Argan oil is a promising tropical treatment derived from the argan nut of the argan tree, in the South Western plains of Morocco.
Local Berber women have used the oil for sun protection and skin tone for millennia, and the powers for acne are very real. Argan oil is among the richest oils in vitamin E, beating even grapeseed oil. That alone makes it miraculous for acne, but less known are argan oil’s anti-hyperpigmentation properties. It’s proven to inhibit one of the key enzymes behind melanin accumulation, tyrosinase.
Argan oil may even improve oily skin, thanks to two natural plant sterols called schottenol and spinasterol. There’s little downside, as argan oil is among the least pore-clogging oils on earth, with an excellent comedogenic rating of 0 out of 5. The much-praised coconut oil fails, scoring 4 out of 5.
But before you enjoy argan oil’s promising powers, you have one task to complete: buying the correct brand.
A poorly produced batch could actually worsen your acne, particularly if the argan oil is diluted with a rancid cooking oil like soybean oil, to save the manufacturer money. Furthermore, harsh processing can destroy some of the all-important vitamins and phytonutrients.
Every brand here is cold pressed, and every brand here is rich in acne-clearing compounds. For a shortcut, the ultimate brands are InstaNatural and US Organic.
Let’s get started:
One – InstaNatural Argan Oil
Our first top quality argan oil product is InstaNatural’s 4oz bottle. Apply this and you’ll soon look like a Hollywood celebrity, according to the company. The truth? InstaNatural Argan Oil meets all the criteria for acne: cold-pressed, organic, and pure.
It’s free from any possible contaminant, being paraben free, dye free, hexane free, and chemical free. InstaNatural is completely organic and certified by two different bodies: Organic Certifiers and Ecocert. Like all great argan oils, it’s sourced directly from Morocco. The bottling and packaging takes place in Orlando, Florida.
Why is being cold pressed so vital for acne? Because extracting the oil through factory methods, harsh heat, hexane and chemical deodorisers, destroys many of the beneficial compounds. The vitamin E and sterols in argan oil are particularly vulnerable to this.
Luckily, the Berber populations of Morocco have maintained a tight grip on argan oil production, and have vowed to keep it to traditional standards. Every argan oil recommended here is cold pressed and InstaNatural is no exception. There’s also a glass, brown coloured bottle, to protect the precious oil from sun damage while on your shelf.
For an organic product, it’s also quite affordable. InstaNatural has the classic distinct yet pleasant aroma that argan oil should do. There’s only one ingredient: Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil. InstaNatural is an excellent product for pure argan oil goodness.
Amazon link: InstaNatural Organic Argan Oil
Two – US Organic
This argan oil is pretty much perfect for acne. Once more, the sole ingredient is Arganina Spinosa Kernel Oil. The oil is cold-pressed, pure, and free from any parabens, fragrances, colorants, alcohol, and chemical preservatives.
According to US Organic, only the highest quality argan nuts are selected. Unlike lesser companies, which claim to be organic with no proof, US Organic’s argan oil is officially certified organic by the USDA.
Like InstaNatural, the bottle is dark and made from glass to prevent UV radiation damage. An UV filtering bottle is important for most skincare oils. It’s great to produce your oil traditionally and avoid rancidity from factory chemicals and heat, but if your oil oxidises while on the shelf, it’s pointless. A dark bottle keeps it safe, particularly if you keep the argan oil in a cool and dark place as well.
The colour of US Organic argan oil is another advantage. A heavily processed, refined and deodorised argan oil will typically be clear and colourless, whereas a traditional, unrefined oil will have natural colour. US Organic’s oil varies from amber to a pale yellow.
Meanwhile, the classic smell is present, which varies from batch to batch depending on the weather, though milder than usual. Like Rejuve Naturals, US Organic deodorises their argan oil naturally through cold methods, by funnelling the oil through natural active carbon.
For acne, skincare, hair rejuvenation, or any purpose, US Organic and InstaNatural are equally excellent.
Amazon link: US Organic Moroccan Argan Oil.
Three – VoilaVe Moroccan Argan Oil
This 4oz bottle also contains a unique lid. Other argan oil products typically contain a glass dispenser, attached to the screwable lid, advising you to dispense 1 to 3 drops in your hand and rub into your face. Meanwhile, VoilaVe contains a pump, making it much easier to dispense. VoilaVe even claims that you can use its argan oil in the shower.
Elsewhere, it’s a similarly great proposition. VoilaVe has double organic certification, from Ecocert and the USDA. The bottle is made from dark glass and VoilaVe specifically formulated it to keep out UV light. The sole ingredient is cold-pressed argan oil while preservatives, fragrances, hexane, and parabens are nowhere to be found. As for the smell and colour, the oil is typically yellow to pale yellow. The smell was described by one user as earthy and organic, disappearing quickly when rubbed into the face. All is in order here.
VoilaVe has a simple refund policy: request one within 90 days, and you’ll get it, with no questions asked. The final benefit is the packaging, perhaps the snazziest around. VoilaVe is very difficult to beat for a pure argan oil product.
Amazon link: VoilaVe Moroccan Argan Oil.
Four – ArtNaturals Pure Moroccan Argan Oil
ArtNaturals is another organic, cold-pressed, chemical free, and 100% pure argan oil product. It fulfills all the acne-friendly criteria, and the hundreds of positive reviews report that its smell ranges from faint to mildly nutty. The oil is imported from Morocco and packaged in Beverly Hills, California.
ArtNaturals has no particular gimmick. It’s just yet another excellent argan oil choice. Interestingly, ArtNaturals claims that their argan oil has a shelf life of 2 years when stored in a cool, dark place. Argan oil is richest in monounsaturated fats, rather than the weak polyunsaturated fats or extremely stable saturated fats. Therefore its stability is moderate among oils, but is boosted further by its massive vitamin E content.
Once more, ArtNaturals is in a dark, glass bottle. Somehow, argan oil manufacturers know exactly how to package it compared to makers of other oils, where plastic is still widespread, even in more unstable oils.
Amazon link: ArtNaturals Pure Moroccan Argan Oil.
Five – Zakia’s Morocco Shea Butter with Organic Argan Oil
An argan oil product which is not pure in the least bit. Why? Because this highly interesting recipe is a combination of pure, organic argan oil with another acne-clearing powerhouse. Shea butter, the fat of the shea tree’s nut, found across African countries stretching from Nigeria to Uganda.
The effect on acne will be very interesting. Shea butter dabbles in different areas to argan oil: it’s a highly effective natural moisturiser, but also has an overlooked ability to stimulate collagen production.
Shea butter inhibits an enzyme called collagenase in your skin, which is designed to break down old and fragile collagen to replace it with new collagen, but frequently gets out of control. More collagen equals strong skin in the face of irritants, delayed ageing, and a firmer and healthier looking skin tone. Your skin will subtly change, in ways you can’t quite comprehend, but can see and enjoy very clearly. Argan oil, meanwhile, is much richer in vitamin E and has its hyperpigmentation properties. Combine the two and miracles may occur.
Both ingredients in Zakia’s product are organic and cold pressed themselves, and are the only two ingredients. The solid saturated fats of shea butter combine with the liquid argan oil to make a soft, easy to apply cream.
Zakia’s recipe is non-ideal if you desire pure argan oil, but has massive potential for experimental acne patients.
Amazon link: Zakia’s Morocco Shea Butter with Organic Argan Oil.
Six – Foxbrim Argan Oil
According to reviews, this argan oil smells like a barnyard, smoky, strong, or briefly nutty before dissipating when used. Foxbrim is perhaps the product with the most consistent natural aroma, if you believe reviews, but in good way. Foxbrim confirms that their oil is cold-pressed, organic, and non-deodorised, not even through natural methods.
Everything else about this argan oil is excellent too. Its organic credentials are rock solid with the bottle bearing the USDA and Ecocert stamps. The oil is imported from Morocco, bottled in Florida and reportedly has a shelf life of 2 years. The bottle is glass and amber.
Like others, Foxbrim advises you to apply 1 to 3 drops to your face and leave it to absorb for 3 to 5 minutes. Is this extremely widespread advice accurate? My recommendation with oils is generally to leave them on overnight, since with argan oil, your main job is to allow the vitamin E to soak in and be thoroughly absorbed into the skin where it can prevent acne. Likewise, whichever mysterious compound suppresses tyrosinase and melanin also needs to soak in. A lot of great studies on natural topical treatments like tamanu oil tested them over a matter of hours, rather than minutes (tamanu oil increases collagen, if you’re wondering).
Overall though, Foxbrim is an excellent argan oil product for acne, with no downsides itself.
Amazon link: Foxbrim 100% Pure Organic Argan Oil.
Seven – Rejuve Naturals Argan Oil
Another top quality argan oil brand, but with a small difference. This oil is filtered naturally to reduce the odour: “filtered with the latest scientific techniques to reduce the smell without losing any of the Argan Oils natural properties.”
The oil remains cold-pressed and free from chemical contamination, so the methods are likely traditional techniques. According to reviews though, there is still a mild, nutty odour, and that’s a good thing, because it shows that whatever deodorising methods they do use are very gentle. The flavoursome compounds of argan oil may be those that clear acne.
Rejuve is again close to its competitors, being packaged in amber glass, certified organic by Ecocert and the USDA, and imported from Morocco and packed in the USA. They recommend using their argan oil within 6 months of opening it, and if you’re committed to applying it for acne, that’s an easy task.
Rejuve Naturals is also very enthusiastic about using argan oil for shiny and soft hair, as a shampoo. Any truth to it? Right now, there’s nothing but historical and anecdotal evidence for argan oil. However, free radical and lipid peroxide activity in the scalp is a big cause of hair loss, and vitamin E can prevent this. Argan oil might therefore benefit your hair in a different way, by keeping it intact.
Regardless, Rejuve Naturals argan oil is an equally great brand to VoilaVe or Foxbrim.
Amazon link: Rejuve Naturals Moroccan Argan Oil.
Eight – Eve Hansen
The oil is picked from Moroccan trees, cold pressed by the locals, and bottled in Eve Hansen’s own special factory before ending up on your shelf and ultimately your face. Eve Hansen is cold-pressed, chemical free, additive free, fragrance free, and contains just one ingredient, argan oil. There’s a glass dropper and the bottle is amber glass.
This is another argan oil which is officially cruelty free too. Unless they’re training gorillas to pick them from trees, you’d expect it, but confirmation is good. Testing animals would probably give them the shiniest and most luscious fur in the jungle anyway.
In fact, there’s actually an indigenous goat subspecies in Morocco which is able to climb argan trees and pick the fruit for their own food. You can see the picture at the end of this article. Somehow, they’re able to stand on the thinnest of branches without snapping them. They’re like the Moroccan equivalent of a mountain goat.
Quality report: a milder smell, according to reviewers, but a signature nutty and natural one nevertheless. Eve Hansen is yet another excellent argan oil brand.
Amazon link: Eve Hansen Organic Argan Oil.
Nine – Poppy Austin Argan Oil
The oil is packed in a dark, opaque, bottle made from Italian glass. There’s been 1 million bottles of this brand sold in over 35 countries. Use Poppy Austin, and you’ll reportedly become captivated by its magic after a single usage. You will enjoy mystical powers that the ancient Phoenicians revered over 3000 years ago. Finally, you will enjoy an oil unmatched in simplicity, beating anything mankind has to offer. Poppy Austin calls its oil liquid gold and a miracle oil.
The truth? Poppy Austin isn’t unique, but is excellent nevertheless. The characteristics are cold pressed, free from chemicals, fragrances, parabens, preservatives, colorants and any ingredient other than pure argan oil. The oil is extracted from deep within the Souss valley of Morocco, and the packaging is American.
There’s little to say other than that Poppy Austin fulfills all the acne-friendly criteria. If your skin needs argan oil (read the scientific article to find out), Poppy Austin will do the job.
If it fails miserably, which is very unlikely, there’s a 30 day money back guarantee. Interestingly, Poppy Austin points out on their website that using olive oil topically can worsen acne, which is true; watch out!
Amazon link: Poppy Austin Pure Argan Oil.
Compared to grapeseed oil or sea buckthorn oil, top quality argan oils are very easy to find. The products here vary little; any of them will improve your acne.
Argan oil only surged in popularity during the last century. By the time big skincare companies arrived in South West Morocco in force, the organic and natural craze had already arrived.
Culinary argan oil is also much less popular compared to grapeseed oil, so the market is automatically more interested in top quality skincare versions. Then there’s the Moroccan locals, who vigorously defend their old traditions. That’s why argan oil is among the most consistently well-produced natural topical treatments for acne.
Corrupt dealers are still lurking, however, so these are the nine best argan oil products an acne-clearing enthusiast could hope to acquire.
Thanks for reading!