IN THIS ARTICLE
- What is jojoba oil?
- What makes jojoba oil so wonderful?
- Who is jojoba oil good for?
- Jojoba oil in Graydon Skincare products
Other name(s): Simmondsia Chinensis Seed Oil, Jojoba Esters, Hydrolyzed Jojoba Esters
What it does: antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, moisturizer/emollient, moisturizer/occlusive
What is jojoba oil?
Jojoba oil is derived from the jojoba plant—a perennial woody shrub that grows naturally in several regions of the world, such as Arizona, southern California and parts of Mexico. This shrub is extremely resilient, needs minimal care, and can grow in places with as little as three inches of rain per year.
Fun fact: Jojoba oil isn’t actually an oil, but a wax ester.
What’s the difference between an oil and a wax ester? Chemically, oil is made up of one glycerin molecule and three fatty acid molecules. On the other hand, a wax ester is made up of one fatty acid molecule and one fatty alcohol molecule.
Another fun fact: Wax ester is what covers the surface of several types of plant leaves, giving them their shine and slippery texture. This helps protect them from environmental factors, much like how human sebum gives us protection from the environment. The similarities and connections we have with nature are crazy, eh?
What makes jojoba oil so wonderful?
Jojoba oil has many properties that make it a perfect ingredient for skincare, hair care and cosmetic products.
For one, jojoba oil is excellent for face and body moisturizers because of its occlusive and emollient properties. Being occlusive means that it forms a protective layer on your skin to prevent Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL) from occurring too rapidly. As a result, your skin is able to retain more water, keeping it hydrated and moisturized. On top of that, the emollient properties mean that it can condition your skin and keep it soft and supple. Jojoba oil is less greasy than other oils and can be absorbed easily by the skin, making it a cosmetically elegant choice for moisturizers.
It’s also been observed to have anti-inflammatory properties.(1) This makes it particularly useful to fight off skin redness and soothe some skin disorders that involve inflammation, such as eczema and psoriasis.
On top of that, it also has some antibacterial properties,(2) (3) which defend against certain types of bacteria and fungi that can cause salmonella, E. coli infection and candida. This makes it a helpful ingredient to protect and strengthen your skin barrier function.
It also contains antioxidant properties(4) that protect your skin against free radicals. Free radicals are damaging particles that we’re all exposed to through various factors, such as pollution and UV damage, that can degrade the collagen and elastin in our skin. Without collagen and elastin, our skin will no longer be smooth, supple and youthful. Jojoba oil has these wonderful antioxidant properties thanks to its rich concentration of vitamin E.
More interestingly, jojoba oil is reported to have wound-healing abilities.(5) Research has shown that it helps your skin cells bind together after they’ve been separated by a wound. This makes it a particularly promising ingredient to use if you’re recovering from a scratch, cut or even scars caused by acne and breakouts. However, as of right now, more research is still needed to confirm this in non-clinical settings.
Personally, I think that the most remarkable thing about jojoba oil is that it’s very similar to the sebum that human skin naturally produces.(6) Thanks to this, it may help to regulate your sebum production. The theory is that, since it’s so similar to our sebum, it could “trick” our skin into not producing additional sebum. And the implication is that, since your skin won’t over-produce sebum, your pores will likely be less clogged, thus reducing your chances of getting acne and breakouts. This is coupled with the fact that jojoba oil is also anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial, and together, these magical properties can help keep acne-causing bacteria at bay. However, this is just a theory that is not fully proven yet, but it certainly is interesting!
Who is jojoba oil good for?
Given that it has a similar structure to the sebum our skin naturally produces, jojoba oil can do a wonderful job at moisturizing your skin, no matter what skin type you have. This means that jojoba oil can be useful for everybody. That said, doing a patch test is always a good practice, particularly if you have sensitive skin.
In addition, if you’re someone who’s dealing with skin redness, you should certainly consider adding products with this ingredient to your routine. Even though we won’t recommend it as the first line of defence against skin inflammation, it’s useful to use with other ingredients like aloe vera or oats.
In hair care products, jojoba oil helps to moisturize dry hair and keep it smooth and shiny. And because it’s composition is so similar to our natural sebum, jojoba oil won’t cause your scalp to produce more oil that results in greasy hair. Nobody wants that!
Jojoba oil in Graydon Skincare products
All Over Face + Body Lotion is formulated with jojoba oil to hydrate and protect your skin. Because jojoba oil absorbs quickly into the skin, our All Over Face + Body Lotion doesn’t leave a greasy feeling. That means you can apply to your face, hands and body then get on with your day!
Jojoba esters are the results of hydrogenating and transesterifying jojoba oil. In Layman’s terms, these are processes where we have the jojoba oil interacting with other substances, hydrogen and alcohol, to create the wax-like ester. This helps to extend the shelf life of these ingredients and increase the stability of the formula.
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Credit for main image: mashuk
Credit for jojoba plant image: Gerald Corsi
(1) Lin, Tzu-Kai et al. “Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils.” International journal of molecular sciences vol. 19,1 70. 27 Dec. 2017, doi:10.3390/ijms19010070
(2) Habashy, Ramy R et al. “Anti-inflammatory effects of jojoba liquid wax in experimental models.” Pharmacological research vol. 51,2 (2005): 95-105. doi:10.1016/j.phrs.2004.04.011
(3) Al-Obaidi, Jameel R et al. “A review on plant importance, biotechnological aspects, and cultivation challenges of jojoba plant.” Biological research vol. 50,1 25. 24 Aug. 2017, doi:10.1186/s40659-017-0131-x
(4) Abdel-Mageed WM, Bayoumi SALH, Salama AAR, Salem-Bekhit MM, Abd-Alrahman SH, Sayed HM. Antioxidant lipoxygenase inhibitors from the leaf extracts of Simmondsia chinensis. Asian Pac J Trop Med. 2014;7:S521–S526. doi: 10.1016/S1995-7645(14)60284-4.
(5) Ranzato, Elia et al. “Wound healing properties of jojoba liquid wax: an in vitro study.” Journal of ethnopharmacology vol. 134,2 (2011): 443-9. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2010.12.042
(6) Wertz, P W. “Human synthetic sebum formulation and stability under conditions of use and storage.” International journal of cosmetic science vol. 31,1 (2009): 21-5. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2494.2008.00468.x