Cactus Seed Oil, also known as Prickly Pear Seed Oil, Barbary Fig Oil, and Indian Fig Oil, is derived from the seeds of the fruits produced by the Prickly Pear Cactus.
Our Cactus Seed oil originates from Morocco. It is extracted during a very time-consuming and laborious process requiring around 36 hours of manual labor, usually performed by Moroccan women at cooperatives. Because the seeds only contain 5% oil, 470 kg of prickly pears are needed to yield 32 ounces of oil. The seeds are separated from the pulp, washed and sun-dried, and stored in a cool, dry place to be pressed only on demand to guarantee a fresh, high quality oil.
Though native to Mexico, the Prickly Pear Cactus (Opuntia ficus indica) can now be found in various arid and semi-arid areas of the world, such as Morocco. Also called the miracle plant for its ability to survive during long droughts and still produce healthy fruits, it grows in open fields without exposure to fertilizers or pesticides. The Prickly Pear fruit contains numerous small black seeds from which the precious Cactus Seed/Prickly Pear Seed Oil is extracted. The oil has been used by generations of Berber women to protect their skin from the hash effects of dry and windy deserts. The Barbary Coast has one the largest population of the cactus in western coastal regions of North Africa - hence the name Barbary Fig.
Most Cactus Seed/Prickly Pear Seed Oil on the market is chemically extracted. By this method, the prickly pear seeds are pulverized and then inserted into a solvent, like hexane. To remove the hexane from the oil, it is heated so that most of the hexane can evaporate. The oil will, however, still contain traces of hexane. Plus, through this process, a great portion of the oil's valuable phytonutrients is destroyed.
Cactus Seed Oil can also be found as herbal oils made by Maceration (a process by which the blossoms of the prickly pears are inserted into oil and temporarily kept at room temperature, so that the blossoms can be "leached out" by the carrier oil - similar to Calendula herbal oil). This macerated herbal oil is a low-priced oil and certainly does not carry the therapeutic qualities of the pure, genuine, cold-pressed Prickly Pear Seed Oil.
Cactus Seed Oil contains more than 85% unsaturated fatty acids, with an impressive 65% of Linoleic Acid and 11% of Oleic Acid. It is an absolutely non-comedogenic oil when used unrefined and is one of the most beneficial oils for the treatment of aged skin with sensitivity.
The oil is also ultra rich in complete antioxidant radical scavengers Tocopherols (Alpha-Tocopherol 81.9%; Gamma-Tocopherol 3%; Delta-Tocopherol 1.2%), which are responsible for the impressive effectiveness of Prickly Pear Seed oil as a natural antioxidant. They help to stabilize cell membranes and protect the skin from free radicals, which prematurely age skin.
Its extraordinary anti-aging power is mostly due to its exceptional vitamin E content (nearly 1,000 mg per kilo) and essential fatty acid omega 6 (linoleic acid)
Powerful antioxidant: stimulates cellular renewal and combats free radicals
Reduces depth of wrinkles and lines, as well as the circles and sagging under the eyes
Reduces redness (rosacea), soothes sunburn, and balances skin's natural production of oils
Restructures, heals, and repairs skin's texture
Helps to smooth keloids and stretch marks
Is an excellent tensor: recovers tonus of the muscles underlying the skin, firming and revitalizing skin's appearance
Closes the skin's pores, moisturizes, and nourishes
Its emollient softens and smooths the skin
Non comedogenic: excellent for ultra sensitive skin lacking moisture and with lines and wrinkles
Over the years I have tried many oils but didn't find one that addressed all my need but that was until I met this oil. I decided to take the lottery ticket with this one and it was worth every penny. I have soft supple skin, helped with my acne, reduced my pores, reduced acne scars and rosacea. Its a miracle in a bottle.