Tamanu promotes the formation of new cell growth and the elimination of dead cells, thus accelerating wound healing. Tamanu is also known to possess anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, and antimicrobial properties. Tamanu should be considered as the carrier oil of choice when working with eczema or psoriasis, burns, acne, dry or scaly skin, diaper rash, diabetic ulcers and in relieving pain from sciatica, shingles, and arthritis.
Although tamanu oil is thick and dark in color, when applied to the skin it is readily absorbed and leaves no oily residue.
Tamanu oil is made by pressing the fruit of the Calophyllum tree which grows in eastern Africa and southeast Asia. To create tamanu butter, coconut oil is whipped into the oil, creating a moisturizing solid butter. It has virtually no odor and an off-white color.
Tamanu butter is renowned for its skin conditioning properties. It is very widely distributed in the cosmetic industry due to its affect on the skin as well as antioxidant properties.
Tamanu butter can be used as a carrier oil or just plain for a moisturizer. If you make your own salves and lotions tamanu butter would be a great addition to your recipe.
Why you need a carrier oil
Carrier or base oils are often applied in conjunction with an essential oil. The common industry term for carrier oils is “fixed oils”. These oils are made from vegetables, nuts or seeds and often have therapeutic properties of their own. The carrier oils used in therapeutic settings should be cold pressed and organically grown rather than produced by chemical methods. This is an important distinction, as some of the carrier oil will be absorbed into the body along with the essential oil.
Carrier oils are used for several different reasons. One major reason is because pure essential oils are often too concentrated to be applied undiluted to skin. Adding essential oils to a carrier also allows the oil to be spread over a larger application area and to be absorbed more evenly. Many essential oils are quite expensive and, because they are so highly concentrated, one or two drops may be all that you need. The use of a smaller quantity is often more beneficial than a larger quantity and is certainly less likely to cause any type of reaction.