Lentisk oil has a thousand uses thanks to its properties: excellent in the kitchen, it is a precious ally for the beauty of skin and hair
If you are wondering what lentisk oil is for, you should know that it is used both as a beauty product and in the kitchen. It is in fact a very fragrant vegetable oil that is obtained from the mastic plant, a common shrub in the Mediterranean scrub and especially in Sardinia. This aromatic oil is obtained from the pressing of the berries and is used both in the kitchen as a condiment and as a cosmetic for its many beneficial properties on a dermatological level, but not only.
Lentisk essential oil, on the other hand, is an aromatic oil distilled by a current of steam from the branches and flowers of the shrub that is used in aromatherapy to treat gastric pain, hemorrhoids and to deflate the legs with massages on the affected area and diluted with other base oil. All parts of the mastic plant are used, namely:
- the dark green leaves for the distillation of the essential oil used to make decoctions and herbal teas;
- the fruits (small berries that ripen in autumn), from which the oil is obtained which replaces the olive oil in the kitchen;
- the trunk, from which an oily resin known as Chios mastic is obtained, often used in phytotherapy, in pharmaceutical companies and also as a component of colors and chewingum.
Lentisk: the properties
Lentisk has beneficial properties of various kinds for our body, which is why it is used in many areas including cosmetics. In dermatology this oil is applied to the skin to soothe some common dermatological disorders, such as irritation, dermatitis and psoriasis, thanks to the anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties typical of mastic. In fact, it helps the healing of wounds avoiding the formation of infections, reduces itching caused by insect bites, regenerates the skin thanks to its soothing properties and reduces free radicals thanks to the antioxidant action. You can find it in anti-itch creams, made to give relief by reducing the itching and redness that often accompany some states of flaking typical of psoriasis.
This oil is also highly appreciated in cosmetics because it is an excellent moisturizer and performs a valid anti-aging action especially if associated with vitamins A and E. In the cosmetic industry it is used to make soaps, shower gels, oils, moisturizers for the face and for the body and products to strengthen the hair, make the hair shiny and untangled. Having also balsamic properties, it can be used in the diffuser of essences or in the humidifier of radiators to purify the air or in the bathtub for a moment of relaxation.
Lentisk oil for food use
Lentisk oil for food use is a valuable ally for flavoring Mediterranean dishes. It is still used in traditional cuisine, especially Sardinian and Apulian, as a condiment oil instead of olive oil to season raw and cooked vegetables, to accompany cheese-based dishes, but also to make excellent frying or enrich soups and broths. . It is considered an excellent seasoning with beneficial qualities for health, with a very intense aroma.
As an oil, mastic is not used as much as olive oil because given that the shrub gives a relatively low amount of fruit and is not cultivated extensively, it makes this the final product tends to be expensive. The taste is stronger and a little more angular than that produced with olives, but much appreciated.
Lentisk oil in cosmetic products
Lentisk oil in cosmetic products is widely used in cosmetics, for the preparation of soaps, bath and massage oils, but also in nourishing and moisturizing creams for the face and body. Lentisk oil is also used in the treatment and prevention of varicose veins in drops along the varice. On the market it is easily found in the form of oil for applications and massages due to its anti-oxidant and soothing properties, as an ointment, but also as tablets for internal use.
Some cosmetic brands are therefore using it in cosmetic products and in particular phytocosmetics to soothe the redness and itching associated with skin manifestations such as dandruff or wheals resulting from mosquito bites.
Lentisk oil: contraindications
Mastic oil has no contraindications, although care must be taken in case of hypersensitivity to the active ingredients and components of mastic oil. In fact, the essential oil, like other oils, could lead to allergic reactions in sensitive individuals, irritation of the skin and mucous membranes and the gastrointestinal mucosa. These are very generic side effects so it is advisable to consult a professional in the case of very sensitive skin.