(NaturalNews) Castor oil is extracted from the seeds of the Ricinus Communis plant and has been used since time immemorial for a variety of conditions and complaints, including hair and skin care. Treating hair breakage and encouraging hair growth with castor oil has long been recognized in the alternative health field. Cold pressed castor oil is tasteless and odorless when pure.
The oil is considered a natural hair oil for baldness or thinning hair which is the result of diet, stress and environmental and/or lifestyle factors. Scientific research on the subject is lacking and the results of clinical studies are ambiguous. However, many people attest to the fact that castor oil has helped with various hair complaints. There have been cases where the hair treated with castor oil turned dark - in some cases new, dark hair growth appeared in place of grey hair, after massaging the scalp regularly with the oil.
Benefits of castor oil for hair growth
Regular usage of castor oil is purported to increase hair growth, reduce or prevent damage and breakage, treat dry hair conditions and condition and moisturize hair and scalp. The oil can be used to prevent hair frizz and/or split ends.
Other uses include treating skin problems, burns, sunburns, skin disorders, skin cuts, and abrasions.
How to use caster oil to prevent hair loss
Wear old clothes or wear protective clothing because the oil will stain fabric. Massage high quality caster oil into the roots and scalp. Distribute the oil evenly on the scalp only. The thick consistency of castor oil makes it difficult to wash out. Cover the hair with a plastic cap and wrap in a warm towel. Wash out after an hour or two. Allow to stay in overnight for a deep conditioning treatment.
The oil can be thinned out with grape seed or jojoba oil. Combining a little castor oil with olive, coconut, almond or tea tree oil helps prevent hair breakage. The moisture benefits of these oils prevent the hair from becoming dry and brittle.
A tablespoon of lavender oil added to a half a cup of castor oil will make the hair smell good, will coat and seal the hair shaft and will trap moisture inside effectively.
Be sure to use only cold-pressed castor oil that is hexane-free. Avoid refined, adulterated oils which can clog the skin's pores. Cold-pressed castor oil retains its valuable nutrients.
Fleur Hupston is a professional freelance writer. She is passionate about natural, healthy living and is currently studying to be a naturopath. She divides her time between writing for Natural News and various other sites, home schooling her children and studying part time.