Borage oil is the oil extracted from the seeds of the borage flower, which is also known by the name of starflower. The scientific name of the borage plant is Borago officinalis. It is a small plant or herb, native to Syria, but has been naturalized in many other parts of the world including, Asia, Europe, South America, North Africa, and Mediterranean regions. Borage flowers are usually blue in color, but pink and white varieties can also be found. The oil derived from the seeds of the borage plant are mainly known for its anti-inflammatory properties, for which it is widely used for the treatment of arthritis. The oil has several skin benefits, and is quite excellent for soothing inflamed and irritated skin. This oil can be used for a variety of skin conditions, right from treating acne lesions to skin disorders like, eczema, dermatitis, dry skin, and even psoriasis.
It has soothing and emollient properties, which is why it can alleviate so many skin conditions including, acne and pimples. It contains the essential fatty acid, known as gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is so crucial for the health of the skin. This essential fatty acid is vital for maintaining the structure, as well as the flexibility of the cell membrane. The essential fatty acids found in this oil can help regenerate the skin by promoting the growth of healthy skin cells.
Other important compounds found in borage seed oil are vitamin C, tannin, saponins, and certain minerals, all of which can play an important role in making the skin healthy and keeping skin problems like acne at bay. The tannins present in the oil can tighten the skin. Borage oil can make the skin soft and supple by restoring the level of moisture. For this reason, the oil is quite beneficial to eliminate skin dryness. The gamma-linolenic acid found in it can help to dilute sebum or oil, secreted by the sebaceous glands. Oversecretion of sebum is the main factor that causes acne and pimples by clogging the skin pores. One can clear up such clogged skin pores by applying this oil on the affected area and thus, reducing the appearance of acne lesions.
It possesses anti-inflammatory properties, for which it can be beneficial in reducing the inflammation and redness caused by acne. At the same time, its cooling and soothing properties can help alleviate skin irritation caused by acne. Another skin condition, in which this oil is said to prove immensely beneficial is rosacea, which gives the face a flushed appearance due to the dilation of blood vessels of the face. It can help to reduce the inflammation associated with rosacea, and also contract the blood vessels by producing a substance, known as prostaglandins. Apart from acne and rosacea, one can use borage oil for eczema and other skin conditions like, psoriasis and dermatitis. In general, it is believed to be great for natural skin care.
Other Benefits of Borage Oil
It can help to relieve the pain, inflammation, and stiffness associated with arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. This health benefit can be attributed to the presence of gamma-linolenic acid present in the oil. Along with helping to alleviate the symptoms of arthritis, it can prove beneficial in conditions like premenstrual syndrome, hot flashes, mood swings, breast tenderness, dry and damaged hair, and hair loss. It can help to regulate the circulation of blood and facilitate the transmission of nerve impulses as well.
For treating acne, this oil can be used topically. It is also available in the form of gel and capsules. However, before using borage oil capsules, it is imperative to consult a physician regarding the appropriate dosage and the precautions to be maintained while taking this supplement. It can be toxic, if taken in excessive amounts. So, one should be sure to take it only in the recommended dosage and under the supervision of a health care provider. People with liver problems should better avoid this oil or its supplement or talk to their physician before using the same.
Disclaimer: This BeautiSecrets article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.