What is Castor Oil
Castor oil is a plant-based oil extract commonly used as a natural beauty product. It is a colorless to very pale yellow liquid with a distinct nutty odor and taste when ingested. It contains high amounts of moisture and essential nutrients good for hair and skin. You can find castor oil and its other forms as ingredients in various personal care products such as soaps and shampoos that nourish skin and hair. There are also castor oil conditioner products to pair with the shampoo for healthier hair!
Where It Comes From
Castor oil is a vegetable oil taken from the seeds of a castor plant. It is scientifically known as Ricinus communis, a plant that belongs to the Spurge family.
Although botanically classified as a shrub, a castor plant can fully develop into the size of a small tree. It could even reach up to 12 meters tall. This plant grows abundantly in open spaces and warm climates. Tropical and subtropical areas such as Eastern Africa and India grow castor plant commercially for castor oil production.
The seeds are the primary source of castor oil. A single castor seed is made up of about 50 percent oil. That’s a lot of castor oil to extract, isn’t it? The castor oil production involves collecting seeds from matured castor fruits or pods. These seeds go through extraction using a mechanical press without the aid of heat. The finished product is called “cold pressed castor oil”.
Some manufacturers take the oil using chemical solvents such as hexane. Since solvent extraction poses impurities in the finished product, most castor oil users prefer cold pressed castor oil for regular use.
Castor Oil Composition
Castor oil possesses a unique blend of moisture, fatty acids, and essential nutrients that you need. It is the only source of ricinoleic acid, which is an omega-9 fatty acid with strong anti-inflammatory and antibacterial property. This is very good for skin. It helps relieve swelling and infection while it fosters healing. This compound also promotes hair growth and cell regeneration.
The oil contains protein, vitamin E, and omega-6 fatty acids. This perfect combination helps restore damaged hair. It makes hair smooth, strong, and shiny as it grows. A high amount of moisture is marked by the oil’s naturally thick texture. This moisture-rich property helps your hair and skin stay hydrated.
Benefits of Castor Oil for Hair, Skin, and Body
Wonder what castor oil can actually do for you? Applying it to your hair, skin, and body has amazing benefits. Some of them might surprise you! Although most known for hair growth and as an antidote for constipation, castor oil has numerous advantages worth discussing. Here are tons of reasons why you should start using it daily for a better and healthier lifestyle.
- Moisturizes Skin – Adequate moisture is the foundation of beautiful skin. Get rid of dull and flaky skin that makes you want to hide away. Castor oil helps relieve dry skin and keeps it hydrated.
- Heals Inflammation – Sunburns, insect bites, and rashes? Applying castor oil helps soothe these inflamed skin conditions. It carries anti-inflammatory property that effectively calms down the redness and associated pain.
- Fights Skin Aging – Castor oil keeps skin nourished and hydrated. It boosts the production of collagen and elastin that keeps skin young looking. It helps fade the most common signs of skin aging such as wrinkles, dark spots, and fine lines.
- Reduces Acne – With the combined action of anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and healing properties, castor oil makes a great acne treatment. It reduces acne without leaving nasty scars behind.
- Removes Impurities – You can get rid of skin impurities that include dead skin cells, dirt, and hardened sebum with castor oil. Use it for oil cleansing. This essentially dissolves the impurities and extracts them out of your pores. It gives your skin a brighter and healthier glow.
- Helps Fade Scars – Constant use of castor oil on scarred skin helps fade the scars away. The oils regenerative property allows new skin cells to develop for a clearer complexion.
- Prevents Stretch Marks – Stretch marks are usually a result of drastic stretching of the skin over a short period such as during pregnancy. Keeping your skin more elastic with castor oil makes you less prone to stretch marks.
- Promotes Hair Growth – Castor oil makes an effective hair growth treatment when applied to hair and scalp. Ricinoleic acid found in castor oil works by promoting blood circulation in the scalp. This thereby encourages the healthier growth of hair.
- Strengthens and Repairs Damaged Hair – Revive weak hair with a regular dose of castor oil for hair care. It contains nourishing compounds such as vitamin E and protein that fortifies the hair while rebuilding every damaged strand.
- Grows Thicker Eyebrows and Longer Eyelashes – Get attention-grabbing eyes with beautiful lashes and eyebrows. As castor oil promotes hair growth, it also helps grow thicker eyebrows and longer eyelashes with daily use. The protein and essential fatty acids in castor oil supports the growth of your eyelashes.
- Conditions Hair – Castor oil naturally conditions hair to make it soft, shiny, and more manageable. Use it as a hair treatment. It leaves a thin layer of coat in every strand that locks moisture in to prevent dryness and split ends.
- Relieves Dry Itchy Scalp – Castor oil effectively calms dry itchy scalp. It also prevents scalp infections that can cause major hair problems like balding and dandruff.
- Acts as a Laxative – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration considers castor oil generally regarded as safe and effective for use as a laxative. With proper dosage, ingesting castor oil relieves constipation.
- Soothes Joint Pains and Arthritis – If you are suffering from joint pains and arthritis, massaging castor oil on affected areas relieves the discomfort. Its anti-inflammatory property helps reduce the swelling and stiffness. As the oil absorbs into your skin, it soothes sore muscles and inflamed skin.
- Grows Strong Nails – Applying castor oil on nails promotes stronger nail plates that protect the nail beds. It also gets rid of fingernail and toenail fungus. This prevents the development of nail infections.
- Disinfect Wounds – Topical application of castor oil on broken skin tissues fosters healing without leaving marks. Its cleansing property works on wounds, cuts, and scratches while protecting the skin from bacterial infection.
Looking for more essential oil products you can use for skin, hair, and body? Learn about the advantages of using essential oil and get a sneak peak of best essential oil brands in the market today!
6 Major Castor Oil Uses
Are you looking for ideas on how to use castor oil? Here are the major castor oil applications you should keep in mind. Try to incorporate them into your daily living to experience the beauty of using castor oil yourself!
Castor oil is a perfect skin care product that suits every skin type. Oily, dry, combination or normal type of skin can definitely delight on the nourishing benefits of castor oil for skin. It promotes a flawless complexion that is free of acne and other blemishes. It prevents dryness by keeping skin moisture always in check. This helps your skin stay hydrated and healthy. It looks glowing and feels soft to touch. Use castor oil as a regular skin treatment for face and body to achieve beautiful skin you always wanted!
Looking for a natural hair care treatment? You will never go wrong with castor oil. It revives damaged hair gently without the further stress that most chemical-based hair products may cause. It contains vitamin E, protein, and fatty acids your hair needs to stay healthy and strong. You can use it for a regular hair mask or add to your hair care products for daily nourishment. Some hair products that contain castor oil will improve hair health drastically too. Castor oil shampoo and conditioner help repair hair damage while promoting healthy hair growth. This pair of hair products will make your hair shiny and smooth with regular use.
Castor oil is definitely the super oil anybody will love. It has uses from head to toe. You can apply it to your broken nails to help them grow back and make them stronger. It carries antibacterial properties that help prevent toenail fungus and infection. The anti-inflammatory property of castor oil works efficiently for relieving strained muscles, joint pains, and other common symptoms of arthritis. This makes it one of the widely used carrier oils for body massage.
Suffering from occasional constipation? Ingestible castor oil products and supplements are natural and safe laxatives as well. With recommended dosage and supervision of a health professional, you can take pure organic castor oil. You can also try readily available castor oil capsules. They are more handy and convenient for relieving stomach upset.
Castor oil’s naturally thick property works well in both high and low temperatures. It is useful as a lubricant in jet, diesel, and racecar engines. Since castor oil tends to form gums in a short time, its lubricating ability works well for regularly maintained engines only such as racing engines. In fact, the lubricant company Castrol took its name from castor oil.
Speaking of lubrication, uses of castor oil extends from the garage to the kitchen! You can apply it kitchen tools such as scissors and hand-cranked meat grinders. You can even lubricate stiff door and cabinet hinges to make them glide smoothly again.
You can use castor oil in your gardens and yards as well. Mix ½-cup castor oil and 2 gallons water. Pour into mole holes to drive them away for good. If you got droopy ferns, perk them up with a solution of 1 tablespoon baby shampoo and 1 tablespoon castor oil in 4 cups of lukewarm water.
Essential oils, in general, are truly useful in many applications. Find out how different types of essential oils are used for aromatherapy, beard, hair, skin, and healing.
Safety When Using Castor Oil
The best way to enjoy the many benefits and uses of castor oil is to keep safety in mind. Here are important pointers you should know before using castor oil.
Potential Side Effects
Using castor oil as a laxative is considered generally safe and effective. When not taken properly, it may irritate the intestinal lining. This causes digestive discomfort and diarrhea for some people. There can be some cases of nausea as well. Here’s a list of other related side effects:
- Stomach Pain
- Bleeding from rectum
- Irregular heartbeat
- Decreased urination
When using castor oil for hair and skin, watch out for any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:
- Burning sensation
- Difficulty in breathing
Remember that any medication or substance may react differently on each person. Precautionary measures are always mandatory to ensure not only the effectiveness of the product but your safety as well. Consider these helpful reminders:
- Perform a patch test – A simple patch test could save you a lot of trouble. Avoid skin irritation by testing your skin sensitivity to castor oil. Apply a drop or two on your wrist or the back of your neck and monitor for 24 hours. If allergic reactions occur, discontinue use immediately.
- Avoid contact with eyes – It’s a basic rule for using any product not meant for your eyes. This avoids irritating your eyes, which are made up of sensitive nerves and tissues.
- Check the label – Especially when using castor oil for constipation, always make sure it is suitable for ingestion. Verify with the label or the brand’s website.
- Seek medical advice – You are always encouraged to consult a healthcare professional for medical advice. Talk about your allergies and medical history. Tell all the other products or medications you are using or taking. Your doctor will know any possible negative reactions.
- Do not use when pregnant – Castor oil can induce labor in pregnant women. If the pregnant woman is not ready for labor, taking castor oil can lead to uterine bleeding and miscarriage.
Where to Buy Castor Oil
Grab your own bottle of castor oil today and begin your journey to a healthier lifestyle. It is available in many health stores and organic boutiques. Some pharmacies also offer castor oil. Just make sure they are credible for selling good-quality products.
If you want to save up on time and energy, go online to make a purchase. Amazon is one of the top online shops worldwide. You get authentic goods right at your fingertips. If you are looking for the most trusted source, the best way is to visit the brand’s website. You simply browse through their catalog, pick your product, and order.
Where you buy castor oil matters as much as the quality of the product itself. Again, these are the best places to buy castor oil:
- Health store and organic boutiques
- Online shops (such as Amazon)
- Brand’s official website
Use castor oil regularly as soon as you get your own bottle of it. You don’t have to worry about the negative effects most commercial products have. Choose pure organic castor oil. It is natural and safe to use for various applications. Look for cold pressed castor oil. It contains the highest amounts of nutrients compared to other types. It is also chemical-free and all-natural.
See? Living a healthy lifestyle does not have to be complicated. All it takes is looking for the right product to use. With castor oil, you definitely have found a perfect personal care partner. Enjoy its amazing benefits for beauty, health, and home!
Looking for a castor oil product? To help you find the best one, check out our list of the top brands of essential oils.