It’s been the essential salve for generations of Berber women, the cult-followed souvenir your friends loved to bring back from Marrakesh, and now it’s the new, must-have ingredient in your beauty cabinet. With a multitasking ethos that makes all those olive oil creams look like downright slouches, argan oil’s amber-toned, nutty-flavored star is rising. The perks: it’s high in vitamin E and essential fatty acids, and can be used as a flora alternative to collagen. Originating in Morocco’s argan trees, the oil is time-consuming to make (the nuts must be cracked by hand, ground, kneaded, then extracted via cold press), but you’ll find it everywhere from eye creams, to bronzers, to salad dressing.
1. The ultimate all-in-one, you can use this residue-free (and fairly traded) oil on your hair and skin for sheen and hydration. Use for one week, and you’ll be hooked.
Superbly Restorative Argan Dry Oil, $30.00, at kiehls.com
2. Using other “It” ingredients like algae as backup, this face cream fights free-radicals for for major anti-aging action.
Age Control Day Care (with Argan Oil) by Issahra, $50.00, at arganbody.com
3. Organic Argan oil delivers vitamin E internally. With its nutty, spicy notes, it can be used on salads, tagines and couscous. Plus, it’s the out-of-the-box gift for the foodie hostess who has everything.
Mustapha’s Moroccan Organic Argan Oil, $70.00, at stores.mustaphas.com
4. Employing Dead Sea water, this Laura Mercier cure boosts the skin’s metabolic reactions and prods along cell renewal. Argan oil delivers a boatload of antioxidants to aging, dehydrated skin.Laura Mercier Flawless Skin Crème, $95.00, at lauramercier.com
5. For those in sun-worship rehab, take heart: Guerlain’s coveted sunless tanning gel not only delivers a bronze glow, it helps heal skin thrashed by those beach binges of your previous life.
Guerlain Terracotta Sunless Tinted Self-Tanning Gel, $50, at neimanmarcus.com
6. Puffiness, fine lines, dark circles—your entire under-eye checklist is accounted for, via milk peptides (for collagen production), antioxidants and probiotics. Here, you’ll find leaves from the argan tree—a favorite hangout for Moroccan goats.
Nude Skincare Advanced Eye Complex, $45.00, at nudeskincare.com
7. Dr. Andrew Weil, never at a loss for colorful beauty language, refers to the skin inflammation that leaves you red, puffy and hyperpigmented as “the fire within.” The cure? His serum joins reishi mushrooms, ginger and holy basil with argan nut oil to calm down stressed skin. Think of it as anger management in a bottle.
Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins™ ‘Plantidote™’ Mega-Mushroom Face Serum, $66.00, at origins.com
8. One thing is for sure: Model-turned-cosmetics-empress Josie Maran loves her argan oil. In fact, it’s the signature ingredient in her beauty line. Her cell-repairing lipstick, for example, eschews parabens and sulfates for jojoba seed oil and coconut cream, and comes in shade names like Curvaceous and Precocious for that extra bit of flair.Josie Maran lipstick, $20, at sephora.com
9. Argan fruit can also be used as the veggie alternative to collagen, delivering an instant lift to skin. The addition of zinc, copper, magnesium and vitamin C will turn you into a radiant, hydrated triple-threat.
REN Revivo-Lift Radiant Day Serum, $69.95, at skinbotanic.com
10. Diptyque, whose parfums and candles are already known for being the socialite’s olfactory calling card, dresses up argan in a floral scent, with a frou-frou body cream that also employs shea butter for epic, all-over hydration.Diptyque L’Ombre dans L’Eau Body Cream, $68.00, at barneys.com