As a super food with remarkable anti-ageing properties, flax seeds have been an important part of traditional Chinese and Indian medicines for ages. Densely packed with protein, fiber, Omega-3 fatty acids and anti-oxidants, this plant food is a power house of health benefits.
Cold-pressed flax oil derived from the seeds of the flax plant yields the different benefits of flax seeds. This natural oil is easily available, convenient to use and loaded with skin benefits. Let us try to learn more about it.
Flaxseed Oil — How Is It Extracted
Flax belongs to the plant family Linaceae, which thrives in India and the East Mediterranean. The seeds are shiny and nutty, and appear within round, dry fruits of flax plants that grow up to three feet in height.
Harvested flax seeds are subjected to cold-pressing after grinding, to derive fresh and potent flaxseed oil. Edible flaxseed oil is prepared by a pressing process followed by solvent extraction. When freshly pressed, the oil is almost colorless and has a light, nutty taste.
Power Ingredients Present in Flaxseed Oil
Flaxseed oil is a natural skin-care product that is also beneficial for heart health. It may be orally consumed as well as applied to the skin. With either option, flaxseed oil produces visible results to problematic skin in limited time.
The following power components are present in flaxseed oil:
Omega 3 fatty acids — Flax seeds are an excellent source of good fatty acids like Omega 3’s. They contain Alpha-Linolenic Acids that prevent various health problems like blood pressure, stroke and coronary heart disease. Omega-3 fatty acids also control inflammation and keep skin hydrated and moisturized, without making it too oily.
Lignans — Flaxseed lignans are anti-oxidant components that balance phytoestrogens in the human body. They restore the hormonal balance of the body.
Potassium — As a reliable source of potassium, flaxseed oil produces normal and balanced blood pressure and water balance in the body.
The benefits of flaxseed oil for overall health are extensive. Nevertheless, it is most effective in combating skin care issues. Let us explore this in closer detail.
The Beauty Benefits of Flaxseed Oil for the Skin
We already saw that flaxseed oil can either be taken orally or applied to the skin to reap benefits. Here are some of the ways in which it aids skin health:
- Reduces appearance of fine lines and wrinkles — Topical application of flaxseed oil plumps up skin and slows down the appearance and progression of wrinkles and fine lines. When used regularly, flaxseed oil improves the ability of the skin to repair itself, evens out skin tone and improves overall texture.
- Acts as an excellent moisturizer — Flaxseed oil is an effective cure for dry skin, whether it is applied alone or in combination with other ingredients. The oil penetrates the skin surface and hydrates from deep within. The constituents also enhance the barrier function of skin and seals moisture within.
- Reduces inflammation and puffiness — ALA and related chemicals in flaxseed oil effectively combat inflammation. It inhibits the production of compounds that cause swelling in the body and reduces redness and irritation.
- Controls dry skin issues — Topical treatments using flaxseed oil alone or in combination with other oils can be used to hydrate the skin and eliminate issues like dry and flaky skin. Regular use of flaxseed oil drastically improves skin texture.
- Improves skin tone — By moisturizing and nourishing the skin, flaxseed oil enables the skin to balance oiliness and repair existing blemishes, scars and other types of skin damage. Continuous use will yield notable differences in overall skin tone and texture.
- Prevents and reduces sun damage — Flaxseed oil has concentrated anti-oxidants that protect the skin from harmful UV rays and free radicals causing skin damage. The soothing properties help to reduce skin irritation in areas affected by rashes or sunburn.
- Helps with skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema — Flaxseed oil can drastically improve the condition of skin affected by conditions like psoriasis and eczema. It reduces inflammation and redness in the applied area, promotes skin repair and soothes irritated skin.
- Controls acne breakouts — Flaxseed oil has excellent anti-inflammatory properties due to the presence of high quantities of omega-3’s. This helps to control acne breakouts. Unlike many other oils, flaxseed oil does not cause blocked pores, blackheads or whiteheads. It is also a good cleanser since it thins sebum and is not irritating.
- Reduces appearance of cellulite — Lignans and phytochemicals in flaxseed oil improve skin thickness and health, which in turn prevents formation of cellulite. EFAs in this oil also help to get rid of existing cellulite by drawing water into dry cells and encouraging formation of new cell membranes.
- Prevents skin cancer — Flaxseed oil has ingredients that combat free radicals and oxidative damage linked to skin cancer. By regularly including flaxseed oil in your diet, you can prepare your body to fight free radicals generated by exposure to sunlight and environmental agents.
- Improves digestion — Skin health is closely linked to digestive activity. By enabling smooth digestion, flaxseed oil enhances your body’s ability to flush out harmful toxins. It is a good laxative that reduces inflammation in the lining of the intestines and aids overall digestive health.
Although flaxseed oil is highly effective in combating and controlling various health issues, it produces very impressive results when used for skin problems. Flaxseed oil helps to whiten skin, reduce wrinkles and is used extensively in anti-ageing treatments. It also works as a daily moisturizer. Let us explore each of these in greater detail.
Whiten Skin and Get Rid of Unsightly Blemishes and Scars With Flaxseed Oil
Flaxseed oil is a natural ingredient that miraculously clears the skin of impurities and improves complexion. Rich in anti-oxidants, this seed oil can effectively repair scars and prevent skin damage. It reduces pigmentation and sun-damage, restoring a youthful glow to the skin.
Flaxseed oil can be used as a general cleanser. By simply rubbing it into the skin, you can unclog blocked skin pores and remove dead cells and surface impurities. It can also be mixed with other ingredients to create face masks and scrubs that improve skin tone and produce a healthy complexion.
Here is an easy recipe for this purpose.
Cleansing Scrub With Flaxseed Oil
Coffee powder — 1 tbsp
Honey — 1 tbsp
Sugar — 1 tbsp
Flaxseed oil — 1 tbsp
Make a thick, coarse paste of coffee powder, honey and sugar in the quantities mentioned above. Add a teaspoon of flaxseed oil to this paste and blend it well. Apply this mixture to your face and leave it on for fifteen minutes. Then gently scrub it all over your skin in circular strokes and rinse the mixture off.
Lift Wrinkles Away With Flaxseed Oil — Anti-aging Solution for Under-eye and Forehead Wrinkles
Flaxseed oil has the miraculous ability to lift wrinkles. This oil is extremely rich in essential fatty acids and skin-enhancing proteins. So, when you regularly apply it to the skin, it adds to the layer of fats beneath it. This helps to firm the area from within and restore bounciness to the skin. As a result, wrinkles that line it are lifted and you will observe a more youthful appearance.
There are two ways in which you can use flaxseed oil to reduce wrinkles and fine-lines and curb signs of skin ageing. They are:
- By consuming it orally — Daily intake of 1 tablespoon of fresh cold-pressed flaxseed oil will reduce the occurrence of wrinkles and other signs of ageing. You can also add it to smoothies or cereals to mask its taste and make it easier to consume.
- Topical application — Regular application of flaxseed oil to skin will slowly work towards reducing fine lines and existing wrinkles.
Here are two recipes for this.
Flaxseed Oil as a Regular Moisturizer
Lightly dampen your skin and rub flaxseed oil gently in a circular motion. Leave it for several minutes. When most of it is absorbed, blot off the excess and leave it on overnight. Use it regularly in this manner, and your skin will appear smooth and supple in few weeks.
Flaxseed Oil to Reduce Fine Lines Around the Eyes and on the Forehead
Helichrysum essential oil — 3-4 drops
Flaxseed oil — 1 tablespoon
Add helichrysum essential oil to flaxseed oil and blend well. Apply this mixture to areas around the eyes, on the forehead and areas displaying signs of ageing. Leave it to penetrate the skin. Use this mixture several times a week to observe results.
Moisturize With Flaxseed Oil to Enjoy Soft, Smooth and Clear Skin
Flaxseed oil is a fantastic skin moisturizer to include in your daily skin care regimen. Apply it directly to your face and allow it to work its magic. You can also mix it with your regular moisturizing cream or lotion and apply it to your face or other parts of your body.
Mixing flaxseed oil with avocado oil further enhances its moisturizing properties. Avocado oil has Vitamin E, potassium, lecithin and other nourishing ingredients. In addition, it penetrates deep into the skin, nourishing it from deep within. So, the combination of avocado oil and flaxseed oil guarantees supple, soft skin almost instantly.
Flaxseed Oil and Avocado Oil Recipe
Flaxseed oil — 1 tablespoon
Avocado oil — 1 tablespoon
The right way to use this combination is to first apply flaxseed oil to the entire area. Next, apply avocado oil over it and gently rub it into the skin. This powerful combination will not only rejuvenate your skin, it will also address problems like skin irritation, blemishes and scars.
Other Ways to Include Flaxseed Oil in Your Daily Skin Care Regimen
Enjoy healthy, problem-free skin by adding flaxseed oil to your daily skincare routine in the following ways.
Flaxseed Oil for Deep Pore Cleansing
Apply steam to your face for five to six minutes to open the pores. Gently massage flaxseed oil into the skin with circular strokes. Once this is done, place a warm and moist face towel on your face and let it sit for few minutes. Gently wipe the oil from your face and pat it dry.
Flaxseed Oil as a Carrier Oil to Soothe Sensitive Skin
Lavender oil — 5 to 6 drops
Chamomile oil — 5 to 6 drops
Flaxseed oil — 2 tablespoons
Mix lavender essential oil and chamomile oil with flaxseed oil in the recommended quantities till well-combined. Gently massage it into the affected skin. The combination will gently soothe the area, reduce swelling and rehydrate it.
Flaxseed Oil as a Carrier Oil to Reduce Inflammation and Pain
Rosemary oil — 5 to 6 drops
Peppermint oil — 5 to 6 drops
Flaxseed oil — 2 tablespoons
Gently combine the essential oils into flaxseed carrier oil and mix well. Massage it gently into inflamed skin and let it absorb. Repeat the same process and continue massaging the area with this blend of oils till the inflammation subsides and pain reduces.
Factors to Remember When Using Flaxseed Oil
The effectiveness of flaxseed oil in enhancing skin quality and addressing skin problems is closely linked to its quality. Best results are obtained from high quality unfiltered and unrefined oil.
Flaxseed oil tends to go rancid quickly. Hence, pay attention to storage and handling, to maximize its shelf life. Store it in a cool, dark space in a translucent or opaque bottle for best results.
Although it is safe for oral consumption, flaxseed oil should always be used in moderation. High intake can trigger diarrhea and vomiting.
Flaxseed oil isn’t advised for pregnant and breast-feeding women. Also avoid use if you suffer from bleeding disorders or are on anticoagulant medication.
Since flaxseed oil can sometimes trigger allergic reactions, always do a patch test before applying it in large quantities.
With its immense health and beauty benefits, flax seeds are undoubtedly some of nature’s finest products. Since the introduction of flaxseed oil in the early 1990s, this natural product has become a popular choice to enjoy the numerous benefits of this miracle seed. Not only does the oil address various skin issues like eczema, psoriasis and dry skin, it is highly effective at controlling and delaying signs of ageing. Whether it is to include in your diet or to add to your arsenal of skin-care essentials, flaxseed oil can be used in a variety of ways to deliver guaranteed results.