Gascogne Plum Oil
The French, too, have their very own “liquid gold”! There is no need to travel far. It is found in the South West, in the Gascogne region. A treasure of luxury and sweetness , this predominantly organic plum oil is rich and nourishing. However, compared to other vegetable oils, this typically French ingredient offers a true bonus feature: its wonderful fragrance! You can find it in skincare products or nourishing body exfoliants, and its high tolerance works wonders in family skincare ranges…
Gascogne Plums, or Ente Plums, used to make the famous Agen Prunes, are a South Western speciality, more specifically of the Lot-et-Garonne region. It is a plum tree variety of the Prunus Domestica species. Ente plums are of a dark purple colour with a characteristic bluish tinge and have a very sweet, honey-coloured flesh. A real treasure of luxury and sweetness, only recently studied in terms of its cosmetic benefits, this vegetable oil is obtained by pressing the kernel found in the stone of the plum, and often discarded as waste by the food and agricultural industry.
After drying and shelling the plum stones, the kernels are ground and pressed in a screw press to obtain the oil desired (INCI : Prunus domestica seed oil). This first cold-pressed virgin oil, most often organically produced, is then simply decanted and filtered.
100% pure and natural, softening and conditioning, with a rich and nourishing texture and velvet to the touch (quite the opposite of a dry oil that seems to coat the skin without really penetrating the surface!),it provides a feeling of deep nourishment and does wonders for dry and sensitive skins, as well as for dry hair.
Above all, its defining characteristic is that it has the most magical olfactory quality. Its perfume of bitter almonds and marzipan is absolutely delicious and addictive! Both subtle and luxurious at the same time, it is almost one of a kind, in contrast to other vegetable oils that, for the majority, just smell like… oil! Naturally rich in antioxidant Vitamin E, it helps keep the skin youthful whilst also having a very good oxidation stability. It also has a high levels of Omega 6 and 9 (especially linoleic acid and oleic acid), the essential fatty acids necessary to maintain skin balance.
RICH, NOURISHING AND FRAGRANT SKINCARE PRODUCTS…
You can find it pure on Aroma-Zone, offered as a food product in various sizes (Organic Plum Oil, € 1.50 for 10 ml, € 4.90 for 30 ml or € 12.50 for 100 ml), but it is also found in combination with other ingredients in different skincare products, such as Decléo’s Aroma Nutrition Crème Riche Nourrissante Corps (body cream; € 38 for 200 ml), or in the form of a Gascogne Plum Oil or Butter with Provence essential mimosa wax, or in the Crème Nourrissante for dry skin from the Aromathérapie d’Académie Scientifique de Beauté range (€ 44 for 50 ml).
Given that it requires no added masking fragrance, it is exceptionally high -tolerance, perfect for family brands, such as SkinHaptics (Hair & Body Shower Gel with cotton and plum oils, 400 ml, € 16; Body Massage Oil with cotton, plum and sunflower oils, baby, child, adult, 125 ml, € 21), or for brands devoted to future mums, such as Beautanicae, that uses it in its organically certified Baume Onctueux Vergetures (Oily Stretchmark Balm) (150 ml, € 27).
… OR ULTRA-KIND EXFOLIANTS
We can also use the ground powder of the Gascogne plum stone as an exfoliating agent (INCI : Prunus domestica seed powder). Examples include Graine de Pastel’s Gommage de Cocagne Corps (body exfoliant) with pastel oil (150 g, € 23).
Gascogne Plum Oil is still used very little in face-care and it is a true shame! Up to now, we have only seen it in the new Acorelle Cleansing Oil (125 ml, €16 ), an organically certified cosmetics brand that is located right in the Lot-et-Garonne region!
It could also be adopted by parfumiers. It is without a doubt that this oil is not just about plums!
Ariane Le Febvre
© L’Observatoire des Cosmétiques