Native to the North Temperate Zone, there are several species of the tree. The tree is also called filbert and belongs to the Betulaceae family. Hazels are popular ornamental trees due to their rich-coloured autumn foliage. They produce masses of yellow male catkins and smaller red clusters of female flowers in late winter. The brown, roundish nuts are partly or entirely enclosed in husks.
Our hazelnut oil comes from the edible seeds of the European variety (Corylus avellana).
Hazelnuts are an important commercial crop and some of the major producers include Turkey, Italy, Spain, USA, China and Japan.
The nuts are added to baked goods, chocolate and other foods; the oil is used for culinary and cosmetic purposes. The reddish-white timber from the trees is used for small wooden articles, such as walking sticks.
Ancient Romans associated the hazel with marriage rituals. In Greek mythology, the winged hazel rod described in the legend of Apollo and Mercury symbolizes communication, reconciliation and commerce.
In England, All Hallow’s Eve was sometimes called the “Nut Crack Night”, accompanied by fortune-telling and cracking of hazelnuts. Hazelnuts are popular during Christmas-time in England.
The nuts and oil are a rich source of beneficial fatty acids, vitamins and minerals, most notably vitamin E and B-vitamins.
Hazelnut oil is particularly useful as facial oil, because it is non-comedogenic (doesn’t block pores). It is also very protective and occlusive, meaning that it doesn’t let skin’s own moisture evaporate. It is also moisturizing on the skin.
We use the protective and moisturising qualities of hazelnut oil in our Double Choc tinted lip balm.
We use hazelnut oil to moisturise the skin in Once a Year, our boozy, bubblegum-scented Massage Bar.