Castor oil has gained so much popularity, mainly for its hair growing benefits. It has, in fact, got a ‘hair saviour’ status in the natural hair care domain.
When I was growing up in India, the castor plant was just another roadside plant. It didn’t get much admiration.
Although it was used for hair, then the most popular oils for hair were coconut oil, sesame oil and mustard oil. Also, that time women’s and men’s hair just grew without any extra effort. I guess it was because of a healthy, non-processed, low-sugar diet, fresh air and more physical activity.
Coming back to castor oil, it has remarkable healing properties, and has been traditionally used to treat many health issues such as joint pain, muscles sprain, skin conditions, fungal infections, and so on.
And its ability to remove waste from the scalp and nourish the hair follicles makes castor oil very beneficial for hair growth.
It also helps reduce hair loss and encourages stronger, thicker and shinier hair. If you have ever touched castor oil you would know that it’s unusually thick and viscous. That is why you always mix it with other carrier oils like coconut oil, almond oil or olive oil, or in a hair mask before applying on your hair.
Castor oil contains a unique ingredient called Ricinoleic acid– this is the star ingredient of the oil, and it’s what makes the oil thick and sticky. It offers great healing benefits thanks to its antibacterial and antifungal effects. A regular massage with castor oil could help with dandruff and other scalp conditions quickly.
And when your scalp is healthy, your hair will thrive and grow thicker.
Castor oil promotes hair growth by boosts scalp circulation. This brings more nourishment to the hair follicles and thus aid in the repair and renewal of hair cells. So the new hair that grows out is stronger, healthier and more resilient.
Castor oil works two ways in getting rid of waste.
Firstly, as it boosts scalp circulation, it also helps clear out the waste build up from the scalp that could potentially damage hair and slow growth.
And secondly, castor oil unclogs the pores and removes the dirt and grease which is sitting inside the hair follicles, making it cleansing oil for your scalp.
Castor oil is a superb moisturiser. It has a special ability to draw moisture from the air into your hair. This is especially useful if your hair is dry and damaged. It will coat the hair shaft and seal in moisture, leaving the hair soft, smooth and glossy.
Applying castor oil treatment before shampoo will also reduces split ends and hair breakage.
The hair mask we will prepare has only two ingredients. Castor oil, of course, and the other is olive oil.
Olive oil is a very nutritious oil for hair. It contains vitamin E, squalene, and tone of polyphenols, which work as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory. These compounds can help reduce hair loss and promote healthier hair.
To make this mask you will need:
Place the castor oil, olive oil (and peppermint oil) in a bowl and stir them until combined.
This hair mask is enough for shoulder length hair, if you have longer hair double or triple the quantity
How to use
Massage the mixture into your scalp and hair. Cover your hair with a shower cap or you can wrap a cloth around your head, and leave it on for 30 to 60 minutes. Next, wash and style as usual.
Do this mask once a week to rejuvenate and maintain your hair. Enjoy your beautiful hair!
Buying Castor oil: Which is Best for Hair?
Pure castor oil is pale yellow in colour and doesn’t have any smell. When you buy castor oil, look for one that is cold pressed, unrefined and hexane free. Such type of oil will be rich in nutrients and free from any artificial chemicals.
Cold pressed means that oil is extracted at low temperature, without the use of heat. This way the oil retains most of the nutrients, while heat extraction can destroy some of goodness of the oil. And unrefined means that the oil is not bleached to obtain a uniform looking oil with no colour or smell every time you buy.
Jamaican Black Castor Oil: Black castor oil is obtained after roasting the castor beans. Thus this oil has a darker colour and slightly smoky smell. This oil is said to offer more moisturising benefits, so it will be more suitable for people with dry, coarse hair.
You can buy black castor oil here.
Which is your favorite DIY Hair Mask? Let me know in the comment box below…
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