Macadamia oil is the skin care hero you’ve been looking for

It’s about to become your best skin friend

Beauty Crew Beauty Writer / May 06 2019

You’ve heard of the benefits of using coconut oil and olive oil on your skin, but you may not have heard of the skin-loving goodness hiding in the macadamia nut.

While you may be familiar with its health benefits (macadamia oil has been shown to improve heart health, boost energy and improve digestion), the beloved macadamia nut has also become one of the latest wonder ingredients in the skin care world - and for good reason.

The skin care benefits of macadamia oil

As you’d expect from any great oil, there are many different benefits of macadamia nut oil for your skin. Extracted from the meat of a macadamia nut, macadamia oil is rich in powerful antioxidants, essential fatty acids, vitamins, and other nutrients that make it a superfood for your skin.

Not only is it a fantastic moisturiser for targeting dry skin conditions, but it’s the easiest way to nab that healthy, dewy skin you’ve wanted for yonks. 

It’s also known to have anti-inflammatory properties and can help improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on mature skin, all while being suitable for pretty much all other skin types (yep - sensitive skin and oily skin included!). 

Anyone wishing they discovered this earlier? Because SAME.

Market Development Manager from Australian Macadamias, Lynne Ziehlke, says, “Australian macadamia oil contains beneficial nutrients for healthy skin including phytosterols for skin protection and repair. Australian macadamia oil also contains the antioxidants vitamin E and squalene. These can be useful for skin maintenance, resilience and protection.”

And did we mention you don’t have to worry about that greasy feeling on your skin? Because macadamia nut oil is totally lightweight and sinks into skin quickly, it’s pretty much your new bestie if you suffer from dry skin. “It’s a natural way to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and retain skin suppleness – well-moisturised skin is younger-looking skin!”

Macadamia oil helps to not only reduce the appearance of ageing, but it also contains vitamins that help prevent the signs of skin ageing, too. “Macadamias contain useful amounts of manganese, which is an antioxidant and essential mineral required for collagen production in the skin.”

Sold yet? We sure are!

Is macadamia oil suitable for acne-prone skin types?

While most oils can sit quite high on the comedogenic scale (a measure of how likely oils are to clog your pores), macadamia oil sits quite low, so most people will find their skin tolerates macadamia well. “Macadamia oil is light, non-greasy and easily absorbed, which makes it suitable for use on acne-prone skin as it won’t clog pores,” says Ziehlke. “Its fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties, which may also be beneficial.”

GOOD TO KNOW: “Like other nuts, macadamias may help to lower the glycemic index (GI) of the diet so eating a handful a day may help reduce acne and keep skin looking healthy, especially when eaten instead of highly processed snacks,” adds Ziehlke.

6 ways to use macadamia oil on your skin

Before attacking a macadamia tree or reaching for the macadamia oil in your pantry, Ziehlke explains, “It’s important to note that there is a difference between macadamia oil used for cooking and macadamia oil for skin care,” says Ziehlke. “The grade of oil used for beauty products is cold-pressed and further refined to remove impurities and the nutty smell.”

Keen to get on board with all this macadamia goodness? Here are a few different ways you can incorporate macadamia oil into your skin care routine:

#1/ As a makeup remover 
Natural oils such as macadamia oil can be used as a gentle way to remove makeup (even stubborn mascara), and can be just as effective as the mainstream stuff, but without the dyes, fragrances and preservatives. Rub a small amount of macadamia oil onto dry skin, adding more as needed, and massage it over your skin for about one minute. If you’re wearing mascara or eye makeup, gently massage a small amount onto your lids, before removing with a warm wash cloth. 

#2 / As a cleanser or in a face scrub
Not only will macadamia oil remove your makeup, but it will effectively cleanse and purify your skin. Actress Cate Blanchett is a fan of using macadamia oil as a face scrub, saying in an interview with InStyle Magazine UK, “Olive and macadamia oils are really good for your complexion. Put one of them on in the shower and they make your skin zing. I incorporate them into a homemade scrub with grapefruit juice and sea salt – a beauty trick taught to me by a friend of mine.” Just make sure you thoroughly remove all residue after cleansing to prevent blocked pores. 

#3/ As a body and face moisturiser
Like we mentioned earlier, macadamia oil is full of super nourishing properties that make it highly effective for keeping the skin moist and hydrated. Similar to jojoba, Ziehlke says the pH of macadamia oil is like that of human skin, so it is easily absorbed and doesn't leave a greasy residue. "It is great on specific dry patches or as a whole face and body treatment post-shower.” Like you would apply a facial oil or serum, place a few drops on your fingertips and then gently smooth into your skin.

#4/ As a hand treatment
“Winter can wreak havoc on hands, as can detergent, cold water, wind, and the drying effects of heating. If your hands are dry and cracked, a little TLC with macadamia oil will soothe, smooth and moisturise them - simply massage into your hands, nails and cuticles,” says Ziehlke.

#5/ To relieve sunburn
If you slipped up on the sunscreen front, macadamia oil can help soothe, calm and relieve sunburnt skin. The fatty acids in macadamia oil  can restore the skin's barrier function and reduce water loss. The phytosterols can help ease itchiness and redness.

#6/ As a massage oil
“Any top spas around the world use macadamia oil as their go-to massage oil,” says Ziehlke. “Not only is it easily absorbed, it can also act as an excellent carrier for other essential oils.”

Macadamia oil skin care you should try

Macadamia oil has become one popular ingredient, and there are now a whole heap of beauty brands getting in on it. Here are some of our top picks from natural beauty brands that are made right here in Australia:

Pure Nut Macadamia Face Scrub
Take a leaf out of Cate Blanchett’s beauty book and try a macadamia face scrub. This little number combines Australian macadamia oil with finely crushed walnut seed (we know, it sounds good enough to eat!), and will leave your face feeling fresh, exfoliated and nourished.

Pure Nut Macadamia Face Scrub

Thursday Plantation Macadamia Daily Body Oil
This intensely hydrating body oil will help nourish and replenish dry, dull skin. Our Review Crew® scored it a cool 4.5 stars, with many of our members reporting how smooth and silky it left their skin. It’s the perfect post-shower staple!

Thursday Plantation Macadamia Daily Body Oil

Byron Baby Macadamia Oil
This gem is 100 per cent natural and contains only native Australian ingredients, including macadamia oil and the kangaroo paw plant, which is known for its regenerative properties. It’ll leave your skin feeling plump, supple and hydrated, while the gorgeous aroma will have you feeling calm and relaxed.

Byron Baby Macadamia Oil

Curious about other good oils your beauty routine needs? Check out our guide to finding the right oils for every skin concern.

Have you used macadamia oil in your skin care routine before? Let us know in the comment section below.

Main image credit: @sarasampaio

Erin Docherty is a Beauty Writer for BEAUTYcrew, Beauty Editor for Women's Health magazine and a Grooming Writer for Men's Health magazine. She has a keen interest in cosmeceutical skin care and is currently working on minimising her 9-step skin care routine – because ain’t nobody got time for that. When she’s not writing about the latest beauty news, or applying copious amounts of serum, you can find her spending all her money in Sephora.