It seems almost annually, a new crop producing miracle beauty ingredients pops up. The not so new kid, argan oil has been making it’s rounds, and is capturing the public’s eye. More often than not, I pay little attention to these kinds of trends, but I have to say, I find argan oil extremely intriguing.
Produced by the nuts of the argan tree, which grows so prominently in Morocco some have said it to be indigenous to the area. The oil is rumored to have restorative and age-defying effects, so much that suppliers all around the globe are scrambling to stock up. It is high in vitamin E, essential fatty acids, and smooth sensation is believed to repair, relieve, and eliminate all sorts of skin conditions. In a New York Times article, Liz Earle, who operates an organic skin-care line in England, said, when she first found pure argan oil, she brought it back to the U.K. analyze it, the results were so remarkably high in vitamin E and had these very interesting phytosterols, which are ideal for repairing scar tissue among so many other things including, that hard-to-define problem of lackluster skin. I know we have all heard claims such as these before, but still.
Pure argan oil is relatively new in America, but English and French tourists discovered it in Morocco years ago and has been a hidden treasure in the shops of Provence, while the more popular lavender and olive oils monopolized the market. Now, with the efforts of the Moroccan King Mohammed VI, who is consistently praised for his efforts to promote women’s rights, the oil is being promoted and exported worldwide. What does pure argan oil have to do with women’s rights? Ironically, that was my main source of intrigue.
It is Berber women who are solely responsible for gathering the nuts and producing the oil, and are doing so in “fair trade working cooperatives.” Outside organizations, such as the Monacan government, are setting the trend in the region, financially backing a system where women can work quarter to half days (allowing them to tend to their families) in exchange for more than fair wages and a great working environment. This has allowed an income for women producing pure argan oil and their families where there was so little before.
The assisting agencies are actively enforcing ecosystem reforestation projects that will aid in the preservation of the argan forest. They diligently participate in partnerships with the Water and Forests Authorities of Morocco to assist in optimal tree growth, pure argan nurseries, and create vocational programs. Active members of this community acknowledge the importance of argan trees and will continue to involve themselves with their protection. In fact, Unesco has designated the 10,000-square-mile pure-argan-growing region as a bio-reserve.
Even if you remove the benefits for beauty most would agree to purchase such a product like argan oil in support of women’s rights, but as the information continues to pour in from around the globe, I am beginning to believe the hype. I first tried products containing argan oil when I tested the Aveda Green Science line, but as much as I enjoy Aveda products, i found it quite difficult to tell what the true value of argan oil was since it had been just a single ingredient of many.
Most recently, I got the chance to test 100% pure argan oil from Eden a company who has started spit-testing it’s effects, and from “the horses mouth” it sure is something else. I have always been an avid user of oils on my skin, and this has proven to be even better. It has kind of a rich feeling, as it quickly absorbs to your skin. Now before you go out and buy the next bottle of pure argan oil, I will try it for a few weeks and document my results, as it may take some time before I notice a dramatic change, but for now, any improvement feels inevitable.