There is a wide array of different natural extracts that permeate the market around the globe. The use and utilities of naturally occurring extracts have been documented and passed through cultures for many generations and across industries from food to healthcare, skincare and aromatherapy. There are the classic options – the ones you’ve most definitely heard of at one point or another; eucalyptus, sandalwood, lavender or tea tree. We’re not here to rehash the classics, but instead – to point our proverbial lens at the underground extracts, the magical substances that have more utility than you’ve ever considered – today is one of our particular favourites in this particular scope, macadamia oil.
Yes, we have a fair few famous exports; beer, UGG boots, Hugh Jackman – but we think it’s fair to say that macadamia oil is far and away one of the most enigmatic and widely utilised export in Australia’s arsenal. People use it for all manner of things in their day-to-day and you’ve likely felt its nourishing sensation at least once or twice without even realising it.
The unique properties of the source itself are something to behold and we cannot begin to geek out enough about the various natural eccentricities that reside in the history and modern uses of the substance, it’s fair to say macadamia oil has an interesting tale to weave.
A Brief History Of Macadamia Oil
Macadamia oil has a long and celebrated history, the extract however was not so popular until quite recently. The nut it resides from however has been around for millennia, being indulged upon by indigenous Australians for the better part of human history. The ancient methods of extracting the nut itself are still considered to be on par with modern nutcracking procedures. A large stone is placed on top of the hard shell and then struck by a hammer stone which in turn cracks the nut open. Of course, extracting the macadamia oil was not as simple as it is today with modern technology making precision much easier.
That being said, the indigenous Australians expressed utility with macadamia oil, often using it as a binding agent for clay and ochres which was the base for face painting and traditional body painting. Macadamia oil was also believed to have naturally beneficial properties for skin rejuvenation and as a ‘carrier’ with other extracts to create alleviations for certain ailments.
As the European settlement made its way across the country, the interest in the elusive nut began to make itself known, soon enough the news of its incredible taste and consistency, along with the incredible benefits that were already being discovered – was spreading like wildfire. It’s fair to say, macadamia oil and nuts were making some serious waves.
There are many who don’t even realise that they’re native to Australia, and that 70% of the world’s supply of the ubiquitous nut that macadamia oil is sourced from can be traced to a single tree in Gympie.
Defining A Carrier
As we mentioned a little earlier on, indigenous Australians had discovered quite early on that macadamia oil was a wonderful carrier substance for different extracts. Of course, they didn’t describe it as a carrier and let the actions speak for themselves, however – this is not far from the modern context. With research and extensive study taking place from then to now, the concept of a carrier extract is still relevant and a major foundational aspect of extract scientific thinking – differing from the essential varieties that you’ve no doubt heard of, a carrier acts as a mediator of sorts – allowing the potency that is often present in the essentials to be dampened while adding the natural benefits of the carrier itself.
Simply put, macadamia oil is utilised as a carrier in a variety of ways, particularly popular with skincare treatments due to the natural & nourishing nutrients that are present in the extract itself. Which lends itself to be highly valued as a carrier for other essential extracts or creams to further enhance their effects.
Whether it is for cooking or as a carrier, macadamia oil has an incredible array of utilities in a wide range of industries.
The Various Modern Utilities Of Macadamia Oil
As we’ve mentioned already, and likely gushed about even more – macadamia oil is a very versatile substance in many industries, its natural richness in nutrients and chemical compounds allows it to enhance a great many products with the simple incorporation of it.
Macadamia oil is one of the saving graces of the skincare industry once you put all the pieces together and see the data for itself. The natural presence of essential and fatty acids such as oleic, linoleic and palmitoleic. These may not sound overly impressive or even legible in typical conversation, but they are linked directly with a healthy toned and moisturised skin.
This makes them the perfect candidate for the skincare industry, allowing macadamia oil to be incorporated into a variety of skin care products with ease, considering their utility as a carrier, this also allows them to be absorbed in a wider variety of creams and lotions and still retain their beneficial properties.
If you happen to be in the possession of some defatted or cold-pressed macadamia oil, try adding the incredible ointment into your skincare routine and start seeing the fatty acids doing their work in no time. The buttery sensation is also a bonus guilty pleasure for us as well as the smooth sensation is hard to come by otherwise.
Better news, due to the high oxidative stability of macadamia oil, it’s able to be supplemented in and therefore dramatically enhance a range of skincare products including massage ointments, lotions and soaps with relative ease.
As we already mentioned, the palmitoleic acid is present in an evergreen fashion in macadamia oil, this naturally occurring goldmine is not only good for the skin, it’s always wonderfully decadent for the hair follicles as well. The natural fatty acid composition is simply designed for clean and maintained looks, the acids combine excellently to create a more dynamic and enriched sheen and shine to hair without the necessity of overly chemically coated alternatives.
There’ve been more than a few converts to macadamia oil who have begun using it as a supplementary conditioner for their hair to great effect. Not only do the fatty acids that are present assist greatly, the extra bonus additive that’s naturally occurring in macadamia oil is the presence of essential proteins and vitamin E which give hair an added layer of natural decadence.
Vitamin Enriched Food
It’s all well and good to have the extract in skincare and haircare contexts, the natural state of being for this ubiquitously mysterious extract is of course its utility in the kitchen. The already established presence of incredibly beneficial nutrients is something to behold all in itself, the nutritional benefits are naturally included in the benefits and utilities of the substance.
The natural presence of monounsaturated fatty acids is already a bonus due to the string of health benefits that have been associated with them over the years, as well as the high omega 3 and delicious taste, it is certainly a superfood to say the least. Though it does have a high fat content, we don’t always recommend splurging too heavily on the macadamia oil, but it does work a treat.