Virgin or Cold Pressed – Which is it?

We know you have heard all about virgin oils and cold pressed oils, but what do these labels really mean?  Let’s start with the similarities.  Both virgin oils and cold pressed oils are obtained by mostly mechanical procedures, as opposed to chemical procedures that may alter the nature of the oils.

Fresh Marula Oil straight from the press.

Examples of mechanical methods of obtaining oil include expelling or pressing.  Upon extracting the oils, they typically incur multiple stages of further purification which can include techniques such as settling, filtering or centrifuging.  The striking difference between these two oil classifications is the application of heat.

While extracting and refining virgin oils, applying heat is the only non-mechanical method that may be used to purify the oils.  Heat might help degrade pesticides in oils being pressed from harvested fruits or vegetables (virgin olive oil being the obvious example), but the result is highly dependent upon the pesticides used.

In contrast, as the name suggests, when extracting cold-pressed oils, the use of heat is forbidden.  Researchers have shown that the use of heat can alter the structure of the oil itself and cause it to lose valuable antioxidants that protect and give nutrients to the skin.  This is what makes cold-pressed oils so sought after in the natural cosmetics industry.

At DLG Naturals BW, a supplier facility of DLG Naturals, Inc. in Botswana, our production of Marula oil is 100% cold pressed.  The abundance of wild-harvested Marula that thrives without the use of pesticides allows us to produce a natural and safe cosmetic oil without the use of heat.  Our cold-pressed Marula oil maintains its characteristic high concentration of oleic fatty acid throughout the entire process –it’s like applying the oil directly to your skin, from the kernel.