Apricot Kernel Oil
Updated: Oct 24
Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot Kernel) Oil
This is a light, non-sticky oil that feels like silk on the skin. I use it mainly for my aroma facials and in face oils due to the wonderful, light feel and easy glide it has on the skin.
Apricot kernel oil is a virtually odourless, lightly coloured oil, produced in Europe (mainly Italy, Sprain, Greece and France), Asia and the Middle East. The oil is extracted from the seeds of the apricot fruit using an expeller press (or screw press) machine and then refined.
Benefits for the Skin
Anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-bacterial and anti-ageing. Apricot kernel oil is wonderfully nourishing and moisturising, and helps to soothe dry skin but is good for all skin types. It is high in vitamins A and E, and Oleic (Omega 9) and Linoleic acids (Omega 6) but also contains vitamins B1, B2, B6 and B17.
Due to its anti-bacterial properties, this is also a good oil for acne and other skin problems.
Not scientifically proven, but worth a mention is that apricot kernels have an unusually high concentration of nitriloside (also known as vitamin B17 or laetrile). Nitrilosides have been promoted as having preventative properties against cancer (Power of the Seed, Susan M. Parker, p.111).
How to Use Apricot Kernel Oil
Apart from being optimum for use in holistic facials, apricot kernel oil can be used as a basic nourishing cleansing oil and makeup remover. Wonderful to use as a massage oil (particularly for the face) as it glides beautifully on the skin. Can be used as a hot oil treatment on the hair - warm the oil gently (not too much, it shouldn't be hot) and massage into the ends of (dry) hair and wrap in a towel - after half an hour wash the oil out as normal with shampoo (tip - to ensure it rinses out properly, add the shampoo to damp or dry hair first and begin to massage it in before adding more water).
Anti-cellulite Bath Blend
3 drops Rosemary
3 drops Juniper berry
Combine with 1 teaspoon (5ml) apricot kernel oil. Add to your warm bath. Mix well before getting into the bath. Relax and enjoy the clean, fresh aromas. Be aware that it might make the bath slippery - take care when getting in and out.
Bath safety note: always dilute your essential oils in a carrier (base) oil, unscented foaming products (shampoo, shower gel, bubble bath etc), solubol, Natrasorb bath, or Polysorbates. Avoid using the following to dilute your essential oils for baths. They are not suitable as essential oils won't dissolve in them, resulting in potential direct contact between the skin and essential oil (which could cause skin irritation): milk, witch hazel, glycerine, alcohol, Aloe Vera, corn starch, baking soda, Epsom salts/regular salt (combine first with a base oil and then add the salts).
And now a picture of my favourite animal :-) Taken by my Dad, Mike Foreman, in Ghonerezou National Park, Zimbabwe (2021).
Essential Oil Safety
Always read the EO safety guidance
Always dilute before use (seek advice for recommended quantities)
Avoid contact with the eyes/mucous membranes
Do not use if pregnant without seeking advice
Use lower dilutions for children/babies/elderly
If you have any medical conditions seek advice
Stop use immediately if you experience a reaction - inform your therapist and seek medical advice
Do your research. Always buy good quality, unadulterated, 100% pure oils, from a reputable company (organic where possible).
Get in touch if you'd like to purchase essential oils, smell any of the oils in my collection, buy a CAM Aromatherapy product, get help with creating your own blend, or have a treatment.
Medical Disclaimer - The above information is intended for educational purposes only, and not to be taken as an endorsement or replacement for any particular medical health treatment. Please check with your health provider before embarking on any type of herbal treatment.
"Apricot Kernel Oil" by Naissance (accessed 5 July 2021)
"The Power of the Seed" by Susan M. Parker - (2014) published by Process Media
"The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy" by Valerie Ann Worwood (2016) published by New World Library
"Complete List of Comedogenic Oils" by Holistic Health Herbalist (accessed 5 July 2021)
"An Introductory Guide to Aromatherapy" by Louise Tucker (Revised Edition) - (2015) published by EMS Publishing