Through cold pressing of the seeds of the plant oenothera biennis, known as evening primrose and belonging to the Onagraceae family, a powerful beauty oil is obtained. This oil is suitable for very sensitive skin and eye contour. You can find evening primrose oil in herbalist’s and chemist’s shops, both for oral use in the form of pearls and for topical applications in bottles. But let’s see better the properties.
Evening primrose oil, its beauty properties
This product is soothing and protective, strengthens the skin barrier, improves hydration, the tone and elasticity of the tissues, regenerates the skin, helps to balance the sebum production and fights wrinkles. These characteristics are determined by its composition, in fact, evening primrose oil is rich in antioxidant substances, such as polyphenols, and essential fatty acids, especially linoleic acid, about 70%, and gamma linolenic acid, about 10%, both with anti-inflammatory properties (Timoszuk et al, Antioxidants, Aug 2018). In addition to this, gamma linolenic acid is important for the health of the skin since it is the primary substrate for the formation of arachidonic acid, a substance characterized by healing properties and able to accelerate tissue healing and regeneration (Oh et al, Cell death Dis, May 2015). Therefore, given these characteristics, evening primrose oil is useful in case of mature or sunburned skin, skin with eczema, acne, dermatitis, even atopic dermatitis, and erythema (Muggli et al, Int J Cosmet Sci, Aug 2005 - Goddard et al , Evid Based Complemet Aletrnat Med, 2015). These benefits have been observed in case of both oral and topical applications of evening primrose oil.
Evening primrose oil, oral use
As mentioned, evening primrose oil can be taken either as an oral supplement or applied on the skin as a powerful beauty serum. As for oral use, the product can be found in the form of pearls that are taken by mouth, from 2 to 4 pearls a day for two or three months. Oral intake of evening primrose pearls does not only have an effect on the beauty of the skin, but also on the health of the whole organism. In fact, as evidenced by scientific studies, these capsules filled with evening primrose oil are able to reduce eye inflammation but also problems such as dry eye and light sensitivity and are able to lower the levels of bad LDL cholesterol and triglycerides (Timoszuk et al, Antioxidants, Aug 2018). The oral use of evening primrose oil pearls in pregnancy is not reported in any scientific study and should therefore be avoided. Avoid also if you are taking neuroleptic drugs as evening primrose oil could alter their action. In general, oral use of evening primrose oil is well tolerated, however possible side effects are headaches and stomach problems (Bayles et al, Am Fa, Physician, 2009).
Evening primrose oil for external applications
You can find evening primrose oil in small bottles, alternatively, since the evening primrose oil pearls are easier to find, you can make a small hole in the pearls with a needle. Add a few drops of evening primrose oil to your usual face and body cream and apply, or you can spread a little product directly on damp skin after bathing or showering or after spraying a hydrolat on your face. Don't overdo the quantity otherwise you risk the oily skin effect. Evening primrose oil is also perfect as an eye contour or as a powerful treatment against deeper wrinkles, such as those on the forehead. In this case you can very gently massage on the area a couple of drops of pure evening primrose oil.