Did you know that olive oil used to be called “liquid gold” by ancient Greek poet Homer? In fact, this moisturizing and antioxidant-rich oil was a common skin care ingredient used by the Greeks, Egyptians, and Romans. We always trust our ancestors’ remedies and have rediscovered the benefits of olive leaves and olive oil by taking advantage of this ingredient in many of our products.
The hardy, age-old olive tree produces fruit and leaves with skin-care benefits.
A little bit about the ingredient itself
Olives, olive oil, olive leaf—all these goodies come from the same tree—a species native the coastal areas of the eastern Mediterranean Basin. An evergreen shrub that rarely grows beyond 26–49 feet, it has silvery green oblong leaves and a gnarled and twisted trunk. It’s known to be very hardy, drought and disease-resistant, and to live oftentimes for hundreds of years. Small white, feathery flowers bloom in the spring and mature into the beautiful (and yummy) olives that you find at your local grocery store.
Internal health benefits of olives
You probably already know that the olive oil you cook with is good for you. It’s full of healthy monounsaturated fats, which are known to help lower your risk of heart disease, and may also help control blood sugar levels. This olive oil is made from the olive itself—the fruit of the tree. Producers grind whole olives and extract the oil for use in cooking, soaps, and cosmetic products.
Olive leaves, however, and olive leaf extract—both from the leaves of the olive tree, rather than the fruit—also have many health benefits, including the potential to boost the immune system and to fight off harmful bacteria. Clinical trials have shown olive leaf extract as having potential in the treatment of viral diseases like herpes, pneumonia, the flu, and the shingles. Both the leaves and the extract are also rich in antioxidants.
Olive oil’s benefit to the skin
Olive oil and olive leaves have numerous benefits to skin.
- Moisturizes: Olive oil contains linoleic acid, a fatty acid that helps it moisturize. Because of its unique ability to mix with water, the oil penetrates deeply to help your skin stay moisturized without clogging pores. This makes it a great hydrator for all types of skin, even sensitive and combination skin that may be prone to clogged pores. Olive oil is also wonderful for using after shaving, and combines well in cleansers to help leave you feeling clean, soft, and nourished.
- Protects: Olive leaves and olive oil have several different antioxidants, all of which help protect from environmental stressors. Olive oil also has vitamin A and E. Olive leaves contain several beneficial flavonoids, including quercetin, rutin, and kaempferol.
- Cleansing. Have you ever heard of oil cleansing? It’s easy to do, just coat your face a good amount of oil, let it sit for a couple of minutes, like a mask, and then use a warm, wet cloth to wipe it off. Olive oil is a wonderful oil cleanser for the skin. It works great to remove makeup and it has natural cleansing properties.
If you’re looking for the benefits of olive leaves and oil in our products, check out the following: