Pomegranate oil has an interesting fatty acid profile - 2% palmitic acid (C16), 1.3 to 2% stearic acid (C18), 5.7% oleic acid (C18:1), 7% linoleic acid (C18:2), 70 to 76% punicic acid (C18:3, n-5), and a titch of gadoleic acid.
Punicic acid is a conjugated linolenic acid called "omega-5" because the first double bond is on the fifth bond from the end (omega meaning end). Also known as trichosanic acid, punicic acid is showing great promise in lab rats in fighting prostate cancer! In humans pomegranate oil is regenerating to skin, offering anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties. It can help with sunburned or chapped skin and improves skin's elasticity, and can stimulate regeneration in skin cells!
The polyphenols found in pomegranate oil are simply fantastic for our skin! It contains gallic acid, which is being studied as a burn and wound healer, and ellagic acid, which is being studied for a number of benefits (also found in mango butter and borage oil). A recent study found that using ellagic acid reduced the destruction of collagen and the inflammatory response, both of which are partially responsible for aging skin. It also shows promise in helping regenerate skin cells and helping to thicken skin. The conclusions from this study are that pomegranate oil may prevent wrinkle formation and photo-aging caused by the UV destruction of collagen. Wow, that's amazing!
Pomegranate oil contains a lot of phytosterols - between 4000 and 6000 mg per kilogram. This is about 4 times higher than soybean oil! It's mostly found as sitosterol and stigmasterol, both of which behave like cortisone, reducing redness and inflammation and helping soothe itchy skin.
Pomegranate oil has a shelf life of about 12 months if kept in a cool, dark place. Definitely add some Vitamin E to any creation with pomegranate oil as it has all those double and triple bonded fatty acids. If you see a CO2 extraction of pomegranate oil, it will have a shelf life of up to 24 months.
Pomegranate oil is not cheap, but it's worth it to add 5 to 10% to a really special facial serum or lotion.
Join me tomorrow for fun with calendula oil!