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Castor Oil for Hair Care: Clinical Evidence

Castor oil has been used in har care for centuries, particularly among cultures based in hot, dry places such as Ancient Egypt. Castor Oil can smooth and moisturize the hair, and some people use it today on the scalp, eyelashes, and eyebrows in the hopes of boosting hair growth.

Uses for Castor Oil

Castor oil is often used for non-hair-care purposes, for instance as a laxative or a topical treatment for skin issues and fungal infections. However, there is anecdotal evidence that it may work to speed hair growth from its normal rate of about one centimeter a month. While there is not much direct evidence of castor oil impacting hair growth, it may work to promote growth or the appearance of growth by improving scalp health overall. Castor oil is useful for its high lipid content, which can deliver moisture and lasting protection to the skin and hair.

Clinical Evidence

There is little clinical evidence in favor of castor oil as a promoter of hair growth. However, some anecdotal evidence from clinical research that involved participant feedback points to its effects on hair health and appearance. Castor oil may improve the moisture and shine of hair overall, and decrease the appearance of breakage and split ends.

How to use Castor oil for Scalp health

To use castor oil on your scalp and hair, you should first take precautions such as wearing an old tee-shirt, as the darker black forms of castor oil can sometimes stain light fabrics. Then, working in small sections across the scalp, apply a few drops of the oil directly to your scalp and roots and massage it in with your fingers. You can also apply castor oil to the lengths and end of your hair, and comb it through to ensure even distribution.

Allow the oil to sit on your hair, and use a shower cap or plastic bag if possible to encourage greater absorption and prevent any mess. You should allow the oil to sit for up to two hours, in order to give the hair follicle and skin of the scalp time to absorb the oil. Wash your hair normally after two hours.

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