This oil comes from the seeds in the fruit of a cactus. It is also known as Prickly Pear. In Morocco, the cactus grows in open fields and is used as hedges along the road (natural barbed wire), none of which have any exposure to pesticides or fertilizers. The bright red fruit, or Prickly pear, growing from the cactus leaf contains all of the small seeds from which the oil is extracted. The oil has been used by generations of indigenous Berber women to fend off the effects of dry desert conditions.
Because of the amount of labor and the time-intensive process to collect and press the tiny seeds, this oil is one of the most expensive beauty oils in the world.. Moroccan women in cooperatives manually handle the seeds, often taking up to 4 days to remove them from the pulp and then dry them in the sun. Because each seed contains only 5% of oil, up to 60 lbs. of seeds (and a half a ton of fruit) are required to yield about 34oz. of oil.
Extremely rich in Vitamins E and K, essential fatty acids and antioxidants, Barbary Fig oil has more tocopherols (molecules with strong antioxidant and free radical scavenging properties) than any oil available in the beauty care market, almost 150% more than Argan oil. Richer in weight and texture than Argan oil, prickly pear seed oil is ideal for dry, mature skin types. It is potent and non-greasy (due to its high level of antioxidants and fatty acids) that is easily absorbed by the skin.
It has been shown to:
• Tighten pores for a smoother and more refined skin texture
• Erase hyperpigmentation spots
• Restore elasticity
• Neutralize free radicals that cause all the signs of aging
• Brighten under-eye circles