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Macadamia Oil: Not Just the Nuts!

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Macadamia oil is probably more widely known as a delicious cooking oil than as a massage oil.  Alas, the macadamia oil used for aromatherapy is not edible, but it nonetheless provides a richly sensuous experience. Combined with another, more aromatic oil, such as lemon myrtle, macadamia oil is at once calming and revitalizing.  In fact, it is better used as a base oil, than all by itself.

Macadamia oil owes its success as a massage liniment to its emollient properties, which is to say it softens and soothes the skin.  Since it enjoys a high affinity with the oil already naturally produced by the human skin, it is more readily absorbed by the body than a lot of other massage oils.  This particular oil also helps reduce fine lines when used on the face.

The Origins of Macadamia Oil

Contrary to popular opinion, the macadamia tree is not native to the island state of Hawaii.  As a matter of fact, it was only brought to Hawaii from southeast Queensland, which had been filled with rain forests -- the perfect environment for this tropical plant.  The macadamia tree was introduced to Hawaii at around 1881, where its fruit evolved to its current status of being the world's most expensive nut.

Macadamia oil is 80 percent of a single macadamia nut, while sugar makes up 4 percent.  The creamy, light texture of the macadamia nut makes it a popular component for confections like chocolate bars.  Macadamia oil is somewhat stronger-smelling than other nut oils, such as almond, but its scent is rather sweet, and not at all unpleasant.

Macadamia Oil -- the "Vanishing Oil"

There is a special property of macadamia oil which is not found in every other massage oil.  It has an unusually high level of Palmitoloeic acid units, which makes it more compatible with older skin compared to other oil brands.  As the human skin ages, it tends to dry up -- that is, to produce less oil -- and the pores also tend to close.  This same "aging" effect occurs when the skin is exposed frequently to the sun.

Macadamia oil seeps into the pores more easily than other massage oils, which makes it look like it is "vanishing" into the skin.  Perhaps it is also known as a “vanishing” oil since it can play a role in the disappearance of wrinkles and lines.  This clear liquid with a slight yellow sheen aids in melting the fat naturally stored by the skin, therefore giving the body a healthy, youthful glow that not only feels good, but looks great as well.

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