Evening Primrose Oil: the ‘cure-all’ oil for every skin type

What if we told you there was an oil out there that benefits all skin types? You’d probably find it hard to believe. Meet Evening Primrose Oil. The ‘cure-all’ magical oil that does wonders for all skin types from acne-prone and dry skin to ageing skin. 

What is Evening Primrose Oil?

Derived from the wild evening primrose plant native to North America, Evening Primrose was traditionally used by indiegnous Americans to heal wounds. By the 17th century, the plant was introduced into Europe and was virtually used to treat everything, and gained the name 'King's cure-all’ for this reason. Today, it stays true to its claims and remains a highly regarded oil for its multi-tasking abilities used in skincare to treat acne, alleviate dry skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.

So what stands behind its healing properties? Evening primrose is packed with amino acids, antioxidants and fatty acids making it a useful treatment for many skin related issues. Read on to find out more about the science behind its multi-tasking claims, and how it can help your specific skin type.

Acne-Prone Skin

For acne-prone skin, Evening Primrose Oil is a must-have ingredient, and this is due to the hero compound, gamma-linolenic acid (GLA). Due to its very high concentration of GLA, evening primrose has an incredible quality of balancing out hormones and easing the body's inflammatory response. When the body breaks down gamma-linoleic acid, dihomo-gamma-linolenic (DGLA) is produced, which has been proven to reduce the body's inflammatory response;a known cause of breakouts. 

On top of Evening Primrose's high quantity of GLA, we must also bring to light the oil's rich supply of linoleic acid. In fact, Evening Primrose's linoleic acid supply is one of the highest concentrations found in nature, making up between 65-85%. Why is this beneficial? Those who regularly suffer from acne often have an insufficient level of essential fatty acids. By applying Evening Primrose, the skin is provided with the essential fatty acid it lacks but needs, resulting in clearer and healthier-looking skin. 

Dry Skin 

Evening Primrose Oil is a great moisturiser. It is rich in texture, penetrates the skin deeply and is able to retain the skin's moisture for glowing, soft and hydrated looking skin. 

As mentioned, the key ingredient here are fatty acids. These are highly effective for dry skin types as the essential fatty acids strengthen skin cell barriers and in doing so they retain moisture more efficiently. The high concentration of gamma-linoleic acid has been shown to effectively minimise transepidermal water loss (TEWL), an overnight process whereby water evaporates from the skin's surface, drying out the skin. By regularly applying Evening Primrose Oil, the skin is nourished with essential fatty acids and is left plump and well hydrated. 

Ageing Skin

Due to its high concentration of gamma-linolenic acid, Evening Primrose oil is not only a great moisturiser, but is highly rejuvenating; able to reduce the appearance of fine lines and enhance the skin's elasticity. On top of this, evening primrose has been shown to reduce the appearance of dark spots and pigmentation, a common symptom of ageing skin. This is due to the fact that Evening Primrose oil is able to stop enzymes, such as Tyrosinase, triggering the formation of melanin, which is the cause of pigmentation.

How to incorporate Evening Primrose Oil into your skincare routine

While you can apply pure Evening Primrose oil directly onto your face as an acne treatment or serum, if you have sensitive skin this may cause irritation. In this case it is best to use a face cream or serum which uses evening primrose oil as an active ingredient. Alternatively, you can add a few drops of evening primrose oil to your daily moisturiser. For best results, Evening Primrose oil should be used in your skincare routine every morning and evening on freshly cleansed skin.

Náu’s Extra-Care Range

At náu, Evening Primrose oil is an active ingredient in our Extra-Care range. Here it deeply nourishes and moisturises the skin and also enhances its elasticity. Its rich quantity of fatty acids work to even out complexion, alleviate dryness, pigmentation and signs of premature ageing, as well as being a great method to aid the healing of scars and inflammation. 

How we extract our Evening Primrose Oil 

At náu, we believe in the extraordinary abilities of nature and its ability to support and enhance our skin. That's why we only use cold-press extraction to distill our oils. When heat is used to extract oil the compositions of the active ingredients changes, stripping the oil of its natural goodness. By cold-pressing we retain the active ingredients in their purest form and yield an oil dense in their natural antioxidants, fatty acids and essential vitamins.