Rose hip seed oil is a pressed seed oil, extracted from the seeds of a wild rose bush (Rosa moschata or Rosa rubiginosa) in the southern Andes. Rosehip seed oil can also be extracted from Rosa canina, which grows in many regions of the world including South Africa and Europe.
The oil contains provitamin A (mostly beta-Carotene). It has been wrongly said to contain retinol (vitamin A) which is a vitamin solely made by animals from provitamin A. It does however contain levels (up to .357 ml/L) of tretinoin or all-trans retinoic acid, a vitamin A acid that retinol converts to.
Similarly, while the fruit is rich in vitamin C, the oil does not contain any, as it is a water-soluble vitamin.
Rose hip seed oil is high in the essential fatty acids: linoleic acid or omega-6, and linolenic acid or omega-3.
It is commonly used in skin care products. It is commonly used for a variety of skin conditions, including dermatitis, and eczema, for mature and sun burnt skin as well as brittle nails and wrinkles. Rose hip oil is also frequently used to heal scarring and diminish photo-aging.
It quickly absorbs into the skin, replenishing moisture and creating a protective barrier on the skin to help prevent dehydration.