Image: Luis Monteiro
You have probably heard your grandmother and family elders wax poetic about the many benefits of castor oil for just about everything. Stubborn acne? Apply castor oil. Looking to grow back your tresses within a deadline? There’s nothing better than castor oil for hair. Uneven skin tan from spending long hours in the sun? Turn to this magic potion oil to even out your skin tone again. But why this elixir considered to be so great? Castor oil, extracted from the seeds of the ricinus communis plant found in the tropical pockets of Africa and Asia, contains vitamin E, proteins and Omega 6 and 9—all key players in ensuring healthy skin and hair. Used as a natural antibacterial and anti-fungal agent through the years, it pitches in to help with everything from speeding up the digestive system, to improving absorption in the skin. Benefits of castor oil for your hair
The antibacterial properties of castor oil help reduce dandruff and related infections, while the antioxidants it packs actively support the keratin in hair. The payoff of using castor oil for hair comes in the form of stronger tresses, that are less prone to frizz. It’s also the best kept secret behind your grandmother’s luscious, long locks. The ricinoleic acid it contains boosts the circulation in the scalp ensuring that the hair follicles receive better nutrition. When used consistently, it is said to spur hair growth at twice the usual rate, and is also used widely for thicker eyebrows and lashes. The oil consists of 90 per cent nutritional content that nourishes the hair shaft, arrests hair fall, reduces split ends and forms a protective layer on the hair to act as a natural defence against sun damage. Benefits of castor oil for your skin
Castor oil is beneficial for just about everything, from soothing acne breakouts to hydrating the skin. The ricinoleic acid it contains, again, plays the MVP in serving as an anti-inflammatory agent that inhibits the growth of bacteria, thereby providing relief from persistent acne. Castor oil also boasts of a low comedogenic score that makes it safe for sensitive skin, while its fatty acids rehabilitate the skin tissue and work on balancing uneven skin tones. These acids also play a key role in reducing blemishes and stretch marks over time, by getting rid of dry patches and ensuring that adequate hydration reaches the skin. How to use castor oil for your hair and skin
This magic elixir features in hair and skincare potions in various ways. But for best results, it is advisable to understand the various types of castor oil, and lock in the one that best suits your needs. In its organic, cold-pressed form, it serves as an excellent anti-inflammatory agent that works wonders for an irritated scalp. Jamaican black castor oil, on the other hand, contains ashes of roasted castor seeds and is more effective at cleansing.
At its most basic, castor oil can be incorporated in your daily beauty routine by massaging it into your skin at night to cleanse the pores. When showering, add a few drops to your regular conditioner to boost hair growth and strengthen the hair shaft from within. If you are suffering from skin inflammation due to sunburn, simply dip a cotton ball into castor oil, apply on the affected area and wash off after an hour. Its microbial properties will get to work on the irritated skin, while its humectant component actively draws in moisture from the air, and helps to restore the skin’s hydration levels. Best DIY uses of castor oil
1) For relief from dry skin, mix two drops of castor oil with six drops of sesame oil, and massage on the face. Place a warm, damp cotton cloth on your face for roughly a minute, before wiping the excess oil away with a cotton ball to leave behind healthy, nourished skin.
2) If you’re looking to go au naturel with your beauty routine, look to this oil as an effective substitute for the chemicals that many face masks feed to your skin. Add a few drops of cold-pressed, hexane-free castor oil to an egg yolk, and apply for fifteen minutes. Wash away to reveal a brighter complexion and a radiant glow.
3) To boost hair regrowth, call upon this magic oil to grow back your tresses. Mix one tablespoon of castor oil with two tablespoons of extra virgin coconut oil, two tablespoons of sweet almond oil and another two tablespoons of sesame oil. Warm the oil for faster penetration, and massage into your hair from roots to ends. For best results, leave it on overnight and wash off the next morning. The benefits of castor oil for hair are endless, and it’ll only take repeating this ritual twice a week for a month for you to start noticing results. Precautions to take while using castor oil
The unhealthy amounts of pesticides that our crops are sprayed with could potentially neutralise the nutritional content of this elixir. Ask for cold-pressed, hexane-free castor oil, that is extracted without heat—it retains its organic content this way.
While the benefits of castor oil could fill a book, it is worth noting that it is a bit heavier than most oils, which can make it a pain to wash off. When using it in haircare recipes, apply it in judicious amounts. But, do not include more than a pea-sized quantity when using in conjunction with your daily conditioner. Whenever possible, apply it overnight so that the hair and skin absorbs it sooner and leaves lesser work for clean-up the next morning. Also read:
Wednesday, March 28 2018
Benefits of using castor oil for your hair and skin
Image: Luis Monteiro
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