Some years ago, I found out that the first two minutes after a hot shower are the best times to moisturise your skin. This is because your pores open up due to the steam; so, when you moisturise in that time period, your skin is super absorbent and according to the Mayo Clinic, this helps to trap some of the water left on the skin, which is good for hydration. However, this can go both ways. Some moisturisers have chemicals that can cause irritation or burning sensations and so when you use them on your skin in its super absorbent stage, the irritation and burning effects could be catastrophic. To avoid this, it’s best to use natural products that have minimum adverse effects on the skin. Over the years, I’ve used all sorts of natural products. While some apparently worked at first, my skin didn’t seem to love them so this is a list of my all-time favourite natural moisturisers.
- Jojoba Oil (pronounced as HO-HO-BA)
It’s become a recent favourite of mine. It’s extracted from the seeds of the jojoba plant which is endemic to North America. The refined oil has a golden colour and might have a slightly nutty scent. Jojoba oil is known for its versatility. It is a great moisturiser for hair, the skin and cuticles. As someone with acne-prone skin, I love jojoba oil because it is non-comedogenic i.e. it doesn’t block pores (blocked pores are a major cause of acne). It is also similar to sebum, which is the natural oil our bodies produce to lubricate our skin. That means it is perfect for people with dry scalp and dry skin. I use jojoba after my nightly showers because it is quickly absorbed into the skin, is non-greasy (no oil-stained sheets!) and my skin feels soft and supple in the morning. It is also great for the cuticles, hands and feet. I usually use it as hand cream as well and again, my hands always feel soft in the morning and my nails have been looking shinier and healthier. I cannot possibly list all the benefits of jojoba oil in this article so I’ll attach a useful link. However, it’s versatility has made it my favourite for the time being, and the beauty of it is it’s for everyone.
- Olive Oil
For millenniums, olive oil has been used as a home remedy for a range of skincare issues. Ancient Egyptians used it as a moisturiser amongst other functions. Best applied to damp skin, the antioxidants and squalene (one of the most common oils/lipids also produced in human cells) give the skin much needed hydration. The low toxicity of naturally occurring squalene means a lower chance of irritation and sensitivity on human skin. Olive oil also absorbs quickly into the skin, giving it a glowing, supple look.
- Shea Butter
I can’t say much on this product because so many people already know and use it. Shea butter is one of the best natural moisturisers out there, barring the smell. It has a deeply moisturising effect on the skin and is moderately low on the comedogenic scale, so that makes it ideal for all skin types.
NB: This list is subjective, these are the top three moisturisers that work best for me. It is always wise to research products you put on your skin, natural or not. Also, be smart when buying such products. Some sellers may sell contaminated or adulterated products so as a consumer it’s your job to be safety conscious. Also, buy 100% organic (i.e. products grown without harmful chemicals like pesticides and weed-killers) and cold-pressed oils (oils extracted without heat or chemicals that lead to quicker oxidation which subsequently renders the oils rancid). In the case of olive oil, the prefix ‘Extra-Virgin’ means that the oil was extracted with a simple mechanical method rather than with heat or chemicals. I hope this article was useful and shed some light on alternative natural moisturisers. What are your favourite natural moisturisers?