This lovely specimen is a camellia (variety: Brushfield's yellow) and flowering in my garden at this moment. It's a magnificent bush especially when in full bloom and it started me wondering about the benefits of camellia oil.
A little investigation was called for.
Some time ago I bought a small bottle of Camellia Tea Oil (Oleifera) - a light green oil extracted from the leaves of the camellia tea plant. It seems that this oil has been known to the Chinese since ancient times, largely due to the wealth of properties and benefits it provides. To name but a few:-
- Emollient. The oil is exceptionally high in Oleic acid (Omega 9) and thus is a brilliant moisturiser being light and easily absorbed by the skin.
- Being high in Oleic acid means that it is a good anti-oxidant which resists rancidity.
- Anti-Aging - helps protect the skin from free radical damage
- Anti-microbial - noted for its anti-fungal properties
- Astringent - mildly astringent and therefore good at treating scars
- Anti-inflammatory - helps reduce skin inflammations
I should also add that Chinese women have been using Camellia oil for centuries on their hair and I can can see this fast becoming the new Argan oil.
However, for the time being I am using it for the products that I make on a regular basis and so far have added it to soap, a facial moisturiser and a skin treatment balm. I also plan to formulate a foot cream since its anti-fugal and emollient properties seem ready-made for this.
The soap is still at the curing stage so as yet I've not been able to test it but the formulation I've used will create a hard creamy bar with excellent cleansing and conditioning properties.
The moisturiser also contains wonderful meadow-foam seed and apricot kernel oils and is scented delicately with essential oils of rose absolute and rose geranium whilst for the balm, I've teamed camellia oil with skin-repairing rosehip seed so what a combination we have here!
No wonder I'm excited!!
I've added a lip balm to the range. With such fantastic emollient properties it was a no-brainer.