Can ingredients found in your pantry improve your skin as your age?

Olive oil has been used for centuries as a skin-care product.  In fact, it was coined “liquid gold” by Homer and was used by the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans and the Phoenicians.  Some of the important skin-renewing components found in olive oil are:

Squalene:  a natural compound that is believed to reduce free radical damage and improve the skin’s complexion.

Vitamin E:  said to enhance the elasticity of the skin.

Oleic Acid:  a monounsaturated fatty acid that works to moisturize and soften skin.

Check out these ways that olive oil can be used to enhance the skin:

  • Chefs often use a mixture of olive oil and kosher salt as a hand scrub, but it can be used on all body parts for exfoliation.
  • Mix small amounts of olive oil and sugar to make a great facial scrub that leave cheeks feeling smooth and soft. 
  • Olive oil makes a great eye-makeup remover, and it helps prevent chapping of the lips.
  • Use olive oil to soothe patches of dry skin, or make a facial mask of olive oil, egg and a little flour to soothe sunburns.
  • Add olive oil to bath water to moisturize and soften all body parts, but use caution as it makes the tub slippery.
  • Just after a bath or shower, apply olive oil while skin is still damp to make a good moisturizer.
  • Olive oil also makes a great product to soften cuticles and strengthen nails.
  • Give hands and feet an intense moisture boost by coating them in olive oil just before bedtime and covering them with thin socks and/or gloves during sleep.
  • Olive oil can be used on the scalp to help control dandruff, and it makes a good, deep conditioner - mix equal parts of water and olive oil and shake well.  Massage into hair and scalp and leave on for about five minutes.  Rinse thoroughly with warm water.
  • Lastly, Olive oil has also been touted to help prevent stretch marks because of its ability to improve the elasticity of the skin.

In a salad or in the bath - regardless of how you choose to use it, olive oil is an inexpensive yet beneficial product.  With its many nutritious and skin-refreshing components, olive oil would be an asset to any pantry or bathroom cabinet! 

Sources:

http://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/beauty/anti-aging/olive-oil-for-skin.htm

http://www.lifetimehealth.com/health-news/64/squalene.html

Owen, R W; Haubner, R; Würtele, G; Hull, W E; Spiegelhalder, B; Bartsch, H (2004). "Olives and Olive Oil in Cancer Prevention." European Journal of Cancer Prevention 13 (4): 319–26.

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