Castor Oil for Hair is said to have numerous benefits, including strengthening strands, promoting hair growth, and nourishing a dry scalp. While the oil itself is unlikely to cause hair growth, it is popular for its ability to create a healthier environment on the scalp, which promotes much faster hair growth.
Nourishing and Strand Strengthening:
“Castor oil is nourishing,” says Ginger King, a cosmetic chemist. According to board-certified dermatologist Rachel Nazarian of Schweiger Dermatology Group, unlike most other oils, which can be mostly fatty, castor oil has a nutritional makeup that includes a potent mix of proteins, vitamins, fatty acids, and antioxidants (aka the internal workings of all the buzziest hair supplements on the market).
It’s no surprise, then, that the oil is touted as a fantastic way to nourish the scalp and fragile hair follicles while also encouraging healthier, faster hair growth. As a result, castor oil has become an increasingly important ingredient in hair care products.
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Could Aid in Hair Loss:
While there is no concrete scientific evidence as to why castor oil is so beneficial for hair, it is unquestionably a popular oil in the beauty industry. According to Nazarian, castor oil can help with hair loss in some cases. Others aren’t so sure. According to King, “there are no scientific studies on this or FDA approval for use in hair growth.”
When it comes to scalp care, hair and scalp expert Philip B. agrees that castor oil has antimicrobial properties that may be useful in fighting off bacterial or fungal overgrowth on the scalp, but with a caveat. “It’s true that fungal overgrowth can cause hair-damaging scalp inflammation, which castor oil can help with,” he says.
Aids for Scalp Flaking:
Castor oil can help those who suffer from flaking due to dry scalp. “Castor oil is well-known for being an effective and gentle method of cleansing the skin,” Nazarian says. “Because castor oil is polarised, it attracts dirt and effectively cleanses the skin.”
Protects against Breakage:
The idea is that the high ricinoleic acid content may help improve blood circulation in the scalp, resulting in nutrition for the hair follicles, stronger strands, and less breakage. Furthermore, because castor oil is a humectant, it is an excellent vehicle for locking in moisture and shine. And, as we all know, moisturised hair (that is, hair that is not dry, damaged, or split-prone) is more likely to grow at a healthier rate.
Increases the Absorption of other Products:
In addition to its efficacy for the scalp, castor oil is thought to enhance and increase the absorption of other products, according to Nazarian. If you incorporate it into your regular hair care routine, your other products may penetrate more effectively, which will only benefit you.
Considerations for Hair Type
Castor oil is best for people who have dry or flaky scalps and brittle hair (it is an oil, so it might be overkill for use on those who already have oily hair). There is also anecdotal evidence that it can help with eyelashes and brows. While the oil is a known irritant for many, Nazarian claims that strategically applying a very small amount to the eyelashes or brows may help induce regrowth through a specific, localized region. If you’re worried about an allergic reaction, apply a test patch to a small area of your skin before applying it to these sensitive areas.
How to Apply Castor Oil to Your Hair
- Use sparingly: Because it is an oil, a little goes a long way—all it’s about is moderation and caution. “You don’t want to overdo it or get it in your eyes or other sensitive areas,” Nazarian warns. Nonetheless, experts appear to agree that the oil is safe enough to experiment with at home. Begin with a patch test, keep expectations realistic, and follow their advice to use a small amount during application to ensure no adverse reactions. It’s also suggested that you don’t use it more than once a week.
- Utilize for a 20-minute treatment: Warm the oil in your palms before working it through your hair’s roots and brushing it out toward the ends. Allow it to sit in your hair for at least 15 minutes before shampooing it out. You can wet your hair beforehand to help the oil absorb better. It should be noted that some people find castor oil difficult to work with due to its tendency to stick. “Because castor oil is highly occlusive and a heavy ‘coater,’ putting it directly on your hair will leave you with it for days and days,” explains Philip B. “It’s highly viscous, which means it can clog pores or follicles and even shrink them.”
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Can castor oil damage your hair?
Leaving it in for too long can actually dry out your hair and scalp, so wash it out after about two hours. Many hair care professionals advise using castor oil no more than once a week. Using it more frequently than that can result in buildup and issues such as matting.
Does castor oil cause hair fall?
Castor oil, due to its astringent nature, can irritate the skin. This could lead to additional dryness, sensitivity, and even hair loss, which is obviously not something you want. In fact, there have been numerous reports of people developing dermatitis after using castor oil.
Can castor oil thicken hair?
That is also why it is so popular as a brow, eyelash, and beard serum, as it promotes hair growth in these areas. It’s also ideal for people who have fewer hairs on their heads and want to stimulate more overall growth.