Healthy Living

Marula oil vs Argan oil

​​Marula oil and Argan oil are renowned in the beauty industry for offering amazing properties that naturally nourish and protect the skin and hair. Derived from fruit bearing trees indigenous to Africa, both oils possess similar moisturizing and reparative properties. Loaded with vitamins, essential fatty acids, proteins, antioxidants and anti-bacterial agents - each of these ‘miracle oils’ also have their own distinct characteristics that make them more favorable for specific types (normal, oily, dry) of skin and hair. If you are wondering which oil is better- you’ll want to compare Marula and Argan and then ask yourself… which one will offer the greatest benefit to your skin and hair type? Then, you’ll have your answer!

argan-oil

​Ideal for normal ​or oily​ ​or sensitive skin types ​or acne prone skin.

Idea for curly hair types, straight hair types​ & thin hair.

Marula-oil

​Ideal for ​dry skin types, ​dull​ & ​aging skin.

Idea for ​dry hair types, ​frizzy hair types​ & ​thick hair.

argan-marula-oil-blend


​Get the best of both worlds!



Marula oil vs Argan oil - A ​​quick ​comparison

​Marula oil

​argan oil

​​Hydrates, softens heals and protects hair and skin.

Nourishes, revitalizes and protects skin and hair.

​Fast absorption rate, non-greasy texture.

Average absorbency speed, thin non-greasy texture.

​Works well on dry and aging skin.

Works well on normal and oily skin.

​Rich with fatty acid Omega 9 with hint of Omega 6.

Good balance of fatty acids Omega 6 & 9.

​​Rich in vitamin C.

Contains no Vitamin C.

​​Vitamin E content 13.7mg/100g.

High Vitamin E content 60-90mg/100g.

​​Contains no Vitamin A.

Rich in Vitamin A.

​​Nutty, sweet mild aroma.

Slight nutty aroma.

​​High antioxidant content.

High antioxidant content.

​​Sterol content of 287mg/100g w/ b-sitosterol (60%) and 5-avenasterol(16%) ​which hydrates and conditions hair.

Sterol content of 130-230mg/100g w/ greater Schottenol percentage which stimulates regeneration and healing of hair.

​​Contains no carotenoids.

Contains carotenoids.

​High fatty acid composition- makes Marula a superior oil for moisturizing, protecting, Rejuvenating, and repairing the skin.

Balanced fatty acid composition makes it non-greasy and non-oily so it absorbs easily into skin to help it retain moisture.

​Protects from free radicals- As a powerful antioxidant
rich with Vitamin C and E, it neutralizes the scavenging
activities of free radicals as it protects against the​
damaging effects of free radicals.

Rich antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal properties help protect the skin from free radicals.

​Has powerful anti-microbial properties which
help damaged (scarred), irritated or inflamed skin.

Powerful anti-inflammatory properties reduces inflammation caused by acne- soothes damaged skin cells-eases eczema & psoriasis.

Organic cold press virgin Marula oil’s​ availability is limited- internet (Amazon), ​independent suppliers.

Organic cold press virgin Argan oil’s availability is widespread- internet (Amazon), ​beauty counters (Sephora), independent suppliers.

Helps repair sun damaged skin.

Contains Ferulic acid- a powerful antioxidant that protects the skin from the sun’s UV rays.

Works well on curly, thick or frizzy hair.

Works well on thin, straight or fine hair.

Anti-aging properties - higher content of ​Oleic acid makes skin appear smoother; reduces fine lines​ enhance elasticity- repairs cell membranes​ promotes collagen production.

Anti-aging properties - inhibits the signs of premature aging. rich proteins minimize wrinkles revives elasticity and boosts cell production.

​What is Marula oil?​

Renowned for being an ‘elixir of youth,’ Marula oil (Sclerocarya Birrea) is a beauty essential. Found throughout South Africa, the oil comes from trees that grow in the wild terrain. The luxury oil is produced by hand selecting and harvesting the kernels from the Marula tree’s fruit. It is then extracted by a single cold press process using state-of-the-art Eco-friendly technology. Always prefer Marula oil that is unrefined, cold-pressed and certified organic. A relative newcomer to the beauty world, this amazing miracle oil has quickly become a favorite choice for women around the world who seek out natural oils to use during their daily beauty regimen.

​What is Argan oil?​

Known as the ‘liquid gold of Morocco’, Argan oil (Argania Spinosa) is extracted from an Argan tree’s nut kernel found in the southwest semi- desert region of Morocco. Both the harvesting and hand selection is done by local women of the Berber tribe. Extracting the oil from the kernel, and the process of cold-pressing, is a labor intensive task involving the removal of the nut’s kernel, crushing it with a mortar and grinding into a paste by hand with a stone- the paste is then squeezed to produce Argan oil. Always prefer Argan oil that is unrefined, cold-pressed and certified organic. For years, this ‘magic’ oil has been highly regarded in the world of beauty because of the numerous benefits it offers the skin and hair.

Marula oil vs ​Argan oil for different skin types​

Which oil is better for your skin? The truth is that both of these essential beauty oils possess impressive skin nourishing and reparative properties; however, choosing the one that will be the most beneficial will depend on the type of skin you have.

Normal: Argan oil is the best choice for everyday use on normal skin because of its many unique attributes. Not only can it support cell stimulation, act as a superb cleansing agent, and protect the skin from damaging UV rays -it can also help skin retain its moisture and inhibit premature aging.

Dry: If you have dry skin Marula oil can work wonders because of its moisturizing properties and high Oleic acid (70-78%) content. As a luxurious rich oil, it has the ability absorb into the skin quickly and seal in moisture quite effectively.

Oily: Argan seems to be the miracle oil of choice when it comes to having oily skin. Having a lightweight consistency, it is non-oily and non-greasy so it’s ideal for oily skin. Its balanced content of both Oleic and Linoleic acid also make Argan oil more favorable for stimulating pore detoxification, repairing cell membranes and cleansing the skin.

Dull, aging skin​: Marula oil’s sterol B-sitosteral compounds make it the perfect beauty oil for repairing and rejuvenating skin. The vitamin C in Marula oil also promotes elasticity of the skin and stimulates collagen production- resulting in firmer skin.

​Marula oil vs ​Argan oil for acne prone skin

If you want to use one of these beauty oils for your acne prone skin, Argan oil will be the most effective. Rich in both oleic and linoleic acid, this natural skin oil has beneficial anti-inflammatory properties that help acne flare-ups, as well as act as an effective agent in cleansing the skin’s pores. Due to the presence of polyphenols it can also stimulate the formation of new, healthy skin cells.

With powerful antibacterial properties, Marula oil can also be beneficial to skin that suffers from acne. Although Argan oil is considered a better preventive and cleansing oil to use, Marula can help diminish blotches on the skin and repair scars caused by acne.

​Marula oil vs ​Argan oil for different ​hair types​

Hair can become damaged over time from elements in the environment and heated styling tools. It can also show signs of aging when exposed to oxidative stress. Achieving positive results from using either one of these beauty oils on your hair will depend on the type of hair you have. Respectively, both oils have unique characteristics that will not only nourish and condition your hair; but also keep it looking vibrant and healthy. So…knowing what type of hair you have will make choosing the right oil an easy one.

Curly hair - Add a bit of bounce to your hair and enhance your curls using Argan oil. Its light-weight, non-greasy consistency is ideal for conditioning curly hair that that has become dull and lifeless.

Dry hair - With an amazing amount of oleic and palmitic acid, Marula oil can penetrate deep into the hair shaft- hydrating dry hair. It is also a terrific daily conditioner if you use hot curling irons or straighteners to style your hair.

Frizzy hair - Being an occlusive, Marula oil can trap moisture into the hair to help reduce the chances of becoming frizzed. If you have frizzing hair the key is hydration and Marula oil can help keep your hair moisturized, shiny and sleek.

Thick hair - As a heavier oil Marula is great for thick hair because the fatty acids form a protective coating around the hair shaft-sealing in moisture-adding life and hydration.

Straight hair - If you have straight hair, you’ll benefit from the Vitamin E presence and essential fatty acid content using Argan oil as a deep conditioner. 

Thin hair - Argan oil is lightweight so it works better for thin hair. Providing a number of nutrients, using Argan oil can reactivate the micro blood circulation in the scalp- which produces strong, healthy hair that looks and feels fuller.

​​​Marula oil vs Argan oil - ​Ingredients & Health benefits

​MARULA OIL

​ARGAN OIL

​​Oleic acid (70-78%) is an essential fatty acid (mono-unsaturated Omega 9) - Effective ingredient of Marula oil that penetrates deeply into the skin. Fatty acids are considered building compounds that the body and skin needs to manufacture and repair cell membranes. It provides anti-aging properties, fights free radical damage, reduces inflammation, promotes wound healing, protects from the sun.1 Consistency is rich and heavy so it seals in moisture effectively providing daily non-greasy hydration to the skin.

​Oleic acid-(44-55%) - an essential fatty acid (mono-unsaturated Omega 9). The balance of Oleic acid found in Argan oil greatly contributes to its healing and moisturizing properties. It provides protection from the sun, reduces inflammation and repairs skin. ​2 Used as an intense skin moisturizer it can result in healthier, softer and more vibrant looking skin.  The Oleic acid content in Argan oil is also effective for reducing for acne outbreaks because it promotes balanced sebum production (oily secretion of the sebaceous glands). When too much oil is present skin cells become trapped and bacteria flourishes - 2 prime conditions for acne breakouts. ​3

​Linoleic acid (4-9%) is an essential fatty acid (poly-saturated Omega 6). Linoleic acid has the ability to heal the skin barrier, stimulate cell generation and work as an anti-inflammatory. Even with small amounts in Marula oil, it helps retain moisture to hydrate the skin. ​4

​Linoleic acid- (28-36) - an essential fatty acid (poly-saturated Omega 6). As an essential fatty acid Linoleic protects cellular integrity and affects cell fluidity by helping to prevent loss of moisture from the skin. The Lineoleic content in Argan oil makes it extremely effective for reducing clogged pores while providing anti-inflammatory, moisturizing and healing support. ​5 Linoleic acid helps promote healthy skin cell turnover- which can result in lessening clogged pores on the skin.

​Saturated fatty acid compounds - Palmotoleic acid (.12%) Palmitic acid (9-12 %), Stearic acid (5.0-8.0 %) and Arachidonic acid (0.3-0.7 %). Along with the benefits of Oleic and Linoleic acid... Palmitic, Stearic and Archahidonic acid all reduce transepidermal water loss in the skin while increasing the smoothness. These fatty acids all work together to decrease the visible signs of aging. ​6

​Argan oil does not contain major concentration of saturated fatty acid compounds.

​Phytosterols/Sterols (B-sitosterol 287mg/100g) Phystosterols are a group of plant-produced molecules. Phytosterols/Sterols provides medicinal uses with anti-bacterial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents that can heal wounds, repair photoaged skin and reduce scaring from acne. The presence of phytosterols in Marula oil preserve the firmness and elasticity of the skin - so they are an essential component in helping your skin reduce the signs of aging. ​7

Phytosterol/Sterols (130-230mg/100g) with the greatest being Schottenol (44.0-50.0%) and Spinasterol (34.0-44.0%) which stimulates the regeneration and healing of skin and hair. Argan oil provides a number of amazing benefits because of its Phytosterol content. With a unique combination of lipid-like compounds-Schottenol and Spinasterol, Argan oil offers powerful inflammatory properties that effectively treat acne, wounds, burns and other skin conditions.  Argan oil also has the ability to stimulate collagen production and reduce the signs of aging while aiding and maintaining an optimal skin barrier function.8

​Vitamin E (Tocopherols) (13.7 mg/100g) - fat soluble compounds. Rich in Tocopherols, Marula oil is a powerful antioxidant that helps the skin maintain its hydration. Accumulating in the epidermis, it helps form a barrier against moisture evaporation in the skin. Vitamin E content works to protect and repair the skin from cell damaging free radicals.9 The vitamin E in Marula oil can provide a radiant look to the skin by preventing cellular aging due to oxidation, nourishing the cells and decreasing inflammation by strengthening the capillary walls.

Vitamin E/Tocopherols (60-90mg/100g) - is a powerful fat-soluble antioxidant that nourishes skin. The high concentration found in Argan oil can have a dramatic effect on healing acne scars and other skin conditions. As a powerful anti-oxidant, vitamin E can help protect cells from damage cause by free radicals. Argan oil can aid in removing damaged skin cells and help stimulate new ones to grow. It has also been known to relieve symptoms of eczema and psoriasis. It has also been known to reduce the appearance of stretch marks with regular use. ​10 

​Vitamin C – an ascorbic acid that is a powerful antioxidant. As a potent antioxidant, Vitamin C fights the damaging effects of free radicals, along with changes that occur with photoageing. 11 Vitamin C works to prevent visual signs of aging on the skin- such as wrinkles, sunspots, loose skin and collagen depletion. It also inhibits pigment overproduction, so it can decrease the appearance of sunspots as we age.

​​Argan oil does not contain major concentration of ​Vitamin-C.

Catechins and Flavanols​: antioxidants that increase the skins defense and self-healing abilities. As a powerful combination of antioxidants, the muscular structure of Marula oil can fight against skin infections and protect against the damage of UV radiation from exposure to sun.12 These antioxidants also contribute to fighting wrinkles and keeping the skin looking youthful.

​​Argan oil does not contain major concentration of ​Catechins and Flavanols.

​​Marula oil does not contain major concentration of ​Carotenoids.

Carotenoids - are plant pigments responsible for the vibrant coloring of many plants and vegetables; they are an essential part of maintaining a healthy immune system.
​The Carotenoid content in Argan oil is a powerful antioxidant that has the ability to deactivate free radicals that damage the skin. When absorbed into the skin, they can help heal damage from the sun and protect it against the environment. Carotenoids in Argan oil can also help fight against the signs of aging by restoring its supple appearance, adding a glowing pigment and enhancing the skin tone.13

​Marula oil does not contain major concentration of ​Ferulic acid.

Ferulic acid- the most abundant phenolic compound in Argan oil. A powerful antioxidant that helps prevent damage cause by ultra-violet light. In fact exposure to UV rays actually has the ability to increase its antioxidant potency. The ferulic acid found in Argan oil has the ability to slow down the effects of aging.14

​Marula oil does not contain major concentration of ​Squalene.

​Squalene - functioning much like Vitamin E - squalene is a hydrocarbon liquid that is an important antioxidant for the skin. Protects skin against damaging free radicals while preventing the breakdown of the skin’s natural collagen and elastin. Squalene contains lipoproteins that are preventives against the formation of harmful peroxides that deplete the important vitamins in skin.15 It possess wound healing and amazing anti-bacterial properties so it is excellent for treating skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.

​​​Marula oil vs argan oil - ​Comedogenic rating​

It is always important that you use natural oils that are in their purest form. Beauty oils on the market should list both non-comedogenic and comedogenic ingredients to help consumers understand exactly what is in their skin care products. Ingredients that are classified as comedogenic have been shown to clog pores and lead to blackheads, whiteheads or acne. Top dermatologists and scientists have developed a rating system (scale 0-5) for many of the common ingredients found into today’s beauty products. This system rates oils, minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, butters, botanicals, waxes and herbs found in skincare products. ​16

Rating System:

  • 0- will not clog pores
  • 1-Low
  • 2-Moderately low
  • 3- Moderate
  • 4 Fairly High
  • 5- High probability of clogging pores

While Argan oil has a completely non-comedogenic rating of 0, Marula oil’s 3-4 rating indicates it has a moderate to fairly high likelihood of clogging your pores. However, Marula’s rating shouldn’t discredit its benefits because not all people’s skin will react the same way when using it. It really will depend on how sensitive your skin is or if you have acne prone skin.

​Should you use an Marula and Argan blend?

There are many products on the market today that offer a blend of Argan and Marula oil. Loaded with powerful antioxidants, essential acids and vitamins, along with moisturizing and skin reparative properties, a combination of both of these miracle beauty oils can offer the user a brighter more radiant complexion while combating damaged skin, fine lines and acne. Although a blend of these two oils can be effective, it’s important that you have a clear vision of the results you want to achieve when using these oils; and, which one - Argan, Marula or a blend of both will be the most beneficial for your specific skin type. It is also recommended you test any oil or blend on a small area of your face first, before using it on the entire facial area.

​How and when to ​apply Argan/Marula oil

Marula and Argan oil aids in building a resilient skin layer called the lipid barrier; which can help you achieve healthy and radiant skin. They both are also renowned for their hydrating, moisturizing and reparative properties; which makes them an excellent conditioner for all types of hair. Learning how (and when) to apply these oils correctly will provide a range of benefits. 

Argan/Marula oil as a Moisturizer - Pour one to two drops into the palm of your hand during your nightly regimen; gently work it into your skin using a circular motion to your face and neck. Depending on the type of skin you have, applying oils at night can allow your skin to soak them in while you sleep-providing you protection throughout the next day. Try adding a drop or two to other beauty products you use for a boost of extra hydration.

Argan/Marula oil for Treating Acne - Pour one to two drops into your palm and apply to face nightly; adding a bit extra to problems areas. You can also dip a cotton ball in the oil and blot it on noticeable pimples that are inflamed.

Argan/Marula oil as a Skin toner - During your facial beauty regimen add 2-4 drops oil to your facial toner and work into skin for a radiant glow.

Argan/Marula oil as an Exfoliant - Pour one to two drops of oil into your hand and mix with a tablespoon brown sugar. Apply to face in a circular motion for 2-3 minutes. Rinse with warm water and pat dry with towel. Exfoliating your skin can be incorporated into your morning or nightly beauty regimen.

Argan/Marula oil as a Hair conditioner - Start with a drop of oil for long hair -1/2 drop for short hair; warm in your palm and start raking through your hair with your fingers from your scalp to the ends. Make certain you apply enough oil to trouble areas (the ends of your hair). You can also add a drop to your fingers and massage the oil into your scalp. It’s recommended you leave the oil in your hair for at least 10 minutes prior to washing it or for an overnight deep condition use 4-8 drops wrap your hair on top of your head and place a shower cap on for overnight treatment. For an all-day leave in conditioner try using a drop (depending on hair length); working the oil through your hair using your fingers.

​Shelf life of Argan oil vs Marula oil

Understandably, these miracle beauty oils run on the expensive side, so you’ll want them to last. Therefore, you’ll want to protect your beauty investment by maximizing the life of whatever type of oil you purchase. Knowing the shelf life for these organic skin oils is essential because you want to use them at their peak potency to achieve optimal results.

Marula oil shelf life: ​1 year

Argan oil shelf life: ​1 year

Storing your oil is equally important if you want to reap all the benefits it offers. Storing both Marula and Argan oil in a cool, dark and dry place sealed in the original box is recommended. If exposed to heat, air (leaving it unsealed) or hot conditions for a prolonged period of time the oil will spoil and its amazing moisturizing, preventative and reparative properties will be greatly diminished.

​How to identify if Argan/Marula oil is spoiled?

You will be able to tell when your facial oil is spoiled by the aroma and color. Rancid oils generally smell musty and sour. Oils can also lose their depth of color when exposed to air and heat because it causes them to oxidize. For instance if the golden color of these oils starts to become a lighter, paler color you’ll know it has been exposed to unfavorable elements because of the change in color.

​Tips for buying Argan oil and Marula oil​

Learning how to read a label will be an important factor in choosing the right face oil. When you know your ingredients, how the oil is made and where it comes from, you can purchase one that will provide you with a positive experience with remarkable results.

​Cold-pressed and unrefined - Unrefined and cold pressed oils have 700% more bio-active compounds than those oils that extracted with heat.

​Check it by sight and smell - If the oil you are considering is not unrefined and organic, you’ll be able to tell by the color and scent. If the oil’s color is light and you can’t smell the oil you’ll know it’s not ‘pure’- organic and unrefined oil is dark golden in color and will definitely have a distinctive nutty, sweet smell to it.

​Dark colored bottle - Never purchase oils that are sold in plastic! To ensure that your oil maintains its potent organic ingredients it should be packaged in a dark colored (preferably glass) bottle. When pure oils are exposed to light and heat they will become damaged; so a dark colored bottle will help your oil retain its potency.

​Organic or wild crafted - The source of the oil, where it is grown and how it is harvested is just as important as is the extraction process that produces the oil. Purchasing USDA organic certified or wild crafted ensures the purity of the oil and ​that the oil hasn’t been tainted by pesticides during the growing process..

​No other filler ingredients - To ensure your oil is pure, checkout the list of ingredients. Often times, water will be the first ingredient on the list of commercial face oils. Stay away from other fillers like petroleum, mineral oil, or grapeseed oil all of which can be detrimental to your skin.

Note ​expiration date - The manufacturer’s expiration date is important because it informs you of the oil’s life span. If the expiration date is in five years or more, you know the oil is not unrefined; and can possibly contain other filler ingredients.

​Consider your skin type - Purchasing the correct oil for your skin type will allow you to reap the most benefits. Have dry skin? Choose Marula- a rich, non-greasy oil that will provide you the moisture and protection you need. Have oily skin? A lightweight, thinner oil like Argan will offer you daily hydration and defend your skin from the powerful UV rays of the sun.

Price - Raw, pure Marula and Argan oil is labor intensive and difficult to make. Quality virgin oils will be reflected in the price. Cheaply priced oils will no doubt be of poor quality, which will greatly diminish the beneficial properties that organic cold-pressed oils offer its user.

​Summary​

So which is the better oil to use? There is no doubt that both Argan and Marula oil both possess remarkable properties that can nourish the skin. When comparing the two- Argan oil is certainly a lighter oil than Marula and has a balance of Oleic/Linoleic acid content that is favorable. Marula, on the other hand, is a heavier oil that possesses a high content of oleic acid which makes it an exceptional moisturizer for your skin. Both work really well on acne prone skin because of their antioxidant and inflammatory properties. When it comes to skin types, Argan works best on normal and oily skin because of its vitamin content whereas, Marula’s phytosterols content makes it ideal for dry skin. Both also work wonders to combat the damaging free radicals that cause premature aging. So…the question you should be asking is not which is the better oil to use…but rather which oil is better to use for your specific skin type.

You really can’t so wrong with either of these amazing 100% organic ‘miracle’ oils because the only difference is they seem to work better for certain skin types. If you still aren’t sure which one you should use, beauty experts recommend you select one of the oils and use it on your skin for 2 weeks. Doing so will give you a better idea of how it will work on your individual skin type; and, you’ll be able to witness first-hand the results you achieve from the oil you chose.


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Team @ Naturazi

Hello! This amazing article was posted by one of the wonderful writers at Naturazi! They strive exceptionally hard to provide you with the relevant knowledge, tips and resources to live healthy and heal naturally.
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