Castor Oil for Hair? 9 Interesting Secrets Backed by Science
Every once in a while we all suffer the joys of a bad hair day. Whether it’s thinning hair, split ends, dry scalp or flakes and frizz, the reality is that having rubbish and unreasonable hair isn’t much fun for anyone.
However, you may be surprised to hear that there’s a little known natural treatment for all of these problems. Hiding in plain sight (or more likely on a shelf in your Grandmother’s kitchen cupboard), this common household potion of the past is possibly the best kept health and beauty secret on Earth.
Castor Oil for Hair Care
That’s right, you read it here first. Castor Oil is scientifically proven to work wonders for your hair.
Although castor oil is a thick, heavy liquid that you’d never normally think of putting in your hair, there is a secret to making it manageable and it’s definitely worth the effort. Once you know how to get it under control and understand the benefits of using castor oil in your hair you may find it becomes an essential part of your regular hair care routine.
Why Castor Oil?
Castor oil contains vital nutrients such as vitamin E, omega-9 and omega-6 fatty acids, minerals and proteins which give it unique moisturising properties that are ideal for maintaining healthy hair. It also has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties making castor oil for hair your secret weapon in a variety of bad hair day situations.
Fights Hair Loss
Hair loss is the most common hair problem facing both women and men today. There are many different reasons for hair loss such as:
- male and female pattern baldness
- heat related injuries from styling hair using flat irons or hair straighteners,
- using styling products containing certain chemicals,
- infection of the scalp or hair follicles,
- dandruff and more.
But with the regular use of castor oil, hair loss caused by these factors can often be slowed or stopped completely.
How Does Castor Oil Prevent Hair Loss?
The Science Bit
Castor oil is said to be effective at slowing and preventing hair loss due to 90% of its’ fatty acid chains being made up of Ricinoleic acid which has been reported by scientific study to increase production of the lipid compound prostaglandin E2 (PGE2 or PGE2).
In the study, scalp tissue with high levels of Prostaglandin E2 had healthy hair growth but in balding areas it was found in much lower levels.
(PGE2 is not to be confused with lipid compound PGD2 which has been linked to hair loss.)
So what does this mean?
Castor oil stimulates hair growth
If you want to stimulate healthy levels of hair growth and combat hair loss then castor oil is scientifically proven to help.
With it’s naturally high levels of Ricinoleic acid – prostaglandin E2 production in your scalp will increase which could lead to hair re-growth in balding or thinning areas. Couple this with Castor Oil’s rich omega-6 fatty acid content and your hair and scalp will be packed full of the nutrients it needs to promote healthy shiny hair.
How to use it:
Massage a generous amount of castor oil in to your scalp and roots and leave it for up to 2 hours before washing it off with an organic shampoo and conditioner for best results. Alternatively apply the oil and leave it overnight, covered with a cap for deep penetration and wash it off the following morning.
Treats scalp infection
Scalp infection can cause major hair problems like bald patches, itchy scalp, etc. This can also stop hair growth. So, if you want to boast healthy, lustrous tresses, then it is really essential to treat the scalp infections. With castor oil’s anti-fungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties, you can fight pathogens and micro-organism causing these problems. Apply it on regular basis to make your scalp infection-free.
Reduces split ends and hair breakage
Spilt ends and hair breakage are a sign of unhealthy hair. Since castor oil is filled with essential nutrients like vitamin E, amino acids, and omega-6 fatty acids, it can help you to put a stop to split ends and breakage. The oil penetrates deep into your scalp and smoothens out rough hair cuticles. So, spread the oil evenly on your hair and wash it after few hours. Since, castor oil is very sticky, you can also mix it with lighter oils like Argan oil or Coconut oil for easier application.
Conditions and moisturises hair
Natural omega-9 acids present in this oil helps to lock the moisture in your hair and scalp. So, it is a great conditioner for your hair. You should apply castor oil in your hair at least 15 minutes before using a shampoo. This will help to make your hair smooth and soft. You can also add castor oil to your favourite hair conditioner to soak in its benefits. Other than this, apply very little amount (one or two drops) of castor oil in your hair each night as a part of your daily hair conditioning routine. You can also use these tips to condition your hair naturally.
Helps to get rid of dry scalp
Dry scalp can also lead to dandruff. But with the help of this oil you can get rid of both. The omega-9 fatty acids that are present in castor oil will nourish your hair and prevent dry scalp. Before washing, apply the oil on the affected area and let it stand for few minutes. You will see the difference after a few washes.
Makes hair shiny
Almost everyone wants lustrous hair. But due to many reasons such as weather, chemical treatments and all, hair losses its shine. Castor oil can help to increase the shine in your hair. It has the ability to coat your hair shaft, and seal the moisture in. This leaves your hair with shinier and silkier surface. You can mix a small quantity of hair oil with your hair serum or mousse, and apply it evenly on your hair. You can also heat up some castor oil and apply it on your hair and then wrap your hair in a towel. After a few washes you’ll notice your locks getting shinier.