As skin-healing products, carrot oils add moisture and may even provide antioxidant protection through topical application. Look for either carrot seed essential oil or carrot root carrier oil. Both possess similar skin-soothing, cell-regenerative qualities for complaints ranging from stretch marks to wrinkles. Just as eating heaping helpings of carrots each day might result in orange skin, applying only carrot oil products to your face could produce the same unfortunate hue. For that reason, homemade skin care recipes and commercial products use carrot oils in small proportions.
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Both carrot seed essential oil and carrot root carrier oils derive from the common carrot, Daucas carota. Manufacturers express the essential oil by steam distilling the dried seeds of carrots, while carrot root oil results from the solvent extraction of the plant’s fresh roots. Both products are used for skin care and massage oil.
Carrot Essential Oil
Essential oils are not fatty oils like olive or canola oils. Instead, essential oils are highly concentrated liquids that possess the therapeutic or fragrance properties of the most potent part of a plant, including leaves, seeds, flowers and bark. Because they are so potent, formulas for skin care generally call for adding essential oil by drops rather than ounces. Carrot seed essential oil is vitamin rich and moisturizing, according to herbal beauty author, Jeanne Rose. Rose considers carrot seed oil an all-purpose skin reliever that helps wrinkles, rashes, dry skin and swelling. Yellow in color, carrot seed oil carries scent notes of wood and earth.
Carrot Carrier Oil
Used in larger proportions than essential oils, carrier oils form the basis for massage oils and lotions in skin care. Carrot root carrier oil acts as a moisturizing base for dry skin face and body products. Like carrot seed essential oil, the carrier oil contains vitamin A and beta-carotene, according to aromatherapy authors Carol and David Schiller. Its deep red color and heavy scent makes it necessary to blend this carrier oil with milder products like olive or sunflower oil when using it for skin care and massage.
The Schillers advise using a proportion of no more than 20 percent carrot root oil to 80 percent of another carrier oil or carrier oil blend. A homemade blend of dry-skin body oil, for example, might contain 1 oz. carrot root oil, 8 oz. olive oil, sunflower oil or hazelnut oil, and about 125 drops of two or more essential oils. Like carrot root carrier oil, carrot seed essential oil works best in a blended formula, according to Rose. Her “Skin Rejuvenation” formula combines 40 drops each carrot seed, neroli, frankincense and fennel essential oils with 8 oz. olive oil and the contents of 16 vitamin E capsules.