If you’ve experimented with different skincare products, chances are you’ve come across a DIY oatmeal face mask or an oat-infused lotion or two at some point. Now, however, it’s oat oil that’s getting it’s due, and it could be just what your regimen needs.
What is oat oil?
As the name suggests, oat oil comes from oats — specifically the Avena sativa plant, which is full of vitamins and minerals like zinc, calcium, and manganese as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, and E. On top of coming in the form of an oral supplement called oat straw extract, it can also be produced as an oil that shows a number of promising health benefits for your skin and scalp.
Because this specific oat contains antioxidants and a strong barrier, it’s able to lock in moisture and nutrients when applied to the skin, creating a soothing, calming protective layer with anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, those same antioxidants play a critical role in keeping compounds called free radicals from damaging cells, helping your skin keep signs of aging at bay.
Oat oil is also full of omega-6 fatty acids and linoleic acid, both of which add to that hydrating skin barrier to lock in moisture. Moreover, compounds called ceramides further shield that top surface layer of skin and act as a “glue” that holds cells together, stopping signs of aging in their tracks. In fact, one study found that oat oil increased ceramide levels by 70 percent in participants.
How should you use it?
Very few people experience allergic reactions or other skin rashes from oat-related skincare products, but you should still err on the side of caution and test out a small amount of oil on your wrist or scalp before covering your body, face, or head with it.
Oat oil comes in a few different forms, including serums for the face (Buy on Kinship, $35), products for the scalp (Buy on Bea’s Bayou Skincare, $20), and traditional lotions for the body (Buy on Verishop $20.00). If you want to use a more potent extract on your skin (Buy on Amazon, $21.99), be sure to mix with a carrier oil like coconut oil so that it’s not as harsh. And if you have any questions, talk to your dermatologist before getting started!