Castor oil is a popular vegetable oil used in cosmetics, skincare products, and pharmaceuticals. Castor oil benefits are not limited to skin care and hair care regimens alone, provided one is talking about the cold-pressed variant of this oil. It is also traditionally used in home remedies. It is a powerful laxative and relieves constipation. Besides that, it is believed to induce and ease labor during childbirth. This belief system was so strong that castor oil was prescribed to pregnant women in ancient Egypt, and has been administered by midwives in the US and Indian households.
Castor oil benefits several industrial applications as well. As a carrier oil, it is formulated with other ingredients for lubricant and brake fluid use. In toiletries, it is used to make soaps and perfumes. Its derivatives are used in formulations for inks and wax. Castor oil is also a key component in biodiesel fuel. Before we set out to find the amazing health benefits and industrial applications of castor oil, let us explain how castor oil is processed.
What is castor oil?
Castor oil (also known as arandi ka tel in Hindi) is extracted from crushing the castor beans. The highly toxic castor beans come from the plant called Ricinus Communis. The beans or seeds should never be consumed in raw form. This is because they are loaded with ricin, an enzyme that makes it a more potent poison than cyanide.
Therefore, castor beans are heated to a high degree, processed, and then used for extracting oil. The result is this highly versatile vegetable oil, which has anti-inflammatory benefits and is packed with antioxidants and vitamins. Black castor oil is extracted from roasted seeds and is recognized for its therapeutic effects. India accounts for 85 percent of the castor oil production in the world.
The many applications of castor oil
Castor oil benefits various applications in our everyday lives, unlike most vegetable oils. While its primary use is in the pharma and the healthcare industry, we use several industrial applications in our daily lives. Here is a list of the popular uses of castor oil, which proves how versatile this naturally extracted vegetable oil is.
- Proven laxative: Castor oil is a time-tested and proven laxative and is approved by the FDA for use as an over-the-counter laxative.
- Induces labor: It has long been believed to dilate pregnant women’s cervix, thereby inducing labor and assisting in childbirth.
- Arrests skin aging: Castor oil is emollient by nature. It is a storehouse of antioxidants that help reduce wrinkles and keep skin hydrated for a healthy glow.
- Promotes hair growth: Castor oil retains water and keeps the scalp hydrated. In addition, it is antifungal and antibacterial. It, therefore, creates ambient conditions for hair growth.
- Helpful in Arthritis: The presence of Ricinoleic acid makes this oil anti-inflammatory. It is believed to bring relief from muscular pain and sore arthritic joints.
- Dulls stretch marks: The Omega 9 fatty acids stimulate the lymphatic system, which helps in healing scars from wounds, and stretch marks from pregnancy.
- Improves nail condition: The oil has the same beneficial effect on nails as on hair and scalp. In addition, it is used to treat brittle nails and chapped cuticles.
- It is used in insect and mole repellents.
- Castor oil is used as a preserving and flavoring agent.
- It is sprayed as a coating to prevent grains and legumes from rotting.
- Dehydrated castor oil is a binding agent in paint and thinners.
- It serves as a lubricant in jet and race car engines.
- It is used in biodiesel plants as an additive.
- The key castor oil benefits
Rich in antioxidants and fatty acids
Mamaearth’s cold-pressed castor oil is rich in Omega 6 and 9 fatty acids. Ricinoleic acid and its derivatives comprise 90 percent of the fatty acid component. The antioxidants are emollient and boost immunity. Vitamin E concentration helps with protein synthesis for hair and skin benefits.
Antimicrobial and Antiviral
These inherent properties make it an ideal tool for fighting bacterial and fungal growth. That is why castor oil is used to treat toenail fungus, heal cracks in the foot soles, and treat scalp infections and dandruff. It is also used to treat acne and pimples.
Castor oil benefits in cases of inflammation. Its anti-inflammatory properties make it therapeutic for treating pain in sore joints and muscles. Castor oil massage is also recommended for arthritic patients.
Improves blood circulation
Concentrated Ricinoleic acid helps greatly in improving blood circulation. This makes castor oil indispensable for all hair care and skincare regimens. It is, therefore, also used as a base oil in massage and body oil formulations. It is also recommended for use on the scalp and face to stop the symptoms of premature aging.
A powerful humectant
It is a natural humectant, which means it keeps the area it is applied to hydrated. Since it can retain water, castor oil benefits dry skin and the scalp by keeping them moisturized for longer.
Base oil benefits
Because castor oil is a great carrier, it can be used for other oils and chemicals to create new derivatives for healthcare and industrial use. Castor oil is versatile for the same reason. For example, you can mix it with coconut oil to condition your hair. You can also use it to lubricate jet and car engines.
Looking for the best scrub for the face?
While castor oil is good for a facial massage once in a while, you still need a scrub for everyday skin care. Mamaearth also offers some of the best face scrubs for men and women. For example, the Ubtan Scrub With Walnut And Turmeric gently exfoliates and removes tans.
You may also try other popular variants like Tea Tree, Charcoal, Rice, and Vitamin C to settle your search for the best scrub for face.
Did you know?
All Mamaearth products are made from natural ingredients. In addition, these products are certified by Made Safe and FDA. This means they are full of natural goodness and free of parabens, mineral oils, toxins, and other harmful chemicals. So give its products a try for better hair, skin, and nails!