The camellia mesmerizes, with striking white, pink, and red ruffled petals reminiscent of a tropical island. But this stunning flower doesn’t come from Kauai; it hails from China and Japan.
Also called the Japanese rose, the camellia was once the flower of society’s elite, but today, it enjoys global popularity. Still, the comely camellia promises more than pretty décor.
Camellia oil comes from the cold-pressed seeds of the same plant, the Camellia japonica. According to the American Camellia Society, more than 200 camellia plants exist, but Camellia japonica is most often used in beauty.
In addition, according to Tatcha skincare founder Vicky Tsai, camellia oil has been a favorite geisha beauty secret for over 300 years. Tsai tells Byrdie Magazine even today’s geishas use camellia oil to combat aging and keep their skin and hair silky.
This magical oil isn’t only for geishas, though. See below for five reasons your skin and hair need camellia oil, and learn how to add it to your beauty routine.
1. Camellia is packed with skin- and hair-friendly nutrients
Camellia japonica oil contains a potent cocktail of nutrients that rejuvenate your skin and hair. According to Oleo Botanicals and beauty retailer MyKirei by Kao, camellia oil is rich in oleic, linoleic, and palmitic essential fatty acids. In addition, the oil contains squalane, calcium, potassium, and vitamins A, B, D, and E.
Together, these nutrients fight aging and nourish, protect, and repair your skin and hair.
2. Camellia boosts shine and may work faster than coconut oil
According to long-time fans, camellia oil lends hair brilliant shine. Jennifer Thomson, a marketing associate, says she switched to this oil after years of conditioning her hair with coconut oil.
“I’ve been pretty amazed by how shiny my hair looks,” she says. “After comparing results from both oils, I’ve found my hair looks shinier and feels softer after using camellia oil. I used to leave coconut oil on my hair overnight, but I get similar results after using camellia oil for an hour or two.”
However, results may vary, so you might want to experiment to see which oil works best for you.
3. Camellia oil keeps skin smooth and youthful
Popular in anti-aging skin care, camellia oil helps keep skin smooth and wrinkle free. According to Oleo Botanicals, the oil hydrates your skin’s deepest layers to fight wrinkles and environmental damage. Better yet, the oil lends skin a silky texture while making it look refreshed.
4. Camellia oil is hydrating and lightweight
Camellia japonica oil hydrates your skin and hair without weighing down hair or leaving skin greasy. Another benefit? The oil also hydrates skin while locking in moisture to prevent water loss.
According to MyKirei by Kao, camellia oil weighs about the same as your skin’s natural sebum, so your skin absorbs it right away. Plus, the oil’s lightweight texture prevents you from leaving behind the grease trail that you would when using other oils.
Sabbatical Beauty’s Asian Powerhouse Serum is one product to try. I can personally vouch for it after buying it two weeks ago. I’ve already noticed a brighter, more rested appearance, and I’ve been impressed with the results.
This serum contains a powerful blend of camellia oil, ginseng, turmeric, mushroom and goji berry extracts, and other nutrients.
Camellia oil hydrates skin, ginseng brightens, and sake evens skin tone and helps fade scars. In addition, turmeric and mushroom extract fight inflammation and aging.
To use, apply after cleansing and combine with other serums, as needed.
Tatcha’s Gold Camellia Beauty Oil ($98) is another product to try. You can use it as a body, face, or hair oil.
This beauty potion contains camellia oil and squalane (from olives), which nourish and hydrate your skin and hair. In addition, green tea, macadamia, licorice, algae, and rice extracts brighten skin and repair your hair.
To use, apply two or three drops to your skin and hair, day and night. Also, try this beauty trick: apply two or three drops to a beauty blender, and dab it on the tops of your cheekbones to give your skin an insta-glow.
You can also use the oil to smooth uneven self-tanner. Or dab the oil on your eyelids to make your eyes pop.
5. Camellia strengthens and protects hair
Another benefit? This nourishing oil strengthens, protects, and smooths hair while taming flyaways and frizz. To use, apply the oil to dry hair, concentrating on the areas where you need it most.
Or you can use the oil as an overnight treatment. Just apply it to your hair before bedtime, and then rinse it before shampooing in the morning.
Cocojojo’s camellia oil is one product to try. Prices start at $15.99, with sizes ranging from 8 oz. to a gallon. Use at least once per week for best results, and you’ll see shinier hair in no time.
Camellia oil is a versatile beauty product that’s convenient to keep on hand. Use it to nourish and hydrate your skin, tame flyaways and frizz, and ward off wrinkles and aging.
You can even use the oil as an overnight hair treatment to soften hair and boost shine.
Now, enjoy your new skin and hair, and check back for more beauty tips and recipes.
Featured image credit: Kyoshino / iStockPhoto
Note: The ideas presented here do not substitute for medical advice. Please consult your doctor before trying new products or starting a new skincare routine.
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