Prickly Pear Oil: Benefits for Skin + Beauty Products

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Prickly pear oil has exploded into a skincare star, and store owners are rushing to restock shelves as customers vie for the last jars. Cactus might seem like an odd addition to your skincare routine. But prickly pear isn’t your average cactus, and the beauty benefits of prickly pear oil for your skin are anything but ordinary.

This cactus fruit is packed with vitamin E, making it a powerful age- and acne-fighting force. Now, beauty gurus from Bismarck to Budapest are using prickly pear oil for skin care to put their wrinkles to rest.

So, read below to learn more about the benefits of prickly pear oil for your skin. Then, see five prickly pear beauty products to add to your skincare routine.

What is prickly pear oil, and what are its uses?

Prickly pear is used in skin care and cooking. Photo: See D Jan/Getty Images via Canva

Despite its name, prickly pear is unrelated to the pears you find in salads. Instead, it belongs to the cactus family.

But while prickly pear might look unwelcoming, all those thorns protect a soft core. Like its cousin, the dragon fruit, prickly pear is nourishing and skin-friendly. In fact, prickly pear contains more vitamin E than argan oil, says Victoria Health.

You can use the fruit for cooking, and you’ll find the oil in beauty products, including facial serums and hair conditioners. You can even use prickly pear as a carrier oil.

But bargain hunters, beware: this oil isn’t cheap.

Use prickly pear oil for skin care to soften wrinkles. Photo: AZCat/Getty Images via Canva

As its name suggests, the prickly pear fruit comes from the same-name cactus, native to Mexico, South America, and the Southwestern US. But Africa, Australia, and the Mediterranean produce the oil as well. (See six Mediterranean beauty treats for your skin and hair.)

Prickly pear oil is also called barbary fig or prickly pear seed oil. However, producing this oil is hard work.

Prickly pear for skin care and diet
Add prickly pear oil to your skincare routine to blast acne and wrinkles. Photo: Pernter/iStock

Prickly pear oil comes from the fruit’s seeds. According to health researchers, it takes about a ton of the fruit to produce one liter of oil, which is why prickly pear oil is so expensive.

But prickly pear oil makes a delightful addition to your beauty routine.

What are the benefits of prickly pear oil for skin?

Prickly pear oil for skin care is expensive because it takes one ton of fruit to make just one liter of prickly pear oil.
Use prickly pear oil for skin care to prevent and soften wrinkles. Photo: AleSal/iStock

Prickly pear oil benefits your skin in many ways. First, the oil is lightweight and won’t clog pores, even if you have acne-prone skin.

Second, according to Healthline, prickly pear oil has antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties, making it a powerful anti-acne and anti-aging aid.

In addition, prickly pear oil contains amino acids, omega fatty acids, and vitamins C and K. These nutrients brighten skin, boost collagen, fade dark spots, strengthen the skin’s barrier, and prevent water loss.

Make cactus fries, or use cactus oil for your face.
Another way to use this fruit: rub cactus oil on your face to soften wrinkles. Photo: Brebca/Getty Images via Canva

Omega fatty acids and vitamin E also calm inflammation, protect against UV damage, soften wrinkles, and speed healing time.

All these actions pave the way to youthful-looking skin. (See these anti-aging grapeseed oil beauty recipes.)

Which prickly pear oil is the best, and what should you look for when buying it?

prickly pear for skin care
Another prickly pear. Photo: vencavolrab/Getty Images via Canva

Opinions vary about which beauty brands are best, but most skincare experts agree that cold-pressed oils are the way to go. Unlike chemical processing, which strips the oil of its nutrients, cold pressing preserves the nutrients, ensuring higher quality.

Prickly pear fruit for skin care and beauty
Use prickly pear for your skincare routine. Photo: Remus86/iStock

Where you buy the oil also matters. For instance, some health and beauty experts say the world’s best prickly pear oil comes from Morocco because Moroccan prickly pear oil contains more nutrients than other varieties.

So, the bottom line? Choose cold-pressed oils, and do your research first.

Prickly Pear Beauty Products for Acne and Aging

Now, see below for five prickly pear oil beauty products to add to your skincare routine. Feel free to browse or follow the links to learn more.

Butt Naked Body Vegan Cactus Face + Hair Oil With Prickly Pear, $23

Prickly Pear face and hair serum by Butt Naked Body, an Australian beauty brand
Get an all-over glow with this Australian prickly pear oil for your face and hair. Photo: E. Morris

First, check out this decadent prickly pear oil by Butt Naked Body, a vegan, cruelty-free Australian beauty brand. This double-duty oil pumps life back into your face and hair.

Benefits: This superstar oil contains prickly pear, Kukui seed, sweet almond, and argan oils to revitalize your hair and skin. The cactus oil softens fine lines, fades dark spots, and locks in moisture, leaving your skin luminous.

This Australian prickly pear oil also strengthens, thickens, and hydrates your hair without the grease. Plus, vitamins A and C boost shine and restore energy to lackluster strands. (Also, pump up the shine with these six homemade hair masks)

How to use: Massage a few drops into clean skin morning and night. Or use it as a leave-in or overnight hair conditioner. Smooth three to five drops on wet hair, or apply to dry hair to lock in moisture and shine.

Moroccan Elixir Prickly Pear Seed Cactus Oil, $78.50

Moroccan Elixir Prickly Pear Cactus Oil for skin care
Try this Moroccan prickly pear oil, another anti-aging remedy. Photo: E. Morris

Next, soak up the skin-healing magic of the cactus with this Moroccan beauty delight. The age-erasing elixir contains prickly pear, orange, vanilla, and saffron oils to soothe your senses while delivering one wrinkle-blasting treat.

The cruelty-free Moroccan prickly pear oil suits all skin types and is safe for daily use.

Benefits: The cactus oil hydrates and brightens skin, softens wrinkles, evens skin tone, and erases stress and fatigue.

How to use: Warm three drops in your palms and massage into your clean skin morning and night. Use it alone or with other facial oils.

Mun Skin Aknari Brightening Youth Face/Neck/Eye Serum, $110

Prickly pear oil beauty product: Mun Skin Aknari Brightening Youth Serum
Mun Skin’s Aknari Brightening Serum is another anti-aging prickly pear oil to try. Photo: E. Morris

Rejuvenate your mind and skin with Mun Skin’s Aknari Brightening Youth Serum. This decadent beauty potion feels like a spa in a bottle. The heavenly fragrance delivers aromatherapy while prickly pear seed oil works magic on your skin.

Benefits: Argan, rose, and prickly pear seed oils combine into one luxurious anti-aging treat. Vitamin E and omega fatty acids soften wrinkles, repair sun damage, fade dark spots, and brighten the under-eye area, restoring radiance.

How to use: Apply to your clean face, neck, and under-eye area morning and night.

Lilfox Illuminating Face Nectar, $125

Lilfox Illuminating Face Nectar, a prickly pear oil beauty product for glowing skin
Lilfox Illuminating Face Nectar, with prickly pear/E. Morris

Another option? Drench your skin in this radiance-boosting cactus oil to reclaim the brighter you. The morning-sun-colored elixir melts away your troubles as it glides onto your skin with the elegance of morning dew.

Benefits: Prickly pear, Brazilian Tourmaline, pomegranate, hemp, and passion fruit oils deliver one intoxicating beauty treat. These oils plump, hydrate, and brighten your skin and soften fine lines, restoring skin’s vitality.

Plus, vitamins A and E protect your skin and reduce the appearance of pores. As a result, your skin reawakens and feels reborn.

How to use: Use it alone or combine it with moisturizer. Massage three drops into clean skin morning and night.

Kahina Prickly Pear Seed Oil, $150

Kahina Prickly Pear Seed Oil is another anti-aging beauty product.
Kahina is another prickly pear oil beauty product. Photo: E. Morris

Next, pamper your skin with Kahina Prickly Pear Seed Oil, another Moroccan beauty treat. Prickly pear seed oil is the only ingredient in this beauty oil, so your skin will adore it.

This 100% organic cactus oil suits all skin types and is safe for daily use.

Benefits: Amino acids, omega fatty acids, and vitamins E and K soften and brighten your skin, lighten under-eye circles, and fade discoloration.

How to use: Apply a few drops to your clean face and neck at bedtime. Use it alone or with moisturizer. 

Prickly Pear: Safety

Do not use prickly pear if you’re allergic, and talk to your doctor first if you have a medical condition.

Also, remove the skin and spines before eating the fruit, and go easy on those seeds, says WebMD. Eating too many could upset your stomach.

Final Thoughts

Prickly pear oil for skin
Prickly pear oil fights wrinkles, another benefit for skin. Illustration: Daria Ustiugova/iStock

Prickly pear oil benefits your skin in many ways: it fights acne, softens wrinkles, and leaves you fresh-faced and glowing.

Whether you use prickly pear oil alone or combine it with other oils, your skin will love the treat. So, treat your skin to this superstar beauty oil and rediscover the radiant you.

Now, enjoy your prickly pear oil—and your new skin—and check back for more beauty reviews and skincare tips.

This post first appeared on Beauty and Travel Reviews./Featured photo credit: Kateryna Bibro/iStock


20 thoughts on “Prickly Pear Oil: Benefits for Skin + Beauty Products

  1. I love this post because I’ve been wanting to get some prickly pear. It’s so dang expensive but I’m saving up!! I see Butt Naked Beauty on Pinterest and I’m most familiar with that brand so I might try it. The price is more in my range.

    1. Yes, Butt Naked Beauty has such a cute online shop, too. I love their prickly pear oil and rose clay mask. I recommend both if you haven’t tried them.

      Feel free to share your thoughts if you do splurge on that prickly pear serum! Thanks for stopping by.

What are your thoughts?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.