Castor oil is often overlooked for its benefits for the skin and hair because of its extremely thick and sticky consistency. However, if you’re looking for a cheap, natural remedy for several common skin and hair complaints, then castor oil is definitely worth your time.
I first stumbled on castor oil as a remedy for regrowing thin eyebrows. I had over-plucked my brows back in the nineties when it was the hip thing to have pencil thin brows, and they never did quite recover. It became necessary for me to pencil in the “bald” spots and I missed the natural look of real hair where these spots were missing.
I read about castor oil as a remedy for thinning brows and hair, and thought I’d try it. I bought a hexane free, organic and cold pressed castor oil and started applying it to my eyebrows every night after washing my face. After about three months, I noticed my brows were noticeably thicker (and they seemed to be growing in darker as well), and attributed it to the nightly application of castor oil.
I’m not the only one that this has worked for. So, why would castor oil help you regrow hair – both on your head and the other two important places, the eyebrows and the eyelashes.
Castor oil is high in ricinoleic acid. This acid is a very effective natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal agent. This can help keep any fungus or bacteria from inhibiting hair growth. Since the oil is also very thick, it may help to prevent hair loss simply by helping to coat the hair and protect it from falling out.
Castor oil is also high in omega 9 fatty acids, which are nourishing to both the hair and the follicle, as well as the surrounding skin. Castor oil has a unique ability to be deeply penetrating, and this helps it to deliver its nourishment deeply into the pores and the follicles that produce hair.
It also has a high gloss, so it lends a lush glossiness and shine to the hair. A little goes a long way, and it is best to only add a tiny bit to the very ends of your hair instead of putting it up near the scalp if you’re just looking for a natural hair smoother.
Simply put about two drops on your hands and rub, then smooth through the ends. If you use too much, there is a fine line between subtle shine and a heavy greasiness so go very light until you figure out the amount that works right for your hair type.
If you’re looking to regrow the hair on your head, you can use castor oil as a scalp treatment. However it can be tricky to get on the scalp without thinning it out with a lighter oil. You can add some melted coconut oil, apricot kernel oil or another lighter oil to help get it spreadable enough.
If you’re simply looking to help thicken hair that is thinning at the edges of your hairline, you can use pure castor oil, with a light hand of course. Another use is to apply the oil to eyelashes to help thicken and strengthen them, as well as to help prevent thinning and shedding.
Many attest to the wonders castor oil offers for keloid types of scars and other scars that involve a lot of hardened scar tissue. This is presumably due to its ability for deep penetration through multiple skin layers.
Because castor oil softens the skin so much, the thought is that this softening helps to break down deep scar tissue so it may be smoothed out. In addition, castor oil has shown promise as a white blood cell stimulating agent. Studies have also shown that castor bean oil helps reduce the inflammatory response in subcutaneous tissue. This may be why it seems to speed wound healing, and may also contribute to its ability to reduce scarring more quickly.
Castor oil is also excellent for the lips. Our lips needs constant protection against the elements. Although our lips regenerate and recover quickly, they also dry out and begin to peel when they are dehydrated.
Castor oil not only smooths the lips with fatty acids, but it also helps protect them due to its naturally thick and immovable nature. In other words, it doesn’t budge without being wiped off. It also imparts a natural shine to the lips, which makes it ideal for both improving the appearance and health of the lips.
Danna Norek is the founder of AuraSensory.com, which offers a line of natural body, skin and hair care products. The Herb Mint Citrus lip balm uses castor oil as one of the primary ingredients to add shine, moisture and protection to the lips (all naturally flavored). Line also includes a Natural Shine Enhancing Shampoo (sulfate free), Deep Hydration Conditioner, natural deodorant and a popular MSM and Vitamin C Face Cream.