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imagesTranscending age, race, and gender, the product that everyone is vouching for these days is castor oil.  Not to be confused with the oil for your car, this castor oil is derived from castor beans, used both internally and externally for thousands of years due to its many wonderful health benefits.  Among the proven benefits of castor oil is its ability to treat hair loss and skin blemishes.

This is why, it is an ingredient in both my body and shampoo bars.

The hair and beauty benefits of this oil are pretty impressive.

In the Netherlands, locals commonly refer to castor oil as the “wonder oil” because of its many uses.  This inexpensive at-home beauty treatment can be found at your local supermarket or chemist.

In my online research, I found many people add castor oil to their conditioner or use the oil as a leave-in moisturizing treatment.  Applying castor oil to hair locks in moisture, softens, adds shine, and protects against heat and other damage.  Many people rub the oil into the scalp, helping to make hair grow faster due to its high content of omega-3 fatty acids.  Other sites claim the oil can even be applied to eyelashes for increased volume and length. The many cosmetic benefits of castor oil seem to be endless.

The antibacterial property of castor oil also makes it very useful as a form of skincare.  Treatment of acne and various skin infections is another important castor oil use. Using castor oil can effectively diminish moles, warts, and stretch marks.  Castor oil benefits the skin by moisturizing the cells.

imagesCastor oil contains Ricinoleic acid, a fatty acid that possesses anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and analgesic, or pain relieving, properties. This acid, as well as both linoleic and oleic acid, are also highly moisturizing. Castor oil is such an effective moisturizer and emollient that it is also used as an anti-wrinkle treatment.  When applied regularly, castor oil will increase skin’s elasticity, make the skin appear more supple and diminish the appearance of wrinkles. Many people have also found castor oil effective in lightening age spots and getting rid of stretch marks.

In soap, castor oil adds a rich and creamy lather even when used for as little as 5 % of the total recipe.  It’s also a humectant (attracts moisture to your skin) oil.

Now you know why in Holland we call it wonder olie!