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Eye Contour: What are the effects of apricot oil on this sensitive area?

The area around the eyes is a highly sensitive part of the face, prone to a variety of concerns: dark circles, bags, wrinkles, fine lines... Its extreme delicacy requires the use of gentle and suitable products. Is apricot vegetable oil an effective natural solution to the various issues around the eye area? Learn more in this article.

Summary
Published April 8, 2024, by Pauline, Head of Scientific Communication — 5 min read

Why should we take care of the eye contour?

The eye contour is one of the most sensitive areas of the face. Several physiological factors can explain its high vulnerability, starting with the thickness of the skin in this area: 0.5 millimeters, which is about 5 times thinner than on other regions of the body. This thinness is also accompanied by a lower prevalence of collagen and elastin, the proteins that provide flexibility and tone to the skin. This is why the eye contour is often the first area affected by skin sagging and the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.

Furthermore, the eyelids are areas that are poor in sebaceous glands, which means that the hydrolipidic film in this area is virtually non-existent. Therefore, the eye contour is only minimally protected from external aggressions and dehydration. Lastly, this area is highly vascularized and the micro-blood and lymphatic circulations can be easily disrupted. Indeed, when the drainage of toxins and blood pigments is slowed, these accumulate under the eyes and can cause dark circles and puffiness.

Apricot oil, a suitable ingredient for the eye contour?

The apricot is a fruit belonging to the Rosaceae family. Originating from Asia, apricot trees are now cultivated in Africa, Southern Europe, Asian countries, and Australia. The apricot, much like the peach, is a fleshy fruit that possesses a hard pit containing a seed, also referred to as an almond. It is from this pit that the apricot oil is extracted, typically through mechanical pressing or with the aid of a solvent. Rich in fatty acids and other active ingredients, this vegetable oil is widely used in cosmetics to care for one's skin and can be applied in its pure form. It's worth noting that there are currently no contraindications regarding the use of apricot oil around the eye area.

Possessing a high moisturizing power, the apricot vegetable oil can help compensate for the scarcity of sebaceous glands in this facial area. Indeed, the high presence of oleic acid in its composition (nearly 70%) allows it to fulfill a protective role similar to that of the hydrolipidic film. Thus, by limiting water loss around the eye contour, apricot oil prevents dehydration fine lines. Moreover, its content in vitamin E, carotenoids, and phytosterols, antioxidant compounds, allows it to delay skin aging and prevent hyperpigmentation problems by inhibiting oxidative stress. Antioxidants also protect collagen and elastin fibers from free radical attacks.

This support is also evident through the anti-collagenase and anti-elastase properties of apricot vegetable oil. An in vitro study indeed showed that this botanical extract can inhibit, in a dose-dependent manner, the activities of collagenase and elastase, the enzymes responsible for the degradation of collagen and elastase respectively. These results are promising regarding the effects of apricot oil on the signs of aging, which often appear prematurely around the eye contour. However, caution is necessary as, for now, only an in vitro study has demonstrated this property.

Key Takeaway : Apricot oil primarily provides hydration to the eye contour and may potentially help prevent wrinkles and bags due to a possible tightening activity. However, it will have no effect on dark circles, regardless of their type.

Sources

  • KIM C. S. & al. Apricot Kernel Extract and Amygdalin Prevent Urban Particulate Matter-Induced Dry Eye Syndrome. Molecules (2019).

  • EL-SHIEKH R. & al. A Powerful Anti-Aging and Immune System Modulating Activity of Standardized Apricot Seed Extract and its Primary Compound; Amygdalin. Tropical Journal of Natural Product Research (2020).

  • NAZZARO F. & al. Fatty Acid Composition, Antioxidant, and in vitro Anti-inflammatory Activity of Five Cold-Pressed Prunus Seed Oils, and Their Anti-biofilm Effect Against Pathogenic Bacteria. Frontiers in Nutrition (2021).

  • RASHID I. & al. Comparative Study on the Effect of Apricot Seeds Extract and Gentamicin Ointment on Corneal Healing Following Induced Ulcer in Pigeon's Eye Cornea. Annals of the Romanian Society for Cell Biology (2021).

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