July 12 2020 – Henrieta Haniskova
Sunflower Seed Oil or more simply as Sunflower Oil, is cold pressed from the seeds of the big, yellow, cheerful Sunflower botanical, a member of the same family as the Calendula, Chrysanthemum, Dahlia, and Gerbera flowers. Several ancient societies used various parts of the Sunflower for therapeutic and culinary purposes. Its dried leaves were also ingredients in recreational substances that were used similarly to the way in which tobacco was smoked.
While in some cultures of ancient South American origin, the seeds of the Sunflower were considered to be a source of food, for other cultures, namely that of the Aztec and Inca communities, the flower was believed to represent the revered sun and, thus, was worshipped.
In Native American Indian practices, the Sunflower’s roots were used in medicinal applications, such as for infusions that remedied snake bites, and the oil derived from the flower was applied cosmetically as a conditioning agent for hair. In Russian folk medicine, the Sunflower’s head and leaves were used to address coughs, bronchitis, rheumatism, and malaria, among other health conditions.
And it is still used today as food as well as in cosmetic preparations.
Upon absorption into the skin, it leaves a protective emollient layer that prevents it from losing moisture while defending its outer layer against damage and facilitating its regeneration, thus resulting in a rejuvenated appearance. It is gentle enough to use on the face, around the eyes, and in baby skin care.
The Vitamin E content of Sunflower Oil exhibits smoothing properties, which slows the look of wrinkles and fine lines. It also prevents blemishing and offers protection against the damaging effects of overexposure to the sun, one such effect being hyperpigmentation. Sunflower Oil is known to even out the skin tone by offering a skin-brightening quality to the complexion. Furthermore, it is also reputed to decrease sensitivity to sunlight.
Its thin consistency means Sunflower Oil is easily absorbed into the skin without clogging pores. While eliminating bacteria that are known to encourage the development of acne, it also reduces the appearance of enlarged pores and bruising. Its abundance of vitamins, anti-oxidants, and fatty acids work to promote skin’s regeneration and to generally enhance skin health.
Used medicinally, Sunflower Carrier Oil’s protective barrier quality serves to protect the body against harmful bacteria that could potentially cause infection. It is reputed to soothe skin that is irritated, inflamed, calloused, and rough, making it ideal for reducing itchiness and for addressing conditions such as dermatitis, eczema, and psoriasis. By removing dead skin cells, Sunflower Oil prevents pores from undergoing congestion that leads to whiteheads and blackheads, thus preventing breakouts.
So many reasons to use it in baby skin care. A lot of formulas for babies utilize this oil in large volume. We love it, but much prefer the more balanced approach of oils and butters from plants that have other healing and protective properties.
Sunflower seed oil is extracted as most of plant oils are. With cold press extraction or solvent extraction. The quality varies widely. We prefer to use organic, virgin cold pressed Sunflower seed oil from Ontario.
Virgin cold press extraction means the seeds are pressed and oil is produced by this process. The first time the seeds are pressed for extraction, is the virgin cold press and contains the highest volume of nutrients.
The pressing is then continued, until the seed mass is dry. Then it's mixed with solvents and processed again to produce what you see on the shelves of supermarkets advertised as PURE vegetable oil. This actually is the lowest quality of plant oil you can find.
Sunflower oil benefits:
The main chemical constituents of Sunflower Carrier Oil are Linoleic Acid, Oleic Acid, Palmitic Acid, and Stearic Acid.
To simplify, these:
•Facilitate wound healing
•Exhibit anti-inflammatory properties
•Soothe acne and reduce chances of future outbreaks
•Exhibit antioxidant properties
•Prevent joint inflammation, stiffness, and pain
•Have cleansing properties that eliminate dirt, sweat, and excess sebum from hair and skin
- COSMETIC: Softening, Astringent, Moisturizing, Conditioning, Anti-Oxidant, Anti-Viral, Anti-Bacterial, Clarifying, Brightening
- MEDICINAL: Anti-Microbial, Anti-Viral, Anti-Bacterial, Immune-Enhancing, Energy-Boosting, Anti-Inflammatory