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What is castor oil used for in cosmetics: uses and benefits

What is castor oil used for in cosmetics: uses and benefits

Castor oil is viscous, pale yellow non–volatile and non–drying oil with a bland taste. It has a slight characteristic odour while the crude oil tastes slightly acrid with a nauseating after–taste. Relative to other vegetable oils, it has a good shelf life and it does not turn rancid unless subjected to excessive heat.

Castor oil is widely used in natural cosmetics for its reinforcing and restructuring properties, both as part of the formulation of cosmetics such as creams and balsams, both if used also directly on the skin. Rich in beneficial fatty acids and essential elements is a real elixir of beauty for skin, hair, eyelashes, nails. Excellent in soaps and cosmetic preparations such as mascara, lipsticks, make-up pencils and lip balms.

Castor oil consists in particular of a mixture of triglycerides, contains ricinoleic acid (90%), oleic (6%), linoleic (5%) and palmitic (2%) and is obtained from the seeds of Ricinus communis. Ricino seeds contain a very toxic protein, ricin, which is not present in castor oil product with a cold extraction (or if the seeds are peeled).

Castor oil in cosmetics: benefits and possible uses

Castor oil on the skin is moisturizing, nourishing, elasticizing, restructuring.

On the skin: the components of castor oil help the production of collagen and skin elastin, which make it softer and more elastic. Furthermore its film-forming properties create a barrier that prevents dehydration and nourishes the skin. It is therefore useful:

- in case of dry, chapped or cracked skin, mature or prematurely aged;

- to soften corns and calluses;

- prevents the formation of excess scar tissue, reduces scars;

On hair, nails and eyelashescastor oil is a restructuring agent: the composition of this oil stimulates the production of keratin, an essential component for the structure and strength of hair, nails and eyelashes. The fatty acids it contains help to rebalance the amount of fat present in these areas, reinforcing and nourishing in depth and avoiding weakening and falling (or flaking in the case of nails). It is therefore:

- excellent fortifying oil for nails and hair; in particular it is indicated for hair with permanent, dry, damaged, fragile;

- mixed with jojoba or almond oil, it is used as eye make-up remover and strengthening treatment for eyelashes;

Castor oil is also anti-inflammatory and soothing: it is used in cases of eczema and psorisase; it is often recommended as a hot application for back pain, menstrual pain, mastitis;

Castor oil also has antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal properties and is useful against tinea pedis, athlete's foot and mycosis.

Castor oil chosen for you by Erboristeria Como:


Castor oil by Flora bio srl is an excellent 100% pure organic vegetable oil certified by COSMOS-BDIH, for cosmetic use, produced from the seeds of the castor plant (Ricinus communis, from organic farming) cold pressed and vitamin And vegetable (the only other ingredient in the formula and present only as a natural preservative!), With remarkable restructuring and nourishing properties. This oil we have chosen for you does not contain: preservatives, dyes, cosmetic allergens, PEG, synthetic substances, petroleum derivatives and is not subjected to refining processes.

Excellent to use in the care of brittle and dry hair, as it exerts a nourishing, reinforcing, polishing and volumizing action. In relation to the principles of Ayurveda, castor oil is a rebalancing of the VATA skin (characterized by dry, thin, wrinkled, cold and chapped skin) and KAPHA (characterized by a thick skin, rich in sebum, tending to fat) .

Ideal base in Aromatherapy: to be mixed with essential oils, add 2-3 drops of 100% pure essential oils chosen among the preferred and most suitable for specific use to a dose of castor oil

Castor oil: how to use it

Here are some of our recommendations for use:

- for the skin: place a small amount on the hands and gently massage the face and body until completely absorbed, morning and evening. Being very dense, it is usually recommended to dilute it to 10% in almond or jojoba oil.

- against acne and pimples: apply a small amount of oil at least once a day with the help of a cotton pad, gently dabbing and massaging.

- against dermatitis, skin infections, fungal infections and warts: prepare a compress with a cotton pad or pad soaked in a small amount of oil and leave it to act overnight, perhaps covering the area with plastic wrap to keep it in pose.

- to nourish the hair: apply the right amount of product to previously dampened hair, also massaging the scalp. Leave on for about 30 minutes. Rinse with mild shampoo.

- to strengthen the lashes: if you have weak, sparse and short lashes, which tend to break, apply every night before going to sleep a small amount of oil with a brush, as if it were a mascara.

- to strengthen the nails: if your nails tend to break and flake or are subject to mycosis, spread a thin layer of oil on the nail all the way through the evening. You can also help with cotton in this case or use an enamel or clean make-up brush to spread it evenly.

Castor oil in cosmetics: controindications?

castor oil is not a significant skin irritant, sensitizer, or photosensitizer in human clinical tests, but patients with occupational dermatoses may have a positive reaction to castor oil or Ricinoleic Acid. Source:  2007;26 Suppl 3:31-77. doi: 10.1080/10915810701663150. Final report on the safety assessment of Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Glyceryl Ricinoleate, Glyceryl Ricinoleate SE, Ricinoleic Acid, Potassium Ricinoleate, Sodium Ricinoleate, Zinc Ricinoleate, Cetyl Ricinoleate, Ethyl Ricinoleate, Glycol Ricinoleate, Isopropyl Ricinoleate, Methyl Ricinoleate, and Octyldodecyl Ricinoleate.

Dr. Laura Comollo

Visit our aromatherapy department for any clarification or for more information.

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