At Luxe Botanics, we care about not only what we present on stage, but also what’s behind the curtain. What we mean is that we’ve chosen the most high-performing botanical ingredients to provide you with visibly effective solutions. Every bottle of skincare we deliver encapsulates our passion for beautiful skin. But what you’re not able to see are how our skincare is made. We ensure they’re all ethically sourced and benefit the women who harvest them for us. We believe in our own little “circle of life” —and it’s one of our most important tenets.
Today, we wanted to highlight our superstar, Marula oil. Marula oil is not only good for your skin—it’s also economically beneficial to the African women who gather it and environmentally sustainable.
Marula is a type of tree with the botanical name Sclerocarya birrea. It grows throughout many regions of Africa, including Kenya. The tree produces a fruit with two to three oil-rich kernels, or nuts, inside. These nuts are used to make Marula oil, a prized ingredient in natural skincare. The multitasking, overachieving Marula oil fights all the signs of aging, including fine lines, wrinkles, sagging, leaving skin looking youthful and hydrated. In fact, it’s so good, we’ve made it one of our core botanicals.
African people have used Marula oil for thousands of years. It has been used for cooking, to preserve meat, to treat leather and as a natural cosmetic. African women use the oil to soothe and heal dry, cracked skin. They also use it as a massage lotion for newborn babies!
Marula oil effectively fights the signs of aging skin. It does this by hydrating and moisturizing skin, increasing skin’s elasticity and combating skin damage. Here are few of the ways Marula oil achieves these remarkable results.
Marula Oil’s Acids Are Incredibly Effective Moisturizers
The main reason Marula oil is so good for your skin is because it’s high in fatty acids. A clinical analysis done by the University of Technology in South Africa found that Marula oil is very high in oleic acid. Oleic acid, also known as omega-9 fatty acid, is a healthy, monounsaturated fat that your body also naturally produces.
Marula oil has a higher concentration of oleic acid than olive oil, making it considerably more shelf-stable. Marula oil also contains linoleic, or omega-6, acid. Your body doesn’t make this acid naturally, so it’s important you provide your skin with it. Both these types of acids work together to help to add youthful moisture to your skin.
Marula Oil Is a Fantastic Antioxidant
Antioxidants, which help prevent and neutralize free radical damage, are arguably one of the most important ingredients you can apply to your skin.
To give you a bit of a science lesson, free radicals are atoms that only have one of two of their electrons. The free radicals aim to “steal” electrons from other healthy atoms, causing a cascade of damage. Some of the main triggers of this process are pollution, UV rays, poor nutrition, smoking, stress and simply the act of living. As an antioxidant, Marula oil fights these free radicals by “donating” electrons to stop the torrent of “stealing.”
Some of Marula oil’s antioxidant properties come from a richness in ascorbic acid, also known as vitamin C. A 2002 study showed the effectiveness of vitamin C in reducing sun damage, one of the major signs of aging. On top of that, here’s what Phytotrade Africa 2012 had to say about Marula oil: “Marula oil has been shown to have free radical scavenging properties higher than most oils oil on the market… Tests included ‘skin hydration’, ‘transepidermal water loss’ and ‘increase in skin smoothness’ with Marula oil performing significantly well.”
How Maasai Women Benefit From Marula Oil
Marula oil provides an important income for the women of the Maasai tribe in Kenya. We work with the Leaky Foundation, an organization that creates opportunities for rural African people to earn money. Most of the people who gather marula fruits are women. Previously, women were offered little opportunity to bring money into their households to feed and clothe their children. After working for the Leaky Foundation for just a few months, these women earn enough money for food and clothes for their children for one year.
Marula oil has a tremendous economic impact on the African communities where it is collected. People are now able to live a higher quality of life, invest in their local economy and give their children a brighter future.
When you buy from the Luxe Botanics Marula range, you’re not only buying a product that will make your skin look younger. You’re also helping create jobs for women living in rural Africa. And that’s not all: Luxe Botanics works with the Buy1Get1 (B1G1) organization to give back. Every purchase from Luxe Botanics helps to support African and South American communities.
How Marula Oil Benefits the Environment
Before the Leaky Foundation helped women earn money by collecting marula kernels, Maasai women could earn a small amount of money by burning wood to make charcoal. This practice, along with agricultural encroachment, leads to deforestation. Burning or cutting down trees can mean the loss of homes for animals and many unique plants. It also means fewer trees are available to absorb greenhouse gasses, contributing to global warming. Giving marula trees an economic value can help save these valuable natural resources and help save our planet.
As you can see, Marula oil is amazing in so many ways. It hydrates and repairs damaged skin like no other. It also helps the environment and improves the lives of people living in rural Africa. And that’s something we can all feel (and look) good about.
The Luxe Botanics Team