Jojoba - Simmondsia chinensis


Synonyms: none

Scientific Name: Simmondsia chinensis

Family: Simmondsiaceae


Desert regions of Mexico, California and Arizona.


Nuts: 50 to 60 % liquid wax (wax that is liquid at room temperature), provitamin A and vitamin E.


Jojoba is a real marvel in dealing with extremes. The evergreen shrub which can reach a height of up to 10 feet/3 meters grows in desert regions with night time temperatures between 32 and 44°F /0 and 5°C and daytime temperatures of up to 113°F/45°C. It can only survive these conditions with the help of its tap roots which grow to a depth of up to 13 feet/4 meters and draw water from the deepest layers of the earth and through its leaves which are specially adapted to cope with the dryness. The woody shrub has long narrow leaves with a leathery surface and hairy covering which help prevent water loss. The plant is dioecious. That means there are male plants that produce pollen and female plants that produce inconspicuous flowers which develop into the brown, acorn-shaped jojoba nuts after wind-pollination. In spite of their extreme habitat jojoba bushes can become as old as 200 years.

Interesting Facts

The name jojoba was derived by the Spaniards from the word jojowi in the language of the Papago of North America. The scientific name Simmondsia was chosen in honour of the natural scientist F.W. Simmonds. Its scientific name used to be Buxus chinensis. The designation chinensis is the relic of a mistake: originally it was thought that the jojoba bush came from China. This name is still found today in the lists of ingredients on skin care products, the so-called INCIs.

The jojoba oil obtained from the nuts was used in many ways by different indigene people of North America. The Apache used the oil to treat pain while Papago used it for stomach disorders. Jojoba oil played an important role in skin and hair care. The edible Jojoba nuts were used raw or roasted as ingredients for various dishes or ground to make beverages. Jojoba did not reach Europe until the 18th century.

Through its special wax-like structure jojoba oil cannot oxidize and therefore has considerably less tendency to become rancid than other oils. It can withstand temperatures of up to 572°F/300°C.

The jojoba bush provides important protection against soil erosion in the extremely dry regions where it grows.

The plant in our products

With so many good skin caring properties it is hardly surprising that jojoba oil is used as the base of most Dr. Hauschka skin care products. It is contained in:

Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil (formerly called Jojoba Wax) is obtained by combining jojoba oil with hydrogen gas to further saturate the fatty acid chains. It has the same skin-nurturing properties as liquid jojoba oil and also lends skin care products a good consistency. Dr Hauschka products containing Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil: