Our Complete Guide to Plum Oil: Benefits, Uses and Cautions
Plum oil is becoming increasingly popular all over the world for its potent and completely natural hair, skin and beauty benefits. With a bright, light and fruity fragrance, oil extracted from plums can have a deeply moisturizing effect on the body, smoothing and hydrating skin for a better glow.
A strong competitor for other natural beauty oils like argan and jojoba, plum oil contains vitamin E and vitamin C as well as a variety of other natural chemical constituents that promote skin suppleness, moisture and a youthful appearance.
You can use a plum oil moisturizer to hydrate skin, reduce oiliness and keep hair feeling luscious, all while enjoying the light but beautiful fragrance of a plum orchard on a warm summer’s day, or as some say, almond and marzipan-like. In this guide, we’ll discover the many health, beauty and lifestyle benefits that plum oil has to offer.
- What is plum oil?
- Plum oil - quick facts
- How is plum oil made?
- Benefits of plum oil
- Plum oil for oily skin
- Plum oil for youthful radiance
- Plum oil for soft, shiny hair
- Plum oil for nails
- How to use plum oil
- Skin moisturizer
- Carrier oil
- Makeup primer
- Hair serum
- Plum oil research
- Plum oil’s antioxidants for skin health - 2009, 2020
- Plum oil’s fatty acids and vitamin E for hair growth – 2019, 2021
- Side effects of plum oil
- Contraindications of plum oil
- Where to buy plum oil
- Beauty counters
- Plum Oil FAQs
- What are the benefits of plum vitamin C serum?
- Is plum oil moisturizer good for you?
- Can I use plum oil for oily skin?
- Does plum oil clog your pores?
- In summary
What is plum oil?
The second-most cultivated fruit in the world, plums are well-loved across the globe for their sweet, tart and almost berry-like flavor, as well as their wide variety of different shapes and colors. Plums can be found in a rainbow of purples, reds, pinks, yellows and greens and belong to the stone fruit family.
Other fruits in this family include peaches, greengages (green plums), nectarines and apricots. The Latin name for a plum tree is Prunus domestica. Plums have two main family lines: the European plum, which originated around the Caspian Sea, and the Japanese plum, which originated in China.
However, in today’s world, you will find sweet, juicy plums being cultivated all over the world, including places like Iran, Japan, North America, France and India. They tend to grow best in temperate climates with plenty of sunshine and well-drained soil.
Even though the sweet plum flesh does contain its own flavor profile and list of benefits, plum oil is actually extracted from the singular kernel inside the fruit. That is where most of the nutrients are.
Plum oil - quick facts
✅ Latin name: Prunus domestica
✅ Country of origin: Europe and China
✅ Scent note: Top
✅ Annual production: 12.6 million tons
✅ Popular uses: hair, skin, beauty
How is plum oil made?
When it comes to extracting and producing plum oil, the kernel is the main prize. The kernel is different to the pit: the pit is the hard, woody stone you’ll find when biting into a fresh plum. If you slice that pit open, inside you will find a smaller, almond-shaped kernel. That is the richest source of nutrients.
Following a harvest period to collect all the ripened plums, these fruits are separated from their pits using mechanical slicing tools. Once the kernels are isolated, they are thoroughly cleaned and dried to remove any unnecessary moisture.
Those precious plum kernels are then put through a milling process, which breaks down the natural oils. Then the crushed-up bits of kernel undergo a heavy cold-pressing process which expels the oils without using any chemicals or heat. The result is a light-yellow oil that smells reminiscent of almonds and marzipan.
Benefits of plum oil
Unlike essential oils which are sought out for their powerful natural fragrances and healing potential, plum oil is favored purely for its skin, hair and beauty benefits. While plum oil does possess a subtle, marzipan-like aroma, its real benefits lie in its ability to smooth, strengthen and hydrate the skin.
Plum oil has a wide range of benefits, which is why it is one of the most popular carrier oils in the world. The dominant chemical constituents of plum kernel oil are oleic acids (60-80%), linoleic acids (15-25%), palmitic acid (5-10%), stearic acid (1-4%), palmitoleic acid (1-2%), and finally, vitamin E.
Some of the main benefits of plum oil include:
- ✅ Balancing oily skin
- ✅ Anti-aging
- ✅ Hair care
- ✅ Nail care
Let’s take a look at each of these benefits of plum oil in more detail.
Plum oil for oily skin
There’s a common myth that people with oily skin should not use oil-based products. However, when the oil is as lightweight, non-greasy and nutrient-loaded as plum oil, that myth can be tossed into the wind. Plum oil is noncomedogenic, which means it won’t clog your pores.
Containing a high level of oleic acid, plum oil is able to balance out the rate at which your skin produces oil, slowing down the development of acne and blackheads. If you struggle with these skin issues, plum oil for oily skin can restore healthy hydration and glow to your face.
Plum oil for youthful radiance
Plum oil is packed with vitamin E and palmitoleic acid (omega-7). Vitamin E is added to many anti-aging beauty products, and plum oil naturally possesses a high dose of it. Able to promote the restoration of scarred, weathered or blemished skin, vitamin E helps to slow down moisture loss from the skin and nourish new cells to create smoother, suppler skin.
Palmitoleic acid contributes to the health, radiance, and rejuvenation of skin, hair, nails and lips. By promoting collagen production which reduces wrinkle formation, palmitoleic acid supports the skin’s anti-aging process.
Plum oil for soft, shiny hair
Oleic acids are also able to tame frizz while promoting healthier, stronger and shinier hair. No matter what your hair type is, plum oil can facilitate better moisture retention within the hair follicles, add nourishment and lustre to strands and protect your hair from heat damage. The presence of linoleic acid in plum oil further promotes thickness, radiance and faster hair growth.
Plum oil for nails
Vitamin E promotes hair growth and nail growth. It can enhance the health and flexibility of your nails while keeping them strong and resistant to chipping. The presence of stearic acid also promotes the locking-in of essential moisture levels, keeping your nails strong and full of shine.
How to use plum oil
Plum oil can be used in a variety of cosmetic and health-related ways, depending on its intended purpose. Here are some of the most common ways to use plum oil:
- ✅ Skin moisturizer
- ✅ Carrier oil
- ✅ Makeup primer
- ✅ Hair serum
Let’s take a look at each of these uses of plum oil in more detail.
Rubbing some plum oil onto your face as a moisturizer is a great way to keep skin fresh, supple and hydrated without becoming greasy. Regular application can contribute to skin that resists moisture loss and keeps sebum production under control for youthful, bright-looking skin.
Plum oil’s content of oleic and linoleic acid make it useful on the face, for acne-prone skin and for those with eczema, since linoleic acid production in the skin is actually reduced in such cases, and replacing it helps unclog pores and calm inflammation.
Many popular cosmetic products are now adding plum oil to their ingredients list, but you can also make your own DIY pure plum oil moisturizer - simply use it as is!
If you’re looking for a carrier oil to use for the topical application of essential oils, plum oil should top your list. Not only will it help dilute your essential oils, making them less irritating to the skin and prolonging their presence on your skin and their benefits, but it actually has its own wealth of skin care benefits which we’ve already touched on.
Plum oil is also an ideal carrier oil to use on the face because it won’t clog pores and it replaces the skin’s reduced linoleic acid content, helps unclog pores and calms inflammation. Use it with essential oils that improve skin health, or with any other essential oils you’re hoping to reap the benefits from when used topically.
If you’re looking for a natural, effective and lightweight makeup primer, plum oil has got you covered. Before applying a full face of makeup, it can be helpful to prime your skin with a nutrient-loaded oil like plum oil. This will prevent your skin from absorbing makeup toxins (which cause acne and sebum build-up), restore moisture and simplify your makeup removal process.
Raw, purified plum kernel oil is essentially a plum oil vitamin C serum, which can be used on freshly-washed hair for a healthy glow and shine. Regular application can repair dry, damaged hair and help restore split ends.
Containing a huge variety of hydrating, smoothing, and strengthening natural nutrients, adding plum oil to your hair care routine can deliver some very positive results. Simply rub some onto your palms after a shower and work through from tips to roots for thicker, glossier locks.
Plum oil research
Research on plum oil’s health benefits, at least the variety Prunus domestica, is surprisingly sparse. The research mostly reflects its antioxidant composition, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effects. However, plum oil contains many compounds with benefits for which there is much research, and some of this is reflected below.
Plum oil’s antioxidants for skin health - 2009, 2020
A recent study wanted to test which types of antioxidants are found in Prunus domestica seed oil. They discovered the presence of epigallocatechin and gallic acid, two powerful antioxidants responsible for the powerful health benefits in green tea. It contained ferulic acid, which supercharges other antioxidants for skin health and anti-aging benefits. Among other compounds, caffeic acid was also found in the extract, offering more antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.
Another study that looked at the active compounds in various species of plum seed oil found a high level of fatty acids, notably oleic acid, linoleic acid and palmitic acid, all of which contribute to moisturizing, anti-inflammatory and acne benefits for the skin. Vitamin E was also present in various forms
Omega-7 fatty acid, known as palmitoleic acid, is known to possess anti-aging skin benefits by reducing wrinkles and inflammation. Plum oil contains omega-7, and a study on an omega-7 fatty acid extract discovered that omega-7 reduces COX-2 and MMP-3 (both of which are markers of pain and inflammation) and reverses damage to collagen-boosting markers, essentially boosting collagen production.
The fatty acids linoleic acid, oleic acid and palmitoleic acid have also demonstrated antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, as well as an ability to reduce biofilm growth of five species of bacteria that often cause infections in people. This shows that plum oil has antibacterial benefits for the skin.
Plum oil’s fatty acids and vitamin E for hair growth – 2019, 2021
In a study by Karger, patients suffering from alopecia were administered Vitamin E supplements to promote hair growth – a vitamin found in high doses in plum kernel oil. The results were a 34% increase in hair count of 38 patients, compared to 0.1% of patients who received the placebo.
Vitamin E’s ability to promote natural hair growth and regrowth is able to limit hair follicle stress, allowing them to grow at a healthier, stronger pace.
Similar results were reported in a study on alopecia sufferers that tested the ability of another plant high in oleic, linoleic and palmitic acids to reduce hair loss and promote hair growth. The seed oil was deemed a successful hair health treatment.
Side effects of plum oil
There’s a reason why so many essential oils are often diluted with a carrier oil before use: they’re extremely potent plant extractions that our bodies aren’t used to being exposed to at such high doses.
Performing a simple patch test and waiting 48 hours before full use can further prevent any unprecedented reactions from occurring. If your skin reacts negatively, immediately stop using the oil and seek medical attention.
Excessive use or internal consumption can lead to some side effects – especially if you have sensitive skin or an underlying allergy to the oil. Some potential side effects include:
- Mild burns
- Skin irritation
Contraindications of plum oil
Even though it is a natural product, pure plum oil is not meant to be ingested. Limiting plum oil to an external-use-only strategy is best for preventing nausea, irritation or mild internal burns.
Since plums and almonds are close relatives, if you have an allergy to almonds or nuts, you might want to do a patch test before use or seek medical advice before use. If your allergy is severe, avoiding plum oil might be your best bet.
Where to buy plum oil
Plum oil is widely available online and in stores. When purchasing plum oil, be sure to look for a 100% pure oil with no added fragrances. This ensures that you’re getting an authentic product with all of the therapeutic benefits of plum oil. If it’s organic, even better!
Here are some of the places where you can purchase plum oil.
All of our carrier oils are produced using only the highest-quality plants that have been harvested and processed with the utmost care. When you purchase plum oil from volant you can rest assured that what you're buying is 100% pure and organic with no synthetic ingredients or additives. You’ll enjoy the best benefits from our oil as it’s luxurious, aromatic and of exceptional quality.
Online retailer Amazon lists a number of different plum oils. However, not all these oils are sold by trusted vendors. Always check the reviews first to ensure that you’re purchasing pure, organic and good quality oils before adding them to your cart.
Many pharmacies stock a range of oils for skin health. If you’d like to see what you’re purchasing before you proceed, this may be an option. Just ensure that the oil is 100% pure.
Your local beauty store or beauty counter may sell plum oil for skin care, as a makeup primer or for hair care. You’ll likely find good-quality plum oil and reliable advice at these stores. But do your due diligence and check ingredients and reviews for yourself before you purchase to ensure you’re getting a quality product!
Plum Oil FAQs
What are the benefits of plum vitamin C serum?
Plum oil contains both vitamin E and vitamin C, both of which are essential for regulating moisture levels within the skin and hair. They also promote smoothness, suppleness, and healthy shine.
Is plum oil moisturizer good for you?
Yes, as long as you are not allergic. Plum oil contains an extensive variety of nutrients and minerals including oleic acid, linoleic acid, and vitamin E, all of which naturally promote healthy hair, skin and nails.
Can I use plum oil for oily skin?
Yes, plum oil works very effectively for combating oily, acne-prone skin. By regulating sebum production and preventing oily build-up, plum oil clarifies and hydrates the skin.
Does plum oil clog your pores?
Even though plum kernel oil has a fatty base, it has a lightweight and non-greasy effect on the skin. It does not clog your pores. In fact, it helps to unclog them with its ability to regulate sebum production.
Plum oil is one of nature’s most powerful beauty products. Containing a wealth of nutrient-dense vitamins and minerals, you can confidently add plum kernel oil to your cosmetic routine for an organic yet highly effective way to promote youthful skin, strong nails and healthy, luscious hair.
We’re here to help if you have any questions about plum oil. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org - we’re always happy to assist you!