DERMATOLOGIST PICK FOR SEED OIL MOISTURISERS
Ingredient Spotlight: Tea Seed Oil
This is no surprise: plant oils have been in the spotlight for the benefits it can bring to your skin. With a variety of plant oils available, it is almost possible to find a right plant oil with the right blend of benefits to make a difference to your skin, be it dry, dehydrated, acne or others. Facial oils are also particularly appealing for those who need a right boost of moisture for your face, but you cannot seem to find a proper moisturizer to give the good dose.
A particular plant oil that we love is tea seed oil. Not to be confused with tea tree oil, tea seed oil is derived from the seeds of the camellia plant.
What is tea seed oil?
Camellias are woody shrubs that are found in Eastern Asia, and have been cultivated worldwide. In China, they are planted and cold-pressed for their oil-rich seeds to produce the edible tea seed oil. The plant is also grown in Western countries as an ornamental plant.
It is an edible oil with a sweet, herbal aroma. With a variety of benefits, tea seed oil is largely used as an ingredient for health, food and cosmetic products.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM, tea seed oil is used for treatment of stomachaches or burns. It is also consumed due to its acceptable taste and high antioxidant levels. The oil is normally used as a cooking oil due to its high quality and healthful properties.
A rich source of emollient for cosmetic preparation also makes it a popular ingredient in skincare. Emollients are concoctions of chemicals that help make the skin soft and pliable, increasing hydration.
Components of tea seed oil
Tea seed oil contains three major fatty acids – oleic, stearic and palmitic acids. 75 to 80 per cent of the oil is made of oleic acid. Oils with high oleic acid content are favoured as it is healthier, also conferring health benefits such as preventing cardiovascular diseases and cancer. Previous studies have shown how these fatty acids can improve skin activity such as anti-inflammation, wound healing and moisturizing effect.
Tea seed oil’s ability to reduce hyperpigmentation
Hyperpigmentation is one of the skin problems Asians face, with research conducted to investigate treatment methods. Most of us may be conscious of the dark spots on our faces, especially when it can be difficult to treat and hard to conceal. The process of hyperpigmentation occurs when there is an overproduction of a pigment called melanin. These pigment spots could be caused by excessive sun exposure. Another reason for hyperpigmentation can be due to melasma or chloasma, also known as ‘the mask of pregnancy’. This results from hormonal influences such as birth control pills or pregnancy. Effects of acne can also be scarring, leaving behind unsightly spots.
To save the day, we have a favourite ingredient: tea seed oil. This oil inhibits the enzyme that produces melanin, helping to decrease melanin content in your skin. With its ability to inhibit melanin production, it is a good skin lightening agent to use in cosmeceuticals.
Tea seed oil’s antioxidant activity
Tea seed oil possesses remarkable antioxidant activity, helping the skin cells to relieve stress and damage and prevent free radical-related diseases. The human body naturally contains free radicals and antioxidants to counter the damage.
According to Dr Teo Wan Lin, an accredited dermatologist at TWL Specialist Skin and Laser Centre, she says: “Free radicals also derive from external sources such as exposure to UV rays, smoking or pollutants. As the level of antioxidants in our body is not sufficient, there needs to be an external supply of antioxidants to reduce the damage that free radicals bring. Such damage could be the interference of important processes, leading to poor function of cells or cell death.”
With high levels of antioxidants, tea tree oil can help prevent damage caused by free radicals and minimize the signs of aging. Such exceptional antioxidant properties put tea tree oil in high regard in cosmeceuticals.
Products with tea seed oil
Incorporated with tea seed oil are our Mineral Booster™ and Vita C GOLD™ serum.
The serum is a stabilized form of vitamin C, and helps to revitalize dull skin. Fused with Camellia Sinesis Leaf Extract, or tea seed oil, the serum can help with dark spots effectively. Apply three drops to your face every morning.
The Mineral Booster™ is a refreshing mist to help boost absorption of your skincare products, suitable for tropical climates like Singapore. With the addition of tea seed oil, it allows the mist to be fused with high antioxidant ability for skin repair.
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