A clear pale yellow to golden yellow oil with a slight, oily odour. It is obtained by pressing the seeds of the evening primrose flower.
The oil has 0.5% Vitamin E (Tocopherol) added as an antioxidant which will reduce the potential oxidation of the Evening Primrose Oil whilst it is in the bottle. That Vitamin E is itself in Sunflower Seed Oil to make the tocopherol pourable. This is the only way to ensure we have a potent product that is effective.
Typical Fatty Acid Profile
C16:0 Palmitic Acid 5% to 7%
C18:0 Stearic Acid 1% to 3%
C18:1 Oleic Acid (Omega 9) 5% to 18%
C18:2 Linoleic Acid (Omega 6) 60% to 75%
C18:3 Alpha Linolenic Acid (Omega 3) max 0.5%
C18:3 Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA) min 9%
Saponification Value mgKOH / g 185-195
Oenothera Biennis Oil, Tocopherol, Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil
According to the Cosmetic Ingredient Database (Cosing), the functions of Evening Primrose Oil are:
To view more information, visit the Cosing Database here.
The GLA in the oil is converted in the body to make prostaglandins. This is an essential part of the action of keeping the skin soft and in good condition.
As it is a dry feeling, thin oil that is easily absorbed by the skin, it is ideal for products that are best with a non greasy texture such as eye creams, anti aging serums and daily use facial creams.
Softening and revitalising to the skin, improving the tone and elasticity. Excellent to use in anti ageing serums, mature skin creams and daily body lotions.
One of the first choice oils to use on sensitive skin because the rich GLA content calms, soothes and restores irritated skin.
Excellent to use in acne and problem skin products as Omega 6 is anti inflammatory, soothes acne prone skin whilst improving wound healing and reduces the chance of future outbreaks. It’s non greasy, fine texture means it will not feel heavy on the skin.
Reduces the appearance of aging by diminishing fine lines and wrinkles. It promotes good moisture levels in the skin, keeping the skin soft and supple with a natural radiance.
An ideal ingredients to include in hand creams or more specific cuticle treatments and balms for brittle nails.
Restores health and vitality to dry and dull hair by locking moisture into the hair shaft, making it soft and supple. Use in hair packs and restorative hair serums to stimulate hair growth that is thicker, longer and stronger.
Conditions the scalp to keep it flexible and effectively reduce dandruff.
Use 1% to 100%. However, a good working level is achieved with up to 10%.
Oil soluble so cannot be used in water only products. It can be used in small amounts in water based gels that will hold it in suspension.
Although the oil is stable at temperature, the valuable GLA content is damaged by heat so it should be used in Stage 3 (cool down stage) when making creams and lotions.
For sensitive skin and rosacea, blend with Rosehip Seed Oil, Thistle Oil and Vitamin E. This will also reduce the size of large pores.
For oily and acne prone skin, blend with Hazelnut Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Epidermis and Sebum Balancer and Vitamin A.
Irritated Skin Cream
Stage 1: (above 70°C)
7% Calendula Oil
5% Shea Butter
4% Oat Oil
Stage 2: (above 75°C)
67% Boiling Spring Water
4% Lingonberry Glycerol Extract
5% BioGreen Emulsifier
Stage 3: (below 40°C)
4% Evening Primrose Oil
2% Eco Marine Algae Extract
0.25% Sea Buckthorn Pulp CO2 Extract
1% Preservative 12
0.75% Essential Oils of your choice
Put stage 1 ingredients into a small bowl in a bain marie.
When they are above 75°C, weigh boiling spring water and BioGreen Emulsifier into a larger bowl and put onto the bain marie. Stir briefly to dissolve the emulsifier.
Pour the fat stage into the water stage and start to stick blend. After a few seconds, look at the cowl of the stick blender (covers the blade) and see what the mix looks like. If it is granular and separating, stick blend a little longer. When the cream looks smooth and like a runny single cream, stop stick blending and take it off the heat.
Cool down in a pan of cold water and stir with a spatula.
When it is under 40°C, add the stage 3 ingredients and mix thoroughly. Put into jars and label.
Sensitive Skin Serum
Stage 1: (room temperature)
34% Evening Primrose Oil
28% Thistle Oil
22% Camellia Oil
11% Rosehip Seed Oil
2% Pomegranate Seed Oil
2% Vitamin E
0.25% Rosemary Antioxidant
0.75% Essential Oils of your choice
Blend all materials together thoroughly. Bottle and label.
Rose Clay Face Mask
Stage 1 (room temperature):
45% Rose Water
45% Pink Clay
3% Vitamin E
6% Evening Primrose Oil
Weight out all the ingredients and mix together. As this clay mask does not contain a preservative, it is designed to be used immediately. Any leftovers can be stored in an air-tight jar and kept in a refrigerator for up to 7 days.
For more information and guidance on making your own skin care products please see Aromantic's books and eBooks in our Publications section.
These notes are not meant to replace medical guidance and you should seek the advice of your doctor for your health matters. The formulae are given in good faith and are intended for educational purposes only. They have not been evaluated or tested in any way and Aromantic Ltd. makes no claim as to their effectiveness. It is up to the reader to ensure that any products they produce from these recipes are safe to use, and if relevant, compliant under current cosmetic regulations.
Traditional Aromatherapy Uses
Traditionally used by qualified aromatherapists to treat eczema, often as a nutritional supplement as well by naturopaths.
Used very successfully for PMS. Also used for MS and as part of a combined treatment for breast cancer.
Used as a massage oil to calm down hyperactive babies and children.
Although native to North America, the plant has grown well in many parts of the world so it is known to many ancient cultures.
The Romans and Ancient Greeks used it a lot in wines as a form of medicine.
Native Americans used the plant leaves to make wound healing poultices. For some tribes, the boiled root was a staple part of their diet.
It has been traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicine almost as a cure all, known for centuries as “King’s Cure All”.
During the second World War, evening primrose seeds were used as a coffee substitute due to rationing.