Hazelnut oil is extracted from hazelnuts and used mostly in cooking. Hazelnut oil is carrier oil made from roasted, pressed hazelnuts. It has a pale yellow color, and absorbs easily into to the skin when applied topically.
Hazelnuts are about the size of a small marble. The nutmeat is encased in a hard shell that resembles an acorn without its cap. The rich, sweet nutmeat has a bitter brown paper-thin skin that is usually removed before eating.
Hazelnuts, a member of the Corylus botanical family, have been cultivated in China for more than 5,000 years. The hazel part of its name comes from the Anglo-Saxon word haesel meaning a headdress or bonnet, referring to the shape of outer shell covering. Hazelnuts are reputed to be native to Asia Minor, from whence they spread to Italy, Spain, France, and Germany via Greece. Prior to the 1940s, hazelnuts were imported to the States. Today they are grown commercially in the Northwest US.
These nuts contain a wealth of oil, 88 percent unsaturated, which is pressed for use as the aromatic and delicately flavored hazelnut oil. Although it cannot be heated to high temperatures, this oil is favored by gourmets worldwide and is relatively expensive
Benefits of using Hazelnut oil
Hazelnut oil can be used to lubricate the skin during massage therapy sessions. Since it easily penetrates the skin tissue, it helps keep the skin soft and elastic. It absorbs fragrances from essential oils when blended, adding to its value as massage oil. The massage recipient receives both the skin-softening benefits of the hazelnut oil and the calming benefits from the essential oils.
Hazelnut oil acts as an excellent emollient and moisturizer because it has a number of essential fatty acids such as linoleic acid, which can rehydrate the skin. So, this oil is extensively used in treating dry skin. Also, the antibacterial and astringent properties prevent the excessive secretion of skin oil that results in acne, thus maintaining soft skin.
The miraculous oil can be used as sunscreen as it is able to filter all the harmful rays of the sun. Because of this most sunscreens contain hazelnut oil. For stronger effect you can mix this oil with sesame oil, avocado oil, and walnut oil. Another way to utilize the benefits of hazelnut oil is to mix a drop of this oil in any of your daily cream and lotion, which can then act as the best sun guard.
Last, like most of other carrier oils, hazelnut oil is also a rich source of vitamin E. The anti-oxidant properties of this vitamin helps in solving many of the problems associated with ageing. Free radicals cause the maximum amount of damage like the destruction of cells and chapped skin. Regular application of hazelnut oil is able to reverse this process by eliminating the free radicals.