The Benefits of Carrot Seed Oil
Ayurveda offers a number of essential oils. Carrot seed oil is one such example. However, be sure to not confuse this with carrot oil – the two are very different. For instance, carrot oil comes from a crushed carrot roots immersed in a carrier oil (e.g. olive or coconut). In contrast, the seed oil comes from cold pressing carrots seeds. Moreover, you can’t use carrot seed oil in cooking unlike carrot oil. Rather, it is a valuable addition to cosmetics and skincare products for its anti-ageing properties.
There are a number of benefits this oil brings. Firstly, it is popular in aromatherapy to improve psychological and physical health. Secondly, it improves brain and nerve functioning. Similarly, it can help to ward away anxiety, stress, fatigue, and nervousness. Thirdly, it can improve digestive, kidney and liver health. Finally, and most popularly, it carries anti-ageing properties which keeps your skin smooth and glowing.
Apart from these, there are a number of other such specific uses the oil offers. Read about using the oil in detail below.
Aromatherapy is the process of inhaling essential oils to improve physical and mental health and well-being. You can either inhale these oils directly, apply int on your skin, or spread it in the air through a diffuser. In this regard, carrot seed oil can perform wonders to mental health. For instance, a clinical study in 2013 finds that this oil improved both metabolism and mood among women participants. This is because of higher arginine levels, which relaxes blood vessels and enhances circulation. Further, it can lower carbohydrate, alcohol, and organic acid levels.
Carrot seed oil is one of the most popular oils you’ll find to keep your skin healthy and replenished. Various studies suggest this as well. For instance, a 2016 study from Portugal shows that carrot seed oil has powerful antibacterial properties and can inhibit the growth of staphylococcal, streptococcal and listeria forms of bacteria. This is namely due to the presence of alphapinene, which kills bacteria without killing underlying skin cells.
Some other studies suggest that the oil has anti-ageing properties as well. Thus, it can treat dermatitis, eczema, rashes, scarring, and vitiligo, among other skin ailments. In addition, they also carry mild anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidant effects. However, more research can help to confirm these claims.
How to Use Carrot Seed Oil
You can use carrot seed oil as an effective sunscreen, moisturiser, or serum. First, you can create a facial serum by simply mixing together equal proportions of carrot seed, Copaiba, Geranium, tea tree oil, and using jojoba oil as a solvent. Mix and shake this into a 15 ml bottle. Then, use a cotton ball to apply a few drops to your skin both in the morning and the evening. This can add a great glow to your skincare routine.
Second, you can upgrade your sunscreen with tea tree oil. Simply add 1-2 drops of the oil before spending time outdoors. It carries a sweet and woody fragrance which keeps your sunscreen smelling good. Further, it packs in extra moisture which keeps your skin fresh during hotter and drier days.
Third, you can add this to aloe vera gel. It helps to heal red skin, rashes, and sunburns.
Carrot seed oil is typically safe for external use. However, make sure to never apply undiluted carrot seed oil. This can cause rashes, redness, or a general burning sensation. Further, if you are using this for a topical purpose, make sure to mix it with a cold pressed oil. For instance, sweet almond or coconut oil are typically the best. This is because these undergo lesser oxidation and are thus more gentle on the skin.
Alternatively, be sure to avoid taking in carrot seed oil internally. Among other issues, it can cause nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, and diarrhoea. Additionally, high doses can result in kidney problems.
Above all, make sure to avoid this oil if you are pregnant. In such a situation, it may cause uterine contractions or miscarriages. In fact, medical literature throughout history has for long recorded its impact on contraception and abortion. Similarly, the effect it has on breastfeeding babies is unknown.
Firstly, there are records of this oil causing photosensitivity. Thus, it may increase the risk of heartburn, photosensitivity, or heat rashes. So,make sure that you limit your sunlight exposure and possibly apply sunscreen or SPF sunblock if you use carrot seed oil. Similarly, be sure to avoid this oil if you are using photosensitising drugs, some antibiotics, or ofloxacin eye drops.
Secondly, wild carrot oil can also cause allergic effects among those who already have allergic reactions to birch, celery, mugwort, and such spices. So, make sure to do a ‘patch test’ before you apply the oil. This involves testing it on a small patch of skin to avoid occurrence of allergic reactions.
Thirdly, carrot seed oil can result in a drop in blood pressure due to diuretic (dehydrating) effects. Thus, many people suggest avoiding this if you take hyper intensive medications. Similarly, make sure to cease using carrot seed oil entirely at least two weeks prior to a scheduled surgery.
Fourthly, carrot oil contains oestrogen-like properties, and can thus interact with premarin and ethyl estradiol, among other chemicals. While there is still low risk when you inhale this, it may increase with topical application.
Storage and Expiry
Carrot seed oil can spoil with oxidation and heat exposure. This can happen even if you buy a quality product, and it hasn’t reached its expiration date yet. It is unlikely that expired oil will cause you any harm. However, this may alter its aroma or cause skin irritation. So, to keep it lasting long with best effects, make sure to store it in a cool and dry room, in a light-resistant bottle. Further, you need not overbuy essential oils – even smaller quantities (beginning from 10 millilitres) can last yearly with regular use.
If you find that the oil is unclear or thick, thrown it away regardless of expiration date.
Carrot seed oil is a fantastic essential oil for aromatherapy and skincare. It can boost your mental health, calm your nerves, and improve metabolism. Further, it can keep your skin hydrated and glowing, and protect you from the sun. However, make sure to be cautious of risks of side effects. Further, make sure to keep this in a cool and dry place and avoid heat exposure.