Watermelon Seed Oil
Botanical Name: Citrullus lanatus
Common Method of Extraction: The oil is extracted from sun dried seeds of the watermelon. The sun dry lowers the water content in them. The seeds are then pressed to extract fine yellow coloured oil. There are many ways of extraction, like cold pressed method, solvent extraction using hexane as solvent and supercritical carbon dioxide extraction. Cold pressed extraction is the healthiest because it does not contain any artificial ingredients in it and it is pure, organic and natural.
Parts Used: Seeds
Largest Producing Countries: Africa
Traditional Use: Watermelon seed oil is ideal as a moisturiser for oily and dry skin. It has strong antioxidant properties and application of the oil brings in anti-aging action. The oil gives natural direct nutrition to the skin and prevents it from free radicals. It is widely used in detoxifying massage mixes and helps reduce inflammation on the skin. The oil helps to drive out worms from the intestine and assist the body to release more urine from the body and in turn removing the toxins from the body. Watermelon seed oil is used as an ingredient in hair care formulations and when applied directly on the scalp it helps reduce the oiliness on the scalp and hair. The oil provides good nutrition to the hair and is widely used as hot oil treatment on the hair to get smooth, shiny and less greasy hair. Watermelon seed oil is a powerful antioxidant and provides nutrients to the cells in the skin. It is the ideal oil to deal with free radicals and oxidising agents in the environment. It is an excellent detoxifying agent of the skin and by massaging it on the lower abdomen it helps tone the urinary system and increase urine output. This also helps in preventing kidney stone formation.
Blends Well With: Watermelon seed oil blends well with other nutty oils because of the nutty flavour. The oil is used as carrier oil with any essential oil for aromatherapy massage.
Of Interest: Watermelon seed oil is popular in West Africa and there it is called ootanga oil or Kalahari oil. Watermelons originated more than 5,000 years ago in the Kalahari Desert of Africa and later migrated north through Egypt, and during the Roman era they were cultivated and prized. In West Africa the oil is till used as a cosmetic ingredient. The oil is light and an excellent skin moisturiser and is used in many skin care products. It is also widely used for making many homemade beauty products.
Safety Data: There isn’t much information on the side effects of watermelon seed oil but the important thing to note is that make sure that the oil is organic and pure. Oil extracted from the seed using the cold pressed technique is better. Make sure that the seeds are not heated at all because the heat changes the composition of the fatty acids and other nutrients and these are most important of the oil. Some nutrients in the oil lead to production of nitric oxide in the body. Make sure that the oil is taken in or use externally in the right dosage.