What is and uses of paraffin oil – discover them all

Paraffin is a hydrocarbon derived from petroleum that stands out for not having any kind of smell or taste. This compound can be found, either in gel or in blocs, however, its best known form is oil, which is obtained by subjecting this ingredient to high temperatures. Paraffin oil is a format that is used in various sectors, such as cosmetics and food, due to the various benefits that this liquid offers us.

If you want to know what the different uses of paraffin oil are, keep reading this article, in addition, we will explain the benefits of this oil and its possible side effects on our health.

What is paraffin oil

The paraffin oil , also known as kerosene or liquid paraffin , it is a hydrocarbon derived from oil which is used in various sectors including medicine and cosmetics, which is used as an ingredient for having the following characteristics :

  • In its liquid state, it is an extraordinarily hydrating compound.
  • It is odorless, so you can add the perfume or aroma that you like the most.
  • Although the color of paraffin in its solid state may appear white to the naked eye, it is actually completely transparent.
  • It has an oily texture and is an ingredient that does not contain any flavor.

Kerosene was first distilled in Canada by geologist Abraham Generous in 1807, and a century later a Polish chemist named Ignacio Lukasiewicz discovered a simpler method for refining this oil. Currently, we can buy it directly in a liquid state or buy it in blocks or gel beads and heat it ourselves, either with specific heaters or in a water bath.

Paraffin oil for cosmetic use

The paraffin oil is widely used in the field of aesthetics and cosmetics, as it has a very powerful moisturizing action. In general, this compound is mainly used for manicures and pedicures for the following benefits:

  • Its excellent hydration property is ideal for smoothing the toughest skin surfaces, as it removes dead cells.
  • It also has repairing properties, making it ideal for very dry hands and severely damaged nail cuticles.
  • Lastly, this restorative action also relieves pain from chapped hands caused by very low temperatures.

Although its main use is for hands and feet, this compound, due to the properties that we have explained, is also ideal for dehydration treatments for the face, since it has the ability to restore smoothness and firmness to all of our skin.

Medicinal uses of paraffin oil

Kerosene is also used medicinally as an ingredient for some topical drugs such as creams, ointments, and balms to primarily alleviate muscle aches. Below, we explain the different medicinal uses of paraffin oil:

  • It is used as a therapeutic treatment for different injuries such as sprains, contractures and muscle aches for its relaxing properties.
  • Thanks to the heat that emanates in its liquid state, it also has a great vasodilator action that promotes blood circulation.
  • It is an excellent laxative, so it is also a good medicinal supplement to combat cases of constipation, hemorrhoids, irritable colon and other intestinal problems.

Nutritional and dietary benefits of kerosene

This liquid compound can also be used as a food seasoning as long as it is used in very small quantities. These are the different uses that paraffin has in the food and dietary sector:

  • Paraffin is used as a food preservative so that the quality of food is maintained for a longer time.
  • Due to its oily properties and, also, because it does not give off any flavor, it is also used to give a more attractive and shiny appearance to other foods.
  • Due to its laxative properties and its caloric properties, that is, it is practically not absorbed by our body, it is consumed as a food supplement in high-impact diets, such as the well-known Dukan diet. In these cases, it is replaced by the rest of the vegetable oils used to lose weight.

In the case of using this substance for weight loss diets, it is important to know that many professionals advise against using paraffin oil as a food seasoning, as it may have the following side effects: abdominal pain, allergic reactions, dehydration due to diarrhea, anal itching and vitamin deficiency.

Other uses of paraffin oil

In addition to all the ways of using this product that we have already discussed, there are more uses of paraffin oil:

  • Liquid paraffin was traditionally used as fuel for portable lamps and lanterns.
  • Its extreme power also makes it used to power jet aircraft engines and space rockets.
  • In solid or gel state it becomes an ingredient for making artisan candles.
  • It also has a use in agriculture, specifically as a component of pesticides for different insects that damage the roots and seeds of crops.

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