old skin and haircare secret of the Maasai tribe of Kenya, yangu oil is yet another up-and-comer that’s rich in antioxidants and essential fatty acids. Sourced from the seeds found in the fruit of the Cape Chestnut tree, this oil is ideal for oily and blemish-prone skin since it won’t clog pores, and it’s believed to provide natural UV protection.
Product to try: Beyond protecting the skin from environmental assaults and delivering an instant radiance boost, Shea Terra Wild Beauty Yangu Beauty Oil ($21) is sustainably-sourced to preserve the pristine land from which it’s harvested, and provides much-needed income for the Maasai tribe.
Found to have 60% more antioxidant power than argan and grapeseed oils, marula oil is a go-to for those looking for hydration, soothing and skin protection. Produced predominantly in Madagascar and rife with omega-6 and -9 fatty acids, it absorbs quickly and leaves skin with a soft, satin finish.
Product to try: Marula Pure Beauty Oil ($78) is all about high quality, which is why the company sources its oil exclusively from hand-selected kernels of wild marula trees and uses a chemical-free cold-press process for optimal purity. P.S. It can also be used to gently remove eye makeup.
Want to try them all?
If you can’t decide which of these oils is best for you (or you simply don’t want to), Nyakio’s Cold Pressed Oils Discovery Kit ($19) features all five in three trial-size blends. This set includes the rejuvenating Manketti & Mafura Anti-Aging Oil, calming Maracuja & Yangu Oil and Marula & Neroli Brightening Oil so you can mix and match depending on your skin’s needs at any given time.
NOTE: All products were purchased or sampled in-store. All opinions are my own.