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August 03, 2021
We know the first thought you might have regarding sunflower seed oil may be the bottle of cooking oil lying in your kitchen. Don’t get us wrong, it is a good oil for cooking purposes, but good quality sunflower seed oil actually has remarkable impact on skin, much more than you think in fact.
Not all sunflower seed oils, which are extracted from sunflower seeds and not the flowers, are created equal. Besides the origin of the actual sunflower seeds, how the oil is extracted can make a huge difference. Most conventional sunflower oils on the market are extracted through heat or chemical processes that would destroy the nutrients in the oil that benefit the skin. In other words, do not run out and buy a bottle of sunflower seed oil from your local supermarket and slather it on, as it will likely provide minimal skin benefits.
On the other hand, cold-pressed, unrefined sunflower seed oil, while less heat-stable (and therefore not good for cooking), retain more of its original nutrient content, which includes vitamins A, C, D, E, and K, essential fatty acids, minerals, amino acids, phospholipids, polyphenols, flavonoids and phytosterols etc. It is also lightweight, non-greasy, non-comedogenic, and easily absorbed by the skin, thus making it amazing for topical use.
Sunflower seed oil is rich in omega-6 and -9, as well as ceramides and phospholipids. They have been shown to help maintain the skin barrier and decrease trans-epidermal water loss, both of which are important in soothing dry skin, and skin issues such as eczema and atopic dermatitis. In fact, it works so well in improving skin barrier function recovery that studies have shown its effect lasts for over 5 hours after application.
One special thing about sunflower seed oil lies with its unsaponifiables. This precious part of sunflower oil stimulates the synthesis of epidermal key lipids and works to stimulate the synthesis of key proteins such as filaggrin, a protein living in our corneocytes that is essential to keep the skin/barrier healthy and to provide key elements to our Natural Moisturising Factor. This is particularly important to eczema sufferers, as studies have shown that some eczema sufferers genetically lack filaggrin in their skin.
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MARIE REYNOLDS LONDON
Elixir™ <- Click to shop
Several studies have suggested that sunflower seed oil has anti-inflammatory properties, as its content can convert to arachidonic acid, which leads to prostaglandin E2, an inflammatory modulator, thereby minimizing the overdrive of inflammatory responses in the skin. When inflammation decreases, symptoms like redness and itchiness also subside. This makes sunflower seed oil an excellent ingredient for treating inflammatory skin problems like eczema, dermatitis, and even acne.
In fact, a study of 497 pre-term infants deemed high-risk for sepsis were given application of sunflower seed oil three times daily versus a petroleum-based moisturizer. The results show a reduction of sepsis by 41 percent, and 26 percent reduction in mortality for the sunflower seed oil group. No adverse events were reported either.
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Another reason sunflower seed oil is excellent for inflammatory skin conditions is due to its wound healing abilities. Indeed, studies have found topic application of sunflower seed oil accelerates healing process thanks to its wide array of amino acids, essential fatty acids, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
A study has shown that topical application of sunflower seed oil for three days reduced wound area by 300%. Subsequent results at the 7th and 21 days were also statistically significant——the wound area was smaller and wound contraction was higher, whereas granulation tissue increased faster, and the epidermis was completely recovered, compared with control wounds.
holi(cleanse) Cleansing Face Oil <- Click to shop
Free radicals are the number one cause of aging, as they damage healthy skin cells, cause collagen and elastin breakdown, resulting in fine lines, wrinkles, and premature aging. Unfortunately, an average person is exposed to 100,000 - 300,000 free radicals from UV radiation, pollution, dust, pesticides, alcohol, cigarette smoke, food, excessive exercises, and inflammation per day, which means we need antioxidants to counteract and neutralize these free radicals.
Sunflower seed oil contains many types of antioxidants, such as Vitamins, A and E, and polyphenols, and can therefore reduce the rate of oxidation by reacting with a variety of free radicals in a multi-pathway approach.
Supreme Seed Delicate Purification Mask <- Click to shop
Our skin naturally produces less collagen and elastin as we age, while collagen and elastin breakdown can be accelerated by numerous factors such as UV rays, free radicals, and inflammations. The two combined can result in fine lines and wrinkles, and premature aging.
Sunflower seed oil naturally help increase collagen production, while protecting the skin’s existing collagen and elastin to prevent fine lines and wrinkles from forming. Skin is thus more toned, smoothed, and youthful looking.
holi(body) Ageless Body Serum <- Click to shop
Although it cannot replace sunscreen, sunflower seed oil will help prevent skin cell damage caused by UV rays, as the high vitamin E content acts as a natural sunscreen which can absorb UVB. On the other hand, the oil itself can form a protective barrier to shield the skin from harmful UV rays, whilst boosting the efficacy of the sunscreen you are using.
MARIE REYNOLDS LONDON
Goji Mallow Cleanse™ <- Click to shop
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