INCI Name: Opuntia ficus-indica
Prickly pear oil is derived from the seeds of the prickly pear fruit, which comes from the Opunita Ficus Indica plant (aka Barbary Fig). It is a member of the cactus family that is native to desert regions of North and South America, though we get our prickly pear oil from Tunisia. Each prickly pear fruit contains tiny seeds, which are extracted by hand from the fruit. Then, the seeds undergo a cold pressed process to extract the oil from the seed. Each seed only contains 5% oil, which means that a half ton of fruits or 60 lbs of seeds are needed to produce 34 ounces of oil. Because of this, and the labor intensive process to produce it, the cost of prickly pear oil is among the highest in the beauty industry.
Because it is a plant-based ingredient, the color and smell of this light oil can vary depending on the season and location it was grown. Seeds collected during the winter have shown to be light green in color with a strong, sweet smell, while those collected in the summer are a darker green and smell similar to olives.
Even though the cactus is native to North and South America, Prickly Pear Oil became popular over 400 years ago in Morocco. There it is an invasive species, but it the cactus is tolerated because its fruit contains many desirable skin care and medicinal benefits.
In addition to the oil's many skin care benefits, the small prickly pear fruit contains effective chemical ingredients that are used for medical purposes.
- Vitamin E (150% more than Argan Oil)
- Essential Fatty Acids
- Linoleic and Oleic Acid
SKIN CARE BENEFITS
- Protects against free radicals
- Tightens pores
- Fights against the signs of aging
- Extremely moisturizing
- Reduces skin redness and helps to eliminate puffiness and dark circles under eyes
- High linoleic acid content makes it absorb quickly and efficiently.
- Works well with sensitive and dry skin
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