How Does Castor Oil Reduce Skin Pigmentation?

On its own or in conjunction with other ingredients, castor oil is sure to work wonders.

Medically reviewed by Dr. K. Harish Kumar, MD DVL
Written by Arshiya Syeda, BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Dip
Edited by Ramona Sinha, MA (English Literature), Certified Skin Care Coach
Fact-checked by Monomita Chakraborty, MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Skin Care Coach  • 

Castor oil is a pale yellow oil that has been used as an age-old remedy for skin and hair issues. It is extracted from castor seeds, and you can use castor oil for skin pigmentation. Though commonly found in India and Africa, it is used across the globe. But is using castor oil on skin safe? Can it cause acne? Read this article to know more about using castor oil in your skin care routine, how it helps, and how to enhance its benefits. Scroll down.

How Does Castor Oil Reduce Pigmentation?

Is castor oil good for reducing pigmentation? Yes! There have been a number of studies conducted on how castor oil helps reduce pigmentation (1). Many dermatologists recommend castor oil because of this property. Here are some more benefits of castor oil for skin pigmentation:

  • Castor oil is crammed with fatty acids, specifically omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids are the magic ingredient that helps reduce pigmentation. They do this by piercing the scar tissue and pumping it out.
  • The omega-3s, in addition to stimulating the growth of healthy tissue, also hydrate the skin, thus giving you clean and supple skin.
  • The antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties of the phenols present in castor oil also help in reducing acne that can leave behind deeply pigmented scars (2).

Sonia, a YouTuber, shared her experience of using castor oil for acne scars. She explained, “Overall, my experience with castor oil has been nothing but good. I have broken out once from it.” She further adds, “My skin feels so much more softer (i).”

Before we further understand how to use castor oil to treat skin pigmentation, let us learn what causes it in the first place. Check out the next section.

Causes Of Skin Pigmentation

Causes of skin pigmentation
Image: Shutterstock
  • Genetics: Some individuals are naturally born with certain types of skin pigmentation such as moles or birthmarks.
  • Sun Exposure: Overexposure to UV rays can also increase melanin production in the skin and cause skin discoloration and dark spots.
  • Acne: Severe blemishes can also leave scars behind and cause skin pigmentation.
  • Hormones: Changes in hormones during pregnancy and menopause can also trigger skin pigmentation.
  • Medical Conditions: Common medical conditions like melasma and vitiligo can also cause skin pigmentation.

5 Ways Of Using Castor Oil For Skin Pigmentation

1. Castor Oil For Pigmentation

Image: IStock

You Will Need

  • 1 tsp castor oil

Prep Time

1 minute

Treatment Time

5 minutes

Method

  1. Take about a teaspoon of castor oil and start applying it to your face.
  2. Massage your face in upward circular motions, concentrating on the problem areas.
  3. After massaging your face for about 5-10 minutes, wash it with a mild cleanser.

How Often?

Twice a day.

Why This Works

Castor oil is an anti-pigmentation agent that is incredibly efficient. Many people attest to the abilities of castor oil for pigmentation on face and skin. Using castor oil twice in a day will help reduce pigmentation. However, if you have extra oily skin or potent acne, avoid using it as oil worsens these issues.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can use a jade roller to massage castor oil over your face. It helps improve circulation and ensures even application across the face.

2. Castor Oil Face Pack For Pigmentation

Image: IStock

You Will Need

  • Gauze
  • Cling wrap
  • 1 tsp castor oil

Prep Time

2 minutes

Treatment Time

Overnight

Method

  1. To make a castor oil face pack, dab a bit of gauze in castor oil.
  2. Press the gauze onto the scarred area and add a few more drops of castor oil to it.
  3. Wrap the gauze tightly in cling film; make sure it’s not too tight, or it can cut off blood circulation.
  4. Leave it on overnight and remove the gauze in the morning.
  5. Do this regularly for 15 days, and you will be able to see visible reduction in pigmentation.

How Often?

Every day for 15 days.

Why This Works

The castor oil hydrates and nourishes your skin with its fatty acids, reducing pigmentation and imparting even skin tone.

3. Castor Oil And Turmeric For Pigmentation

Image: IStock

You Will Need

Prep Time

2 minutes

Treatment Time

1 hour

Method

  1. Add about half a teaspoon of turmeric (haldi) to a teaspoon of castor oil.
  2. You can thicken the mixture by adding more turmeric or you can keep it thin.
  3. Work the paste evenly onto the skin and leave it on for an hour.
  4. Wash off the paste with lukewarm water.

How Often?

Once a day.

Why This Works

This is one of the most popular home remedies for pigmentation that you can make using castor oil. Turmeric is another excellent ingredient for the treatment of hyperpigmentation. It inhibits excessive melanin production and helps lighten dark spots and pigmentation.

4. Castor Oil And Vitamin E For Pigmentation

Image: IStock

You Will Need

Prep Time

2 minutes

Treatment Time

5 minutes

Method

  1. Pierce the vitamin E capsule and add the oil to a teaspoon of castor oil. Mix well.
  2. Apply this oil mixture onto your face.
  3. Massage your face in upward circular motions, concentrating on the problem areas.
  4. After massaging your face for about 5-10 minutes, wash it with a mild cleanser.

How Often?

Twice a day.

Why This Works

Vitamin E has excellent antioxidant properties that help even out your skin tone and prevent skin damage. This oil mixture you achieve smooth, blemish-free, healthy skin.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can also add fresh aloe vera gel to this mixture to help soothe and hydrate your skin.

5. Castor Oil With Lemon And Honey For Pigmentation

Image: IStock

You Will Need

  • 1 tsp castor oil
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice

Prep Time

2 minutes

Treatment Time

30 minutes

Method

  1. In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients until you get a smooth mixture.
  2. Apply this mixture onto your skin and leave it on for about 30 minutes.
  3. Wash the mask off with lukewarm water and a mild cleanser.

How Often?

Once a day.

Why This Works

Honey is an incredible emollient that acts as a natural moisturizer for your skin. It has excellent skin lightening properties that help control melanin production, effectively treating pigmentation. If you use this face pack regularly, your face will start glowing within a week.

Note:

If you are suffering from acne, it is not a good idea to apply oil on your face as this might worsen the problem. If you have any skin issues that you think might flare up with the use of these treatments, please consult a dermatologist.

These are some of the easiest ways you can use castor oil for skin pigmentation treatment and reduce scars. Castor oil is an excellent tonic for dry, discolored, and scarred skin. But, it is important that you remember most natural remedies need time to treat. The skin repairs itself in around 30 days. So, the efficacy of these face packs will not be apparent immediately. You will need to give them time!

Infographic: 5-Minute Castor Oil Remedy For Skin Pigmentation

Castor oil has been used in organic beauty care for a long time now. Applying castor oil can help even out your skin tone and reduce the appearance of blemishes. It can also help manage pigmentation issues. Unfortunately, though we all know of its benefits, many of us do not have enough time to make and apply a full-fledged castor oil remedy.

So, we have highlighted two of the easiest and quickest castor oil remedies you can try to manage pigmentation. Check out the infographic below to learn more.

5minute castor oil remedy for skin pigmentation (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Save the high-quality PDF version on your device now.

Download Infographic in PDF version Download Infographic
Download Infographic in PDF version

Castor oil helps treat skin pigmentation. This is a proven fact, and several studies show the benefits of using castor oil for skin pigmentation. Castor oil is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids that pierce the scar tissues and pump them out. Thus, it boosts the growth of healthy tissues and hydrates the skin, improving its texture. You may directly apply raw castor oil to your face, prepare castor oil face packs, or mix it with other ingredients like turmeric, vitamin E, lemon, or honey. However, since most natural ingredients take time to show results, you should be patient enough to wait at least a month to notice improved skin health.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I leave castor oil on my face overnight?

Yes, it is safe to leave castor oil on the face overnight.

Can I use castor oil on my skin every day?

It is generally safe to use on the skin every day. However, if you have acne-prone skin or any allergies, it is best to avoid using it or consult your doctor before using it.

How long does it take for castor oil to work on skin pigmentation?

It varies from individual to individual and depends on the frequency of use and the extent of hyperpigmentation. Generally, it may take a couple of weeks to a few months to notice a visible reduction in skin pigmentation.

Can castor oil be used for all skin types to treat pigmentation?

While it is safe for use on most skin types, those with acne-prone or oily skin types may find it too thick and greasy. However, it is recommended to conduct a patch test to avoid any potential skin irritation.

Are there any side effects of using castor oil for skin pigmentation?

According to anecdotal evidence, the use of castor oil may lead to allergic reactions, skin irritation, and blockage of skin pores in some people.

Is it better to use cold-pressed castor oil for skin pigmentation?

Possibly. Due to the lack of heat or the use of chemicals during production, cold-processed oil varieties contain relatively higher levels of nutrients. This may help nourish the skin and help reduce skin pigmentation.

Can castor oil be used for dark circles under the eyes?

Yes, it can help deal with skin pigmentation issues, such as hyperpigmentation, blemishes, dark circles, and dark spots.

Key Takeaways

  • Castor oil contains fatty acids that nourish the skin tissue to reduce pigmentation and improve overall skin texture.
  • You can apply the oil directly to your face and massage it to improve blood circulation.
  • You may also combine castor oil with natural antioxidant-rich ingredients like turmeric and honey to prepare DIY face packs.
  • Do not use the oil on oily or acne-prone skin, as it may clog your pores and worsen the acne.

Discover the amazing benefits of castor oil for reducing skin pigmentation, treating acne, and achieving a clearer complexion. Check out this video!

Personal Experience: Source

References

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. Phenol-castor oil: modified peel for dermal melasma
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16706754/
  2. Antiviral activity of castor oil plant (Ricinus communis) leaf extracts
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33515683/
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