Castor Oil

Castor Oil is a light gold oil that is expeller pressed from the bean of the Ricinus Communis, a tropical perennial shrub.

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Castor Oil Properties

  • It acts as a humectant by drawing moisture from the air.
  • Is easily absorbed by the skin making it a great skin softener and conditioner.
  • Will produce a stable lather in handmade soap and will speed up the saponification process resulting in a quicker trace. 
  • Good for hair care and makes a wonderful natural shampoo bar.
  • When purchasing, buy only detoxified castor oil.
  • Produces a very soft, clear soap bar if used alone so combine it with other oils such as olive, palm and coconut.

I use about 20% Castor oil in a shampoo bar (the bar will be a little softer than normal but it makes a great shampoo) and for a normal soap, to boost the lather, I use about 5 - 10%.

The chart below shows the approximate percentages of fatty acids present in Castor Oil. As you can see by the high percentage of ricinoleic acid, a soap made using this oil will have a very conditioning, fluff and stable lather. You will also note the absence of hardening fatty acids which will result in an extremely soft bar. Be sure to use it with plenty of hard oils.

Lauric Myristic Palmitic Stearic Ricinoleic Oleic Linoleic Linolenic
        90 4 4  
Full Lather   F/L  
  Stable Lather  

This information is provided for reference use only and is not meant to substitute the advice of a licensed health care professional.

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