Linolenic Acid Best Emollient Hydration Linolenic Acid at a glance Omega-3 fatty acid found in flaxseed, canola, and soy oils + walnuts Is one of two essential fatty acids for humans Functions as a skin conditioning and restorative ingredient Has soothing properties Linolenic Acid description Linolenic acid is a naturally occurring, colorless polyunsaturated fatty acid. Also known as alpha-linolenic acid, it is an omega-3 fatty acid that occurs in flaxseed, canola, soy, and certain fish oils. Walnuts are a top dietary source of linolenic acid. It is considered one of two essential fatty acids for humans, meaning they must be ingested because the body cannot produce them naturally. The other is linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid. Deficiencies of linolenic acid in the body are believed to play a role in disorders such as eczema; supplementation with this omega-3 fatty acid has been shown to visibly improve this condition. In cosmetics, linolenic acid functions as a skin conditioning agent and skin restorative ingredient. Research demonstrates it has anti-inflammatory properties as well, and there are some studies showing it has potential as a spot fading ingredient. The independent Cosmetic Ingredient Review panel has ruled linolenic acid safe as used in cosmetics.