Fatty Acids and Vitamins
Each oil offers a unique set of qualities, from the Fatty Acids and Vitamins they possess. As well as the antitoxins and antibacterial properties they have. As the basic building blocks that create these oils are either mono or poly-saturated acids. Often referred to as omega fatty acids. With these labeled as essential fatty acids or non-essential. According to the body’s ability to produce the acids on its own.
Naturally, these nutrients support the body the most internally through diet. Many arguing soaps are rinse away products. Still, it is easy to feel the effects of various types of soaps. The tightness some soaps will leave skin feeling, even after being rinsed away. While others leave the skin feeling supple and nourished.
At any rate, below are some short descriptions of how each acid benefits the skin.
Fatty Acids & Vitamins
Found naturally in oils such as grapeseed oil. Beta-Carotene is the antioxidant pigment in plants that gives fruits and vegetables their rich hues of reddish-orange to yellow.
A popular chemical additive in many commercial cosmetics for its ability to protect the skin from UVA-light damage. Beta-carotene is effective in reducing levels of oxidative stress, as well as improving the overall appearance of the skin.
Known to be converted into vitamin – A by the body when digested. There is strong evidence that suggests beta-carotene benefits aging skin. By stimulating collagen production to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Capric Fatty Acid
Found naturally in coconut, palm kernel oils, and to some extent, goat’s milk. Capric Acid is an antioxidant that is classified as a non-essential fatty acid. Known as an emollient that helps to soften and smooth the skin’s surface. Which also helps skin retain moisture, a benefit that reduces the appearance of wrinkles.
As an antioxidant, this acid helps to neutralize free radicals that can cause skin damage and lead to premature aging. Capric acid also contains antimicrobial and antifungal properties this fatty acid helps to prevent the spread of harmful bacteria. Particularly bacteria that can irritate acne-prone skin.
Considered safe for use on all skin types this acid has been chemically isolated and is widely used in commercial cosmetics for its emollient and antifungal properties to extend shelf life.
Lauric Fatty Acid
Naturally found in oils such as coconut or palm, Lauric fatty acid is classified as a non-essential acid. With anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Which makes this fatty acid the number one source of antimicrobials for commercial skincare products.
Along with the benefit of protecting against acne-causing bacteria Lauric acid also has moisturizing properties. Which has led to the use of coconut oil for ages as relief for dry skin conditions.
However, this acid is not recommended for everyone. With dermatologist warning people with sensitive skin to use oils containing this acid with caution. While some do have allergic reactions.
Linoleic Fatty Acid
One of the essential fatty acids that can not be produced by our bodies, Linoleic acid can be found in many nut and seed oils. Oils such as sunflower, safflower, almond, argan, and many more.
While it is well documented that polyunsaturated fats should replace carbohydrates and saturated fats in our diets. This essential fat is also an excellent topical treatment. Linoleic acid’s arguably greatest asset is its support of the skin’s protective barrier. Which increases elasticity and softness.
Highly beneficial to dry skin Linoleic acid aids hydration by helping to prevent transepidermal water loss. As it stimulates new cell growth to replace old dead skin cells.
Another asset of this acid is it is an anti-inflammatory agent. Which works to prevent the clogging of pores by preventing the body’s sebum from hardening.
Linolenic Fatty Acid
Another polyunsaturated fat listed as an essential fatty acid is Linolenic acid. Two sources for this Omega 3 acid are black current seed and camelina seed oil.
This acid is known to promote a healthy heart rate when ingested. As well as contribute to the health of the body on a cellular level.
Topically Linolenic acid help to repair skin damage and protects from the harmful UV sunlight. Noted for its anti-aging properties, this acid helps to improve the skin’s firmness. Increasing moisture, and elasticity, while smoothing roughness, and decreasing inflammation.
By promoting new cell growth Linolenic acid helps the skin heal faster to produce health skin.
Myristic Fatty Acid
Found in babassu, coconut, and palm kernel oils, Myristic acid is a saturated long-chain fatty acid. Considered a non-essential acid this fatty acid is noted for the ability to attach itself to sebum when used in cleaning. Sometimes being overly cleansing.
Being an emulsifier, Myristic easily combines with dirt and oils. As such this fatty acid is excellent at removing excess sebum people with oily skin produce. However, over-cleansing is a possibility. Since removing this oil too often can result in the body trying to keep up. Only to produce even more.
Oleic Fatty Acid
The most prevalent fatty acid found in most carrier oils. Oleic acid is the main moisturizing element found in olive oil. Research has also proven that people with oily skin produce this acid in excess.
This omega-9 acid is extremely hydrating with anti-inflammatory properties. Still, this acid can be pore-clogging for oily, acne-prone, and combination skin. Known to help the skin repair itself.
Also known to easily pernitrate the skin’s layers Oleic acid helps to nourish your skin from within. To fight dryness and the fine lines of wrinkles that form with age.
Palmitic Fatty Acid
Palmitic acid found in many carrier oils is another non-essential fatty acid.
Naturally produced by the body. This saturated fatty acid is the most commonly found. Noted for softening and smoothing the skin. Palmitic acid is an emollient that forms a protective layer on the surface of the skin. Which helps the skin retain hydration for a plump, youthful complexion.
As an interictal part of the skin’s lipid barrier, this fatty acid helps the skin repel allergens, bacteria, and irritants. However, as we age this barrier begins to decline along with the body’s production of the various esters needed for healthy skin.
Ricinoleic Fatty Acid
Castor oil is the only natural source of Ricinoleic acid. Used for thousands of years as a natural laxative. But it has many industrial uses today. From pigment, and printing ink, to textile finishes.
Noted for its anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing properties this acid easily penetrates the skin. To soothe and soften dry, rough patches. Also known for stimulating collagen production, many swear by Ricinoleic acid to diminish the signs of aging. While also aiding in hydration of the skin as well.
In soap Ricinoleic acid creates a hard bar of conditioning soap. Moisturizing the skin by acting as a humectant, drawing moisture from the air. Additionally, its viscosity helps to stabilize lather and assists oils high in myristic and lauric fatty acids to create more stable large bubbles.
Stearic Fatty Acid
Found in various carrier oils, Stearic acid is a prominent component of cocoa butter and shea butter. Widely used in commercial cosmetics as a lubricant and emulsifier. Noted for giving products a satiny feel.
Another emollient, Stearic acid works to soften and smooth the skin. Strengthening the barrier by locking moisture in while blocking irritants out. Decreasing the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines as it fills in gaps between cells of the epidermis.
Yet there is one thing about Stearic acid that makes it stand out, unlike other emollients. This acid is also a surfactant, which helps to cleanse the skin. Except with Stearic acid, unlike other surfactants, it doesn’t strip the skin of its natural oils. Tolerated by sensitive skin, this is a gentle cleanser. Which doesn’t irritate compromised skin.
Found in carrier oils such as Argan, Avocado, and Mango Seed Butter vitamin A is an essential nutrient. Vital for maintaining vision, body growth, immune function, and reproductive health.
Topically there is evidence this vitamin stimulates collagen production to reduce the effects of aging and wrinkles. While also improving the skin’s elasticity and sagging skin by encouraging the formation of new blood vessels.
Research has proven the anti-inflammatory properties of vitamin A to help reduce clogged pores and to treat acne. As well as ease the effects of other skin problems.
Carrier oils known to contain an array of B vitamins include Almond and Black Current Seed Oil. With a total of 12 different types of vitamin B, few oils have a complex verity of the supplement.
Classified as vitamin B complex the combination of 8 B vitamins works together as an antioxidant. To promote skin cell turnover and fight free radical damage. Topically this vitamin reduces the signs of aging and makes skin look firm and toned.
Vitamin B3 (one of the vitamins in B complex) or niacin is considered one of the best B vitamins for your skin. Often recommended to clear skin problems such as rosacea, acne, and increased redness.
When it comes to soap and skincare Vitamin C is a unique vitamin. A water-soluble vitamin, it can not be found in any carrier oil. Not being transferred into the oil of any plant or fruit.
Another characteristic of this vitamin is that it reacts with lye even after saponification of soap. This reaction creates sodium citrate from the sodium hydroxide which will not produce soap. Also if enough citric acid is added to curing soap it will revert into a gooey mess.
While vitamin C is very beneficial to the skin. This vitamin is not added to nourish the skin. Also claims about lowering soap’s pH are unfortunately misguided and false!
Instead, citric acid is sometimes added in small amounts to create sodium citrate. A compound that helps soap in chlorinated and hard water to reduce the possibility of soap scum.
Some carrier oils that can supply vitamin D are avocado, olive, and sunflower oil. However, vitamin D is the only vitamin the body can synthesize itself.
While the true significance of vitamin D for health is just beginning to be researched. Researchers are starting to realize when vitamin D hormone levels are balanced, auto-immune skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea improve.
Still the evidence of topical use being beneficial is yet to be proven.
Prominently found in many carrier oils vitamin E is sometimes called the skin vitamin. In fact, this vitamin is so prevalent in some oils they are used as substitutes for liquid vitamin E.
With antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties vitamin E is best known for reducing inflammation and making skin look younger. Sometimes used as a spot treatment for scaring although there is very little proof this is effective.
Found in nut oils and green plant oils such as avocado or olive oils. Technically a group of compounds vitamin K helps the skin recover from injury.
Medically used after surgery or cosmetic procedures like laser treatment, vitamin K is believed to help cuts, wounds, and bruises heal considerably faster than usual.
With researchers hopeful for the potential to be used in treatments for conditions associated with broken capillaries like rosacea, varicose veins, or spider veins in the future.
Oils and Types of Butter
The recipes we developed naturally have some of the well-known oils and types of butter. Olive oils, Coconut, and Shea butter, but there are many more. Oils such as Camelina, an old world oil, and Milk Thistle the National plant of Scotland.
Chosen for their specific properties the oils and types of butter in our soaps are essential to gently cleansing the skin to leave you feeling refreshed and invigorated.
Come learn more about what makes Highlands Lather unique.
Clays, Exfoliants & Other Additives
Our specialty soaps include various clays, exfoliants and other additives to help remove the oils and grime from the day as well dead skin cells to reveal new glowing skin for a healthy look.
By using natural ingredients such as coffee, cornmeal, and sugar, as well as mineral-rich earth clays in our soaps to offer even further benefits. Each is specially chosen to work with the soap’s recipe.
To learn more about the added ingredients we use to enhance our soap please click the link below.