What Is Jojoba Oil? Grooming Buzzword Explained, Plus Top Products For Adding it to Your Routine

what is jojoba oil
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The grooming world is a lot like a human psyche: the deeper you get into the weeds, the more complicated things become. There’s a lot to learn in diving deep into ingredient lists, essential vitamins and minerals for your skin as well as the science of sun damage. However, this can all get overwhelming, and it can become tricky to decipher which face wash, acne face mask or spot treatments you should keep on your bathroom counter, and which should get tossed. If you’ve got a solid routine down where you wash your face once (hopefully twice!) a day, moisturize and use a face mask here and there, you’re 90% of the way there in my book. But, if you’re curious as to why certain products work the way that they do, or why certain ingredients are important, there’s no better place to start than by researching those grooming buzzwords we all hear all the time. From “aloe vera” to “anti-aging,” these phrases are thrown around a lot in skincare marketing, and it’s time to deep dive into what they mean and how they help. We’re going to start with a personal favorite of mine — jojoba oil.

What is jojoba oil? It’s present in many moisturizers and skincare products and supposedly is great for hydration. How? Why? And is it actually effective? I figured there’s got to be some truth to these claims since it’s present in so many products, and it turns out there are! Jojoba oil is produced by the hearty jojoba plant which grows in various regions in northern Mexico/ southwestern United States. It’s naturally protective, hydrating, deeply moisturizing and excellent for diluting essential oils, hence its presence in many skincare products. It’s got high amounts of vitamin E and antioxidants, and is antifungal and antibacterial. I’m going to walk you through each of the ways, from head to toe, that jojoba oil is great for your body and works beyond skin deep, and include some recommended products for adding it to your routine along the way.

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Cliganic USDA Organic Jojoba Oil

Cliganic jojoba oil, what is jojoba oil Courtesy of Amazon

Cliganic USDA Organic Jojoba Oil

$9.99

  

1. It’s An Excellent Moisturizer

This one’s probably not a surprise. Jojoba oil is a humectant ingredient, meaning it helps seak off the skin’s protective, hydrating layer so it doesn’t lose moisture on its own. This helps your body regulate oil, or sebum, production so it doesn’t produce too much leaving your skin oily, or too little leaving it dry.

It’s common for the pH balance of the skin to be thrown off by a stripping cleanser or other harsh ingredient, which in turn throws it into sebum overproduction mode. This can cause over-cleansing the next time you wash your face due to the excess oil, and the cycle continues. Hydrating with a lotion or cream that contains jojoba oil can prevent this from happening, as it mimics sebum closely so your body doesn’t overproduce. It can balance hydration levels effectively and keep them level with consistent use.

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Body Mist

This hydrating body mist from Aveeno uses jojoba oil to rebalance the skin’s surface and condition rough, dry and even sensitive skin. It’s made of 98% naturally-derived ingredients including oat oil and jojoba oil, is hypoallergenic, and is free of artificial components like parabens and phthalates.

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Aveeno Moisturizing Body Mist

$8.69

  

2. It May Be Naturally Antibacterial

It’s not as comprehensively antibacterial as other natural ingredients, but there has been some evidence that it can kill bacteria that causes e. coli, salmonella and candida. As an ingredient that’s moisturizing in hand sanitizers, that tend to be incredibly drying, it can only help.

Artnaturals Alcohol Based Hand Sanitizer Gel

This hand sanitizer is infused with jojoba oil to make the formula more moisturizing and gentler for sensitive skin types. It’s got 62.5% ethyl alcohol for germ-killing duties and is free from harsh, synthetic ingredients. It’s also scent-free, which is great for those allergic to scents or harsh essential oils.

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3. It Contains Natural Forms of Vitamin E

This is a major plus for this natural ingredient, as vitamin E does a lot of great things for the body. It works with your skin as an antioxidant to help your body fight off oxidative stress from daily toxins and pollutants. Our skin puts up with a lot as we move through the world, and jojoba oil may help mitigate some of the damage. It also works in conjunction with the vitamin to form a barrier to protect against the skin’s mortal enemy — UV damage from the sun. Vitamin E is also a great remedy for scars and may effectively minimize their appearance when combined with jojoba oil in treatment. Jojoba oil’s high concentration of natural vitamin E may also help quicken wound healing in general across the body.

DERMA E Radiant Face Glow Oil

This face oil contains jojoba oil and other antioxidants to promote a healthy appearance for the skin as well as a well-maintained balance of vitamins. It contains all organic and natural ingredients to enhance glow, even out skin tone, help smooth texture and deeply moisturize.

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DERMA-E Radiant Glow Face Oil

$19.48

  

Vitamin E Oil With Jojoba

This vitamin E oil from Sky Organics includes jojoba and rosehip oil, and is designed to help minimize the appearance of scars, stretch marks and other skin issues on the body. The oil is formulated to soften dry skin and can be added to your favorite moisturizers for an antioxidant boost. This oil contains 36,000 IUs of vitamin E alongside the jojoba oil, so it’s a super effective formula for your skin.

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Sky Organics Vitamin E Oil

$13.95

  

4. It’s Non Comedogenic

Translation: it’s less likely to clog your pores and cause breakouts. It’s very similar in chemical composition to sebum, which your body naturally produces, and your skin can’t tell the difference most of the time. As a product, therefore, it’s less likely to build up on your skin and cause or irritate existing acne.

Now Solutions Organic Jojoba Oil

This is 100% pure, multipurpose jojoba oil. This oil is non-GMO and the production process has been vetted and is GMP-quality certified. It’s formulated highly stable for all skin and hair types, and is a great versatile product to add to your bathroom cabinet.

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Now Solutions Organic Jojoba Oil

$10.99

  

5. It’s Hypoallergenic

Those with sensitive skin can rest a little easier after slathering this oil all over their face during their nighttime routine, because it’s hypoallergenic! On its most basic, molecular level it’s a wax so instead of absorbing into the skin always, it creates a smoothing seal on the exterior layer that helps your skin lock in moisture. It’s not known for being irritating for most users, and an allergic reaction to it is rare.

Ancient Greek Remedy Oil

This body oil from Ancient Greek Remedy contains only six raw, organic ingredients so you know it’s pure. It’s got the jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, extra virgin olive oil, grape seed oil, sunflower seed oil and vitamin E — quite the hydrating powerhouse. It’s formulated to be anti-aging, help smooth and moisturize skin, shrink pores, clear up acne and prevent future breakouts.

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Ancient Greek Remedy Body Oil

$14.99

  

6. It May Help Ease Dandruff

Dandruff is caused by a fungus, grossly enough, called Malassezia. Jojoba oil is naturally antifungal, so alongside its soothing and moisturizing capabilities, nightly scalp treatments with it could help ease dry, itchy dandruff. A properly moisturized scalp is a happy one, and this oil might be just the ticket. Head & Shoulders, one of the biggest brands in the dandruff treatment game, has infused jojoba oil into their products.

Head & Shoulders Supreme Dry Scalp Care Shampoo and Conditioner

This shampoo and conditioner set is formulated to nourish your scalp and hair fully, and is infused with both jojoba oil and argan oil. Through taking care of your scalp first, it’s designed to help build healthy, vibrant, naturally hydrated hair. Both the shampoo and conditioner are safe to use with color and chemically-treated hair.

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Head & Shoulders Supreme Dry Scalp Care

$17.98

  

7. It May Help Collagen Synthesis

Collagen is an essential protein that’s present in your skin and joints, our body naturally produces it when we’re young. Unfortunately, our natural collagen levels can decrease as we get older, but antioxidants in remedies like jojoba oil can help your body produce more of it.

LDR Glycolic Exfoliating Cleanser

This cleaner contains all sorts of great ingredients for your skin, including AHA and BHA — two chemical exfoliants and jojoba oil beads for moisture. The mix of natural glycolic, beta hydroxy acids of glycolic, lactic acids and salicylic acids all combine forces to remove dead skin cells and jumpstart the renewal process for your skin. The jojoba oil beads act as a gentle exfoliator and hydrate at the same time. All ingredients and sourced ethically and the cleanser is cruelty-free.

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8. It’s Got Anti-Inflammatory Properties

If you’ve got eczema, psoriasis, or just red, itchy, angry skin — jojoba oil may help. External application of jojoba oil through a mask, lotion or cream has been shown to improve flare ups of these conditions. If you’ve got a condition that makes your skin super dry, jojoba oil may help!

Desert Essence Hand & Body Lotion

This lotion from Desert Essence has a whole mix of calming, soothing ingredients for the skin like green tea, coconut oil, shea butter and, you guessed it, jojoba oil. It helps the skin repair from everyday environmental stress and oxidative stress. It’s fragrance-free, so there’s nothing artificial that could irritate in it, and the jojoba oil ensures the moisture penetrates deep so you get hydration without an oily residue afterwards.

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Desert Essence Hand & Body Lotion

$8.05

  

9. It Can Work As a Cold Sore Remedy

Cold sores happen, but most of us would probably like to avoid them. According to Engsall in Byrdie, “The tingling people feel when a cold sore is emerging is the [herpes] virus moving up the nerve shaft feeding on oxygen. Jojoba applied to the area will quickly mix with skin sebum and block the flow of oxygen to the virus, which retreats back into the nerve shaft.” If you use jojoba oil often enough, the cold sore presumably won’t get enough oxygen to grow and emerge from the skin and cause irritation. She went on to explain that “Jojoba also contains docosanol, which is an ingredient in commercial cold sore treatments.”

DocoShield Cold Sore Prevention Lip Balm w/ Docosanol

This lip balm contains docosanol, the active ingredient in jojoba oil, and also contains the oil itself for its moisturizing properties. Used regularly, this lip balm is designed to prevent cold sore outbreaks by preventing the virus from replicating and spreading.

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DocoShield Cold Sore Prevention Lip Balm

$14.97