If you've been keeping up with the skincare world, you've likely encountered more oils, lotions, and potions than you know what to do with. And to that we say, the more the merrier! Allow us to add one more to your repertoire – sea buckthorn oil.
Don't worry, sea buckthorn isn't some adorable crustacean or rare species of coral humans harvest in the name of beauty. The name is a bit of a misnomer, as the sea buckthorn plant is actually a hardy shrub that has little to do with the ocean. Cue sigh of relief!
We promise you're going to want to have this wonder oil on your radar. Sea buckthorn boasts an impressive profile of essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. That makes it a lean, mean, anti-aging machine!
So, let's get into the sea buckthorn benefits to be had, as well as a little background on this nutritious oil and tips on how best to use it.
IN A NUTSHELL
Ingredient Category: Antioxidant, Occlusive
Main Benefit: Sea buckthorn oil is deeply hydrating and features a unique combination of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that improve the overall health and look of the skin.
Find It In: Facial and body oils, serums, cleansers, masks, and moisturizers.
What Is Sea Buckthorn Oil?
Also known as sandthorn, sallowthorn, and seaberry, the sea buckthorn plant is a deciduous shrub that grows at high altitudes in places like the Himalayan region, China, Russia, and northern Europe. Some people even refer to it as "the Holy Fruit of the Himalayas" — this plant’s got a lot of names.
Sea buckthorns produce tart, yellow-orange berries that have been used for centuries in traditional medicine, as well as eaten as part of a healthy diet and applied to the skin. And that's because these plants pack a powerful nutritive punch!
This little shrub boasts an abundance of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that provide a multitude of health benefits. They include all four types of omega fatty acids, ten times more vitamin C than an orange, and a generous dose of vitamin E.
Sea buckthorn oil is extracted from the fruit and seeds of the plant and can be applied topically or eaten. Whether it comes from the fleshy pulp of the berries or their small, nutrient-rich seeds, this oil can add incredible value to your skincare routine.
Sea Buckthorn Benefits
Naturally, a plant bursting with as many goodies as sea buckthorn offers a glorious grab bag of benefits when applied to the skin.
Being so full of antioxidants, sea buckthorn oil offers strong protection against stressors that hasten the signs of aging. It's brimming with polyphenols, flavonoids, micronutrients, and vitamins A, C, and E, which all work hard to neutralize the threat of external aggressors.
That helps to smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, plump the skin, and even out tone and texture. This also makes it a top-notch option for anyone trying to minimize the look of discoloration and scarring.
And since these antioxidants reinforce the skin's natural defenses, fewer things can irritate it, resulting in a calmed complexion. That's why sea buckthorn oil is used as a go-to soothing agent after exfoliating treatments like peels and masks.
Then there's sea buckthorn oil's balanced profile of fatty acids, which provide smoothing and occlusive properties and alleviate temporary redness and discomfort. Oils like omega-7 and omega-6 rejuvenate and strengthen the skin, while omega-3 and omega-9 help hydrate — the perfect combination for rough, dry, and flaky complexions!
Sea buckthorn oil also boasts linoleic acid (a natural component of our sebum), which helps to fortify the skin's lipid barrier. That prevents dry skin from losing moisture it desperately needs, improving hydration levels.
Add that to the fact that sea buckthorn oil has a knack for penetrating deep into the epidermis, and you've got an ultra-moisturizing, ultra-softening treat that won't leave you feeling oily.
Great for All Skin Types
When you take into account sea buckthorn oil's protective and strengthening properties, hydrating prowess, soothing and calming effects, and deeply penetrative nature, you get a pretty versatile substance. One that serves dry, sensitive, and combination skin types equally well.
And if you have oily skin? Good news! As if it wasn't already too good to be true, sea buckthorn oil is non-comedogenic, so it won't clog up those pores.
How to Use Sea Buckthorn Oil for Skin
There are a few ways to integrate sea buckthorn oil into your skincare regimen. You can apply it in its purest form — just make sure it's free of funky additives and hasn't undergone a chemical or heat extraction process that could kill all its nutrients.
On its own, it can replace your usual lotion or you can apply it after you've used your favorite facial moisturizer and anti-aging eye cream to seal them in. Otherwise, it will form a barrier that other products won't be able to penetrate.
This nutritive oil works very well in tandem with hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid and jojoba oil, so it pops up in serums and facial oils aplenty — which is great if you don't feel like messing with the pure stuff.
It's important to note that sea buckthorn oil has intense coloring and can sometimes impart a reddish or yellow hue to products. That's both a blessing and a curse, as directly applying it can give skin a fresh, healthy glow without having a tinting effect, but it can also potentially stain white bedding. So don't put it on right before going to sleep!
And due to its high content of unsaturated fatty acids, pure sea buckthorn oil can go bad without proper storage and should be used quickly. So keep it in a dark bottle away from heat and direct light.
Super Oil for Super Skin
They say if something sounds too good to be true, it is. But they probably hadn't heard of sea buckthorn oil before! This nourishing nectar of the Himalayas has an impressive nutrient profile that makes it extremely good for you both on the inside and out.
It combats common signs of aging and water loss and evens tone while rejuvenating, protecting, and plumping skin — what's not to love?