Pomegranate Seed Oil: The Anti-Aging and Anti-Inflammatory Wonder
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Pomegranate Seed Oil: The Anti-Aging and Anti-Inflammatory Wonder

by Heather Smith on Jun 24, 2022

 

pomegranate oil for face - infographic by bareLUXE Skincare

We focus on pomegranate oil as we continue our series on the many benefits of facial oil. Pomegranate is a fruit rich in many essential nutrients. Apart from being delicious to eat, it is a rich source of essential fatty acids that help restore a healthy glow to your skin. Pomegranate oil for skin has many benefits and is great for all skin types. 

Read on to learn everything you need to know about using pomegranate oil for skin and face care.

History of the Pomegranate 

Pomegranate is a common fruit that people have eaten for ages. Because of its nutritional properties, pomegranate is called the fruit of life, nature's power fruit, and a superfood.

Pomegranate has been used in many cultures and medicinal practices around the world. The pomegranate is seen as a representation of life, abundance, and beauty in the history of food and medicine. Many beauty secrets lie deep inside the beautiful little rubies of pomegranate. Pomegranate oil benefits go far beyond just nutrition.

Goddess Juno holding a pomegranate

The fruit of the pomegranate is found throughout Greek Mythology, and evidence of pomegranate trees dates back to 4000 BC. In Greek mythology, pomegranates represent the cycle of death and rebirth. The fruit was significantly valued in 1600 BC in Egypt as the fruit of life.

The first places where this beautiful fruit was cultivated were the Mediterranean region and the Asian mainland of the western Himalayas. Traces of pomegranate cultivation has been found in the Northern region of Africa and Southern Europe as well. Pomegranate trees have also flourished in parts of the USA. However, its roots lie in the Himalayas and the Silk route of South East Asia.

The Pomegranate Plant 

The pomegranate plant is a fruit-bearing deciduous shrub. Belonging to the family of Lythraceae, it has the scientific name Punica granatum. The plant grows from 5-10m tall and bears fruits yearly in the cooler months (October-February in the Northern Hemisphere). The plant's life span can reach 200 years. 

The name pomegranate comes from the Latin words pomum and granatum. The combination of pomum and granatum creates a word for seeded apple. In old English, the fruit was also called the Apple of Grenada. The modern French term for pomegranate is grenade which gives its name to the military grenade we use today due to its unique shape.

How is Pomegranate Oil Extracted? 

Like most of the best face oils, pomegranate oil is extracted from tiny seeds using the cold-pressing process.

CO2 extraction is another method often used, but cold-pressing best maintains the integrity of the phytochemicals. As a result, pomegranate seed oil has many beneficial properties for the skin. 

Composition of Pomegranate Seed Oil 

Essential fatty acids are healthy, nourishing oils and pomegranate seed oil is no exception. In addition, the lipid content of each seed is 15 to 20 percent, making high yield production of the oil possible. 

Pomegranate seed oil contains around 5% stearic acid, 12% oleic acid, 14% linoleic acid, and 65% punicic acid. It is also prized for its high levels of polyphenols. The pomegranate seed oil benefits can be attributed to this unique fatty acid profile, as are many of the other health benefits.

punicic acid chemical structure

Punicic Acid

Unique to pomegranate seed oil and found in only a few other seeds, punicic acid is an omega-5 that's of much interest in the nutraceutical world. It is a bioactive component felt to have significant therapeutic potential for many conditions like obesity, inflammatory disorders, and diabetes. 

Punicic acid is structurally related to conjugated linoleic acid, which is already prized for its excellent skin benefits. In addition, punicic acid reduces inflammation and acts as a powerful antioxidant. Punicic acid benefits for skin care are likely significant.

Pomegranate Seed Oil Skin Benefits

Juice and extract from the pomegranate peel (pericarp) are well-known astringents and are often used in water-soluble cosmetic preparations. 

pomegranate seeds and fruit

As a cosmeceutical, pomegranate oil has been shown to stimulate cell growth, procollagen synthesis and collagen production, and inhibits MMP-1 (matrix metalloproteinase), which causes slowing of the cellular aging process. In addition, it is also shown to enhance absorption of other substances, resveratrol in particular. 

Many of the pomegranate seed oil skin benefits are due to the punicic acid. Its collagen-boosting effects make pomegranate oil for face use excellent for products for anti aging and dry skin. Since this light oil is non-pore clogging, it's also safe for oily and acne prone skin. It is even used in hair care products because it can improve shine and scalp moisture.

All of these features combined should result in the following visible improvements to your skin when you use pomegranate face oil:

    • improved texture and softness
    • improved firmness and elasticity
    • reduced fine lines
    • repaired skin barrier and reduced inflammation and redness
    • moisturization and a healthy glow
    • brightening, reduced dark spots, and a more even skin tone
    • fading of scars

If you are shopping for an anti-aging face oil, look for options that contain pomegranate oil if your skin is mature, dry, or sensitive. 

Pomegranate Oil Comedogenicity

Pomegranate seed oil is a lightweight, thin oil that is not greasy. It rapidly penetrates the skin and does not leave an oily residue.

The skin-loving oil is non-comedogenic and rated a 1 on the comedogenicity scale. The oil is safe to apply to all skin types, and even people struggling with acne can use pomegranate oil as a beauty elixir. 

Sustainability and Humanitarian Concerns

The pomegranate plant and fruits are readily available worldwide because of their adaptability to different climatic conditions. The tree pomegranate has a long life which also adds to the sustainability factor of large-scale pomegranate cultivation. Since the pomegranate fruit is edible, it does not lead to too much waste, especially when all plant parts are used for nutritional or cosmetic purposes.

No major environmental concerns are linked with pomegranate plant cultivation and pomegranate oil making. People have used pomegranate oil for ages, and there are minimal humanitarian or agricultural exploitation concerns. 

 

As you can see, the many skin benefits of pomegranate seed oil, and the fact it is suitable for all skin types, makes pomegranate oil for skin a must try! 

 

References:

  • Ceyhun-Sezgin A & Artik N. (2017) The Fatty Acid Composition of Pomegranates Grown in Turkey. International Journal of Bioprocess and Biotechnological Advancements, 2(1): 81-87.
  • Shabbir MA, Khan MR, Saeed M, Pasha I, Khalil AA, Siraj N. Punicic acid: A striking health substance to combat metabolic syndromes in humans. Lipids Health Dis. 2017;16(1):99. Published 2017 May 30.
  • Amri Z, Lazreg-Aref H, Mekni M, et al. Oil Characterization and Lipids Class Composition of Pomegranate Seeds. Biomed Res Int. 2017;2017:2037341.¬†
  • A.M.M. Costa, L.O. Silva, A.G. Torres. Chemical composition of commercial cold-pressed pomegranate (Punica granatum) seed oil from Turkey and Israel, and the use of bioactive compounds for samples' origin preliminary discrimination, Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, Volume 75, 2019, Pages 8-16,
  • Aslam MN, Lansky EP, Varani J. Pomegranate as a cosmeceutical source: pomegranate fractions promote proliferation and procollagen synthesis and inhibit matrix metalloproteinase-1 production in human skin cells. J Ethnopharmacol. 2006 Feb 20;103(3):311-8. DOI: 10.1016/j.jep.2005.07.027. Epub 2005 Oct 10.¬†
  • Liu W, Zhao Q, Lv L, Yan S, Song Q, Chen T, Yao Q. Pomegranate Seed Oil Enhances the Percutaneous Absorption of trans-Resveratrol. J Oleo Sci. 2018 Apr 1;67(4):479-487. DOI: 10.5650/jos.ess17144. Epub 2018 Mar 9. PMI
  • Lin TK, Zhong L, Santiago JL. Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils. Int J Mol Sci. 2017;19(1):70. Published 2017 Dec 27.¬†
  • Odah, SM, Salama, MM, et al. Anti-wrinkle activity and UPLC-MS/MS metabolic profile of pomegranate and grape seeds extracts. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research. DOI link: http://dx.doi.org/10.13040/IJPSR.0975-8232.11(8).3679-89
  • Mohammad Taher Boroushaki, Hamid Mollazadeh and Amir Reza Afshari. Pomegranate seed oil: A comprehensive review on its therapeutic effects. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research. Feb, 2016.

About the Author

Dr. Heather Smith developed her love for skinimalism and clean beauty years ago when she began making home remedies for her newborn's eczema. She is an expert in natural ingredients and active botanicals and has now launched bareLUXE Skincare - a full line of effective oil serums. She dedicates this blog to consumers who are researching ingredients and working to make their beauty ritual more natural and sustainable.

MEDICAL DISCLAIMER 

This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Dr. Smith nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content should consult their physicians about their skincare concerns and routines.