What’s the secret behind really gorgeous skin? In the case of one runway beauty, it’s all about an amber-hued oil that is extracted from the seeds of wild rose bushes.
“I like to wear rosehip oil at night,” Victoria’s Secret model Miranda Kerr told POPSUGAR Beauty. “It’s full of many antioxidants and it really works on a cellular level too to rejuvenate the skin. I put that on at night and I wake up glowing.”
And the 30-year-old mother isn’t the only fan. The Duchess of Cambridge, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Victoria Beckham have all been reported to use rosehip oil to keep their skin smooth and blemish free.
But what’s so great about this so-called beauty balm, anyway?
“Rosehip oil, also known as rose hips oil, is a light, absorbable oil that has shown benefits for both the face and scalp, explains Dr. Jessica Krant, a New York City-based dermatologist and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. “It contains beta carotene, or vitamin A, which is known to help promote a healthy skin cell lifecycle, as well as antioxidant and anti-inflammatory components.”
“Rosehip seed oil does contain a blend of bioactive ingredients that can potentially be beneficial to the skin, for example vitamin C, vitamin E, carotenoids, and essential fatty acids,” adds Dr. Julia Tzu, a dermatologist who is also an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at New York University. “It may be potentially beneficial as an anti-aging product because of the antioxidant ingredients it contains. Its high vitamin C content suggests that it may also be useful for treating dark spots, since vitamin C decreases the pigment-producing ability of the skin.”
The skincare industry has already taken note. There are several products on the market, all promoting youthful, soft-as-silk skin. Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Skin Therapy Oil, which features rosehip, insists it can help improve the appearance of scars, stretch marks, and dry, damaged skin. Trilogy’s organic rosehip oil, made to be massaged directly onto the face day or night, reportedly improves the appearance of fine lines. Then there's Kerr’s own KORA Organics body oil, which “hydrates, illuminates, and naturally nourishes your skin.”
Sounds too good to be true? Experts say more research is needed to see if this wonder ingredient is really the secret to Kerr’s flawless skin — or if it’s just good genes.
“There is no scientific proof that rosehip oil is the best thing for your skin,” explains Dr. Gary Goldenberg, medical director of the dermatology faculty practice at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. “Rosehip oil certainly can be beneficial since it contains fatty acids. Some also claim that it has antioxidant properties. However, no proof exists that this is true and that it actually helps your skin regenerate.”
While Goldenberg does agree it can provide some moisturizing relief for those suffering from dryness, individuals with oily skin may want to think twice before slathering it on.
“Since it’s an oil, I would be cautious to use it in acne-prone patients,” he said.
Tzu, who warns that it can potentially induce allergies for people with sensitive skin, says not being careful can cause more harm than good. And those who are battling stretch marks may want to look into other alternatives that provide lasting results.
“Currently there are no truly effective treatments for stretch marks, aside from laser treatments to eliminate the redness found in early stretch marks,” she explains. “Despite the ability of vitamin C to promote collagen formation, the effect is negligible for stretch marks, and hence rosehip oil is unlikely to do anything substantial for stretch marks.”
Still curious about rosehip oil? Dermatologists advise doing an allergy test first to ensure the product won’t inflame or irritate the skin by applying it in a small area on your arm first. If you're allergy-free, consider adding a few drops to a warm bath to help soften skin. If you suffer from dryness, experts say it can be used in replacement of your moisturizer by gently massaging the oil onto the skin until well absorbed. And if you do have oily skin, seek the advice your dermatologist to ensure the product won’t clog your pores, causing unwanted flare-ups. However, it is recommended to look for products featuring key terms like "dry oil," which means it will be absorbed by the skin without leaving a slick residue.
At least you'll get to feel like an angel for a day.