castor oil for hair

Is castor oil for hair the secret to thicker, longer locks?

  • Marie Claire is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.
  • Read up on why you should try it, ASAP

    During the summer months, it’s a no-brainer to protect your skin with an SPF moisturiser, but your hair? Not so much. Which is why castor oil for hair could be your one-way ticket to repair.

    It turns out protecting your locks is far easier than you’d think, and it’ll cost you just under £10. May we present castor oil, one of beauty’s best kept secrets (and favoured by Demi Moore, who in case you didn’t notice, has incredible hair).

    We asked trichologist Sally-Ann Tarver of The Cotswold Trichology Centre & Theradome for her thoughts on the hair hero ingredient.

    ‘It’s quite hard to get hold of in its raw form these days,’ says Sally-Ann. ‘But it is used in many black hair formulas due to its deep moisturising properties.’

    Castor oil for hair growth

    So, what makes castor oil so good for hair growth and repair?

    Made from castor seeds, castor oil is high in vitamin E and essential unsaturated fatty acids like omega-6, which stimulate blood circulation on the surface of the skin, giving hair growth a helping hand.

    It also contains ricinoleic acid and omega- 6 essential fatty acids, which when used topically may boost blood circulation to the scalp, stimulating healthy hair growth.

    What are the benefits of castor oil for hair?

    ‘Castor oil is rich in minerals, vitamins and essential fatty acids all of which are great for your hair and scalp,’ says Vincent Allenby, creative director at Trevor Sorbie, Manchester.

    It might be a good product to consider using around the changing of the seasons, advises Headmasters Artistic Ambassador Gareth Williams: ‘Castor oil benefits the scalp because of its moisturising properties.

    ‘It improves blood circulation to the scalp and helps to soothe flaky, itchy scalp environments, which is perfect to use during the changing of the seasons. Containing lots of fatty acids, the oil really does help to heal the hair’s fibre, so you get smoother hair.’

    Castor oil for hair treatment

    But Vincent Allenby warns that using the oil in its raw form (if you do manage to get hold of it) is not a good idea.

    ‘If using it on your hair make sure it is diluted with something such as argan oil or jojoba oil as on its own it’s too heavy for the hair and could be a little troublesome rinsing.’

    Shop now: Pukka Organic Castor Oil 250ml for £9.73 from Amazon

    As an example, if you do wish to treat your hair with castor oil, you may wish to mix three spoonfuls of castor oil with one of coconut oil and one of jojoba oil.

    The smell of castor oil is not exactly the stuff of spa treatments, either, so using a drop or two of essential oil in your mixture will make your treatment more enjoyable. Coconut oil also boasts a host of hair benefits, as does argan oil for hair.

    To use as a treatment, heat the oil over hot water until warm (never in the microwave – a burnt scalp is not enjoyable) before applying to your hair and rinse well after you’ve given the oil time to work.

    The experts at Pukka Herb also recommend massaging the oil into your scalp, through the ends and then rinsing twice with shampoo to get rid of any residue.

    If your hair is particularly dry, leave overnight and only do this once a week.

    Reading now