This is a very commonly asked question. And so, we will explain.
Cold pressed oils aren’t cold pressed but are pressed slowly so the temperature stays within the range for those oils considered cold pressed. Cold pressed oils are the best oils for eating.
Cold pressed means they were pressed slowly so the temperature doesn’t exceed 120-122 degrees Fahrenheit.
The old adage “Time is Money”, result is that few big companies will cold press oils. As this is not cost effective so most companies expeller-press the oils. Cold pressing also produces less oil than expeller pressed.
When expeller pressed, the temperatures goes almost to 180 degrees Fahrenheit and in oils that are refined the pressing temperatures can reach 400 degrees but not always.
Most refined oils are also filtered to remove bacteria, mold spores and other undesirable sediments.
Realize that cold press doesn’t mean room temperature. When they ‘squeeze’ the nuts or seeds – heat is produced. No matter what you may have been told cold pressed is not done “cold”.
So what does this mean? Cold pressed oils will most likely have more nutrients (namely vitamins and enzymes) but can also have bacteria and mold spores etc. in them, which can cause early spoilage and rancidity. This is one of the reasons fixed oils have a shorter shelf life than essential oils.
Expeller pressing is more apt to kill harmful bacteria and many mold spores but will begin to deteriorate the nutrients.
Refined – if done at high temperatures can cause damage to the oils themselves BUT like I stated earlier, refined oils used in the massage, body and cosmetics are often times Expeller pressed oils that have been run through filters to remove bacteria, mold and sediments.
Some oils are solvent extracted but the refining process removes almost all the solvent. Any solvent which is left is considered minimal to none and is usually not a problem.
Depends on the situation and the application for which it is to be used.
For use on open sores or unknown rashes – refined oils are most likely the best to use to help to avoid entering any new bacteria or fungi but many of the oils, if they are fresh will normally be fine.
Remember only a few carrier oils have a long shelf life – Jojoba and Coconut oils are two of the best and very good for the skin.
Jojoba is usually expeller pressed and filtered so that’s one reason it has the long shelf life. Also due to its chemical composition it has molecular bonding that is strong and resists oxidation.
Some Coconut oils are processed very differently than other oils – they are processed using what is called ‘fermentation’ **. Virgin Coconut Oil, is usually processed using the traditional fermentation method, in my opinion, has some of the best skin nutrients and healing properties for all skin types.
For healthy skin, for use in massage, any oil can be used depending on the skin type and again as to what your application it is being used to address.
For more information on the various Carrier Oils please visit this article https://birchhillhappenings.com/aromatip/SE2011fixedoils.htm
**(You can do a search for Coconut Oil production and on Tropical Traditions website it explains the process the best) .
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