We have known about the castor oil health benefits and beauty benefits for a really long time. Even the ancient Egyptians used it around 4000 BC. The Greek traveler, Herodotus, has mentioned its use as an ointment. Cleopatra used to apply the oil to brighten the white area of her eyes. She also used it for her hair. Back then, the plant was called “Palma Christe” as the leaves look like the “hands of Christ”.
In the modern age, Britney Spears and Angelina Jolie are known to believe in the castor oil benefits for its medicinal, restorative, laxative and cathartic values. Traditional healers have used the oil for centuries. Modern science is just beginning to understand the many health and beauty benefits of castor oil.
Obtained from the castor seed, Ricinus communis, this vegetable oil is extracted from the seed in its purest form. The chemical composition is unusual. It is made of fatty acids, and 90 percent of this is ricinoleic acid. The plant that gives us this oil is now found mostly in Africa and India.
Castor Oil Beauty Benefits
1. Castor Oil Moisturizes Skin Deeply
Castor oil moisturizes dry skin very well. It is highly viscous and can thus penetrate the skin easily to reach the tissues. Its fatty acids will give you healthy and glowing skin, while removing the dryness. The dry and flaky patches will go away when you use castor oil for skin. Besides, the oil will also treat skin conditions such as dermatitis.
- Castor oil – 1 teaspoon
- Coconut oil – 1 teaspoon (optional)
- Mix equal parts of coconut oil and castor oil and apply on the dry parts of your skin.
- Alternatively, you can apply just the castor oil. It is thick and can be tricky at first. Coconut oil will lighten the texture and make it easy for you to apply. Take the oil in your palms and rub it well on your skin. Make the layer even.
- Wait for 30 minutes. Take a shower after this.
- Apply the oil every day for two weeks.
- You may even apply the oil and leave it overnight. You will be refreshed and hydrated in the morning.
2. Castor Oil Heals Inflamed Skin
Castor oil heals skin inflammations caused by acne and sunburns beautifully. The ricinoleic acid in this oil gives it anti-inflammatory properties. These healing properties of the oil will give you a miracle cure without any side effects.
- Castor oil – 1 teaspoon
- Cotton ball – 1
- Dip your cotton ball into the oil.
- Apply it directly on the affected skin.
- Leave it for 30 minutes.
- Wash off with water.
3. Castor Oil Fights the Signs of Aging
Castor oil benefits for skin also include reversing the signs of aging. Of course, no one can reverse aging itself. But its signs and symptoms on the skin can be checked and even reversed if you apply the oil topically.
The oil will penetrate deep into your skin and stimulate the production of elastin and collagen, which will hydrate and soften your skin and make it look youthful, smoother and softer. The oil will reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and crow’s-feet.
Don’t worry. Castor oil won’t ever clog the pores of your skin and cause pimples. In fact, it can actually help you get rid of acne.
- Take a few drops of castor oil.
- Massage it gently in a circular motion on your skin just before going to bed.
- Massage every night for four to six months.
- Wash off in the morning.
4. Castor Oil Removes Stretch Marks
Castor oil benefits the skin externally and internally. It can remove the ugly stretch marks from the thighs and stomach region. Almost every woman who has been pregnant has stretch marks and knows how bad they can look. These stretch marks are caused when skin on the abdomen experiences severe stretching in a short period of time. You will have fewer marks if your skin is elastic, but the marks will still be there. Use castor oil to get rid of stretch marks.
- Take a few drops of castor oil and rub it over your skin.
- Wrap the affected skin portion with a plastic or clean cloth to help the oil soak in.
- Keep it wrapped for an hour and then wash off.
- Do this in the last couple of months of your pregnancy.
The stretch marks will go away quickly if you do this regularly.
5. Castor Oil Fades Scars
Castor oil can help you get rid of a scar caused by an old injury, even if it has refused to go away after all these years. Its fatty acids will penetrate deep into your skin through the epidermal layers and heal those scar tissues. The oil will also promote the growth of new skin tissues. The omega-3 fatty acids in castor oil will stimulate the growth of healthy tissues and give you supple and blemish-free skin. Slowly and surely, the scars will go away, never to come back again. The new skin will look young and supple.
Castor oil is so effective that often, dermatologists will recommend it for treating spots, uneven skin tones, and marks.
- Take a few drops of castor oil.
- Massage it gently on your skin having scars.
- Do this daily, 3-4 times or at least every night for four to six months.
- Wash off in the morning.
6. Castor Oil Reduces Acne
People with acne tend to avoid applying any oil on their skin and for good reasons too. Oil usually clogs the pores to make it worse. They avoid applying creams for the same reason. Castor oil is an exception. This oil will actually help you beat the acne breakout and remove acne scars. The ricinoleic acid in castor oil can fight off the bacteria which cause acne very well.
- Castor oil – 2 to 3 drops
- First, wash your face well with warm water. Your pores will open.
- Apply the oil on your face. Massage in a circular motion.
- Keep it overnight. Wash off with cold water in the morning.
7. Castor Oil gives you Healthy Lips
Ingesting castor oil is not a good idea because its ricinoleic acid can irritate the lining in your small intestine. However, you can still apply it carefully on your lips without licking it. The oil does wonders with cracked and dry lips, thanks to its super quality fatty acids. In fact, the oil is used to make many over the counter lip remedies.
- Just take a small portion of the oil on your finger tip and rub it on your lips.
The cracks will go away. The oil will also prevent further chapping.
8. Castor Oil for Beautiful Nails
You can have long, beautiful and healthy nails, thanks to castor oil. All the of vitamins and minerals in castor oil contributes to nail growth effectively. It also hardens the nail plate and thus protects your nail bed. The oil keeps your nail moisturized, smooth and shiny. Moreover, you never get bacterial and fungal infections in nails when you apply castor oil to these regularly.
All you have to do is just massage the oil on your fingernails and cuticles daily for a couple of months. Take just a small portion of the oil. You may even apply the oil on your toenails.
9. Castor Oil Removes Warts and Skin Tags
Skin tags and warts look ugly. But sadly, they often tend to come up in the most visible portions of the skin. Don’t worry as castor oil can remove these growths efficiently. In fact, the compounds in this oil are capable of dissolving and eliminating any unusual skin growths and not only skin tags.
- Take a little bit of castor oil on your finger and apply it directly on the skin tag or warts.
- Do this daily, if possible, multiple times in a day.
- The skin tags will start to disappear after a few months.
But remember, this remedy won’t work for moles, which can sometimes look similar.
10. Castor Oil Cures Sunburn, Skin Rash and Itches
The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of castor oil will help you treat all those bug bites, itches and rashes. Plus, it also helps soothe sunburned skin.
- Castor oil – 1 teaspoon
- Band aid – 1, or cotton
- If the area affected is small, then soak the band-aid in the oil.
- Now apply this on the affected part.
- For larger areas, dip the cotton in your castor oil and apply directly.
- Keep it for an hour. If the itching or sunburn is severe, then you should leave it overnight.
- Wash off with cold water.
Apply the oil for 2-3 days and the itching and sunburn will go away.
11. Castor Oil Promotes Hair Growth
Castor oil benefits for hair are also well known. Massaging the oil on any part of the body won’t lead to excess hair growth. But the results will be very good if you apply the oil on your scalp. Do keep in mind that you have to warm the oil before applying. The warm castor oil will improve circulation which leads to hair growth. All its nutrients too help control damage to your hair.
- Heat the castor oil till the time it gets tolerably hot to your touch. Take just a drop to test though.
- Let it cool down for a while.
- Dip your fingertips into the warm oil and apply on your scalp.
- Massage gently.
- Leave it overnight or for several hours.
- Use a towel or shower cap to avoid getting the castor oil on a pillow.
You should also apply the oil on areas of hair loss because of alopecia. Hair will grow back quickly if you apply this oil regularly. Anti-inflammatory properties of castor oil will help you fight this autoimmune disorder. Once or twice every week should be enough. You should begin to see the results in about a month.
The treatment works best on damp hair. Make sure that your hair is not completely wet when you are applying the oil.
12. Castor Oil Thickens Eyelashes and Eyebrows
Thanks to the castor oil benefits for hair, you may soon have thicker eyelashes and eyebrows. This nourishing and follicle-stimulating oil will thicken the hairs of your lashes and brows. It contains fatty acids, vitamins and proteins that will nourish your hair follicles and promote the growth of hair in your eyebrows. The oil will also let you fight the micro-organisms that hamper growth of hair.
- Castor oil – 1 teaspoon
- Cotton ear bud – 1
- Dip the tip of the cotton ear bud into the oil and apply gently on your eyebrow ridge.
- Rub the oil on your eyebrows every night before going to bed.
- Do this for a month, but the results will be visible only after about two weeks. You will certainly have denser hair in the area. You can then shape the eyebrows like you want to.
- To apply on your eyelashes, first close your eyes.
- Apply on your lashes at bed time.
13. Castor Oil Prevents Premature Graying of Hair
Not only does castor oil helps grow your hair and controls hair fall, it also removes the signs of graying from your hair. Castor oil stops your hair from losing pigments.
Dip a piece of cotton into the oil and rub it gently on the hair. This will delay the hair turning white or gray.
Castor Oil Health Benefits
Apart from all its beauty benefits, Castor oil is also one of the healthiest oil for your body! It heals and cures many of the health disorders.
14. Castor Oil Treats Fungal Infections
The undecylenic acid in castor oil gives it a strong fungicidal property. The acid is a breakdown of ricinoleic fatty acid, present abundantly in the oil. You can use it for treating many common fungal diseases such as athlete’s foot, tinea cruris (itching in the crotch region), and ringworm. A lot of doctors prescribe the azole drug for such fungal infections. But castor oil can be as effective, if not more. Also, it will never cause any side effects, unlike many drugs.
- Heat 1 teaspoon of castor oil.
- Let it cool down for a while. It should be warm to your touch.
- Apply the oil on the affected areas just before going to bed.
- You can leave it overnight.
Apply the oil daily for a week and see the difference. The progress should be remarkable.
15. Castor Oil Soothes Joint Pain
Almost 90 percent of castor oil is made up of ricinoleic acid, which is rich in anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties that create decongestant action on the lymphatic system. There is a wide network of lymph vessels within the body. These vessels collect waste from the tissues and pass it on for elimination.
Accumulation of toxic wastes in the lymph causes autoimmune diseases such as arthritis that will give you pain. The joints may also become inflamed. The congestion will ease up when you apply castor oil to your joints. The lymph will once again move freely.
How it works:
- The oil will work directly on your immune system.
- It will stimulate your thymus gland and increase the white blood cell count, which are called lymphocytes.
- Apply castor oil on your painful areas and gently rub for a couple of minutes and leave it. Just topical application of pure castor oil will give you amazing results.
- You can also mix castor oil with cayenne pepper and apply it locally. The results will be even better. You will get quick relief from the pain of arthritis.
16. Castor Oil leads to Healthy Bowels
Poor bowel movement can become a serious issue. It’s not just about the discomfort. If you cannot pass stool for days, then the accumulation of waste inside your body can cause other medical problems too. Castor oil is a popular stimulant laxative which works by increasing the movement of your intestines and thus helps the stool to come out. Castor oil will keep it soft and help you in proper bowel movement.
- Castor oil – 1 teaspoon
- Cranberry or orange juice – 2 to 3 drops
- Mix two to three drops of cranberry or orange juice into the castor oil.
- Drink the mixture in the morning, every day.
Your bowels will keep working efficiently. If you are having severe problems, drink a teaspoon of castor oil. This will detox your intestines. However, be sure that you don’t take more than a teaspoon. Limit how much you ingest.
17. Castor Oil is a Remedy for Constipation
Studies have revealed that castor oil is an extremely strong laxative. This is why it can be very effective in treating constipation. It is, in fact, one of the most ancient remedies for constipation.
- Castor oil – 2-3 drops
- Prune juice, cranberry juice, ginger juice or orange juice – 2-3 drops (any one)
- Mix equal portions of castor oil with prune juice, cranberry juice, ginger juice or orange juice. Castor oil tastes bitter, so mixing will make it taste better.
- Take it in the morning for three days. You should never take castor oil for more than three days continuously.
18. Castor Oil Treats Insomnia
Are you having sleepless nights? A wonderful home remedy can give you peaceful nights again. The very cooling effect of castor oil makes you sleep tight.
The remedy is simple. All you have to do is just rub a little bit of the oil on your eyelids before going to bed. But make sure that the oil doesn’t get into your eyes.
19. Castor Oil Treats Hemorrhoids
Many men above the age of 55 years suffer from hemorrhoids or piles. In fact, according to statistics, 85 percent of men suffer from hemorrhoids sometime in their lives. Castor oil offers relief from the itching and pain associated with hemorrhoids.
- Take a cotton ball and soak it in the oil.
- Apply the ball on the hemorrhoids.
- Keep it there for 15 to 20 minutes.
You can do this several times in a day till the issue goes away. In fact, for severe cases, you may have to do this several times every day. But remember, this remedy will work only if you have external hemorrhoids. It will not work for internal hemorrhoids.
20. Castor Oil Softens Calluses
Castor oil is a very effective treatment for corns and calluses. There can be swelling and pain, which may make it difficult for you to walk. Apply the oil on the affected part, and you will add softness and restore the moisture. The oil’s anti-inflammatory properties will reduce swelling and alleviate the pain. It also treats cracked and dry heals.
- Castor oil – 1 teaspoon
- Cotton ball – 1
- Pumice stone – 1
- Immerse your feet in warm water and soak it for 10 minutes.
- Scrub the thickened and hard skin with a pumice stone.
- Now rinse off your feet. Pat dry.
- Soak your cotton ball into the castor oil.
- Keep it over the corn or callus.
- Apply a piece of tape over the cotton ball to secure it.
- Leave it for an hour at least.
Do this every day for a week and you will surely get the desired results.
21. Castor Oil Relieves Colic Pain in Babies
Small babies often suffer from colic pains. What’s worse is that, it is often guesswork for the parents. If their otherwise healthy baby keeps on crying for longer periods and they aren’t able to control this, they tend to associate the discomfort or pain with colic. In fact, there is no better answer too. If your baby too suffers from colic pain, try using castor oil as a remedy.
- If your baby is crying and seems to have abdominal pain, simply rub castor oil on her tummy. However, just take 1-2 drops as this oil penetrates too well.
- Massage the belly area well.
- But first, warm the oil and rub it in your hands before applying.
The oil will offer immediate relief. It will alleviate the pain and help her sleep well.
22. Castor Oil Relieves Sore Muscles
Get a massage with castor oil after a hard day at work and you will get the much needed relief you want. It’s an amazing remedy for those sore muscles. Vitamin E in the oil is good for the skin, so get the massage even if you don’t have sore muscles.
23. Castor Oil Soothes the Eyes
The oil will also remove the tiredness from your eyes. Castor oil works a lot like petroleum jelly and yes, it doesn’t create a mess like the jelly does.
- Rub a small portion of the oil around your eyes before going to bed.
- You can also apply the oil on your eyelashes. But make sure that it doesn’t get into the eyes.
- Leave it overnight. Wash off in the morning.
24. Castor Oil Cures Menstrual Disorders
Ricinoleic acid in the oil is an emmenagogue. It can help cure menstruation if it is obstructed, painful or delayed. It also offers relief from painful menstruation. The reason might be that castor oil stimulates blood circulation in the reproductive area when applied topically over abdominal area. It is important for clearing out toxins, dead or foreign tissues, and old blood that sure helps relieve menstrual pain and other such disorders. You need to make a castor oil pack for this:
- Castor oil
- Flannel cloth large enough to cover abdominal area even when folded (wool or cotton)
- Hot water bottle or an electric heating pad (optional)
- Fold the flannel cloth two to three times and get a desired length that covers whole of your abdomen area.
- Soak it in castor oil. Wring out the excess oil, it should be soaked but not dripping.
- Lie down and place this pack on your lower abdomen area.
- You may also place a heating pad or something warm over the pack to make it some more effective.
- Let it be there for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Do this 3-4 days a week for a month.
25. Castor Oil for Parkinson’s Disease
This progressive nervous system disorder can limit movement severely. It affects a lot of people and affects the quality of life badly. Parkinson can also cause slowing down and stiffness. It makes it extremely difficult to perform as simple tasks as walking and talking. So far, no cure has been discovered for Parkinson’s disease. However, some studies have indicated that castor oil can help in managing symptoms of the disorder better.
Study results have revealed that the antioxidant and unsaturated fatty acid components of the oil can loosen the stiffness and slow down tremors associated with Parkinson’s. It leads to better coordination between muscles and even make them more flexible.
- Consume one teaspoon of castor oil every morning.
- You may also massage your hands and legs with warm castor oil for about ten to fifteen minutes at a stretch.
- Alternatively, you may wrap a warm flannel cloth around your hands and legs. This relaxes the muscles and makes them flexible.
26. Castor Oil for Cerebral Palsy
Castor oil health benefits also come as a rescue to those suffering from Cerebral Palsy. This disease affects motor skills, muscle tone and movement. Cerebral palsy usually happens because of brain damage during birth or in the first five years of a child’s life.
Studies indicate that the unsaturated fatty acids of castor oil may repair the neurological pathways and brain tissues. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory components of the oil may help treat the symptoms of cerebral palsy better. In some cases, the condition may even be completely cured.
Castor oil packs can be used for relief from cerebral palsy.
Other Uses of Castor Oil
There are many other uses of castor oil, apart from its health and beauty benefits.
- Castor oil’s viscosity is very consistent, and it doesn’t freeze. So the oil is used in cold climates to keep equipment lubricated.
- Back during World War I, castor oil was used as an aircraft lubricant.
- It is used as a flavoring agent and as a food addictive.
- Castor oil is a known mold inhibitor.
- The oil is used to manufacture synthetic resins, rubbers, paints, fibers, dyes, varnishes, and plastics.
- It can make ferns and other trees healthier.
- Castor oil mixed with water can kill the moles or scare them away from your yard.
- It is used in soap, shampoo and lipstick.
Castor oil benefits us all, one or the other way. It can help us stay healthy, and get better skin and hair. All you have to do is know the right way of using it. The oil is a natural remedy that works quickly and efficiently. You can even ingest a little bit of castor oil as it will give you some benefits, but make sure to limit it, as too much may cause adverse effects.