Click Here to Pay Learn More ;SPECIAL OILS AND INGREDIENTS

Maybe you got a sample of macadamia nut oil in a swap....or you need to know why a recipe calls for castor oil is in your shampoo bar recipe...this chart will help clarify some of the ingredients you come across in recipes.
If you are mainly interested in soapmaking oils, please go to the chart with that information Oil Characteristics Chart


Almond Oil, Sweet

Scentless oil for conditioning and softening the skin. Great for dry, itchy skin. Contains glucosides, vitamins and minerals. Used in massage oils, lotions, balms and soaps.Saponifiable.Listed in the British Pharmacopoeia and an excellent choice for even the most simple of moisturisers or massage oils.

Aloe Vera Available in powder, gel or oil. Traditionally used for healing burns and injuries. Soothes dry damaged skin.
Apricot Oil Light rich oil good for mature or sensitive skin. Use in creams and lotions. Great by itself for removing makeup and softening delicate skin around the eye. A skin conditioning agent that is emollient, non-greasy and ideal for dry, tired and mature skins.
Avocado Oil This oil is rich in vitamins A, D and E; contains proteins, lecithin and amino acids. This highly therapeutic oil is said to have healing and regenerating properties. High percentage of unsaponifiables.Heals scaly skin and scalp.
Avocado Butter Reported to contain a complex blend of vitamins A and E and other active materials which increases skin elasticity and encourages healthy skin.
Babassu Oil Originating from the Brazilian rainforest, this oil is reported to be non-comedogenic. It leaves the skin with a soft, lustrous smoothness.
Beeswax Use in soap, lotions, creams, balms, salves. May use cosmetic grade, white filtered pellets or natural. Adds hardness and works with borax to emulsify ingredients.
Blackcurrant Seed Oil A rich source of GLA and a superb moisturiser which can be used in place of evening primrose or borage seed oils.
Borage Seed Oil Another rich plant source of GLA. Excellent moisturiser in skin care.
Borax Water softener, whitener and often used as an eumulsifier. There is a cosmetic grade available, but the store bought "20 Mule Team" is fine to use since your using such small qualities.
Brazil Nut Oil An oil rich in proteins and vitamins E and A, this precious gift from the South American rainforest comes from the fruit (nut) of a tree that can grow for a thousand years. Brazil nuts, or para nuts, produce an oil that is a rich emollient and a moisturiser not too dissimilar to sesame oil.
Calendula Oil This oil is known for its regenerative and anti-inflammatory properties.Good for irritated, itchy or rashy skin. Purchase only pure oil extracted without solvents.
Camellia Oil A traditional oil used in the Far East and particularly in Japan for the protection and moisturisation of the skin and hair.
Carrot Oil A source of beta-carotene and provitamin A. Natural color and skin nutrient. Often used in suncare products.
Castor Oil Rich in fatty acids and lubricating to the skin.High percentage of ricinoleic acid leads to high viscosity. Acts as an humectant. Great in combination with other oils in soap.
Candelilla Wax Used as an alternative to beeswax this is a hard vegetable wax that comes from the Candelilla plant.
Cocoa Butter Emollient properties great in soapmaking and lotions. Hard at room temperature.
Coconut Oil, Fractionated Steam distilled liquid that absorbs readily into the skin. Great for massage oils. Long shelf life.
Coconut Oil 76 or 92 degree. Degree is the melting point. Used as 20-30% of oils in soapmaking. Can be drying in large amounts. Use for salve bases. Emollient.
Cottonseed Oil Has emollient properties, vulnerable to rancidity. Look for organic due to pesticides freely used in the cotton industry.
Dead Sea Salt Full of minerals. Great for bath salts.
Dead Sea Mud Rich in minerals, stimulates circulation, removes impurities and nourishes the skin.
Emu Oil Anti-inflammatory, anti microbial, emollient and moisturizing, non-comodogenic, hypo-allergenic, prevents and diminishes scarring. Relieves pain and inflammation. Great for superfatting.
Emulsifying Wax Used to bind oils and water when creating lotions.
Look for plant based, not petroleum.
Epsom Salt Magnesium sulfate. Relieves aches and pains.
Evening Primrose Oil* see rosa mosqeta oil also Best for dry skin use. Contains 10% gamma-linolenic acid, very nourishing. Good for eczema and psoriasis.
French Clay Tightening, absorbs oil from the skin.
Fuller's Earthq Relatively pure form of silica; almost the same properties as french clay.
Grapefruit Seed Extract Anti-oxidant that extends shelf life and acts as a preservative. Contains Vitamin C and glycerin, antibacterial, antimicrobial, astringent, deoderizing, antiseptic.
Grapeseed Oil Rich in vitamins, minerals and linoleic acid. Light penetrating oil great for massage oils. Use in creams, lotions and balms.
Glycerin, Vegetable Emollient properties. Humectant. Good for chapped skin. Used in transparent soapmaking.
Hazelnut Oil Moisturizing easily absorbed by the skin.One of the most highly unsaturated vegetable oils. A recent paper showed that hazelnut oil has phospholipids which give greater and longer-lasting moisturising potential to cosmetic emulsions.
Hemp Seed Oil Vulnerable to spoilage due to high lineolic content. Look for unbleached cold pressed cosmetic grade.Store in refrigerator or freezer. Soothes and heals dry skin.A virtually canabinoid-free oil that rivals linseed for its richness and high arachidonic acid content. A perfect choice for skin protection.
Honey Emollient, humectant, soothing, antiseptic and bacteriostatic.
Illipe Butter An exotic material from the rainforests of Borneo. This rich butter is packed with natural fatty acids, triglycerides and phytosterols to protect and moisturize the skin by complementing its natural lipid layer. A wonderful alternative to cocoa butter which, chemically, it closely resembles.
Jojoba Liquid wax highly penetrating and closely resembles human sebum.Anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant.Fantastic. Prolongs shelf life.
Kaolin Usedas drying agent in masks, scrubs.
Kokum Butter It contains about 39% oleic acid, 58% stearic acid, and 2% palmitic acid. It has applications in skin and hair products, acne products, and skin tonics.
Kukui Nut Oil Benefits eczema, psoriasis, sunburn, chapped skin, acne. To the Hawaiians this tree is a symbol and a legend. The oil is a panacea for delicate, sensitive or dry skin and is pure and gentle enough to use on a baby's delicate skin.
Lanolin *Anhydrous Emollient and used as an emulsifier in creams and lotions.Can be sensitizing. Easily absorbed by the skin.
Lecthin Used as a thickening agent in lotions and creams.
Macadamia Nut Oil Emollient;may act as an antioxidant. An oil from the 'King of Nuts', this Hawaiian emollient is reported to have properties akin to those of sebum.
Mango Butter Most of the same uses and properties as shea butter. Pleasant light scent and creamy coloring,a greatly respected emollient that is often used as a cocoa butter replacement. It is obtained from the fruit kernels of the Mango tree. Refined and deodorized, is very emollient and has a very nice softening effect and is easily spreadable on the skin. It is used in skin and bodycare, massage creams and make-up. Shelf life exceeds 1 year.
Meadowfoam Seed An oil that is stable, non-greasy and rapidly absorbed. This oil is ideal for those products where a soft, smooth, silky feel is required whether it be on skin or hair, research suggests that this oil increases the life expectancy of lower life oils......
Monoi Oil The tropical paradise of Tahiti captured in one gloriously fragranced oil which overpowers the senses with its rich floral bouquet. The pure delight of gardenia flowers infused in skin-loving coconut oil.
Neem Oil Has antiseptic properties and used to treat scabies and dandruff. A very aromatic oil (aromatic in this case may be stinky to some!), neem (also known as margosa or nimba) is one of India's most respected treatments for problem skin.
Olive Oil Excellent moisturizer. Attracts external moisture to the skin while still allowing the skin to perform normal functions as sweating, shedding. Different grades offer different properties. Best for skin care is Grade A
Palm Oil Used with other oils in soapmaking. Pulls other oils into saponification and makes soaps less melting.
Palm Kernal Oil Can be substituted for coconut oil in soap.Moisturizing in moderation.
Peach Kernel Oil A skin conditioning agent that is emollient, non-greasy and ideal for dry, tired and mature skins. Can be used as an equivalent to apricot kernel oil.
Pumpkin Seed Oil The oil from pumpkin seeds has been used across the world as a treatment for sores, ulcers and other skin problems. Its high sterol and vitamin E content makes it ideal for this purpose.
Peanut Oil Non-drying conditioning oil.Highly unsaturated. Vulnerable to rancidity. A traditional oil for use in sunscreen preparations and after-sun oils. It is substantive and protective to the harshest of external conditions.
Rice Bran Oil A moisturising oil, rich in gamma oryzanol. The typical composition of crude rice bran oil is 81.3-84.3% triglycerides, 2-3% diglycerides, 5-6% monoglycerides, 2-3% free fatty acids, 0.3% waxes, 0.8% glycolipids, 1.6% phospholipids, 4% unsaponifiables.
Rosehip Oil The rose of Mosqueta oil, which was once described as the 'Fountain of Youth'. This oil is remarkable for its benefits to damaged and distressed skin.
Safflower Oil Limited shelf life. Used for its moisturizing qualities. Safflower oil is mentioned in ancient Egyptian texts and was used to heal old wounds. It has an exceptionally high linoleic acid content and is an excellent choice for the replenishment of moisture in skin creams and lotions.
Sal Butter Low content of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and is very softening on the skin, it is protective against sunlight and can be used as a direct replacement for cocoa butter. Shelf life exceeds 1 year.
Seabuckthorn Oil Obtained from the maceration and extraction of the fruit into olive or sunflower oil, this is an old and traditional remedy handed down by generations of battling Mongols for the treatment of bruised and battered skin. Ideal for inclusion in "sports" ranges.
Sesame Oil Strong nutty smell; used in creams and soaps for its moisturizing properties. Also known as gingilli oil, this oil has been known since earliest antiquity, from ancient Egypt to the Indian continent, as a soothing, gentle emollient. It is an extremely good substitute for olive oil and has excellent longevity in massage preparations.
Shea Butter African Karite Butter:Used for over a thousand years as treatment for dry aging skin. Can be used "as is" look for refined crushed. Basically unsaponifiable. Use cocoa butter to counteract its stickiness.Butyrospermum parkii This rich, buttery oil from central Africa is used for the protection and care of skin cracked and dehydrated by the elements, an elegant addition to products crafted for the smoothing and replenishment of dry skins.
Shealoe Prepared from equivalent quantities of Shea butter and Aloe gel which provides all the advantages of Shea butter, plus the moisturizing and healing properties of Aloe gel. Very creamy and white to off white in appearance with a characteristic fatty odor with a hint of aloe scent, not solventy smelling,non-greasy, moist feel upon application.Should be refrigerated if not used within a few months.
Stearic Acid Binds and thickens creams and creates harder bars of soap.
St. John's Wort Oil An orange-red oil that takes its colour from the hypericin it contains. This oil is part of most herbalists' repertoire for damaged skin, bruises and other skin problems. Especially useful for sensitive skin products.
Sunflower Oil Less expensive safe alternative to olive oil. Contains Vit.E.Moisturizing.
Vitamin A Soothing and healing for all skin types.
Vitamin E Used as a preservative and antioxidant.
Walnut Oil this nut provides an emollient oil which has been used for its efficacy on dry and damaged skin. In mythology, while man ate acorns the Gods ate walnuts.
Wheat Germ Rich in vitamins A, D and most importantly E. Nourishing to the skin and used in massage oils to extend shelf life.
Witch Hazel Commonly used mild astringent.

Fatty Acid Composition Chart of Various Oils *

Oil
Saturated 
fat %
Mono-
unsat.
fatty acid %
(MUFA)
Poly-
unsat.
fatty acid %
(PUFA)
 linolenic 
fatty acid 
%
 linoleic 
fatty acid 
%
EPA 
(timnodonic) 
20:5n-3 
%
DHA 
22:6n-3 
%
 Almond
8.2%
69.9% 
17.4%
0.0%
17.4%
Brazilnut
24.4%
34.8%
36.4%
0.0%
36.0%
Canola
7.1%
58.9%
29.6%
9.3%
20.3%
Cashew
19.8%
58.9%
16.9%
0.0%
16.5%
Cocoa Butter
59.7%
32.9%
3.0%
0.1%
2.8%
Coconut
86.5%
5.8%
1.8%
0.0%
1.8%
Corn
12.7%
24.2%
58.7%
0.7%
58.0%
Flaxseed
4%
22%
74%
57%
17%
Hazelnut
7.4%
78.0%
10.2%
0.0%
10.1%
Macadamia
15.0%
78.9%
1.7%
0.0%
1.7%
Olive
13.5%
73.7%
8.4%
0.6%
7.9%
Palm
49.3%
37.0%
9.3%
0.2%
9.1%
Palm kernel
81.5%
11.4%
1.6%
0.0%
1.6%
Peanut
16.9%
46.2%
32.0%
0.0%
32.0%
Pecan
8.0%
62.3%
24.8%
1.0%
23.6%
Safflower
9.6%
12.6%
73.4%
0.2%
73.0%
Sesame
14.2%
39.7%
41.7%
0.3%
41.3%
Soybean
14.4%
23.3%
57.9%
6.8%
51.0%
Walnut
9.1%
22.8%
63.3%
10.4%
52.9%
Wheat germ
18.8%
16.6%
61.7%
6.9%
54.8%
Salmon
19.9%
29.0%
40.3%
1.1%
1.5%
13.0%
18.2%
 
 *From The USDA Nutrient Database of For Standard Reference, Release 11-1 (August 1997)

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