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Uses in Cosmetics

How Castor Oil Creates Makeup


Editor’s Note: Content is updated with additional information under the section, “Castor Oil Uses in Cosmetics“.

A collection of makeup products on a wooden surface

Do you wonder what the castor oil uses in cosmetics are? First, take a brief review of the awesome qualities of castor oil. Castor oil is a deep conditioning and cell repair treatment that is good for hair and skin.

As a common ingredient in cosmetics, there are many ways to experience the benefits of castor oil products for beauty and wellness. Find out what makes castor oil perfect for making personal care products. Discover the various castor oil uses in cosmetics you will absolutely love!


    Why Use Castor Oil in Cosmetics

    Castor oil form ricinoleate, a salt of ricinoleic acid. It is the most common castor oil derivative with many cosmetic uses. Salt is a chemical compound that comes from an acid. It forms through the balancing reaction of an acid and a base.

    Blots of five different shades of red lipstick on a white background

    Many types of ricinoleate make up some of the common cosmetics and fragrances available in the market today. This includes body and bath goods. Personal care like deodorants and lotions also contain this ingredient.

    Castor oil makes a good moisturizer and conditioner. This is the top reason why castor oil uses in cosmetics[1] is becoming more popular in the cosmetic industry. Its structure remains unchanged even at extremely high or low temperatures. When exposed to changing climates, the presence of castor oil in cosmetics help maintain its smooth texture.

    Castor oil and its other forms help create many cosmetic products. Its unique properties improve their quality especially in skin care products like lotion. Castor oil makes them richer and more enticing for everyday application.

    Want to know the effects of using pure castor oil for your skin? While castor oil uses in cosmetics create awesome skin care, you can use castor oil for skin by itself and get amazing results!

    Castor Oil Uses in Cosmetics

    Adding castor oil or its types in cosmetic products serve different purposes as well. Here are the different castor oil uses in cosmetics. Either in form of pure organic castor oil, ricinoleate, or hydrogenated castor oil[2], this vegetable oil is a superb beauty ingredient. Find out how cosmetic use for castor oil works and what benefits it gives for each purpose.

    White face cream on a white plastic container

    Anticaking Agent

    Due to a naturally dense texture, castor oil prevents powdered or granular substances from forming clumps. This is important for makeup goods like foundation and powders. Of course, you want to use a foundation that stays flawless on your face.


    Castor oil reduces or eliminates unpleasant body odor. It protects build-up of such odors on the skin to prevent bad smell. Season 1, Episode 8 of the Russian television show “The Sniffer” portrayed the use of zinc ricinoleate[3] to mask smells.

    Skin Conditioner (Emollient or Skin Softener)

    With high moisture content, castor oil softens and soothes dry or flaky skin. It allows lotions, creams, and body washes maintain a creamy texture. You enjoy using these products. Feel it as you smooth them on your skin or body.

    Skin Conditioner (Occlusive or Moisturizer)

    Castor oil moisturizes skin by providing a physical barrier to skin water loss. It makes skin products effective at keeping skin hydrated. Hydrated skin looks plump and glowing. These are signs of healthy skin.

    Updated Content:

    Castor oil enhances the effects of skin conditioners. It delivers an abundance of essential fatty acids, which readily absorbs through the skin. It provides moisture and hydration to keep skin soft. What makes castor oil effective as a conditioner is that it improves the ability of skin to retain water content. This organic oil prevents the fast evaporation of moisture to protect skin from dryness.

    While it is a light oil, the essential fatty acids reach the deeper layers of the skin to keep it supple. The small particles of the oil make it perfect for quick moisturizing that leaves skin feeling smoother after use.


    An emulsion is a combination of two or more liquids that normally do not mix. Therefore, a visible separation in the mixture occurs. This happens when blending oil and water. A castor oil derivative keeps them from separating into its components. It improves the product’s shelf life and texture. It forms emulsions by reducing the surface tension of the substances. This agent helps mix water with oils such as when making creams and lotions. This makes your product look even and feel smooth when applied.

    Castor oil with naturally thick texture dripping from a bottle

    Opacity Enhancer

    Adding castor oil derivatives reduces the transparent appearance of cosmetics. Makeup used to cover skin blemishes often contains this ingredient. Concealers are the best examples. They help hide certain imperfections to give your skin a flawless finish.


    Castor oil cleanses the hair and skin. Due to effectiveness in clearing acne and blemishes[4], one of the top castor oil uses in cosmetics in facial cleansers. It allows water to mix with oil and dirt in order to wash them away easily.  This helps facial cleansers and toners work effectively. It eliminates grime and dust from your body.


    Castor oil increases the thickness of cosmetics. It provides a smooth and silky feel to the product. No one wants to put a watery lotion, right? You want it creamy and lush for an enjoyable feel when applied to the skin. Toothpaste contains this ingredient for a similar reason.

    What Cosmetic Products Contain Castor Oil

    Experience these awesome castor oil uses in cosmetics is by using beauty products that contain castor oil. Many cosmetic and personal care products commonly used today consist of castor oil in their formulation. That includes lip care products and makeup. You can also find castor oil in personal care and even fragrances.

    Close-up of a woman's face while applying lip care product

    Lip Care

    Castor oil uses in cosmetics is truly versatile and wide-ranging. Lip care products that use castor oil are lipstick, lip balm, lip gloss, and lip liner.


    Makeup products using castor oil include concealer, blush, foundation, and makeup remover. For eye makeup, eyeliner, brow liner, eyeshadow, and mascara commonly contain this ingredient.

    Hair Care

    Staple bathroom products also benefit from various castor oil uses in cosmetics. Hair care products like conditioner, shampoo, styling gel, and hair serum may contain castor oil[5].

    Skin Care

    For skin care products, great examples are bar soap, body wash, lotion, and body oil. Castor oil makes these products effective for healing dry skin and keeping it hydrated and healthy.

    Face Care

    Face care products use for castor oil include facial moisturizer, facial cleanser, and eye cream. As with any other skin benefits, face care products with castor oil helps fight signs of skin aging like wrinkles and fine lines.

    Creams and Topical Solutions

    Hand cream and shaving cream are other examples. Skin problem treatments for eczema, acne, and rashes may have castor oil on the ingredients list too.

    These products are some of the most common examples of castor oil uses in cosmetics you should try. Now, you just can’t run out of options for getting the most caring benefits of castor oil. While using a cosmetic product that contains castor oil provides you with those benefits, you can always go back to basics. Use pure organic castor oil[6] on your hair, skin, and body for your everyday needs.

    Want to find out how castor oil works for your hair? Using castor oil for hair regularly makes it soft, smooth, and silky.

    I’m a little shy and awkward but I rely on my outfit and overall appearance to speak for me. I am obsessed with taking care of myself. That’s why I love researching about different hair and skin care products. My friends describe me as a huge nerd who happened to be somewhat attractive.

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    1. Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil.

    2. Hydrogenated Castor Oil.

    3. Zinc Ricinoleate., last updated June 2018

    4. Martinko, K. Want Fabulous Clear Skin? Try the Oil Cleansing Method., January 2014

    5. Lukas, E. Can Castor Oil Really Help Your Hair Grow?., July 2017

    6. Kubala, J., MS, RD. 7 Benefits and Uses of Castor Oil., April 2018