Safflower Oil

About Safflower Oil

Safflower seed oil is expressed from the seeds of a thistle-like, annual plant which typically has bright red or orange flowers. Native to arid environments, this herbaceous plant is currently cultivated in 60 plus countries around the world. However, overall production is relatively low. Safflower is considered to be one of mankind’s oldest crops, playing a culturally significant role as far back as ancient greece and Egypt. Safflower seeds were commonly used as dyes, worn as garlands, while also being used for its different beneficial properties.

In recent history, Safflower has primarily been collected for its vegetable oil, often used to replace some less healthy plant oil options. There is little use for the flower petals, but they can be a cheap substitute for saffron, an expensive cooking herb.


How It Works

Safflower oil is a natural plant emollient with a high concentration of several beneficial fatty acids, including oleic and linoleic acids, as well as antioxidants. This nourishing composition makes safflower oil the perfect addition to skin and hair care products as it helps to condition and moisturize.

When blended in hair care products, the oleic acid promotes healthy hair and scalp by increasing circulation in the scalp. This strengthens the hair follicles and helps to prevent hair loss. The linolenic acid can help repair the skin’s barrier and hydrates, boosting your skin’s overall appearance. When used as part of a cleansing system, it is believed that linolenic acid can combine with sebum (an oil largely responsible for acne) to unclog pores and help clear blackheads and spots.


Common Concerns

Safflower oil is considered to be extremely safe, and a non-irritant when applied topically. Some individuals with an allergy to, or a sensitivity to, the Asteraceae/Compositae plant (ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, etc.) may have an allergic reaction.  


Quick Facts

Binomial Name: Carthamus Tinctorius
Common Name: Safflower Seed Oil
Source: Seed of the Safflower plant
EWG Score: 1


Proven and Possible Benefits


Acne Hair care Dry skin


Improve circulation



Information contained in this website is intended for educational purposes only and is in no way intended for diagnosis. The Food and Drug Administration or Health Canada have not evaluated this information. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. For health problems, please refer to a qualified health practitioner.


  • Close up of orange safflower. Flower used traditionally for dying and oil production
  • Dried safflower
  • Safflower in the bowl on herbs background