Beauty: Surrender to the Beautifying Power of Castor Oil, by Kristen Ma

There’s no escaping it: castor oil is making a comeback. Sure it’s been around for a long time, but for many, it’s just newly making waves on the online beauty scene (all that talk about castor oil cleansing!). Well, this uber-rich oil shouldn’t only be used as part of this skincare trend as it has many uses. For years, this oil has been used for a number of things from cleansing, liver detoxification, and eyelash thickening. Read on for seven ways you can use castor oil to beautify your skin and body!
1. To Cleanse
Let’s start by talking about the oil cleansing method. You may have heard of it as many beauty bloggers tout it as a great way to remove dirt and impurities without stripping the skin. Castor is the most common oil to use because its viscous texture gives it the ability to loosen toxins from the skin. However, not all skin types can use this oil as castor is very stimulating. I recommend either diluting it or starting with a less stimulating oil (such as coconut) and phasing it in gradually.
2. Nail Nourishment
Brittle nails? Dried out cuticles? Castor oil is an excellent treatment on our finger tips because it is probably the richest oil on the market – its texture is downright “gluey”. But this makes for a great protective barrier for weak nails in need of nourishment and shielding. It super moisturizes! Also, castor oil stimulates blood flow to the area. Since our extremities are the last to receive circulation, this helps to encourage blood to these tissues.
3. Relieve Constipation for Clearer Skin
Castor oil is a powerful laxative. It really gets things moving! This is no secret; people have been using it forever for moving toxins through the GI tract. I’ve also used castor oil as part of an Ayurvedic detox. This is important because our complexions are very connected to bowel health. Constipation can lead to acne, breakouts, dehydration and inflammation. In fact, one Ayurvedic Doctor told me that people with high Pitta and breakouts should take one to two spoons of castor oil per month as a bowel and liver detoxifier.
4. Thicken Your Lashes
This old tip was told to me by a makeup artist who has been using it for years! This oil promotes hair growth because of its circulation-stimulating properties and nourishing consistency. Dab some oil on your lashes each night and watch ‘em grow day by day before your very eyes!
5. Fill in Those Brows
While castor oil promotes fuller lashes, it also fills out eyebrows. If you have sparse brows like me, applying castor oil to your brows every night is a real godsend.
6. Castor Oil Detox Packs
This oil may be most famous for its packs. It’s used as a topical medicinal treatment to detoxify our internal organs gently. This is usually done by massaging it into the abdominal area, then placing either an organic cotton sheet or plastic wrap over top of it to prevent it from getting all over your clothes. I know many women who do this each night for polycystic ovaries, constipation or liver cleansing. The oil is said to penetrate the skin and create stimulation and detoxification in the areas it’s placed over. It’s especially good for diminishing cysts and other growths. One naturopathic doctor even told me she uses it to naturally whittle down bone spurs. Wowee!
7. Lip Slick
Want a high gloss finish? Throw away those petroleum-based lip products and just use castor oil. Because of its richness, it makes for an excellent lip slick. Just dab it over your favorite lipstick for a shiny, kissable smile.

Kristen Ma PhotoKristen Ma is the co-owner of Pure + Simple Inc., a group of Holistic Spas with its own line of Natural Skincare and Mineral Make-up.  She is an Ayurvedic Practitioner who has studied in Canada, the United States and India.  She is also a Certified Esthetician with eight years of practical experience, having worked in Canada as well as Australia.  Most recently, Kristen has authored “Beauty: Pure + Simple” which was published by Mc Arthur and Company.  Kristen has written on the subject of Holistic Beauty for Vitality Magazine, Blink and Jasmine.  She is also a regular contributor to B Magazine, Tonic and Sweat Equity Magazine.

For more information on Kristen, please visit www.holisticvanity.ca.

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