Becoming quite a popular product, Argan Oil suffers the consequences of high demand. Today on the market are lots of products labeled "Argan Oil", but they are fake alternatives to the real oil, with low quality and potentially dangerous side effects. They contain filler oils and synthetic ingredients that make it cheaper to produce and sell.
Learn how to spot pure Argan Oil, what troubling signs to avoid and why you should only use pure Argan Oil.
What Are The Most Used Oil "Fillers" Ingredients to avoid
Hexane is the most popular and most dangerous solvent found in fake Argan Oil. It is a chemical compound, derived from crude oil and is mainly used in the production of paint and glue. Unfortunately, it is infused in both edible and beauty Argan oils.
It is colorless and odorless, which makes it hard to detect when mixed with Argan Oil. When ingested or applied to the skin, it can cause nausea, dizziness, intestinal and lung damage, skin conditions, hair fall and allergic reactions. Beware and avoid suspicious Argan Oils at all cost!
Squalane is a type of naturally occurring chemical compound, found in both animals and plants. This saturated oil is made out of shark liver, olives or rice bran. It is even present in the human body - it makes up the sebum, secreted from our glands.
In skincare it is used as a moisturizing oil with anti-inflammatory benefits. It is considered an anti-aging agent and hair sealer, that prevents breakage.
Squalane raises environmental concerns, as in the past it was mostly derived from shark liver. To this day, there is still unregulated shark poaching for harvesting squalene. Knowing this, you can never be 100% sure the squalane you are using is plant based and cruelty free.
Similar to squalane, squalene is an odorless lipid also naturally present in plants, animals and human sebum. It represents a slippery liquid, usually lighter than squalane. It is used in beauty products for its skin lubricating and barrier protecting properties.
Again this oil is still a very controversial ingredient, as its origins may be dubious like squalane.
Moreover, it is an oil that spoils very quickly and becomes rancid. Another unpleasant feature of squalene is that it sits on your skin without absorbing, leaving a greasy and heavy feel.
Even though olive oil is well-known as a healthy and highly nutritious plant derivative with proven skin and hair benefits, it is not a good idea to mix it with pure Argan Oil.
Olive oil is widely spread, easy to produce and its quality and purity may vary. The olive oil used in cosmetics as a filler product is usually of poor quality, being processed and often diluted.
On the other hand, olive oil is heavier than Argan Oil and it doesn't fully absorb into the skin and hair. Mixed with Argan Oil, it would only spoil and decrease the beneficial properties of the Argan Oil.
Just like olive oil, coconut oil raises the same concerns - it is easier to supply and produce and on the market there are lots of coconut oils with varying quality. The health benefits of coconut oil are present only when the oil is virgin, organic and cold pressed.
Coconut oil is also a very well-recognised skincare ingredient with moisturizing, repairing and nourishing properties for skin and hair, but all of them are not attainable if the coconut oil is processed.
There are two concerns that arise when mixing Argan Oil and coconut oil:
The first case is when you mix a virgin cold pressed coconut oil with pure Argan Oil. Sure, both oils keep their qualities, but the ones of coconut prevail - it is a much heavier oil, that has no absorption into the skin, with a greasy feel and pore clogging ability. It actually locks out the moisture from entering the skin and hair, blocking the penetration of the much lighter Argan Oil.
The second case is when you add processed coconut oil to pure Argan Oil: the processed oil significantly lowers the healing powers of the Argan Oil, making it basically unusable for consumption and prone to cause inflammation and irritations when applied topically.
Mineral oil is a petroleum derived product and is widely used in cosmetics as a moisturizer, due to its proven occlusive properties. This oil is a heavily processed product, with stable formula and no odor or color.
It is believed to be a relatively safe alternative, as it does not penetrate the skin, but still it may cause a nasty reaction. For instance, mineral oil is not suitable for sensitive and acne-prone skin. With this said, combining it with pure Argan Oil, it will surely suppress its healing powers.
Artificial colors, fragrances, phthalates, preservatives and other additives are proven to be causing skin irritations and allergic reactions. On top of that, most of them are carcinogenic and not approved for safe use. This is enough proof for you to avoid them entirely.
How Can You Recognise The Pure Argan Oil
Thankfully, there are some clear signs that will help you tell apart the real and pure Argan Oil from the fake and diluted ones:
Argan Oil has a very distinctive and slightly nutty smell. The smell disappears within a few minutes when applied to the skin. If it smells perfumy or has no smell - it is a fake.
The color of Argan Oil is light golden yellow. The one for culinary use is a bit darker, as the argan nuts used to make it are roasted. A lighter or no color indicates a presence of a dilutant.
Argan Oil has a very smooth and silky texture, which quickly absorbs into the skin, leaving no greasy residue and a velvety feel. Watery or heavier texture indicates a fake oil.
Here everything is simple - the ingredients list should only state 100% pure organic Moroccan Argan Oil. Nothing more.
Price is undoubtedly a factor for buying pure Argan Oil and you should never settle for the cheap one. The process of producing pure organic Argan Oil is especially time-consuming - it takes hours of manual labor and a great deal of raw material. This is why pure Argan Oil is expensive. Learn more about it in our article "The Process of Producing Argan Oil".
Origin and certifications
Always look for ethically sourced Argan Oil from Morocco with eco certification for organic farming. Check out the manufacturer and importer and make sure it is an already proven company like Essence of Argan.
What Are The Dangers When Using "Fake" Argan Oil
Ingesting and applying "fake" Argan Oil with unknown and potentially dangerous diluting agents is not a joke and should be considered with extreme caution.
Here are some of the side effects, monitored from using fake Argan Oil:
skin conditions like rashes, eczema, acne, redness and breakouts
lung and nervous system damage
nausea and stomach problems
dizziness and depression
- What Are The Benefits Of Using Pure Argan Oil
Argan Oil is one of the most potent plant oils with extensive healing and beautifying properties. It can be truly considered a miracle in a bottle. Largely used in cosmetics and culinary, Argan Oil is an abundant source of omega 3, 6, 9 fatty acids, antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamins A, E and C, linoleic acids and more.
The oil provides diverse health benefits, such as:
fights aging signs
plumps and hydrates the skin
soothes skin irritations
heals acne and acne scars
repairs the skin and rejuvenates it
provides UV protection sun damage prevention
abolishes hair and scalp concerns like dandruff, hair fall and damaged hair
lowers high blood pressure and cholesterol
repairs DNA and kills cancer cells
- enhances the immune response
and many others.
Essence of Argan is one of the biggest providers and importers of 100% Pure Organic Moroccan Argan Oil in the world. Visit our online shop and get your FREE TRIAL of pure organic Argan Oil of the highest quality!
I Love this oil-
Thankyou for your detailed comparison with other oils..understand much better now.Thanks.
The best oil I’ve been using thanks
Very interesting and informative.
I love your product. My face looks much better.I received many compliments. I’ll be ordering more soon