Jojoba oil (pronounced ho-HO-ba) isn’t actually oil, but instead a wax ester. Why do we care? Simple really wax ester is the most similar substance to human skin oil (sebum). Then when you take consideration the it’s antibacterial, and the sheer number of nutrients it contains, it’s no surprise that jojoba oil has become extremely popular in a vast number of fields including cosmetics, diet, and medical use.
Where Jojoba is Found
Jojoba oil is extracted from seeds of the jojoba plant, scientifically known as Simmondsia chinensis, A shrub native to the Sonoran and Mojave deserts of Arizona, California, and Mexico. It is the sole species of the family Simmondsiaceae, placed in the order Caryophyllales. Native Americans have long used jojoba oil to help heal sores and wounds.
It takes three years for the seed to grow into a plant. Ninety-five percent of them end up in personal care or health products, blended with other ingredients, and because of this Jojoba oil is rarely sold in its pure form. The main bulk of jojoba oil is farmed in Israel and Argentina and exported.
Pure jojoba oil has a bright, golden color whereas processed jojoba oil is clear and transparent. It has a high shelf life and can be stored for long periods as it is a relatively stable liquid. It does not oxidize easily and will not turn rancid compared to other oils because it does not contain triglycerides, unlike most other vegetable oils such as grape seed oil and coconut oil.
Natural Benefits – Why We Use It
Antibacterial: It has antimicrobial properties, which means it actually discourages the growth of some bacterial and fungal microbes that attack the skin.
Sensitive Skin: In addition, the chemical composition of jojoba closely resembles that of the skin’s natural sebum, so it is easily absorbed and rarely causes allergic reactions, even in the most sensitive individuals.
Treating Acne / Oily Skin: Jojoba oil can prevent the skin from becoming too oily. Because the structure of jojoba oil so closely resembles natural sebum, it can actually trick the skin into producing less natural sebum, which, unlike jojoba, can clog pores. Jojoba oil may help treat acne, both by reducing sebum production and by protecting the skin from harmful bacteria.
Nutrients: Jojoba oil contains many important nutrients, such as vitamin E, B complex vitamins, and the minerals silicon, chromium, copper, and zinc. It also contains a lot of iodine, which may be where jojoba gets its ability to fight against bacterial and fungal infection.