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© 1993 Society of Cosmetic Chemists
Journal of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists, Vol. 44, No. 5, 239-247


Emollient action of kukui nut oil
H. Ako , L. Fujikawa , D. Gray

ABSTRACT

Synopsis

Dry skin drives the search for effective emollients. This report searches for an explanation of the superb skin feel of this native Hawaiian oil. Using skin stripping technology and gas chromatography, we demonstrated kukui oil's ability to penetrate the stratum corneum, leaving a triglyceride barrier containing a mixture of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. A kukui oil-based lotion was also very effective in laying down an emollient layer of lipids. However, skin penetration did not distinguish kukui oil from oils containing saturated fatty acids. It is speculated that the skin feel of kukui oil may be due to the fact that it lays down a mixture of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids, forming a semipermeable barrier that would protect the skin from further drying and would allow dry skin to heal naturally. It was found that kukui oil is quite stable as judged functionally by the degradation of linolenate (C18:3n-3).

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© 1993 Society of Cosmetic Chemists
Journal of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists