Castor oil is often overlooked as a health and beauty treatment and is often only thought of as a remedy for constipation, but it has a long history of being used for many other healing and beauty enhancing treatments too. The oil is derived from the seeds of the Castor plant (Ricinus communis) or it also has another common name – the seeds of the Palma Christi plant, also known as the palm of Christ and documentation of its use for medical purposes can be found as far back, as 1550 B. C., when the ancient Egyptians used it to treat eye irritation.
1. Castor oil for hair growth
How to make your hair grow faster? Use castor oil! Massage slightly warmed up castor oil into your hair and scalp and it will improve the blood circulation to your follicles, promoting faster hair growth. The oil also contains omega-6 fatty acids, so it will nourish your hair as well. For a really deep effect, after massaging the oil into your roots and spreading all over your hair (up to the ends), make a bun and cover your hair with a cap, leave the oil on overnight and wash out the next day (you might need to wash your hair a couple of times to get rid of the greasy feel). If you find that the consistency of castor oil is too thick and it’s hard to work with it, then mix castor oil with coconut oil or sweet almond oil in proportion 1:1 and use as described above. Your hair will be shiny and silky and will grow faster.
2. Treats dandruff and other scalp conditions
Amongst its many properties, castor oil also has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. Massaged into the scalp it will help to clear up dandruff and other scalp conditions quickly and if you use it regularly, it will stop the conditions from taking hold in the first place.
If you have dry hair and dandruff, try doing this hair mask: mix 1 tablespoon of castor oil with one tablespoon of olive oil and add juice of half a lemon. If you have oily hair and dandruff, then mix one tablespoon of each of these ingredients: castor oil, honey and aloe vera gel, then add juice of half a lemon. Apply the mask on the roots of your hair for about 30 minutes before shampooing and conditioning your hair. This mask will not only help you get rid of dandruff, but will also nourish and condition your hair, making it healthier and shinier.
3. Thickens hair
Castor oil contains omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids, both of which are useful for encouraging healthy hair growth. With regular use, castor oil will encourage new growth and thicken existing strands to give you a beautiful and shiny head of thicker hair.
4. Conditions hair
You don’t need expensive, manufactured conditioners to condition your hair, simply mix a couple of drops of castor oil with your leave-in conditioner and apply evenly to your hair; your locks will become softer and healthier.
5. It brings the shine back into your hair
Warm up some castor oil and massage it into your hair, wrap your hair in a towel and leave for half an hour or so (or leave it overnight), then wash off; it will lock the moisture in your hair, condition it and leave you with the beautiful glossy look to your locks.
6. How to get rid of split ends? Use castor oil
Apply castor oil on the ends of your hair for half an hour before shampooing. If you do it regularly, you’ll soon forget about dry, split ends and your hair will look healthier and shinier.
7. Natural homemade hair masks with castor oil
If you want to improve the overall appearance of your hair and make your locks shine with health and glossiness, try doing this hair mask: slightly warm up one cup of kefir on a water-bath and add a couple of tablespoons of castor oil; mix well these two ingredients and apply to your hair (to the roots and to the ends), put on a shower cap and then towel; leave the mask to work its magic for half an hour, then rinse off, shampoo and condition. Your hair will become shiner, healthier and softer, especially if you use it regularly.
8. Longer eyelashes
If you desire to have longer eyelashes, but you don’t want to go for eyelashes extensions, then try applying castor oil on your lashes every night before going to bed. In a couple of weeks time you should see the great result: naturally longer and thicker eyelashes that you’ve always dreamed of.
9. Thickens eyebrows
Rub some castor oil into your eyebrows each night before you go to bed and it will nourish and thicken your eyebrows. It also stimulates the growth of hair, so it’s great if you’ve over plucked your eyebrows. After a couple of weeks of regular castor oil massages your eyebrows will become thicker, so that you can shape it to your preference.
Benefits of castor oil for skin:
10. Great skin moisturizer, it delays the signs of aging
Castor oil penetrates deep into the skin, softens and hydrates it. The oil also helps to promote the production of elastin and collagen, which help to delay the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and give the skin a more youthful appearance.
For dry skin mix 1/4 of castor oil and 3/4 sesame oil.
For normal skin mix 1/4 of castor oil and 3/4 grape seed oil (or olive oil).
For oily skin mix 1/4 of castor oil and 3/4 jojoba oil.
Gently massage your face in the evening with the oil mix, then put slightly warm damp washcloth on your face for about a minute and take away the excess oil with a cotton pad. Your skin will be soft, nourished and hydrated.
Castor oil also can be used to moisturize the gentle under eye area. Mix castor oil with sweet almond oil in proportion 1:1 and use it as your under eye cream.
11. Dry skin remedy
Castor oil is also good at treating such problems as skin dryness. Just mix castor oil with a little coconut oil (in proportion 1:1) and apply to the affected area of your skin, leave it on for 20-30 minutes, then rinse off and pat dry. After a couple of times of doing this your skin will become softer and dryness will disappear.
Here is a face mask with castor oil that will help you get rid of skin dryness and will make your skin soft and smooth:
Mix one teaspoon of castor oil with one egg yolk, apply it to your face for 10-15 minutes, then rinse off with lukewarm water and pat dry. Your skin will love it!
12. Sunburn remedy
Thanks to it’s soothing and anti-inflammatory properties, castor oil is a good remedy for sunburns. Just apply castor oil mixed with coconut oil (in proportion 1:1) to the affected area and you will soon feel the relief.
13. Use castor oil as a lip balm
Use castor oil as a lip balm to moisturize, nourish and care for your lips, and forget about dry and chapped lips forever.
14. Castor oil helps to treat mild acne
The ricinoleic acid found in castor oil makes it a superb natural treatment for mild acne. Wash your face first in warm water to open up the pores and then, massage some of the oil into your face and leave it on overnight. Rinse off the next morning and your acne will soon be cleared up. (Recommendation: if you have acne problems, promptly consult your doctor.)
15. Reduces the appearance of scars
Over time, the regular application of castor oil can reduce the appearance of scars. The fatty acids in the oil penetrate quickly into the scar tissue and promote the growth of healthy tissue around it, thus reducing the size of the scar itself.
16. Heals cracked heels
Castor oil is very easily absorbed by the skin and is a great treatment for dry and cracked heels. Massage plenty of the oil into your heels before you go to bed and cover with a pair of socks to avoid the mess on the sheets, and you will find that it quickly restores the moisture to your skin and adds softness.
17. Castor oil helps prevent stretch marks
Massage the oil into your skin, twice a day, when you are pregnant and it will help prevent the stretch marks from forming. You can also use it after birth to help the marks heal.
Benefits of castor oil for hands:
18. Create your own hand cream using castor oil
Mix castor oil with sesame oil in proportion 1:1 and use it as your night time hand cream. Your hands will be soft, moisturized and nourished.
19. Natural treatment for brittle nails
Castor oil is great at treating brittle and cracked nails. Just massage your nails with the oil every evening, before going to bed, and already after a week of doing it, you’ll see your nails transform from brittle to healthy.
20. Healthy cuticles
Moisturize your nail cuticles every evening by massaging it with castor oil, while watching TV or reading, and soon you’ll forget about dry or bitten cuticles.
Other benefits of castor oil:
21. Eases the pain of arthritis
Castor oil is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties and can be used as an effective treatment for arthritis. Massage painful joints with the oil and then, apply a warm compress for immediate relief.
22. Clears constipation
It would be impossible to talk about castor oil without mentioning constipation! The oil has a powerful laxative effect and one teaspoon in the morning will soon have your bowels moving again. (Don’t use it if you are pregnant though).
23. Treats ringworm
Castor oil contains a compound called undecylenic acid, which is a very effective treatment for the fungal skin infection, ringworm. For best results, apply and leave on overnight.
24. Cures allergies
Taken orally, castor oil can reduce the symptoms of allergies. The oil is naturally anti-allergic and just a few drops a day can greatly reduce the symptoms of hay fever and other allergies. Consult your doctor before using castor oil orally.
25. Inducing labour
Not that we would recommend it as a home remedy, but castor oil can be used to induce labour in women that have gone the full term. The oil contains ricinoleic acid, which can promote the start of contractions.
26. Removes corns
Take some cotton wool, dip it in castor oil and secure it in place over a corn with some first aid tape; the fatty acids in the oil will soften the corn and, over a period of about a week, remove the corn and moisturize the skin.
27. Provides a cure for warts and moles
There are many tales of castor oil being used effectively for the removal of warts and moles. Mix some oil with a little baking soda and rub well into the affected area, repeat regularly and both warts and moles have been reported to have disappeared without any scarring.
28. It boosts your immunity
Castor oil can help you fight infection. The oil can energize the immune system by increasing the number of white blood cells in your system. In studies, when castor oil was applied to the outside of the body, the white blood cell count was increased within 24 hours of application.
– Test the oil on your wrist before using it, to make sure that you are not allergic.
– Although castor oil is highly effective, it’s not recommended to use it too often on your face, as it can clog pores and lead to breakouts.
– Pregnant women should avoid using castor oil orally.
– If you want to try and use castor oil, make sure to consult your doctor before doing any self treatments.