When it comes to skincare, I’m a bit of a purist. I love one-ingredient products – coconut oil is great for removing make-up, apple cider vinegar mixed with water is a wonderful toner for your body… but I haven’t really mentioned jojoba oil*. Here’s why it’s one of my top picks for a simple, natural skincare routine.
First, it’s probably a good idea to explain why jojoba is great for certain skin types, but terrible for others. You may have come across the terms linoleic and oleic acids – these are natural chemicals that feature in varying amounts in plant-based oils. If you really want to go into it, both are unsaturated fatty acids, where oleic is omega-9, and linoleic is omega-6.
Our skin naturally produces a certain amount of both of these oils, which can either be a help or a hindrance. For example, certain types of acne are caused by a deficiency in linoleic acid in the skin’s sebum, i.e. natural oils. Applying oils therefore is a great way to balance your skin’s sebum production and hopefully reduce any kind of inflammation, whether it be oily or dry skin.
The golden rule is to use oils high in linoleic acids if you have oily skin, and use oils high in oleic acids if you have dry skin. I found this article by Dawn Michelle really useful in figuring out which oils are best – and it turns out, jojoba is a perfect match for my skin type, as I’m a mix between dry cheeks and and oily t-zone.
As a head’s up, jojoba oil only has a subtle grassy scent, which quickly subsides after application too. In this way, it’s a perfect base to mix with other stronger-smelling natural oils, such as tea tree oil to apply to spots, or eucalyptus oil* for headaches (eucalyptus oil is what they put in Vicks! After all these years, I now know exactly what that childhood nighttime smell is made from!).
In fact, as a carrier oil it’s extremely versatile and I’m planning on applying it in the tips of my hair after washing instead of my regular almond oil (another carrier oil) too. My boyfriend uses a mix of jojoba oil with other lovely smelling oils for his beard too! And it can also be used as a simple moisturiser, or even make up remover too.
Finally – it’s pronounced ‘ho-ho-ba’! It’s taken me 22 years to realise this, and I still think ‘yo-yo-ba’ sounds nicer, but whatever – it’s a miracle oil, I’m not going to argue!