Oat grass (Avena sativa) has been cultivated for its edible grain crop for thousands of years. Oat seeds dating back to 2000 years have been found in Egypt, although, these were probably from wild oats. Cultivation as a food crop started in Europe around the Bronze Age and then spread throughout the world. Oats tolerate cold climate very well and some of the major commercial producers are USA, Canada, Belarus, Finland, Poland and Germany.
The Roman historian, Pliny, and his contemporaries, mention the use of oats as a topical, skin-soothing treatment in the medical texts of their time. Oats, and the extracts made from them, became popular in cosmetics after information was published in the 1930s about the ability of oats to relieve itching and to protect skin.
We use fine oatmeal or rolled oats steeped in hot water to make our creamy oat milk.
While we are probably most familiar with oats cooked into porridge, oats are also used in savoury dishes, cereals and cakes. Ancient Romans recognised the beneficial properties, both externally and internally, and there are mentions of the nutritional and health benefits of oats in many Roman writings of the time.
Oats are a source of calcium, iron and vitamin B1. They are high in carbohydrates and contain more protein and lipids (fat) than other grains. Oats also contain avenanthramides, a type antibiotic produced by the plant, which acts as an antioxidant and may contribute to the topically soothing effect of the grain.
Cosmetic and medicinal preparations containing oats, and oat extracts, have been shown to be anti-inflammatory, to relieve itchy, irritated skin and to help with allergic reactions due to the antihistamic nature of oats.
We simmer the fine oatmeal in water to produce the rich oat milk for our Dream Cream hand and body lotion, which is very effective in calming and soothing the skin.
Our Ambrosia shaving cream uses oat milk to calm the skin during the process of shaving.
We use oat milk in our King of Skin solid body butter, alongside cocoa and shea butters, which work together to moisturise the skin.
In our Honey Trap and Whipstick lip balms, we use oat milk to soften the lips.
Our R & B Hair Moisturiser contains oat milk to soothe dry, sensitive scalps.