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Castor oil: properties and what it is for

Castor oil is a natural remedy that has been used by humans since the times of the ancient pharaohs. A few decades ago it was in common use in Spain and other countries as a purgative and, although this popular application has been falling into disuse, it is a much more common substance than we think, present in all kinds of aesthetic and medicinal products.

If you want to learn more about the benefits of castor oil, join us in this AgroCorrn article on the properties of castor oil and what it is for , in which we also tell you how to apply it to hair and eyelashes, two of its most common uses.

What is castor oil

The castor oil , also called castor oil (badly translated from the English ” castor oil “) is a product that is extracted from the seeds of Ricinus communis , common name castor plant . It is a species of shrub that has its origin in tropical Africa, although it is currently naturalized in tropical latitudes around the world.

This oil is composed of a triglyceride of essential fatty acids, being one of the omega 9 type, ricinoleic acid , the main one. Ricinoleic acid can be found in much lower concentrations in other oils, such as cottonseed and soybean, and many of the properties that castor oil boasts are attributed to it.

You can learn more about vegetable oils with these other AgroCorrn article on What are essential oils and Rosemary oil: what it is for and how to prepare it .

Castor oil properties

Castor oil contains a high concentration of vitamin E, as well as being rich in proteins, minerals, tocopherols, and essential fatty acids, such as the aforementioned ricinoleic acid and linoleic and linolenic acids. Among the most outstanding properties of castor oil we find:

  • It is a product with proven antifungal and antibacterial properties , which is why it has traditionally been used for all types of skin conditions and lesions, as it helps to treat and prevent infections.
  • It is very nourishing and moisturizing for the skin, which is why it is a great ally against dermatitis, scars and other skin problems, and for the hair, which is why it is widely used to improve its health and growth.
  • If ingested, it is a purgative product, that is, it has antiparasitic properties .
  • It is also an antioxidant oil due to its content of vitamin E and fatty acids, which is why it is usually applied to the face.

In addition, it is a natural product and, therefore, free of chemical additives, in addition to being respectful with the environment, and can be disposed of properly without being highly polluting.

What is castor oil for?

The benefits and uses of castor oil are very numerous and it is worth listing them one by one:

  • Purgative – Castor oil as a laxative and antiparasitic has been used traditionally, and this is probably one of its most popular and well-known uses. It is, however, a fairly severe laxative that should be used only as an occasional antiparasitic treatment and for constipation, as it works as a stimulant, causing the intestine to move more than usual.
  • Anti-acne and anti-wrinkle : Castor oil for the face has a lot of beneficial effects. It serves as a facial cleanser, removing traces of dirt and grease, while with its antibacterial action it is an excellent ally in the fight against acne. It is also very useful for cleaning makeup residues, and its vitamins and fatty acids penetrate deeply into the skin and stimulate the natural production of elastin and collagen, compounds that help reduce wrinkles and result in smoother skin. smooth and hydrated. If you are interested in this property, here we detail another 10 anti-wrinkle vegetable oils .
  • Anti-stain: castor oil is also a great ally when it comes to removing spots on the skin. It is a long process, but it is totally natural.
  • Anti- stretch marks : its beneficial properties for the skin extend to the treatment of stretch marks and scars, helping to eliminate them if they are mild and recent or to blur them if they have been for a while.
  • Burns, Dermatitis and Stings: This natural product helps soothe the discomfort of insect bites as well as minor burns and dermatitis. In addition, it helps the skin to regenerate more easily.
  • Against corns: calluses and corns can also be less annoying if treated with this product with gentle massages, reducing their inflammation and the pain they cause.
  • Strengthening hair and eyelashes: it is very common to use castor oil for hair, as it reinforces its growth and strength, giving it greater health and a brighter appearance. It is also popular to use castor oil for eyelashes and eyebrows, as it stimulates their growth, making them stronger and more attractive. We recommend this other post about natural and sustainable hair treatments .
  • Nail care: it is a good moisturizer for the cuticles and to strengthen the nails.

How to apply castor oil to hair

Follow these tips to apply castor oil to hair :

  • To stimulate hair growth, a massage of the scalp with your fingers and this warm oil is recommended.
  • Apply it before going to sleep for no less than 5 minutes, to remove it when you shower in the morning.
  • In the treatment of split ends or similar, mix a few drops of the oil with your shampoo or apply it directly to the hair.

How to apply castor oil on eyelashes

If you want to improve your eyelashes, do not hesitate to follow these steps to apply castor oil on your eyelashes :

  1. Remove make-up from your eyelashes. Here we tell you how to make a make-up remover with natural products .
  2. Apply the oil directly on these in a small amount, being careful not to overdo it since the oil is of great density and gives a lot of itself.
  3. Massage the lashes until they absorb it and be careful not to get it in your eyes.

Castor oil contraindications

Among the contraindications of castor oil , the following stand out:

  • Due to its laxative properties, this oil is not recommended for people who regularly suffer from colic or similar intestinal disorders.
  • It should also be avoided, as in most cases, by pregnant or lactating women.
  • Nor can people with sensitive skin take it or apply it to them who show an adverse reaction to its application in a small test dose (one drop is enough) or who already know that they are allergic or sensitive to any of the components of the plant of castor bean.
Maria Anderson

Hello, I am a blogger specialized in environmental, health and scientific dissemination issues in general. The best way to define myself as a blogger is by reading my texts, so I encourage you to do so. Above all, if you are interested in staying up to date and reflecting on these issues, both on a practical and informative level.

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