Is Castor Oil Good for Hair?

BY Kiku Chaudhuri

We’ve all heard of coconut oil being a holy-grail hair care product but did you know, castor oil for hair is the new coconut oil? Yes! You read that correctly. Castor oil for hair is one of the best things you can use to restore, revive, and strengthen your locks. The benefits of using oil for hair, whether its almond, coconut or castor, has been touted for generations. Castor oil for hair specifically, has been the latest trend in haircare due to its miraculous ability to restore hair growth. 

What is castor oil?

Castor oil is derived by pressing the seeds of the castor bean plant. It is a pale yellow liquid that is rich in nutrients and minerals that are extremely beneficial for your hair. It contains omega-6 fatty acid and vitamin E, two essential nutrients that contribute to strengthening hair follicles. 

How is castor oil beneficial for hair?

Castor oil is a humectant (a natural moisturizer) that helps retain moisture in your hair.  Applying castor oil on the scalp has been shown to promote hair growth. Castor oil is beneficial for hair because it improves hair growth quickly and effectively, improves circulation, combats bacterial infections, increases absorption of other products, attracts dirt and oil to cleanse the scalp and nourishes the scalp. 

Benefits of castor oil on the scalp

When applying castor oil directly onto the scalp, Dr. Rashmi Shetty, India-based celebrity dermatologist explains, “Castor oil should be applied directly to the scalp if you want to promote growth. Do keep in mind that because it is a dense oil, over-shampooing is common to rinse it out. Choose a time when you don’t have plans and can gently wash it out, and if a bit of residue remains, leave it be”. Castor oil for hair has a slew of benefits, Dr. Shetty also mentions that it makes the hair intensely hydrated and helps it grow by strengthening the hair follicles. 

Additional benefits of castor oil

Dr. Geetika Mittal, award-winning cosmetologist and M.D., helps shed some light on the other benefits of castor oil. “Castor oil has amazing anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antibiotic properties. It is made up of fatty acids that stimulate receptors and imbibes water, dilating blood vessels and increasing oxygen supply and nutrient-rich blood to the follicles.” This helps any follicles that may be confronting issues such as dandruff or nutrient loss. In turn, the hair appears thicker. “The thickness of castor oil for hair protects the hair follicles from outside damage and coats the hair very well” she adds. 

How to use castor oil

The use of castor oil for hair is recommended for its nutrient-rich properties, however, the way it is applied plays a big role in ensuring best results. Dr. Geetika says, “The best way to apply castor oil is to use it from the scalp to the ends”. For maximum results, use it as a deep treatment. Follow up with a hot towel. As a pre-wash treatment, castor oil can be mixed with conditioner and applied as a hair pack as well. 

Overall, castor oil for hair is a natural and organic way to maintain the health of the hair as it contains many hair-loving properties. It creates a healthy environment for hair to thrive and promotes the better functioning of the hair follicles, while promoting growth. As a deep conditioning ingredient, castor oil for hair is the best option.