There are some ingredients that will only work for certain skin types.
Some will be the holy grail for a few skin conditions and dreadful to others.
You’ll swear by some during the summer season and call them underperformers during the winter. We do however believe that there are several ingredients out there that do support you, even when life isn’t perfect and you’ve eaten too much chocolate, had too much wine, or stayed up so very, very late.
Tiny little powerhouses that offer some TLC to almost any skin type and even a few skin conditions.
They might not offer you picture perfect skin, but boy, howdy, they’ll support the hell out of it.
Sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides)
This little hero graces many of our products. With approximately a 190 bioactive substances, sea buckthorn oil is a cosmetic force to be reckoned with.
Its power lies in its ability to heal the root cause of skin imbalances by regenerating the skin from the inside out. It’s a strong antioxidant that will help you fight free radicals, rebuild cells, and delay cell ageing.
Because it so deeply nourishes the skin from the inside out it will improve the skin’s elasticity and structure and limit excessive water loss, causing the skin to look lush and properly hydrated.
As it works on such a deep level it can support wound healing, and reduce scars and discolourations.
It’s even helpful in protecting the skin (and cells) from radiation, healing radiation burns, as well as aiding in recovery after chemotherapy.
If all that sounds too good to be true then remember that the abundance of bioactive substances present in sea buckthorn cause it to be so multidirectional in its use.
Amongst its active ingredients are complex lipids which soften the epidermis, improve skin elasticity, and accelerate skin renewal. It has approximately 14 vitamins: A, B complex vitamins (B1, B2, B6), C (a whopping 900%), E, F, K, P, several others, as well as provitamin A (alpha- and beta-carotene), and a mixture of other carotenoids like zeaxanthin and lycopene, strong antioxidants (tocopherols and tocotrienols), and flavonoids (approximately 36 types).
Honestly, it’s quite the lengthy list (see resources for the scientific research) and what it comes down to is that sea buckthorn is jam packed with a ton of good stuff and it is quite worthy of giving it a spot in your skincare.
If you’re wondering where this miracle berry hails from, you don’t have to look far, it’s native to Europe and some parts of Asia. Its common name refers to its growing habit, in Europe it tends to grow near the sea where not many plants will compete for space amongst the sandy soil and salt spray.
Within Asia, it grows in semi-deserts, where once more not many plants will be competing for resources.
The organic sea buckthorn essential oil we sell from Living Libations is a supercritical CO2 extract from the berries of the Hippophae rhamnoides plant.
It’s highly concentrated, pure, and stays stable and potent despite the fragility associated with the oil.
- Over a 190 bioactive ingredients, making it a cosmetic powerhouse.
- Suited to all skin types.
- It heals the root causes of skin imbalances by regenerating the skin from the inside out.
- Heavily researched radiation protection.
- Significant liver protector (hepatoprotective).
A word of warning: it is best to use sea buckthorn oil diluted since it’s rich in orange coloured pigments and will stain any fabric it comes into contact with.
Though not as bad as turmeric might stain, it’s still best to make sure that the products you’re using have been properly absorbed into your skin before you come near any kind of light-coloured fabric.
Jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis)
Jojoba, pronounced ho-HO-bah, is native to North America and grows in Southern California, Arizona, and Utah.
As a drought resistant evergreen shrub, Jojoba prefers a desert to semi-desert as its growing habitat.
The scientific name for Jojoba, Simmondsia chinensis, would make you think it’s native to China, as chinensis means ‘from China’ or ‘native to China’, but the name is simply a mishap.
Every now and then you simply get a plant name that doesn’t make a lick of sense and they don’t always get corrected afterwards.
This little mix up was due to a misreading of a collection label, the label said ‘Calif’ which was interpreted as China—you can blame that on illegible handwriting or a distraction.
Jojoba has the interesting quality that even though it looks and feels like a light-weight oil, it’s actually a liquid wax and its composition is quite close to the composition of our own sebum.
This close resemblance means that it’s excellent for dry skin as it readily absorbs into the epidermis and for those with an overactive sebum production (oily skin, clogged pores, acne) it tells your skin to chill out and ease down on the oil production and break outs.
Making it a highly effective moisturiser to all skin types.
Jojoba has traditionally been used to moisturise skin and hair, treat dry scalp and dandruff, to detangle and condition hair, unclog blocked follicles, to clear acne, and to fade the appearance of scars and stretch marks.
It’s also widely used as a massage oil and as a base for essential oils. The texture of jojoba is almost satin like, delicate to sensitive skin, and isn’t known as an irritant, so experiment and see what it can do for your own skin and hair.
The organic jojoba oil we sell from Living Libations is cold pressed from the seeds of the Simmondsia chinensis grown in the United States.
Unlike refined and chemically processed jojoba our oil has a faint nutty scent to it. So, if you’ve been bit overwhelmed as to how to take care of dry and sensitive skin without overworking it and setting off a breakout, why not try jojoba.
It will work as a cleanser—as it readily softens the excess sebum in clogged pores—and it will deeply hydrate your skin when used as a moisturiser without weighing your skin down.
- Excellent moisturiser to all skin types due to its close resemblance to sebum.
- Quick absorption into the skin.
- Natural emollient, deeply moisturising and soothing to the skin .
- Excellent for dry skin, scalp, and hair.
- Dissolves excess sebum (clearer pores and treats acne).
- Makes a great carrier oil.
Tamanu (Calophyllum inophyllum)
Tamanu, native to Polynesia, Melanesia, and some parts of Southeast Asia, has been used for centuries for the cosmetic and medicinal benefits it offers.
It’s traditionally and still used as a beautifying and healing agent, treating a number of skin conditions like severely dry skin acne, acne scars, rashes, burns, eczema, general scarring, age spots, and other skin blemishes, as well as sunburn, psoriasis, and inflammation.
Nutrient-rich and stuffed with anti-inflammatory agents it delivers healing deep within the skin’s layers stimulating the skin to heal faster.
Tamanu oil is derived from the fruit of the tamanu tree. It blooms twice a year, sporting pretty and rather fragrant flowers, which once pollinated develop into clusters of yellow and round fruit with a large nut in its midst.
The fruit is left to dry on the tree where it naturally falls off the branches when it’s ready. The dried fruit is collected, the nut removed, and left out to dry in the sun for two months to develop its rich oil.
After which it goes through cold pressing, with each nut offering up a few drops of oil. A full grown tree yields about 100kg of fruit of which 18 kg ends up as oil.
Outside of its cosmetic and healing use, the tree is appreciated for its beauty and its sweet scented flowers and is planted as an ornamental as well.
The wild and certified organic tamanu oil we sell from Living Libations is cold pressed from the seeds of the Calophyllum inophyllum tree grown in Madagascar.
The oil smells nutty and has a light yellow to green colour similar to olive oil. We recommend adding a few drops to jojoba (dilution of 5-15%) to create a soothing serum for scars, acne, and rashes.
- Healing damaged skin.
- Topical healing agent.
- As a protectant against environmental stress.
- Suited to both dry, acne prone, and oily skin.
- Beneficial to several skin conditions like eczema, acne and acne scars, psoriasis, skin rashes, dermatitis, age spots, and general scarring.
Black Cumin Seed (Nigella sativa)
Black Cumin is native to Southern Europe, North Africa, and Southwest Asia.
It’s an annual flowering plant that belongs to the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae) with fragile flowers and finely divided, linear leaves.
Each plant produces numerous seeds, black on the outside and white on the inside and its scientific name roughly means cultivated black seed.
It has a long documented history in several cultures and traditional healing systems and has been heavily researched for its broad spectrum biological and therapeutic potential.
The reason black cumin packs such a medicinal and healing punch is the presence of its main constituent, thymoquinone, which has been intensively researched in its own right.
Thymoquinone has been proven to support the liver from damage (hepatoprotective) and contains anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, cytoprotective (protects cells from harmful agents), and anti-cancer properties.
So far in the research that has come out (over 400+ scientific papers on PubMed), Nigella sativa comes out as a powerful broad spectrum pharmacological aid.
Due to its potent antibacterial properties, black cumin is a powerful aid in combating skin conditions like acne, blemishes, and clogged pores. As well as an aid in any skin disorder caused by bacteria.
Its rich profile of bioactive substances makes it an extremely nourishing and powerful oil, suited to treat oily and acne prone skin. And even though it’s mighty at combating acne, it still won’t dry out your skin or cause any irritation.
The black cumin seed oil we sell from Living Libations is a supercritical CO2 extract from the seeds of the Nigella sativa plant grown Egypt. Delivering a pure and potent end product that’s almost identical to the chemical profile of the raw plant.
In our experience the oil is non-sensitising, meaning it won’t irritate your skin when you use it to treat your acne and blemishes.
- Contains thymoquinone, which has been intensely researched for its wide spectrum
- support to the body including hepatoprotective (the ability to prevent damage to the liver), anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, cytoprotective (protects cells from harmful agents), and anti-cancer properties.
- Great for acne and skin impurities.
- Soothes inflammation.
- Powerful anti-bacterial and anti-microbial.
If you’d like to include black cumin seeds into your diet, keep in mind that they look more like black sesame seeds than they do cumin seeds.
If you’re confused as to what your buying simple look for the scientific name: Nigella sativa.
The seeds taste rather aromatic and pungent, with an identifiable onion like flavour to them.
You might actually know them from the little black seeds they add as flavouring to naan bread.
Turmeric (Curcuma longa)
Turmeric has a long history of cultivation in India and Southeast Asia.
It’s related to ginger (Zingiber officinale), cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum), and galangal (multiple species) which all belong to the ginger family (Zingiberaceae) and are known for their long use within both medicine and cooking.
Turmeric is a perennial herb, meaning it doesn’t have to be replanted each year, it doesn’t set to seed but multiplies (propagates) through its root system called rhizomes.
Quite interestingly, turmeric is only known as a domesticated plant and the species we love didn’t develop in the wild.
The rhizomes of the Curcuma long plant have a long tradition of use, both as a spice, a medicine, and as a dye. It’s vibrant, bright yellow to orange colour is a sight to behold and if you’ve ever cut open a piece of turmeric you know just how much this baby stains.
Turmeric has been used in India for centuries as a spice, as a dye, and as a medicine without any known side-effects.
Though turmeric is made up of a wide range of bioactive substances, the most relevant would appear to be the phytochemical, curcumin, which is responsible for giving turmeric its vibrant colour.
Therefore the research done on turmeric has mostly focused on curcumin, which has been shown to exhibit antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and anticancer activities making it a potential ally against various diseases and afflictions.
You can find curcumin as a standardised extract, but it does seem that adding the whole rhizome to your diet offers more benefits than just its curcumin concentration.
Plus, you can’t deny that it makes a colourful addition to your food.
As a natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory it will combat acne and blemishes and tame down break outs and flare ups that your skin might go through.
More, so turmeric is actually known for reducing redness and evening out the skin tone. It’s a natural liver protectant and beneficial to your whole digestion, and those with a well-working digestion tend to have brighter and less congested skin.
The turmeric essential oil we sell from Living Libations is a supercritical CO2 extract from the rhizomes of the Curcuma longa plant cultivated in Indonesia.
Keep in mind that if you’re going to mix turmeric essential oil into your skincare that it stains (on the skin only temporary), so make sure you properly dilute it and that it’s fully absorbed into your skin before you come near any kind of fabric you hold dear.
- Liver protectant
- Digestive aid
- Evens out skin tone and tones down redness
- Helpful in treating acne and blemish as it tones down redness and has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities.
Just remember that no matter how miracle this or miracle that any ingredient might, you’re not a dime a dozen, if something doesn’t work for you, no matter how many people preach its benefits, just leave it be.
Also, you can treat your skin with all the good stuff you can find but if you’re not getting enough sleep, binging on crap food, you can slather away and no amount of holy grail ingredients will make a true difference.
Honestly, look after your insides, bounce about, get plenty of Omega-3’s, ease down on the sugar and the caffeine, and stuff your plate with greens…and you know a bunch of other good stuff that will nourish your body just right
Still confused on which of our products will suit your skin the best or simply can’t figure out which products to try, shoot us an email and we’re more than happy to help you out.
About the Author
Julie is a writer and illustrator from Antwerp, Belgium where she spends a great
deal of time trying to construct the perfect sentence and rethinking her choice in colours—both in her closet and her illustrations.
You can find her work over on www.juliesmits.com
The Hungry Child is a study of our personal and collective experience of the natural world.
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- A. C. Dweck and T. Meadowsy. ’Tamanu (Calophyllum inophyllum) – the African, Asian, Polynesian and Pacific Panacea’. International Journal of Cosmetic Science, 2002, 24, 1-8
- Aggarwal BB, Sundaram C, Malani N, Ichikawa H. ‘Curcumin: The Indian Gold’. Adv. Exp. Med Biol 2007; 595: 1-75.
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We here at Dutch Health Store are honoured that Living Libations has chosen to work with us in becoming their largest EU distributor. We offer their entire range of skin care, hair care, dental care, and close to their entire range of essential oils. More than feeling honoured to work with Nadine and Ron, we’re proud that we can offer this nourishing line of whole body care to an EU audience. So, go out and explore what we have on offer and feel free to get in touch with us with any request or questions you might have. We’re here to help.