You’ve tried everything under the sun to support and care for your delicate complexion. Yet, nothing seems to work for your skin the way you hoped it would. Well, let us introduce you to one of our power player ingredients, Tamanu oil, one of nature’s most powerful skin regenerators. From acne prevention to wound healing to improving your overall health, tamanu oil contains powerful antioxidant and therapeutic properties that will have your skin glowing. Let’s take a deeper look at how this Polynesian secret can transform your skin care regimen.
What is Tamanu Oil?
Aptly enough, tamanu oil comes from the seed of the tamanu tree. The tamanu tree is native to the Pacific Islands. For centuries, natives used tamanu oil for skin conditions such as rheumatism, ulcers, and wounds.
Since then, tamanu oil has mostly remained a Southeast Asian treasure. Seeing as the trees only blossom twice a year, one tree only produces about 5 kg of oil per year.
After blossoming, tamanu seed pickers place the seeds in a moisture-free area. Here, the sun dries them out over an eight week period. This causes the seed to ooze sticky oil.
The dry seeds are mechanically cold-pressed to secrete the oil. For the best quality oil, natives pick kernels from trees closest to the saltwater-misted coast. That makes the Republic of Vanuatu a haven to harvest unfiltered seeds.
As a volcanic archipelago, the soil in Vanuatu is rich with unique nutrients that allow tamanu seeds to produce highly therapeutic oil. That’s why we use Tamanu oil from a high quality source in Vanuatu. Beware of black or dark brown versions of tamanu oil like the type produced in Vietnam. Highest quality oils, like those from Vanuatu, have a dark forest green color.
Skin Transformative Powers of Tamanu Oil
Tamanu oil is starting to make its mark in the skincare industry. That’s because this oil is such a versatile ingredient for many skincare needs. Let’s take a look at the many uses of tamanu oil for skin rejuvenation.
Tamanu Oil for Wounds
The biggest reason the Polynesian culture has used tamanu oil for skin care for so long is its wound healing abilities. Tamanu oil contains antibacterial and antibiotic properties, as well as exceptionally high counts of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.
Monounsaturated fats are great for improving heart health by introducing LDL cholesterol into your diet. LDL cholesterol balances out the heart-disease-inducing HDL cholesterol. While tamanu oil is used for cosmetic purposes, your body can still absorb the monounsaturated nutrients through your largest organ, the skin.
What really makes tamanu oil for skin care so effective is its high level of polyunsaturated fatty acids. These fats are essential because our body can’t produce them on their own. So, they must come from other sources such as tamanu oil.
Polyunsaturated fats are why tamanu oil for skin health is growing in popularity across the cosmetics world. That’s because polyunsaturated fats play a key role in cell membrane development. Therefore, the amino acids in these fats are essential in rejuvenating skin cells that result in wound closures.
Tamanu Oil for Acne
Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats play an even bigger role in making tamanu oil a great addition to skin care formulas. Up to one third of tamanu oil is composed of the monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid, also known as oleic acid. Studies have found that “Monounsaturated FFAs such as oleic acid, may disrupt skin barrier and act as permeability enhancers for other compounds present in plant oils.” Oleic acid is also responsible for providing deep moisture replenishment.
Oleic acid assists the skin in absorbing calophyllic acid. Calophyllic acid is a very unique terpene (organic compound found in plants) that is abundant in tamanu oil. Canophyllic acid has antibacterial properties that help fight off the inflammations behind acne flare-ups.
Making tamanu oil for skin care even more effective, this Polynesian secret is also rich in linoleic acid. While oleic acid is a monounsaturated fat that assists nutrients through the skin barrier, linoleic acid, an essential building block for ceramides, strengthens and supports skin barrier function, helps trap in the good nutrients and seals foreign chemicals out of the skin.
Tamanu Oil for Hyperpigmentation
Hyperpigmentation is a common condition where patches of skin become darker in color than the surrounding area. There are various causes of hyperpigmentation.
One of the most common causes of hyperpigmentation is overexposure to UV rays. Some individuals are more susceptible to hyperpigmentation, such as women with hormonal imbalances, many times caused by birth control or pregnancy, as well as people with darker skin tones.
Postinflammatory hyperpigmentation is another common form of hyperpigmentation, caused by skin conditions such as acne and various forms of dermatitis.
Studies show that Tamanu oil possesses anti-inflammatory activity due to its calophyllolide molecule, as well as antioxidant and UV protective properties.
Tamanu Oil for Sun Damage
As we mentioned, overexposure to UV rays may do a lot of damage to the skin. Two major antioxidants present in tamanu oil are coumarins and xanthones. These potent molecules help cell membranes maintain their integrity against free radicals caused by UV rays. In fact, one study found “85% of the DNA damage induced by UV radiations were inhibited with 1% Calophyllum oil.”
Tamanu Oil for Psoriasis
One of the most effective uses of tamanu oil for skin care is against psoriasis. Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that is further perpetuated by the presence of the bacteria strain, Staphylococcus aureus.
Studies have shown that oils extracted from Calophyllum inophyllum (CIO), the technical name for the tamanu tree, have “High antibacterial activity against bacteria involved in skin infections such as multi-drug resistant Staphylococcus aureus strain.”
Tamanu Oil for Wrinkles
And when it comes to wrinkles, prevention is key. As noted above, antioxidants protect your skin from UV and pollution induced damage, which can lead to premature signs of aging, aka accelerating the rate at which your skin develop wrinkles and age spots. Not only does Tamanu oil contain antioxidants which aid in wrinkle prevention, but also critical omega 3 and 6 fatty acids which aid in preventing TEWL (trans-epidermal water loss), which helps keep your skin looking plump and hydrated, reducing the look of deep wrinkles and fine lines.
Tamanu Oil for Skin Care
Tamanu oil may have been around for centuries, but its super powers are still being uncovered. As science has pointed out, this rare and powerful oil has so many therapeutic properties that can improve your skin. From combating acne to smoothing wrinkles, tamanu oil is a versatile addition to any skin care formula.
Shop The Blog!
Experience the transformative powers of Tamanu oil, found in all Root Science facial serums:
Your skin protects you, and at the end of the day, you too should protect your skin.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this blog are based on personal opinion and experience accumulated over the numerous years of being the in the natural skin care industry. The intent of this site is to present information and advice based on personal opinion and experience, and may differ with the experience of those reading this blog. The views and products expressed are not intended to treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Enjoy the Read? Want to stay up to date on all things Modern Purist?
Sign up for our newsletter below!
We’ll even send you 10% off your first purchase as our little welcome gift!