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Simmondsia Chinensis Seed Oil

Simmondsia Chinensis Seed Oil

Also-called-like-this: Jojoba Oil
What-it-does: emollient
Irritancy: 0
Comedogenicity: 0-2


Jojoba is a drought resistant evergreen shrub native to South-western North America. It's known and grown for jojoba oil, the golden yellow liquid coming from the seeds (about 50% of the weight of the seeds will be oil).  

At first glance, it seems like your average emollient plant oil: it looks like an oil and it's nourishing and moisturizing to the skin but if we dig a bit deeper, it turns out that jojoba oil is really special and unique: technically - or rather chemically - it's not an oil but a wax ester (and calling it an oil is kind of sloppy). 

So what the heck is a wax ester and why is that important anyway? Well, to understand what a wax ester is, you first have to know that oils are chemically triglycerides: one glycerin + three fatty acids attached to it. The fatty acids attached to the glycerin vary and thus we have many kinds of oils, but they are all triglycerides. Mother Nature created triglycerides to be easily hydrolyzed (be broken down to a glycerin + 3 fatty acid molecules) and oxidized (the fatty acid is broken down into small parts) - this happens basically when we eat fats or oils and our body generates energy from it.

Mother Nature also created wax esters but for a totally different purpose. Chemically, a wax ester is a fatty acid + a fatty alcohol, one long molecule. Wax esters are on the outer surface of several plant leaves to give them environmental protection. 25-30% of human sebum is also wax esters to give us people environmental protection. 

So being a wax ester results in a couple of unique properties: First, jojoba oil is extremely stable. Like crazy stable. Even if you heat it to 370 C (698 F) for 96 hours, it does not budge. (Many plant oils tend to go off pretty quickly). If you have some pure jojoba oil at home, you should be fine using it for years. 

Second, jojoba oil is the most similar to human sebum (both being wax esters), and the two are completely miscible. has this not fully proven theory that thanks to this, jojoba might be able to "trick" the skin into thinking it has already produced enough sebum, so it might have "skin balancing" properties for oily skin.

Third, jojoba oil moisturizes the skin through a unique dual action: on the one hand, it mixes with sebum and forms a thin, non-greasy, semi-occlusive layer; on the other hand, it absorbs into the skin through pores and hair follicles then diffuses into the intercellular spaces of the outer layer of the skin to make it soft and supple.

On balance, the point is this: in contrast to real plant oils, wax esters were designed by Mother Nature to stay on the surface and form a protective, moisturizing barrier and jojoba oil being a wax ester is uniquely excellent at doing that.

Show me some proof

  • Glob. J. Agric. Food Safety Sci., Vol.2 (3): pp. 270 283 (2015), Chemical studies on grown jojoba oils under Egyptian conditions

Products with Simmondsia Chinensis Seed Oil

Ahava Dead Sea Crystal Osmoter X6 Arya Laya Regeneration Argan Cleansing Oil Bliss Fabulips Lip Scrub Captain Blankenship Rose & Pomegranate Face Oil Darphin Essential Oil Elixir - 8-Flower Nectar Oil Dewy & Bae Raw Glow Nourishing Face Serum Dr Hauschka Coverstick Esse Repair Oil First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cannabis & Oat Dry Oil Fresh Rice Dry Oil Herbivore Botanicals Phoenix Facial Oil Hobe Labs Energizer Hot Jojoba Oil Hair Treatment Ikarov Jojoba Oil L'Erbolario Lip Balm La Coéss Revitalisé Nutrient Organic Face Oil Madara Smart Antioxidants Fine Line Minimising Day Fluid Marie Veronique Treatment Oil Medik8 Red Alert Serum Medik8 Retinol 3 Tr Odacite Clogged Pores Serum Concentrate Paula's Choice Moisture Renewal Oil Booster Peach & Lily Pure Beam Luxe Oil Pyunkang Yul Oil Rodin Geranium & Orange Blossom Luxury Face Oil Rodin Jasmine & Neroli Luxury Face Oil Rodin Lavender Absolute Luxury Face Oil SOCO Botanicals Soco Symphony • Face Oil Elixir Schaebens Vitamin C Konzentrat The Jojoba Company Natural Pigmentation Oil The Jojoba Company Oily Skin Balancer URANG S.O.S. Multibalm URANG Vitamin Oil Serum cliganic Organic Jojoba Oil elf Nourishing Facial Oil lavera Mineral Compact Powder Moisturizer With Licochalcone Anointment Natural Skin Care Shea Butter Cream Barrier Restore Serum Kristina Holey + Marie Veronique Barrier Restore Serum Bskincare Face Oil Burt's Bees Complete Nourishment Facial Oil DADO SENS Sensacea Soothing Face Emulsion Darphin Jasmine Aromatic Care Derma E Nourishing Rose Cleansing Oil, Argan & Jojoba Oils Elate Cosmetics Universal Crème Esse Eye & Lip Cream French Girl Organics Facial Oil Elixir French Girl Organics Organic/Vegan Cleansing Oil Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Lip Treatment GLAMGLOW Good In Bed Go-To Face Hero