What Are the Benefits of Using Sesame Oil on Your Skin?

Sesame oil is derived from the seeds of the flowering sesame plant, also known as Sesamum indicum. These plants are native to East Africa and India, but they’re currently grown in many countries around the world.

Due to its hearty, nutty flavor and its high levels of mono- and polyunsaturated fats, sesame oil has become one of the most popular oils for cooking.

But does it have benefits beyond the kitchen? Is it a good oil to use on your skin? Read on to learn more about the properties of this oil, and what it can and can’t do for your skin.

What are the benefits of using sesame oil on your skin?

Sesame oil has the following properties, which help to make it a beneficial oil for your skin:

  • Antioxidant. This means it has the ability to fight damage by free radicals, or unstable molecules that can harm the cellular structure of your skin.
  • Antimicrobial. This means it can kill harmful microorganisms or stop their growth.
  • Anti-inflammatory. This means it can reduce inflammation and swelling.
  • Sesame oil also has a moderately low rating on the comedogenic scale. This unofficial database ranks different oils and butters by their pore-clogging properties. The scale ranges from zero to five.

A rating of zero means that an oil won’t clog your pores, while a rating of five means that it will.

According to a 1989 study published in the Journal of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists, refined sesame oil has a comedogenic rating of one, and unrefined sesame oil has a rating of three. Non-comedogenic oils, like sesame oil, are good options for many types of skin.

Because non-comedogenic oils don’t clog pores, sesame oil may work well on acne-prone skin. Sesame oil’s anti-inflammatory properties may also add to its acne-fighting abilities, although there’s currently no scientific data to back this up.

Although studies on sesame oil are limited, especially with regards to skin care benefits, there have been some discoveries about its antioxidant, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties:

  • A 2005 animal studyTrusted Source found that topical application of sesame oil may reduce oxidative stress, which can lead to cell or tissue damage.
  • A recent animal study found that topical use of sesame oil was helpful for healing second-degree burn wounds.
  • One small studyTrusted Source found that sesame oil, combined with massage, significantly reduced pain associated with limb trauma among emergency room patients.
  • There’s some evidenceTrusted Source that sesame oil may help filter out ultraviolet (UV) rays, but not to the extent that products designed for this purpose can.
  • What nutrients does sesame oil have?
  • Sesame oil contains vitamin E, which can help protect skin cells from the damage caused by environmental factors, such as UV rays, pollution, and toxins.

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