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The castor oil plant, leaves, flowers and seeds alongside a bottle of yellow liquid; castor oil

Benefits and uses of castor oil

There are few things out there as dynamic as castor oil. Wondering what makes this humble plant-based oil so useful? Read on to discover castor oil’s benefits and why it deserves a place in your bathroom cupboard.

First of all, what is castor oil?

Castor oil is essentially a vegetable oil derived from a plant native to Africa and Asia. It contains high amounts of fatty acids – including omega-6 and ricinoleic acid – and has been used as a natural remedy for specific skin issues for centuries.

In its purest form, castor oil is a colourless to pale yellow liquid with a distinct taste and odour. It’s typically used in the likes of soaps and perfumes.

Benefits of castor oil

Get shiny, healthy hair

Castor oil contains ricinoleic acid and omega-6 fatty acids, which – when massaged onto the scalp – can help increase blood circulation and improve hair growth. It also moisturises and conditions your hair naturally, leaving it shiny and healthy.

Helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles

Speaking of moisturising, the essential fatty acids of castor oil can help restore the skin’s natural moisture balance. It penetrates skin and boosts the production of collagen, which helps soften and hydrate the skin.

It has antifungal properties

Some studies show castor oil’s high-fat content makes it great at protecting the skin from spot-causing bacteria. Castor oil is, therefore, a great option if you’re a fan of oil pulling, plus it may help alleviate the appearance of problem skin if used as a cleanser.

It’s moisturising

Last but not least, castor oil is incredibly moisturising, which makes it a great natural alternative for soothing your skin, softening your nails or even nourishing your eyelashes! It can also be used in place of conditioner, especially if you have a dry scalp or have brittle hair.

Castor oil and hair

One of the most popular ways to use castor oil day today is as an intensive conditioning treatment for your hair. Its moisturising properties allow it to reduce the appearance of split ends, while its soothing properties make it effective against dandruff and irritated scalps.

How to use castor oil

  1. Mix it with equal parts olive, almond or coconut oil to create a moisturiser
  2. Dab some on your face or apply it with a warm flannel to reduce the appearance of problem skin
  3. Try oil pulling with castor oil
  4. Massage it directly into your scalp to soothe irritated skin and reduce dry skin
  5. Put a small amount of castor oil on your brows or lashes to promote hair growth
  6. Comb some through split ends
Before applying a castor oil such as our cold-pressed Pukka Castor Oil or Miaflora Castor Oil, we recommend that you test it on a small patch of skin first to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction

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Last updated: 19 March 2020


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