Composition of vegetable oils: the major attraction of beautiful organic cosmetics

Obviously the 21st century will be the century of security, for various reasons, we are less and less willing to take risks. The key words are: prevention, safety, health, certainty… The followers of cosmetics will be divided. There will be followers of technical, highly scientific, cosmetic. We will also have fun, basic cosmetics and, above all, we will have increasingly effective natural and organic cosmetics.

This is how we see the resurgence of vegetable oils as a major instrument of natural and healthy beauty. They have very recently returned to the forefront of basic care, used as a serum in beauty oils, with a composition of around 98% oils, therefore active, against a present between 10 and 28 % in organic creams.

Almost unique ingredient in beauty oils for the face, or essential in creams, they are at the essence of our brand because, vegetable oils are only composed of carbon (C), hydrogen (H) and d 'a little oxygen (O), in varying proportions depending on the oil.

In order to fully understand how a vegetable oil works, it is essential to explain how the skin works.



The stratum corneum (stratum corneum) is the top layer of the epidermis. It has a predominant aesthetic role, it is the main protective element despite its fineness (10 µm, 1/100 of a mm). It is an almost impermeable barrier.

The horny layer is made up of cells (the corneocyts) ordered like a brick wall (board c) whose cement is made up of polyunsaturated fatty acids, cholesterol and ceramide (major constituent).

If the water concentration is less than 10%, it appears dry, scaled, loses its flexibility, or even cracks.

If the water concentration is too high, its dehydration is accelerated.

Hydration permeabilizes the epidermis in both directions.


It is a proteoglycan gel (sugar capable of fixing water) in which hyaluronic acid is one of the components. It is also made up of proteins like collagen and elastin.

It is vascularized. It is the skin's water reservoir.

The water content of the total skin changes over time. It is 80% water in an infant while it is only 60% in an elderly person.

Wrinkles are a structural modification of the dermis more than a decrease in water concentration, it is the result of the same breakage of the dermis and the epidermis. Apart from the natural phenomenon of aging, many reasons or aggravating factors exist: too much sun, too much stress, smoking, pollution, inaction ... so many facts that develop free radicals also responsible for aging. the skin and not that ...



It is in fact slightly acidic (pH = 5.5 on average), it becomes less acidic with age. Oily skin is more basic. This acidity limits attacks from pathogenic microorganisms, so the skin's defense decreases over time.


It is a film on the surface of the skin, made up of sebum secreted by the sweat glands and water.

Sebum is made up of polyunsaturated fatty acids, ceramides and cholesterol.

The secretion of sebum is more important in the middle of the face the T zone.

It is secreted more strongly in men than in women and decreases after 50 years.

The secretion of sebum increases in the 2nd part of the cycle in women.

It disappears after using a detergent, it reappears after a few hours.

Its function is to maintain the ph and strengthen the aesthetic appearance of the stratum corneum.

IN SUMMARY: a good cosmetic product is a product which, at a minimum:

  1. Reduces insensible water loss (hydration)
  2. Maintains skin ph
  3. Consolidates the stratum corneum (the brick wall that prevents sagging and therefore wrinkles)
  4. maintains the hydro lipid film
  5. fight against free radicals

Now let's see how and why beautiful vegetable oils work

First of all, what are we called Vegetable oils, they exist in a simplified way, three main types of oils see our article on the blog: here

- Mineral oils, obtained from petrochemicals) they are occlusive, protect the skin well from external aggressions but do not nourish in depth do not bring any benefit to the skin. They do not oxidize and keep for a very long time.

- Modified oils. These oils of natural origin have been modified in the laboratory, they have been heated, diluted ... these oils of natural origin no longer nourish the skin but offer benefits to the touch, formulation and savings ...

- Vegetable oils, the real ones, the 100% natural. Obtained only by pressing fruits or stones, they are rich in fatty acids and anti-oxidants. Each oil has of course its own peculiarities, they all have in common nourishing, moisturizing and protective properties. They are first cold pressed. We will only talk about these, the others being of no major interest to the skin.

Vegetable oils are mainly composed of triglycerides sometimes at more than 98%, they are interesting for the skin because they contain fatty acids and serve as a support for INSAPONIFIABLE.

In these, we will find a lot of elements that interest us the most:

  • Vitamins: E (Antioxidant and natural preservative), A: (carotene), K (Coagulant), D (antirachitic) regulates and facilitates the absorption of calcium It also helps maintain skin hydration.
  • Polyphenols (flavonoids): Antioxidants, healing and repairers
  • Phytosterols (cholesterol): Anti-inflammatory, protect against UV rays, improve microcirculation
  • Tri terpenes: Emollients
  • Hydrocarbons- Squalene: Restructuring of the epidermis (close to the composition of the skin's sebum)
  • Minerals: zinc, iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper
  • Enzymes: coenzyme Q10, glulathione peroxidase, methionine reductase, polyphenol oxidase, isoenzymes
  • Resin esters known for their healing and disinfecting properties



We have previously mentioned their importance in the construction of this brick wall of our stratum corneum.

There are several kinds of fatty acids: saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Saturated fatty acids (SFAs) are mainly of animal origin, they are present in butter, cream, lard or bacon ... Some vegetable oils also contain them, such as palm oil.

Unsaturated fatty acids (UFA) are mainly found in plant products as well as in fatty fish such as salmon, sardines or tuna ...

They fall into two sub-categories:

- Monounsaturated fatty acids, omega 9

- Polyunsaturated fatty acids, omega 3 and 6

 In the skin, it is mainly polyunsaturated fatty acids that interest us.

“Essential” fatty acids are lipid compounds that the body cannot manufacture, or in insufficient quantities, and which must therefore be provided through the diet.

  • Omega 3s are part of the essential fatty acid family.
  • Omega 6 participates in the construction of immune cells, improves healing.

For omega 6 to be really effective, they must be associated with a sufficient intake of omega 3. We find: linoleic acid (the only essential omega 6 fatty acids), gamma-linoleic acid, dihomo acid -gamma-linoleic, arachidonic acid.

Take the two essential acids (which cannot be produced by our body) as an example

       1. linoleic acid

Present in a good number of vegetable oils, linoleic acid is one of the essential fatty acids of the omega 6 family. Inside our skin, linoleic acid is part of the composition of ceramides, which, in turn, make part of the lipid cement, a real protective barrier for the epidermis. A deficiency in omega 6 will result in an intense dryness of the skin, a less radiant complexion, brittle and dull hair….

       2. Alpha-linolenic acid

Of the omega 3 family, alpha-linolenic acid is the only acid labeled "essential" since it cannot be synthesized by the body.

In the cosmetics industry, alpha-linoleic acid is known for its moisturizing power which gives suppleness to the skin. It is anti-inflammatory and therefore soothes redness and skin irritation.

  • Omega 9, monounsaturated fatty acids, are not essential fatty acids because the human body can manufacture them, the best known is oleic acid. That we still use in cosmetics in addition to omega 6 in particular

There are between 40 and 50 common fatty acids and more than 500 rare fatty acids only present in some oils. In fact there are about twenty fatty acids that can interest us each with different functions. Each vegetable oil has its own composition of fatty acids.

The role of the formulator will be to find the best synergy between these different fatty acids and therefore different oils to meet the needs of each type of skin.

We can already say that the unique synergy of vegetable oils that is effective on all skin types is a decoy. Each skin type will require a specific fatty acid composition.

Share this post

comments (0)

No comments at this moment