Aromatherapy Carrier Oil Spotlight: Red Palm Oil

by Andrea on February 16, 2010

red-palm-oilThe Latin name for red palm oil is Elaeis guineensis.

This bright red oil is produced from the flesh of the palm fruit. The fruits are washed and gently steamed for a few minutes to soften the pulp. The fruits are then pounded to separate the flesh from the nut.

The flesh is placed in a hand-operated press, which presses the oil out of the flesh. The red oil is heated slightly to remove water, then filtered through a gravity filtering system to remove any impurities.

Red palm oil is considered the richest natural source of skin-healing carotenoids. The oil contains about 15 times more carotenoids than carrots!

It is a great skin conditioner and moisturizer, and is known for soothing eczema and psoriasis. It brings a bright red color and soft texture to your butter blends. When red palm oil is cold, it looks and feels more like a soft butter. The aroma is peppery and bright.

I add red palm oil to my body butters for its pronounced skin healing properties and the beautiful color it brings to the butter!

Did you know?

  • Red palm oil is a rich source of vitamin A in the form of carotenoids. The carotenoids give the oil its deep red color.
  • The oil is used as food and as a skin conditioner, and has cultural significance in many African regions.
  • Red palm oil is high in tocotrienols, which are antioxidants that belong to the Vitamin E family. Red palm oil is particularly rich in these tocotrienols. In fact, it’s one of the only vegetable oils with an abundant tocotrienol content.
  • Red palm oil doesn’t play well with white shirts! Be sure to dilute well with other carrier oils to protect light colored clothing and sheets.

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Owner/Instructor at Aromahead Institute
Aromahead Institute, owned by Andrea Butje, is a premier resource for online aromatherapy classes. Andrea offers her inspired approach to online aromatherapy certification through essential oil videos and original education materials. Check out her book, Essential Living: Aromatherapy Recipes for Health and Home, on Amazon!

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Scott March 10, 2014 at 4:04 pm

very good info thank you 🙂


Eliane March 3, 2010 at 6:01 am

but we have to be aware where the red palm oils comes from. it is said that the plantations of these palm trees destroy incredibly large habitats of wildlife etc…


Admin March 3, 2010 at 8:12 am

Yes, it is true and highlights that it is vital to know your source-we buy from a supplier who is aware of the issues and supports Palm Fruit oil programs that have strict environmental sustainability programs. The harvester and manufacturer of the Palm Fruit oil we purchase has sustainable harvesting protocols from state and third party environmental programs such as the Rainforest Alliance and EcoSocial.


Crystal February 23, 2010 at 1:30 pm

Have you used this oil alone, with essential oils blended for ezema treatments?


Admin February 23, 2010 at 1:57 pm

I never have used it alone due only to its staining properties. I fins it best to blend it….but you could blend it with all carriers and butters and no essential oils. I recommend a bit of tamanu.


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