The discussion of almond oil vs. jojoba oil takes place in the midst of the rise of natural plant-based oils for skincare and hair care, a growing trend towards cleaner, more sustainable beauty and personal care products.
As many consumers become increasingly conscious of the ingredients in their beauty routines, they also seek alternatives that are perceived as more natural and environmentally friendly. Plant-based oils in skincare and hair care have thus gained popularity, as they offer versatility and come packed with numerous nutrients.
In this context, understanding the differences between almond oil vs. jojoba oil is crucial for crafting an effective hair care or skin care routine that is tailored to individual needs. At the same time, knowledge of the unique properties of almond oil vs. jojoba oil allows brands to develop targeted formulations for particular skin or hair types, addressing diverse consumer needs.
Almond oil vs. jojoba oil: the definitions
What is almond oil?
Almond oil is a natural oil extracted from the seeds of almonds (Prunus dulcis), the fruit of a species of tree native to the Middle East and South Asia.
Sweet almond oil, the variety typically used for cosmetic and culinary purposes, is rich in nutrients (including vitamin E, monounsaturated fatty acids such as oleic acid, linoleic acid proteins, potassium, and zinc) and has a light, mild, and slightly sweet aroma. It is known for its moisturizing and emollient properties and has thus become a popular ingredient in skincare and hair care products.
What is jojoba oil?
Jojoba oil is a liquid wax extracted from the seeds of the jojoba plant (Simmondsia chinensis). Known and highly-esteemed for centuries by the native american peoples of Northern Mexico and the Southwestern United States, it was attributed “mystical” powers to alleviate a myriad of bodily ills, from cuts to scratches, and open sores.
Despite its name, it’s important to understand jojoba oil is not technically an oil but rather a liquid wax ester. In fact, its chemical structure closely resembles the natural oils produced by human skin. Wax esters are part of the surface layers of animal skin and plant leaves, and used for moisture control, protection and as an emollient. In the case of the human sebum, the jojoba esters are very similar to the esters that make up 25-30% of human sebum. What’s more, the jojoba tree produces commercial quantities of this functional liquid material in its seeds, making it a popular ingredient in skincare and cosmetic products.
Hair benefits of almond oil vs. jojoba oil
When considering almond oil vs. jojoba oil when it comes to hair care, it’s important to understand their unique composition makes for distinct benefits.
As such, jojoba oil is known to:
- Regulate oil production: known for its ability to mimic the natural sebum of the scalp, jojoba oil can help regulate oil production. This is particularly important because numerous issues related to the scalp stem from the accumulation of hardened sebum, which obstructs hair follicles and may result in certain forms of scaling. Additionally, failure to eliminate this hardened build-up can impede the proper functioning of hair follicles, potentially causing hair shaft loss and, ultimately, follicle damage. Jojoba oil efficiently permeates the scalp and hair shaft, effectively loosening and dissolving the hardened build-up. As such, it is often used to address issues such as dry scalp and dandruff.
- Moisturizer: thanks to its ester wax composition, which is similar to the natural oils produced by human skin
- Defense against split ends and breakage
- Hair loss action: because it provides an effective hydration to hair follicles, it can have a cascading effect thickening hair and stopping hair loss.
On the other hand, almond oil is also known for its beneficial effects on hair care formulations:
- Nourishing and moisturizing: almond oil is packed with nourishing components which provide an outstanding effect in caring even for dry and damaged hair. Thanks to its emollient properties, it can help reduce dryness and flakiness, promoting a healthier scalp environment. With its emollient properties, almond oil is effective in moisturizing and softening the hair.
- Dandruff: almond oil can act as the perfect scalp treatment for dandruff, as it prevents excess of yeast thanks to its antimicrobial characteristics.
- Thicker hair and hair loss: its nourishing and moisturizing effect means almond oil can play a part in thickening hair. At the same time, its high content in Vitamin E plays an essential role in preventing hair loss, thanks to an improvement in cutaneous microcirculation.
- Targets deficits in essential fatty acids: skin conditions such as dermatitis, baldness and hair depigmentation can all be traced back to this cause and reversed with the topical application of linoleic acid-rich oils such as almond oil.
Almond oil vs. jojoba oil: what’s the best option for skincare?
Again, when considering almond oil vs. jojoba oil as skin care alternatives, both provide unique benefits that may be convenient for different skin types and personal needs.
In the case of jojoba oil, these are the most outstanding benefits of this natural active ingredient as part of skin care formulations:
- Natural humectant: jojoba oil is well-known for its similarity to the skin’s natural sebum, and helps to hydrate and nourish the skin, forming a thin lipoid layer without leaving a greasy feeling. This is why jojoba oil has been a key ingredient for tattoo care, among other formulas. Often recommended for all skin types (including oily and acne-prone skin), jojoba oil provides additional benefits as it can help balance oil production and provide moisture without clogging pores. As such, it generates a partially-porous layer with exceptional transepidermal respiration and moisture control.
- Helps retain moisture: jojoba significantly reduces Transepidermal Water Loss, adding to its beneficial moisturizing properties while also not blocking transpiration of gasses and water vapor.
- Protection: jojoba oil can limit the accumulation of germs in pores, thus protecting the skin against bacterial infection and recurrent acne.
On the other hand, there are several distinct skin care benefits of almond oil:
- Moisture: almond oil is also an effective moisturizer for the skin, and is particularly beneficial for dry skin, leaving it feeling soft and smooth.
- Soothing effect: almond oil provides an instant relief from skin irritation and problems such as itching, swelling and conditions such as psoriasis or eczema.
- Sensitive skin: it is often recommended as a treatment for sensitive skin and children’s skin, as well as anyone with reduced tolerance for formulations including alcohol.
- Skin barrier repair: with its high polyunsaturated fatty acids content and emollient power, it favors restoration of the skin lipid balance and the skin barrier function. As dry skin has been demonstrated to contain reduced linoleic acid amounts, almond oil can play a significant part in generating a correct barrier function.
- Antioxidant: almond oil contains significant amounts of vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, and copper, all known for their powerful antioxidant properties.
- Healing: almond oil plays a role in healing superficial skin burns and conditions such as dermatosis
- Photoprotective: thanks to its contents in α-tocopherol, almond oil shows a powerful activity against UV radiation-induced free radicals.
Some final thoughts on almond oil vs. jojoba oil
All in all, the discussion contemplating almond oil vs. jojoba oil leads to a final conclusion: their use is a matter of each individual’s hair care and skin care needs and preferences.
Here are some real-life scenarios to be considered:
- While almond oil is generally considered safe for most skin types, individuals with acne-prone skin may want to be cautious, as it has a moderate comedogenic rating. In this case, jojoba oil would be a better choice as it’s non-comedogenic, meaning it does not clog pores.
- Texture can also play a part in preferred formulations: jojoba oil presents a lightweight and non-greasy texture, while almond oil might feel slightly heavier, providing a more comforting sensation for some.
- Those with dry or sensitive skin might recur to almond oil as it’s deeply emollient and rich in nutrients while being safe for most skin types.
- Inflamed skin, on the other hand, could benefit more from the anti-inflammatory properties of jojoba oil.
- Both oils can be beneficial for mature or aging skin, although almond oil’s rich vitamin E content makes it a good choice, as it acts as an antioxidant that helps protect the skin from free radicals and supports skin repair.
In the end, both jojoba oil and almond oil provide outstanding benefits and add to the wide range of natural ingredients taking the cosmetic and hair care market by storm. As part of this unstoppable movement, at Provital we’ve developed top-quality jojoba oil and sweet almond oil as part of our Oily Cares line to help companies align with current consumer demands for natural, effective plant-based oils.