It is as rare as it is precious; argan oil is a natural resource that has always been used, notably by Berber women for its cosmetic benefits.


Argan oil is very rich in essential fatty acids and the antioxidant vitamin E, both of which give it remarkable cosmetic properties: it soothes, calms, hydrates, protects and nourishes the skin while also preserving its elasticity. An increase in cellular exchange helps to restore the hydrolipid film; in turn this prevents dryness and cutaneous aging.


Argan oil: the age-old beauty secret of Berber women in Morocco.


The stocky "Argania Spinosa" tree, with its short yet strong winding trunk and with very dense thorny branches, can grow to between 8 and 10 metres tall and can live for up to 200 years.


This tree grows exclusively in south-western Morocco where it covers 800 000 hectares between Essaouira and Agadir.


The ecosystem of this region (arid or semi-arid land and significant amounts of sunlight) is perfectly adapted for the endemic development of this species.


The trees in the argan forest or "arganeraie" are very scattered and there are only 50 to 150 trees per hectare but it plays a fundamental role; it is the last defence against the advance of the desert.


The argan tree is a providential and precious tree that has existed for millennia and is considered to be a tree of life.

The Tree
of Life

The socio economic role of the argan tree in this region of Morocco is undeniable. It limits the rural exodus by forming the basis upon which thousands of people lead their lives.

The technique by which argan oil is extracted goes back through the generations and revolves around the many stages that Berber women in Morocco carry out by hand.


This has enabled the emancipation of women and has given them a place in society by means of their work within the argan oil cooperatives.


Argan oil from the Ritessens range is sourced from GIE VITARGAN, an economic interest group created to help the members of the cooperatives sell the products they make from argan oil and its by-products.


GIE VITARGAN was founded in 2005 in cooperation with the EU and has the following objectives:
• lthe creation of a social status for Berber women through active participation in the region's socio-economic development
• lawareness-raising amongst the local population on the necessity of the preservation and sustainable management of the Arganeraie
• the promotion of products made by members of the cooperatives

Ritessens' bio creme