Chia seeds are worming their way into everything (it’s the glitter of the health food world!), so it’s no surprise that it’s made its way into skincare, in the form of chia seed oil (turns out those tiny dark specks have oil in them – who knew?).
Chia seed oil is a bit special in the world of skincare oils – it has a lot of alpha-linolenic acid, a form of omega-3 fatty acid (about 64%). The only common-ish oils that also have a high omega-3 content are perilla oil (58%) and flaxseed oil (aka linseed oil, 55%). There are a handful of studies on topical chia seed oil and alpha-linolenic acid applied on skin floating around. They’ve found that chia seed oil is an effective moisturiser, and that alpha-linolenic acid can fix hyperpigmentation and acts against inflammation in the eye but not in mouse skin (unless you eat it), so the jury’s still out on its effectiveness.
The first brand I’ve come across that uses chia seed oil in their skincare products is Goodness Natural Beauty Lab, a New Zealand company which has a tidy range of chia seed products packaged with a pretty pastel colour theme. The products are biodegradable (no plastic microbeads) and have recyclable packaging. They’re also organic if you’re into that, but since there isn’t any good evidence that organic produce is more nutritious or has any less pesticide residues than conventional produce, it’s not a selling point for me. The range includes a cleanser and a scrub, along with a day cream, a night cream and a dropper bottle of chia seed oil.
Every Day Cream Cleanser and Every Week Face Scrub both smell grassy – it’s an unusual scent for a skincare product, but not unpleasant. The cream cleanser is based on aloe vera extract, vegetable oils and glycerin. (It’s worth noting that contrary to popular opinion, aloe vera doesn’t really have any skin-soothing properties, but it does make a nice lightweight base for skincare products.) There’s no surfactants, which means that it’s gentle and not drying; on the flip side, when I was wearing heavy make-up, I found that I needed to cleanse twice or use a foaming wash afterwards.
The scrub uses essentially the same base with the addition of fine pumice particles, which I initially thought would be too rough, but I’ve had no irritation or dehydration so I think it’s fine if you use it lightly. If you have sensitive skin though, it might be better to use a jojoba bead scrub instead. The base is very moisturising and creamy rather than foaming, which helps with minimising irritation. I particularly like that it’s called “Every Week” – a lot of people I’ve talked to use scrubs every day and wonder why their skin keeps breaking out or getting dehydrated, so it’s nice that Goodness are promoting the “less is best” message! There’s also a nice patch test warning on all the products.
Every Morning Moisturiser and Every Evening Cream are also based on aloe vera extract, oils and glycerin. Both are very light in texture – I can actually use Every Morning Moisturiser under my sunscreen, and I actually found Every Evening Cream too light for winter nights – my skin felt tight in the morning, so I’ll be saving it for summer. They both contain coconut oil, which I thought was a strange choice since it has a reputation for being comedogenic, but it’s quite far down the ingredients list. I didn’t have any problems with it. The evening cream comes in a jar, which I’m always a bit wary of for “natural” skincare lines, but this does have a bunch of preservatives in the ingredients list so I’m not too worried.
The bottle of Certified Organic Chia Seed Oil is blended with meadowfoam seed oil, which has a smooth feel and a long shelf-life, unlike alpha-linolenic-rich oils. Unfortunately there isn’t any info on how much of each there is. I found that the oil feels quite dry and lightweight, even more than than linoleic-rich oils like sunflower, hemp and rosehip.
There’s a bone I want to pick with the overall marketing though – Goodness makes a big deal out of how chia has a “perfect 3:1 ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 essential fatty acids” – I have no idea where they get the idea that this ratio is perfect or correct or whatever. Nutrition research indicates that we should be eating a 1:1 – 4:1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3, and there’s no research on the ratio for topical use, so… what’s the deal there?
Apart from that though, the products are well formulated – they glide on easily and smoothly, and aren’t lumpy or separation-prone like many natural skincare lines. I particularly like the Every Morning Moisturiser. The packaging is pretty and durable, and the products are reasonably priced. You’ll be able to pick these up from My Chemist, Chemist Warehouse, Woolworths and soon from Priceline as well.
|Product Name||Product Type||Price||Size||Price per mL ($)||Ingredients|
|Every Day Cream Cleanser||Cleanser||$16.95||150 mL||0.113||Aqua (Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Extract, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Glycerin (Vegetable), Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Salvia Hispanica (Chia) Seed Oil, Cetearyl Wheat Straw Glucosides (and) Cetearyl Alcohol, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Rubus Fruticosus (Blackberry) Fruit Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Cetearyl Alcohol, Parfum, Xanthan Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Cinnamal, Eugenol, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool|
|Every Week Face Scrub||Scrub||$12.95||50 mL||0.259||Aqua (Water), Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Extract, Glycerin (Vegetable), Cetearyl Alcohol, Salvia Hispanica (Chia) Seed Oil, Glyceryl Stearate, Stearic Acid, Pumice, Cetearyl Glucoside (and) Cetearyl Alcohol, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Parfum, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Cinnamal, Eugenol, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool|
|Every Morning Moisturiser||Moisturiser||$16.95||75 mL||0.226||Aqua (Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Extract, Glycerin (Vegetable), Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Glyceryl Stearate, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Salvia Hispanica (Chia) Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Hibiscus Sabdariffa (Hibiscus) Flower Extract, Vaccinium Myrtillus (Bilberry) Extract, Cetearyl Glucoside (and) Cetearyl Alcohol, Parfum, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Hydroxide, Benzyl Benzoate, Citral, Citronellol, Limonene, Linalool|
|Every Evening Cream||Moisturiser||$19.95||60 mL||0.3325||Aqua (Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Extract, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycerin (Vegetable), Glyceryl Stearate, Stearic Acid, Salvia Hispanica (Chia) Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Cetearyl Glucoside (and) Cetearyl Alcohol, Parfum, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Hydroxide, Benzyl Benzoate, Citral, Citronellol, Limonene, Linalool|
|Certified Organic Chia Seed Oil||Oil||$19.95||20 mL||0.9975||Salvia Hispanica (Chia) Seed Oil, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil|
These products were provided for review, which did not affect my opinion. For more information, see Disclosure Policy.