Mobile Menu Close Icon

Tamanu Oil – The Multitool of the Skincare World

tamanu oil

If you’re passionate about using as natural of products on your skin as possible, you likely know the benefits of hazelnut oil, squalane oil, and argan oil, but have you heard of tamanu oil? 

If you haven’t, that’s totally okay! Although it is rich with a plethora of legit benefits, tamanu oil has maintained a relatively low key profile for skincare products. However, this only means that it’s one of beauty’s best-kept secrets!

Since we’re all friends here, we don’t mind spilling the beans surrounding all the ways that tamanu oil can help in your quest for soft, supple, sensational skin.

So, today, we’ll be discussing all things tamanu oil, including what it is, a bit of its background, its benefits. By the end of this post, you’ll understand why tamanu oil should be your next go-to item for experimenting with.

So, let’s get started. Beautiful skin awaits!

What is Tamanu Oil?

what is tamanu oil

Tamanu oil is an extract that comes from the seed of the tamanu nut tree. This specific tree species is native to French Polynesia and portions of Southeast Asia.

While it remains somewhat undiscovered by the broader beauty world, tamanu oil is widely celebrated. In fact, tamanu oil has been serving as a skincare staple for generations in certain Asian, African, and Pacific Island cultures for its various health and skin benefits.

In its purest form, tamanu oil has a thick consistency, dark green colour, and notable earthy, nutty aroma. While commonly referred to as tamanu oil, when listed as an ingredient in various products, its technical name, Calophyllum inophyllum seed oil, is frequently used.

While you may think that, since it’s an oil, its only legitimate applications are for hydration, you are in for a shock. This oil is no one-trick pony!

Tamanu oil can be used to treat multiple conditions, including acne, rosacea, psoriasis, wound healing and more.

Is it Safe?

First things first, it should go without saying that if you are allergic to tree nuts, steer clear of tamanu oil. It is derived from a tree nut, which we outlined above, so it will likely cause an adverse allergic reaction if you aren’t careful. 

That said, tamanu oil is considered to be generally safe when applied topically. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so we still advise conducting an appropriate patch test by applying a small amount of oil on the inside of your arm and waiting to see how your skin reacts.

For optimum results, wait for at least four hours to see how your skin responds to tamanu oil application. If you begin to see redness or experience itching, burning, tingling or other irritation, discontinue use.

Additionally, many tamanu oil product labels ill advise against ingesting the oil, swallowing it, or allowing it to come into contact with your eyes. All rules that would be best to follow.

What are the Benefits of Tamanu Oil?

There must be something about tamanu oil that has made it such a notable impact on the various communities and cultures who have chosen to use it for generations.

So, what makes tamanu oil so special? What precisely are its benefits?

We’ll tell you! However, there isn’t just one to choose from. It has so many healing properties. It would take ages to outline them all!

That said, below, we’ve outlined a few:

It has Anti-Inflammatory Properties

One of the most multifaceted benefits of tamanu oil is its ability to reduce inflammation.

It contains a molecule called calophyllolide, which has been studied extensively. The compound is responsible for supplying anti-inflammatory effects similar to those from hydrocortisone. This molecule plays a critical role in the overall wound healing abilities of tamanu oil.

In particular, this element could be highly promising in treating multiple skin condition symptoms, including those for eczema, rosacea, and acne. However, more research is necessary to determine its efficacy.

It can Help Treat Acne

Tamanu oil has been shown to possess high antibacterial activity against various bacteria involved in skin infections, including acne.

More specifically, it works against both p. acnes and p.granulosum – the bacteria associated with acne. Paired with its anti-inflammatory effects, tamanu oil can be an effective treatment for combatting inflammatory acne breakouts.

While it may seem counterproductive to use an oil to treat blemishes, these properties work together to provide your pimples with some extra healing powers.

It Soothes Dry Skin

If you have a dry skin type, tamanu oil can be incredibly beneficial and can be used to soothe and moisturize your thirsty skin.

This is because the oil itself is rich in fatty acids, more so than many other oils, contributing to its powerful moisturizing abilities.

It Stimulates Collagen Production

As part of its wound-healing capabilities, research has shown that it is excellent for skin regeneration.

In this way, it has been seen to promote cell proliferation and stimulate collagen and elastin production. On top of this wound-healing benefit, increased production of these two elements serves to smooth out and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and combat other signs of aging.

It is Rich in Antioxidants

Tamanu oil is also chock full of potent and powerful antioxidants. These properties can help protect the skin from damaging (and aging) external environmental factors, including pollution and UV rays.

In fact, according to a 2018 study, Calophyllum inophyllum oil is one of the only ones that has such a powerful capacity to absorb UV light. Specifically,  it cited that 85% of DNA damage induced by UV radiation was shown to be inhibited by 1% of tamanu oil without irritation.

Tamanu Oil – What Can’t it Do?

Tamanu oil can be used for a variety of different skin conditions and impurities. Its powerful wound-healing abilities are excellent for combatting bacteria, reducing inflammation, and protecting your skin from external environmental factors.

That said, it is crucial you don’t apply it to open wounds.

Tamanu oil has been used for centuries for its powerful healing and antioxidant properties, with the added benefit of having scientific evidence to support its efficacy. At the same time, further research is necessary to understand all that it can do.

That said, what we know so far is pretty cool!

The purity of this product is unparalleled. Not only is it natural and organic, but it’s also budget-friendly and multipurpose.

Tamanu oil, who knew!