Jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis) , also known as goat nut, deer nut, pignut, wild hazel, quinine nut, coffeeberry, and gray box bush, is native to South-western North America. The plant came to prominence in the late 1970s when scientists found that the liquid wax from the jojoba bean has a strikingly similar structure to the natural wax esters in human skin. The CSIRO introduced the plant to Australia in 1978 and selectively bred certain varieties especially suited to Australian conditions. Commercial plantations are now established across the country, including at Kalannie, Wagin, Geraldton and York in Western Australia.
A shrubby bush which usually grows between 3-6 feet, though occasionally taller, the leaves are up to 1 ½” long, thick with a waxy gray-green coloration. The flowers are small with a green-yellow colour and contain no petals. The plant is usually dioecious, either male or female, with both sexes needed to produce the fruit. Occasionally there are hermaphrodite plants but this is rare. The plants can live between 100-200 years. While often solitary in growth, jojoba’s can produce ground based shoots and form into thickets.
Jojoba oil is extracted from the seeds of Simmondsia chinensis, the jojoba tree.
Studies show that jojoba is non-comedogenic, and, therefore, provides an ideal base for fighting wrinkles, anti-acne and therapeutic products. Its natural ability to solubilise sebum allows jojoba to spread readily and absorb easily into the skin, improving skin suppleness. Jojoba is more stable to hydrolysis and oxidation than triglyceride vegetable oils, because of its unique ester structure that combines monounsaturated fatty alcohols. It is antibacterial and antifungal too so it kills many of the common skin bacteria and fungi as it cleans and moisturises.
Jojoba is also deeply nourishing for skin, hair, nails & cuticles. This – combined with its rapid absorption rate – makes jojoba an excellent carrier for all types of topical moisturizers. Jojoba is widely used in skin care products including face and body moisturisers, cleansers, lip conditioners, shaving and aftershave products, make-up removers, acne treatments, shampoos, conditioners, hand creams and foot creams.