When creating Midnight Bouquet Beauty Cream I knew that one of the main ingredients had to be sweet almond oil. Sweet almond oil has been used as a beauty fluid for more than a thousand years and in the last century by actress Greer Garson and by First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy. According to Natural Living Ideas:
Almond oil had been used extensively for its health benefits and as a beauty aid much before science caught up with the goodness of this seed oil. Very popular in Southeast Asia and in the Mediterranean region where the Almond tree was first domesticated, the almond kernels and the nutty oil extracted from them were credited with promoting heart and skin health.Now we know that the oil is rich in Vitamin E, monounsaturated fatty acids, proteins, potassium and zinc, besides a number of other minerals and vitamins, which explains why it is so good for our heart, skin and hair.Almond oil comes in two variants; bitter and sweet. The bitter almond oil is extracted from the bitter almonds that contain a glycoside called amygdalin which turns into toxic hydrocyanic acid on processing. Most almond trees growing in the wild produce bitter almonds that have varying degrees of this glycoside. They can have fatal consequences if ingested. Bitter almond oil does have some medicinal properties, and may be pretty safe for external application, but is better avoided due to the high risk of poisoning.The sweet almond oil that comes exclusively from edible almonds (Prunus amygdalus var. dulcis) selectively cultivated for their sweet taste. It is the oil popularly used for skin and hair care. It has many culinary uses too. Let’s see how we can use this wonderful gift of nature to enhance our health and beauty.
Smooth, supple skin is a sign of youthfulness, but a structural protein called collagen is behind this flawless look. Collagen forms an even layer under the skin and acts as a good padding that keeps the skin taut, yet supple. Fine wrinkles start to appear as we age because of thinning of the skin and unevenness in the collagen padding underneath.It is an inevitable part of the natural aging process, but premature aging can result from excess exposure to sun, tobacco smoke, and dehydration. With proper protective measure and skin care, the aging process can be slowed down to some extent. Almond oil has a role to play here.Oxidative stress is one main reason for the deterioration of collagen layer. Almond oil contains Vitamin E, which is one of the most potent antioxidants known. It can help repair some of the damage done to the collagen layer. The oil is especially rich in proteins, and can provide the amino acids required for the formation of collagen. External application of the oil can prevent dehydration by reducing moisture loss from the skin. (Read more.)