Aromatherapy
Apricot

Prunus armeniaca

Apricot oil, also known as apricot kernel oil, is light, unscented oil obtained by pressing the kernel or seed of apricot (scientific name Prunus armeniaca). Apricot oil is generally used for massage. However, this oil is versatile, offering numerous health benefits, subject to the manner in which one opts to use it.

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Apricot kernel oil belongs to the family that also includes almond oil and possesses similar properties. This oil has a long shelf life and does not decompose. Apricot oil is also odourless. Since it is thin, nourishing oil having a light yellow hue, apricot kernel oil is quickly absorbed by the skin, thereby making it outstanding for use as carrier oil with your essential oil. Apricot oil is a natural skin moisturizer that soothes the skin, while making it softer. It has been found to suit various types of skin. Apricot kernel oil contains linoleic, oleic, and linolenic acid. Using this oil has several health benefits, including tissue regeneration, neutralizes wrinkles and, at the same time, maintains the normal tone of the skin. This oil is especially beneficial for people who have aged prematurely, and having dry, sensitive, inflamed skin. You can add apricot oil to your preferred face and foot creams, bath oils, body lotions and massage oils. You can use apricot kernel oil in a 100 percent solution. Alternatively, this oil can also be used as a base.

Apricots have their origin in Armenia. However, some people believe that the fruit may have originally come from China. Currently, apricots are extensively cultivated in Central Asia and the Mediterranean region. Turkey now produces the largest amount of apricots worldwide. The seeds of this fruit enclose an elevated proportion of oil. Many believe that the practice of extracting oil from apricot seeds dates back to ancient times. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) refers to the use of apricot kernel oil for curing ulcers and tumours. With time, this use of apricot oil spread all over the place and during the 17th century, people in England used this oil for this purpose. In fact, apricots themselves are wonderful for treating several health conditions. Apricots have a very high dietary fiber content and, hence, consuming only a handful of the dried fruit can provide relief from constipation.

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Generally, the color of pure apricot kernel oil is pale green. However, it may also be somewhat deeper yellow subject to the type of apricots that have been used to extract the oil. Most people say that apricot kernel oil is odourless, but it does have a light nutty scent. This oil has a nutty flavour, something akin to that of almonds. Apricot kernel oil is perfectly suited for making confections such as marzipan.

Apricot kernel essential oil is generally produced in large amounts and, hence, it is easily available at the pharmacies as well as natural health stores. However, the prices of apricot oil may differ depending on several factors, including the manner in which the oil was extracted from apricot seeds and whether or not it is of good quality. People having an individual or family history of nut allergies can also use this essential oil without being concerned about allergic reaction. Although the color and texture as well as the price of this oil are similar to that of the sweet almond oil, it does not have the latter's tendency to cause allergic reactions. In general, apricot oil has a longer shelf life compared to the other oils that are used commonly.

Apricot kernel oil is best known for its properties that are wonderful for treating the skin. Although several people love to consume the flavourful and extremely nourishing apricots, most are not aware that the seeds of this fruit contain very important natural substances that can be utilized for extracting a natural essential oil. This oil, called the apricot kernel oil, is obtained by a process known as cold pressure and it can be employed for treating a variety of health condition. In effect, apricot kernel oil possesses several medicinal properties.

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The essential oil extracted from apricot kernels contains elevated amounts of natural vitamins, especially vitamins A and E, which are essential vitamins for our skin. It also encloses essential fatty acids, vital minerals and a number of other nutrients. There are two reasons why apricot kernel oil is considered to be magical. First, it is readily absorbed by our skin with any oily feeling or leaving any trace. Second, use of this oil does not result in allergic reactions even in people having extremely sensitive skin and can also be used in products meant for babies. Apricot kernel oil has moisturizing, soothing and nourishing effects on our skin. In addition, this oil also possesses cooling, anti-inflammatory and other therapeutic properties.

Different from various other essential oils, apricot kernel essential oil has a fine texture, but is odourless. In order to obtain optimal health benefits of apricot kernel oil, it is advisable that you use it as massage oil. This oil is highly beneficial for people with dry, prematurely aged or sensitive skin. Using apricot kernel oil for regular massages or in the form of face mask will help to rejuvenate, invigorate as well as moisturize the skin. At the same time, this essential oil also helps to tone up the skin and make it more supple and clear, thereby preventing any kind of irritation and promoting blood circulation.

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Apricot kernel essential oil can be used to treat a number of skin conditions, especially those related to the facial skin. At the same time, it moisturizes as well as rejuvenates your neck and hands. Practitioners of Chinese traditional medicine used this essential oil for curing symptoms related to asthma and also to prevent tumour formation. Apricot essential oil also offers anti-inflammatory benefits and is effectively used for treating severe skin problems like acne, dermatitis and eczema. In addition, you can use apricot kernel oil for nourishing the scalp as well as putting off hair loss, as this oil helps to strengthen the hair follicles. This is the main reason why apricot essential oil often forms an important ingredient of a variety of shampoos, hair care products, lotions and many such items. It has been found that the essential oil extracted from apricot kernels blends completely with nearly all other essential oils known to us.

Several different varieties of cosmetics as well as personal care products, such as creams, ointments, lotions, shampoos, soaps, and conditioners, contain apricot kernel oil. Different from some types of oils that stay behind on the skin's surface, this essential oil is rapidly and completely absorbed by the skin without any trace or greasy remains. In case you feel that your skin becomes itchy and dry after bathing or taking a shower, apricot kernel oil is ideal to overcome the problem. Simply apply this oil to your skin lightly prior to towelling off.

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As apricot kernel essential oil possesses moisturizing properties and is rapidly absorbed by the skin, it is commonly used in the form of massage oil. Use of superior quality apricot kernel oil can augment the benefits of massage considerably. The benefits of massaging with good quality oil include alleviation of pain, stress and inflammation. At the same time, use of apricot kernel essential oil gives one an overall feeling of health and happiness. Moreover, this essential oil is extremely mild and its use does not result in skin irritation, thereby making it ideal massage oil for children as well as infants.

General properties

  • anti-inflammatory
  • cooling
  • moisturizing
  • nourishing
  • soothing

Blends well with

General uses

  • acne
  • asthma
  • dermatitis
  • eczema
  • hair loss
  • hair problem
  • pain
  • stress
  • tumours
  • ulcers
  • wrinkles

Precaution

Although apricot oil is considered to be safe for use by almost everyone, women should strictly avoid using this oil during pregnancy.

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