The thick, viscous texture of Castor Oil sets it apart from nearly all other Oil used in natural skin care. Unlike light Oils, such as Fractionated Coconut Oil, Watermelon Seed Oil, or Sunflower Oil, Castor Oil is intended to be heavy and greasy, providing intense lubrication to formulas such as lip balms, or body butters. Castor Oil is so heavy, in fact, that it can form a protective barrier over the skin. Like Glycerin, Castor Oil is also a humectant, meaning that under the right circumstances, it can draw in moisture, providing extra intensity for dry skin formulas. This makes Castor Oil an ideal ingredient in diaper ointments and lip products. Castor Oil can also be used in hair formulations as a moisturizing and conditioning agent, and in soaps to provide emolliency and lather. When adding Castor Oil to a formulation, be sure to keep it at a low percentage. In soaps, too much Castor Oil can cause the bars to be overly soft. In skin and hair care recipes, too much Castor Oil can leave the skin or hair greasy and oily. Castor Oil should be used extremely sparingly in facial formulations or on acne prone skin. Castor Oil can actually block pores, so it should be used carefully, to avoid breakouts.
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