What You Need to Know About Rosehip Seed Oil
Rosa rubiginosa ~ Sweet Briar Rose
From this earthly gift of a plant, we obtain rose hip seed oil. Ever heard of it? Sometimes referred to as Rosa mosqueta, rosehip seed oil is kind of like a well-guarded secret… Used by Chileans for centuries, the amazing healing benefits of rosehip seed oil have only relatively recently been validated.
Photo Credit: heatheronhertravels.com
Now gaining popularity with the general public, this cold-pressed, sensitive, “dry” oil has thoroughly impressed the scientific community at large. Heather, from a Real Food Lover, accurately summarizes two important studies on rosehip seed oil:
The first major confirmation of its capabilities came in 1983, when the University of Santiago conducted research on 180 individuals. These tests studied people with extensive facial scarring, acne scarring, deep wrinkles, UV damage, radiation damage, burn scars, surgical scars, premature aging, dermatitis, and other skin related problems. In these tests, rosehip seed oil regenerated the skin, reduced scars and wrinkles, prevented the advancement of wrinkles and aging, and helped skin to regain its natural color and tone. Since this time, other universities and labs have also completed studies, also yielding positive results. Another well-known study in 1988 was conducted on twenty women between the ages of 25-35 with extensive premature aging to their skin. Their skin was wrinkled, and had sun spots from overexposure to the sun. After four months of applying rosehip seed oil daily, their wrinkles and sun spots had almost completely disappeared, and the skin had a fresher and healthier look.
With it’s amazing healing properties and ability to moisturize, this diversely capable oil is one you will want to be familiar with. I have only recently discovered it in the past year, and I assure you–it’s brilliant. I love it’s non-greasy, oil-free feel, and when I use it to moisture my skin; face and neck especially, it feels like my skin just took a big hydrating drink of water!
Most of the rose hips used for rose hip seed oil grow wild in the southern Andes although that is not the only habitat for the Sweet Briar, or Eglantine rose. It is a deciduous shrub with delicious apple-scented leaves. It is from the fruit, or “hip” of this plant that bears a tiny seed that is then pressed into rosehip seed oil that I (and others) so covet.
The rosehip seed is made up of 77% fatty acids. High in linoleic and linolenic acids, vitamin C, and vitamin A (retinol); all essential for skin and hair health, Rosa rubiginosa has been found to regenerate tissue and eliminate wrinkles, fine lines, scars, sun damage and stretch marks. The essential fatty acids it contains when absorbed through the skin, convert to prostaglandins which assist in cellular membrane and tissue regeneration.
Rosehip seed oil in short helps prevent premature aging, soothes, heals and moisturizes mature skin, and prevents the formation of keloid scar tissue, which is the characteristic thickening of the skin in scar formation.
It also helps to heal conditions such as:
- Age spots
- Brittle nails
- Burns, radiation and sun
- Dry and damaged hair
This amber-to-orange hued oil has a nutty scent and may be used ‘straight out of the bottle.’ It is perfect for use undiluted on the skin– even sensitive skin, but it is not recommended for those with acne or very oily skin, due to it’s high fatty acid content. It is safe, inexpensive and effective. It can also be used in many “kitchen cosmetics” recipes including creams, lotions, facial serums and massage oils. It should be kept refrigerated due to susceptibility to oxidization, even though it has a shelf life of two years. I buy it in bulk at my co-op, which sources it from Mountain Rose Herbs. You can also buy it from them directly, but their smallest size is 8 ounces. I like to re-bottle it into a smaller container and add carrot seed oil and vitamin E to improve it’s shelf life. (Carrot seed oil is also the best essential oil for rejuvenating skin). Aside from preserving the rosehip seed oil, you’ve just made an easy DIY facial serum There are many recipes out there where you can expound on facial serum creations, but with rosehip seed oil I prefer to keep it simple. I truly subscribe to the “if it ain’t broke–why fix it” motto, and rosehip seed oil definitely falls into that category. I usually take my rosehip seed oil ‘neat,’ but since you’ll likely already have the oil around, why not try these fun, homemade formulations:
Rosehip seed oil has become key in my facial care routine. Aside from its miraculousness, it’s simplicity and ease of use is something I truly appreciate. I LOVE that I can toss a tiny amount in a small bottle and take it anywhere.
Where can you get this stuff? Mountain Rose Herbs carries a high-quality, cold-pressed
rosehip seed oil.
Note: Cold Pressed is a method of mechanical extraction where heat is reduced and minimized throughout the batching of the raw material. This helps the oil maintain its original state, constituents, and depth. Temperatures are rigorously controlled to ensure that it does not exceed 80-90 degrees Fahrenheit. Although not a practical method of extraction for all vegetable oils on the market it is highly regarded as the extraction method of choice.