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Winter weather isn’t just near, it’s in full-force rage mode. Without a regimen that focuses on nourishing, protecting, and seriously hydrating, you might just be out of luck when it comes to a glowing complexion and hair that shines. Que baobab, an admittedly weird-sounding ingredient that’s seriously underhyped but 100% worthy of being the star of your winter skincare regimen.

What the Heck is Baobab Oil?

Baobab oil comes from the baobab tree (go figure), a beast-of-a-plant that looks like it’s straight out of the Lion King. Makes sense, seeing as how it grows in mainland Africa, as well as Australia, Madagascar, and Arabia. Baobab oil that’s found in skincare products is extracted from the tree’s fruit seeds, which blossom about once per year. After the seeds are dried (often under the hot sun), the oil is extracted with a simple cold-press process.

Source: Unsplash/ Sergey Zhesterev

Not only is baobab oil super moisturizing thanks to a host of omega fatty acids, but it’s also rich in antioxidants and vitamins A, B, and C. When used on your skin and hair, it infuses nutrients and moisture for a soft, hydrated, healthy look and feel.

You can get the benefits by using baobab oil at the end of your skincare routine (after you’ve moisturized), to lock in moisture and nourish and hydrate your skin to the max. We love the Aura Cacia, Organic Baobab Oil, $9.70, it feels silky soft on the skin and doesn’t feel heavy.

Our Fave Baobab-Laced Products

Because it’s so hydrating, you’ll usually find baobab — pronounced “bay-uh bab” — in rich creams, oils, and butters intended for your hair, skin, lips, and nails. It’s super gentle, so all skin types can use it every day or on an as-needed basis (like right now when humidity levels are zilch and your skin/hair is parched). Below we’ve featured some of our favorite products that make baobab the superstar it deserves to be.

1. Farmacy Dew It All Total Eye Cream, $38

baobab skincare

This moisturizing eye cream features a slew of super hydrating ingredients, including our dear baobab oil, algae oil, rosehip oil, and plumping hyaluronic acid. It also has soothing ingredients to help depuff, including chamomile, aloe, and calendula.

2. SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate + Repair Protein-Strong Treatment, $11.49

baobab skincare

SheaMoisture’s entire “Manuka Honey & Yogurt” line contains baobab oil to soften, hydrate, and nourish your locks. We’re especially fond of the bestselling Strong Treatment, a rich mask that’ll give you gloriously hydrated hair.

3. Drunk Elephant Slaai™ Makeup-Melting Butter Cleanser, $34

baobab skincare

If you haven’t yet incorporated a balm cleanser into your regimen, it’s time. Drunk Elephant’s new Slaai combines a megawatt team of oils (including baobab seed, marula, and mongongo) to hydrate skin while the balm works its magic to melt away makeup and grime from the day.

4. Belif Aqua Bomb Hydrating Toner, $28

baobab skincare

After cleansing your skin, double down on moisture via a hydrating toner. K-Beauty brand Belif — heralded for their Aqua Bomb line — just dropped a new toner that combines baobab, hyaluronic acid, and honeysuckle.

5. Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Body Lotion, $9.99

baobab skincare

Those in the market for a straight-up, no-fuss body moisturizer will find a winner in Burt’s Bees Ultimate Care Body Lotion, which is formulated for really dry skin. The star of the show is baobab, and we love that it’s dermatologist-tested, hypoallergenic, and fragrance-free.

If you have any questions on baobab, drop us a line in the comment section!