There are about as many carrier oils for natural skin care and hair care as there are stars in the sky. Before you get too overwhelmed by the possibilities, keep in mind that you only need a few favorites to accompany a simple beauty routine.
Organic Virgin Coconut Oil: The rich, decadent aroma of this oil will make it very hard to resist. While I am often tempted to slather myself in this oil from head to toe, I use just a few dabs as an extra conditioner whenever I wash my hair. Organic virgin coconut oil is moisturizing, but also astringent. Its light texture is great for everyday hair care and skincare.
Clockwise from top: rosehip seed oil, watermelon seed oil, tamanu oil.
Rose Hip Seed Oil: This highly moisturizing oil is as light as a feather and packed with antioxidants, making it an excellent base for facial serums and creams. Rose hip seed oil can also be used as an additive in facial masques, body oils, and oil cleansers.
Castor Oil: Castor oil is very thick and greasy. It may not seem like the kind of thing that you would want to put on your face, but it is a key ingredient for the oil cleansing method. It’s also a good choice for foot care. Castor oil is too greasy for use as a moisturizing ingredient on the rest of your body.
Watermelon Seed Oil: This miracle oil has a very pleasant texture that is nongreasy, and easily absorbed into the skin. Watermelon seed oil is an excellent ingredient to have on hand for almost any recipe, including scrubs, lotions, balms, body butters, and hair conditioners. Watermelon seed oil is relatively inexpensive compared to other specialty oils with similar properties, so I recommend keeping a good amount handy for general use.
Apricot Kernel Oil: Another excellent oil for daily use, apricot kernel oil is sometimes easier to find than watermelon seed oil. It makes a great base for almost any recipe, and can be used in both skin and hair care products.
Avocado Oil: This carrier oil is thicker and heavier than watermelon seed oil, but not nearly as greasy as castor oil, making it the perfect choice for adding extra conditioning power to recipes meant for dry skin or dry hair.
Jojoba: Scientifically speaking, jojoba is actually not an oil but a liquid wax. This unique ingredient mimics your skin’s natural sebum almost exactly. Sebum is the natural lubricant and protectant your body produces for the hair and skin. For this reason, Jojoba makes a great moisturizer, but just like sebum, jojoba oil can clog your skin if used too heavily.
Clockwise from top left: pink kaolin clay, dry; pink kaolin clay, wet, sea clay, wet; sea clay, dry.