During my time in Morocco I thought of one oil that I needed to have from there and that was of course the famous argan oil or like it’s also been called: “liquid gold”. Is it an oil that I love using like my precious coconut oil? Well I’ll let you know in this post but first I’ll start with some facts about argan oil because I went to an argan oil experience and I talked with locals about how they are using argan oil for ages.
Origin of Argan
Argan oil is from the argan tree that grows these days in the south-west of Morocco and a part in Algeria as well. The argan tree is rare what makes it an expensive oil as long as you have the right one. One liter argan oil can cost 100 Euro. Even the Egyptian doctor lbn Al Baitar wrote a scientific paper about the production of argan and what benefits this product can have for your body.
The argan oil experience
In a town called Essaouira I went to an argan oil experience where you could see how the argan oil is been produced. The work is been done by Berber women. There are different ways to produce argan oil but I experienced the traditional way. With the traditional way the local women use a machine of stone to extract the oil from the argan kernels.
The difference between argan oil that’s used for cooking and cosmetic use is that the argan oil for cooking is made of kernels that are roasted what gives the oil a nut flavor. The cosmetic argan oil is made of kernels that are not roasted. In this blogpost it’s about the cosmetic argan oil.
It seems that you really need to be careful where you get your argan oil or cosmetics with argan inside in general because many of these products do not contain what they promise. It’s supposed to be a product with 100% natural ingredients. At the argan oil experience I saw so many cosmetics: shampoo, conditioner, soap, facial cream etc. All made of 100% natural ingredients.
Benefits of cosmetic argan oil
- Speeds healing of wounds
- Slows down aging process
- Improves the health of hair
- Helps prevent stretch marks
- Strengthens nails
- Good as a lip conditioner
Argan soap with jasmine scent
My eye fell on an argan soap with the scent of jasmine.. I’m in love with jasmine! The soap bar doesn’t only smells good but it looks wonderful as well doesn’t it?
Pure argan soap
But I couldn’t leave without a bar that contains only pure argan so no scent at all.
My pure argan oil
And yes! I got my genuine argan oil from the mother of the owner of the appartement I rented in Marrakech. Many locals use the cosmetic argan oil as a facial mask and sleep overnight with it but they also use it for their hair. Normally I use coconut oil for almost everything 😉 so as a facial mask as well. Of course I’m going to compare it with one and other and that’s what I did. Here it comes:
COCONUT OIL VS ARGAN OIL
When I rub coconut oil on my face it’s pretty shiny for a couple of minutes but it leaves a:
- Matt, silky effect/feeling the whole day
- And my skin feels smooth and soft the whole day as well
Argan oil is thicker than coconut oil and when rubbing it on my face it’s shiny but after a couple of minutes:
- It feels dry
- No silky effect/feeling
- No smooth feeling anymore after a couple of minutes and it doesn’t have the soft feeling like the coconut oil
- Appears to get a dryer look on my face as well
So we have a winner!
To me my precious coconut oil is still a winner.
Then later I tried using the argan oil to seal in the coconut oil and that works for me!!! Like the LOC method with kinky curly hair. See my video: The LOC method on a twist-out and braid-out. I did an overnight facial mask. The argan oil seems to seal the coconut oil so my face stayed extra smooth overnight.
I found the argan oil better to use as a cream to seal the moisture extra on my face. And did you know that argan oil is a natural sun cream? It has an SPF of 30! That’s much more than coconut oil that has a SPF up to 10. I actually did a Dutch blogpost about what you should know about suncream and a dark skin. That blogpost is all about natural sun creams since colored people also need it.
Some handy tips I experienced in my argan oil and coconut journey but also some facts:
Always make sure to use a leave-in before the oil. That way the oils penetrates better in the skin and keeps the skin smoother. I use water these days as that works just fine for me but you can also use for example a moisturizing toner.
Pure argan oil is good til 12 months after purchase.
Make sure you get the pure argan oil for skin benefits. There are shops that sell pure argan oil. However it may not be executed the traditional way and for that reason can have a lower quality due to bulk production, or the use of modern machines or even chemicals.
Whenever being in Morocco especially the south-west and you would like to buy argan oil consider to do that with a local who knows where you can get the correct argan oil. Or make a trip to Essaouira like I did where there are plenty of argan oil cooperatives and you can do an argan oil experience or even have some sun bathing while you’re there ;-).
And I cant’t mention it enough. The best coconut oil is the extra virgin one! I here and read many times these days that people quit with using coconut oil because they get hair dryness, breakage or allergic reactions. It’s possible that it’s the coconut oil to blame but it’s also possible that you use coconut oil that’s not extra virign or that your using a product with coconut oil inside that’s again not extra virgin. Read the ingredients. When it’s extra virgin it will be labeled on the bottle. Some also call it raw coconut oil or coldpressed.
I didn’t want to go to far in this post about argan so I will get back to you about the argan soaps in another post. Stay tuned and keep following. Mucho natural love for now!
PS: do you use natural oils for you face, maybe as a mask? And what is your favorite?