Oils may not sound like an excellent choice for the face, but they are bliss. From healing dry, damaged skin to adding an instant glow to it, natural facial oils can do a lot for us beauty junkies by getting absorbed into the skin almost instantly. And if it comes to a wonder ingredient like sesame oil, the potential becomes even more significant. While using sesame oil in your meals is a matter of acquired taste, applying it topically can always reap its benefits for skin and hair care. Today, we will discuss how the oil can help get super awesome skin. Read on to learn why and how to use sesame oil for glowing skin.
What are Sesame Seeds?
Sesame seeds are tiny edible seeds obtained from the pods of the sesame plant (Sesamum indicium) belonging to the Pedaliaceae family and Sesamum genus. Originating in India, this flowering plant has many other wild species native to sub-Saharan Africa and is now cultivated extensively across the globe. Sesame seeds have long been known for their rich, nutty flavor and high oil content. Sesame is considered one of the oldest oilseed crops discovered to date (1). However, the best thing about seeds is that they have many potential health benefits that may help us protect ourselves from cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, arthritis, and so on (2). Besides being used in worldwide cuisines and folk medicines, they have been used in skin and hair care for thousands of years. Hence, the sesame plant is often called the “Queen of Oilseeds” (3).
Unhulled sesame seeds have a nice golden-brown color for its outer husk while the hulled ones look simple off-white (turn brown upon roasting) due to the absence of the husk.
What is Sesame Oil?
Sesame oil is a light or dark brown-colored edible oil with a beautiful nutty flavor. It is extracted from raw sesame seeds (both black and white) through the method of cold pressing. Sesame oil comes loaded with fatty acids, such as mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids, which makes it one of the most popular cooking oils (4). The essential fatty acids in the oil are oleic acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid, and linoleic acid. It also contains plenty of antioxidants and phenolic compounds, which include tocopherol, pinoresinol, sesamin, sesamolin, sesaminol, and sesamol. Etc. Besides, sesame oil is rich in proteins, vitamins (B complex, E, D), minerals (calcium, zinc, phosphorous), and other organic components. All these contribute to its excellent culinary, medicinal, and cosmetic properties.
Different versions of sesame oil are used in a wide variety of Asian and Middle Eastern dishes for different flavor and aroma. Unrefined sesame oil is used at a low to medium flame for a delicious, nutty flavor. On the other hand, refined sesame oil mostly suits deep- or stir-frying for its neutral flavor. However, the use of the toasted version of the oil is limited to dressings and marinades only.
Why Use Sesame Oil for Glowing Skin?
Sesame oil, the dark horse of the oil family, possesses incredible beauty benefits that will help you deal with every skin woe and achieve picture-perfect skin that is naturally radiant. Following are the ways sesame oil can give you a flawless, glowing skin:
- Sesame oil helps cleanse and exfoliate the skin thoroughly by removing dirt, dust, and dead cells.
- The comedogenic rating is one for refined sesame oil and three for unrefined (5). Being a non-comedogenic oil, it does not clog skin pores. Instead, it keeps them clear by drawing the gunk out of it.
- Since sesame oil is rich in natural fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins, it is a great all-natural alternative to your moisturizer that keeps the skin hydrated, plump, and healthy.
- The oil gets absorbed into the skin almost immediately, nourishing it from deep within and making it silky smooth.
- High levels of antioxidants in sesame oil help in fighting against oxidative damage caused by free radicals in the body (6). This is essential to keep signs of aging (wrinkles, fine lines, etc.) at bay and rejuvenate the skin fast.
- The antibacterial and antimicrobial properties of the oil are effective in killing harmful microorganisms or averting their growth in the skin. This helps in combating pimples, acne, and breakouts.
- Sesame oil also has excellent anti-inflammatory qualities, healing dryness, rashes, and infections and reducing inflammation, redness, and swelling.
- If there are second-degree burn wounds, the topical application of sesame oil may help heal them successfully (7).
- The oil forms a protective film over the skin to prevent it from the damage caused by the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun.
- It is suitable for all skin types, including oily and acne-prone skin.
How do you use sesame oil for glowing skin?
You can use sesame oil for glowing skin in many ways. We have listed them down:
1. As a Cleanser
For optimal effectiveness as a cleanser, warm the oil before use. Before bathing, gently apply warmed sesame oil to your face and neck. Massage delicately for 10 minutes using circular motions with your fingertips. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes, then remove it with a wet cotton ball or a damp washcloth. Conclude by washing your face with a mild cleanser. Incorporating this routine into your daily regimen will result in thoroughly cleansed pores, preventing skin dryness, and imparting a natural, radiant glow.
2. As a Moisturizer
Cleanse your face well with a gentle herbal cleanser and lukewarm water, and pat it dry completely. Now, apply a few drops of the oil all over it and massage slowly for 5 minutes. Let the oil get absorbed into the skin by leaving it on overnight. You can also smooth sesame oil on your skin after a bath every day and see your skin respond to it like a dream! However, if you are bothered about the strong smell of the oil, add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to it.
3. As a Sun Protector
If you do not want to use chemical-laden sunscreens, try applying a thin film of sesame oil on your skin at least half an hour before going out. You can also mix sesame oil with a few drops of carrot seed essential oil for this purpose, as the latter is known to have the highest SPF. After cleansing it thoroughly, apply it to the skin, and you are all set with natural and adequate sun protection.
4. As an Anti-Aging Agent
Replace your night cream with a few sesame and lavender essential oil drops. Massage this thoroughly on the skin in a circular motion to improve blood circulation. This remedy also fights against the visible signs of aging as you enjoy your sleep at night. Hence, you will wake up with renewed skin the following day.
5. As an Acne-Fighter
If you want sesame oil for acne or scars, dab it onto the affected skin with a cotton ball. Leave it overnight for the best results, and wash it off in the morning with lukewarm water. However, ensure that you exfoliate your skin before trying this remedy to remove all dead skin cells and debris. This will help the oil get absorbed more easily into your skin.
If you have very oily skin, use sesame oil with caution. As you cannot be too sure about how your skin is going to react to the oil, it is always good to start with a patch test.
Other Benefits of Sesame Oil
Now, here are the potential health and hair benefits offered by sesame oil that you also must take into consideration:
- Two antioxidants in sesame oil, i.e., sesamol and sesaminol, may protect you against heart cell damage by inhibiting the production of free radicals in the body (8).
- The oil may prevent chronic inflammation by reducing inflammatory markers in the body (9), which diminishes several illnesses, including joint inflammation, toothaches, scrapes, etc. (10)
- Sesame oil contains as much as 82% unsaturated fatty acids (11), especially omega-6 fatty acids, which help prevent heart diseases (12) by delaying the formation of plaque in the arteries and lowering the levels of bad (LDL) cholesterol as well as triglycerides in the bloodstream.
- When it comes to keeping blood sugar under control and regulating it in the long run, sesame oil can be a great choice as it reduces blood sugar significantly, even in people with diabetes (13).
- The oil has been found to relieve osteoarthritis, reducing symptoms like joint pain to a large extent (14).
- The topical application of sesame oil has often been linked to reduced arm and leg pain.
- Dripping it on the foreheads regularly may help improve the quality of sleep.
- Sesame oil is also effective in enhancing the strength and shine of hair by nourishing the scalp deeply.
Safety and Precautions to Follow
If you don’t have a sesame seed allergy, you can safely use sesame oil on your skin. Nevertheless, individuals sensitive to sesame may experience allergic reactions from topical and oral applications of the ingredient. These reactions can range from mild to severe. They may include symptoms such as coughing, itchy throat, hoarse voice, nausea, vomiting, hives, facial redness, swelling, abdominal pain, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, dizziness, fainting, rapid heartbeat, and cardiac arrest. Therefore, it is advisable to consult with a doctor before incorporating sesame oil into your daily routine to ensure it is safe for your health profile.
Sesame seeds are tiny edible seeds of the sesame plant with a rich, nutty flavor and high oil content. They have incredible benefits for our health, skin, and hair, which make them a vital part of both worldwide cuisines and folk medicines for more than thousands of years now. The light or dark brown-colored sesame oil is extracted from raw, cold-pressed sesame seeds. Being rich in essential mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids, antioxidants, phenolic compounds, proteins, vitamins, and minerals, it holds excellent culinary, medicinal, and cosmetic properties. It gives a flawless, naturally radiant skin by cleansing and exfoliating it thoroughly, unclogging skin pores, moisturizing and nourishing the skin deeply, delaying the appearance of signs of aging, rejuvenating the skin, combating acne, reducing inflammation, healing wounds and burns, and providing complete sun protection. You can use it as a cleanser, moisturizer, sunscreen, anti-aging agent, and even acne-fighter. Besides, sesame oil is also effective in averting heart cell damage, curing chronic inflammation, enhancing cardiovascular health, controlling blood sugar levels, providing relief from arthritis symptoms, strengthening hair shafts, and so on. However, you must do a patch test or consult the doctor prior to including sesame oil in your daily routine. Otherwise, you may end up experiencing mild to severe allergic reactions.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Does Sesame Oil Make Skin Fair?
Sesame oil does not change the skin complexion as such. But it protects the skin from UV damage and brings out its natural glow, which helps lighten the skin tone and makes you look radiant.
Which is Better for Hair – Sesame Oil or Coconut Oil?
Both are great for hair. However, sesame oil is beneficial for maintaining scalp health, strengthening hair shafts, promoting hair growth, and adding shine. On the other hand, coconut oil enhances the overall health and appearance of the locks, thus making them longer, stronger, and thicker.
Does Sesame Oil Darken Skin?
Sesame oil is a natural sun protector that protects the skin from the sun’s damaging ultraviolet rays. This helps make the skin lighter rather than darken it. The oil’s antioxidants also help rejuvenate the skin cells, contributing to their natural radiance.
Does Sesame Oil Grow Hair?
Yes, sesame oil is highly effective in stimulating the growth of hair. It boosts blood circulation throughout the scalp, stops excessive hair loss, and facilitates new hair growth.
Is It OK to Eat Sesame Seeds Every Day?
It is OK to have sesame seeds every day. But ensure you have at least a small handful for maximum health benefits.
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- “What are the Benefits of Using Sesame Oil on Your Skin?“, Healthline.com
- “Comedogenicity and Irritancy of Commonly Used Ingredients in Skincare Products,” NoNonsenseCosmethic.org
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- “Healing Effect of Sesame Ointment on Second-degree Burn Wound in Rats,” GMJ.ir
- “Putative Antioxidant Property of Sesame Oil in an Oxidative Stress Model of Myocardial Injury,” NCBI.nlm.nih.gov
- “Therapeutic Effects of Sesame Oil on Monosodium Urate Crystal-Induced Acute Inflammatory Response in Rats,” PubMed.NCBI.nlm.nih.gov
- “The Effects of Topical Sesame (Sesamum indicum) Oil on Pain Severity and Amount of Received Non-Steroid Anti-Inflammatory Drugs in Patients With Upper or Lower Extremities Trauma,” NCBI.nlm.nih.gov
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- “White Sesame Seed Oil Mitigates Blood Glucose Level, Reduces Oxidative Stress and Improves Biomarkers of Hepatic and Renal Function in Participants with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus“, PubMed.NCBI.nlm.nih.gov
- “Effects of Sesame Oil in the Model of Adjuvant Arthritis,” PubMed.NCBI.nlm.nih.gov