How To Use Castor Oil For Treating Dandruff

Flakes will be a thing of the past when you use this extraordinary oil regularly.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Meena Konada, MBBS, DDVL Dr. Meena Konada Dr. Meena KonadaMBBS, DDVL facebook_icontwitter_iconlinkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma linkedin_icon Experience: 7 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Ramona Sinha MA (English Literature) linkedin_icon Experience: 11 years
Fact-checked by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) Monomita Chakraborty MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years

Dandruff is a hassle, making the scalp itchy and forcing you to avoid wearing your favorite black tops. Unfortunately, most anti-dandruff products contain chemicals that damage your hair health. A safer alternative is using a natural ingredient like castor oil for treating dandruff.

For ages now, castor oil has been used as a remedy to treat many scalp issues. It is derived from the seeds of the castor plant, which may help treat and control dandruff. Also, this oil contains antifungal properties that can effectively manage any associated scalp infections. Scroll down to know the multiple benefits of using this multi-purpose vegetable oil to treat dandruff. You will also come across the various ways of using castor oil for dandruff.

Why Is Castor Oil Good For Dandruff?

Woman applying castor oil in hair for dandruff
Image: Shutterstock

Castor oil is rich in ricinoleic acid that works as an excellent antimicrobiali  Medicines that slow or stop the growth of microorganisms, such as bacteria, viruses, fungi and protozoans. and fungicidali  Biological organisms or chemical compounds carrying antifungal properties that kill fungi or their spores. agent (1), (2). Such antifungal agents may help treat fungal and scalp infections like seborrheic dermatitis (scaly patches on the scalp) (3).

Dandruff is usually triggered by seborrheic dermatitis that affects the areas rich in sebaceous glands. Seborrheic dermatitis is characterized by skin inflammation, redness, and flakes (4). If your scalp is infected with the Malassezia fungus, you may experience a dry and flaky scalp (5). Also, having dry skin causes white flakes, which, in turn, may result in dandruff (6).

Anecdotal evidence suggests that the omega-9 fatty acids in the castor oil may help moisturize your hair and balance your scalp pH. The oil also reduces scalp dryness and itchiness. It balances oil secretion as well and may reduce dandruff.

Isn’t it fascinating to know that a household oil can help solve a major scalp issue? In the following section, we have listed a few of the DIY castor oil treatments that help treat dandruff.

Best Ways To Use Castor Oil For Treating Dandruff

1. Castor Oil, Aloe Vera Gel, And Tea Tree Oil

Castor and tea tree oils help fight against dandruff (7). Aloe vera gel acts as a soothing agent and reduces scalp itchiness (8).

What You Need

  • Castor oil, 1 ½ tablespoons
  • Aloe vera gel, 3 tablespoons
  • Tea tree oil, 2 to 3 drops


  1. Mix the three oils in a bowl.
  2. Apply the mixture to your scalp.
  3. Leave it on for about 45 minutes.
  4. Cover your head with a shower cap.
  5. Wash with a herbal shampoo.
  6. Follow this routine thrice a week.

2. Castor Oil, Almond Oil, And Rosemary Oil

Woman looking at her scalp in the mirror
Image: Shutterstock

Like castor oil, almond oil also helps prevent dandruff by moisturizing your scalp. Almond oil is rich in vitamin E, which may help moisturize your hair (9), (10). Rosemary oil may exhibit antifungal activity against dandruff (11).

What You Need

  • Castor oil, 1 tablespoon
  • Almond oil, 1 tablespoon
  • Rosemary oil, 2 to 3 drops


  1. Mix the castor and almond oils in a glass bowl.
  2. Heat the mixture in a microwave oven for a few seconds.
  3. Add rosemary oil to the mixture.
  4. Apply this mixture to your hair and scalp. Leave it on overnight.
  5. Follow this routine thrice a week.

3. Castor Oil And Ginger Juice

Ginger juice may seem like a stinky ingredient to put on your hair, but it can do a world of good to your hair. Anecdotal evidence suggests that ginger juice can clear clogged pores and cleanse away dandruff, dirt, and product buildup.

What You Need

  • Castor oil, 2 tablespoons
  • Ginger juice, 2 tablespoons


  1. Mix the castor oil and ginger juice.
  2. Apply this mixture to your scalp.
  3. Leave it on for 30 minutes.
  4. Wash with a herbal shampoo.
  5. Follow this routine thrice a week.

4. Castor Oil And Argan Oil

Woman applying a mixture of argan and castor oils on hair
Image: Shutterstock

Using argan oil on your head can help get rid of your dandruff and give you softer hair. The moisturizing properties of argan oil may help treat dandruff, tame down the frizz, and make your hair look shinier. However, more research is needed in this regard.

What You Need

  • Castor oil, 2 tablespoons
  • Argan oil, 1 tablespoon


  1. Mix the oils in a glass bowl.
  2. Heat the mixture in a microwave for a few seconds.
  3. Apply the mixture to your scalp and hair.
  4. Leave it on overnight.
  5. Wash with a mild shampoo.
  6. Follow this routine twice a week.

5. Castor Oil, Coconut Oil, And Egg

Castor and coconut oils work synergistically well to deep condition your scalp. Coconut oil has a high affinity for hair proteins, and can easily penetrate the hair shaft (12). Its penetrating powers may get the required nutrients into your hair shaft, preventing a dry scalp, hair loss, and dandruff. Research shows that the application of coconut oil may prevent severe dandruff (13). The protein from the egg can nourish your hair and make it soft and shiny (14).

What You Need

  • Castor oil, 1 tablespoon
  • Coconut oil, 1 tablespoon
  • Egg, 1


  1. Whisk the egg, and castor and coconut oils in a bowl.
  2. Apply this mixture to your scalp and hair.
  3. Leave it on for 30 minutes.
  4. Wash with cool water and a mild shampoo.
  5. Follow this routine once a week.

6. Castor Oil And Olive Oil

Olive oil is a renowned natural hair conditioner (15). In contrast to conventional store-bought conditioners that may potentially congest and irritate your scalp, olive oil effectively moisturizes a dry scalp and alleviates flakiness.

What You Need

  • 2 tablespoons of castor oil
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil


  1. Mix both the oils in a bowl.
  2. Heat up the blend slightly to make it lukewarm.
  3. Apply this warm oil blend to your scalp and gently massage it in with your fingertips in small, circular motions.
  4. Leave it on for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  5. Shampoo your hair with your regular shampoo and warm water.
  6. Do a final rinse with cold water.
  7. Use this treatment once a week

Rayna, a blogger, emphasizes the importance of natural oils in hair care, highlighting their benefits for moisturizing, conditioning, and promoting hair health. In one of her blog posts, she writes, “I use this [castor] oil when massaging my daughter’s edges. I also use this on my ends to seal in moisture as it is so thick, it is amazing for the edges and ends of my hair (i).”

This is how you can use castor oil for treating dandruff. It is essential to choose the right castor oil. In the following section, we have listed the parameters you can consider for choosing the right castor oil.

Castor oil can help to get rid of flakes
Image: Shutterstock

How To Choose The Right Castor Oil?

Ensure you choose a cold-pressedi  Extraction of oil or juice using a hydraulic press. Some common cold-pressed oils are coconut oil, olive oil, and sunflower oil. castor oil. Check for parameters like purity and grade. Purchase from authorized sellers. Furthermore, ensure the oil is free from hexane (a chemical solvent used to extract oil from the seeds).

  • Oil Purity

Always look for 100% pure castor oil free of chemicals, toxins, artificial ingredients, fragrances, flavorants, and alcohol. These ingredients may dry your scalp out and even irritate it.

  • Oil Grade

Castor oil is available in two grades AA standard or pale-pressed, and imported. The pale-pressed variant is also known as virgin oil and is processed by pressing the seeds. It is further cold-pressed to get high-quality refined castor oil. Whereas the imported oil variant is prepared by mixing the first batch of pressed seeds with the next batch of seeds.

  • Oil Certification

It is another important parameter while choosing castor oil. Always look for that oil with the USDA Certified Organic label. It signifies the oil does not contain any synthetic ingredients.

protip_icon Did You Know?
There are numerous varieties of castor oil on the market. The most popular ones are Jamaican black castor oil and regular castor oil.

Though castor oil helps treat dandruff, excess use may lead to certain adverse effects. Find out more in the next section.
Woman with dandruff on black T-shirt
Image: Shutterstock


Limited research is available on the adverse effects of castor oil. But some anecdotal evidence suggests that castor oil is generally safe for dandruff treatment. However, you could experience some side effects if you are allergic to it (skin redness, itching, swelling, and a burning sensation). Furthermore, it may cause acute hair feltingi  A rare scalp hair disorder that causes densely tangled hair. It is a common side effect of using castor oil. if not mixed with carrier oils (1). Do a patch test by applying a little castor oil to your forearm. Leave it on for 24 hours to check if you are allergic to it.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Use caution while applying castor oil to your hair as it is a staining substance that can leave long-lasting stains on clothes.

Infographic: 5 Amazing Ways To Use Castor Oil For Dandruff

Although dandruff is not a serious health concern, it can disrupt the quality of your daily life and affect your mental health. No one wants to be constantly thinking about the irritating flakes on their scalp and shoulders. But, don’t worry. Castor oil may help. Check out the infographic below to learn more.

5 amazing ways to use castor oil for dandruff (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Castor oil has long been used to treat various scalp problems and is often incorporated in numerous natural remedies. It is made from the seeds of the castor plant, and it can aid dandruff control and acts as a scalp treatment. Castor oil has antifungal and antioxidant qualities, making it useful for treating dandruff and other scalp problems. Follow the simple methods mentioned above for treating dandruff with castor oil. Improve your hair care routine by adding a few drops of any essential oil, like tea tree oil or peppermint oil, to castor oil to further combat dandruff. However, excessive use of this oil may result in negative side effects. We recommend that you run a patch test first. If you develop any sensitivities, stop using it and talk to your doctor about other options.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I leave castor oil overnight?

Yes, you can leave castor oil in your hair overnight to enhance your hair growth and make your hair stronger and healthier.

Do you put castor oil on wet or dry hair?

It does not matter if your hair is damp or dry as long as you apply castor oil to clean hair. Nevertheless, damp hair tends to absorb oils better.

Does castor oil regrow hair?

Castor oil has not been proven to have any significant effect on hair growth. Some people claim that applying castor oil once a week can promote growth that is 3 to 5 times the average rate. However, there is no scientific proof to back this up.

Does castor oil darken hair?

Anecdotal evidence suggests that using castor oil regularly can make your hair appear darker. It is also regarded as a fantastic method of reducing the rate of premature graying. However, there is no scientific evidence to support this.

Key Takeaways

  • Castor oil contains antifungal and antioxidant properties that can be beneficial for dealing with scalp infections like dandruff.
  • When it comes to the DIY treatment of dandruff, you can combine this natural remedy with other ingredients such as argan oil, aloe vera, or ginger juice.
  • Consider the purity and grade of cold-pressed castor oil when purchasing to get the most out of it.
Castor Oil For Treating Dandruff

Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

Embark on a journey to dandruff-free hair with this video on castor oil. Click on it to discover its nourishing properties and scalp benefits for a healthier, flake-free mane.

Personal Experience: Source


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. Characterization and evaluation of antibacterial and antiproliferative activities of crude protein extracts isolated from the seed of Ricinus communis in Bangladesh
  2. Synthesis and evaluation of antioxidant and antifungal activities of novel ricinoleate-based lipoconjugates of phenolic acids
  3. Role of antifungal agents in the treatment of seborrheic dermatitis
  4. Adult Seborrheic Dermatitis
  5. Malassezia€”Can it be Ignored?
  6. A New Postulate on Two Stages of Dandruff: A Clinical Perspective
  7. Treatment of dandruff with 5% tea tree oil shampoo
  8. Medicinal and cosmetological importance of Aloe vera
  9. Genotypic and Environmental Effects on Tocopherol Content in Almond
  10. Effects of Tocotrienol Supplementation on Hair Growth in Human Volunteers
  11. Antifungal activity of different essential oils against Malassezia pathogenic species
  12. Hair Cosmetics: An Overview
  13. Association of Malassezia species with dandruff
  14. Nutrition of women with hair loss problem during the period of menopause
  15. Ethnopharmacological survey of home remedies used for treatment of hair and scalp and their methods of preparation in the West Bank-Palestine
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Dr. Meena Konada

Dr. Meena KonadaMBBS, DDVL

Dr. Meena Konada is a board-certified dermatologist with 9 years of experience. She is a public health nutrition graduate from New Jersey, USA. She specializes in aesthetics and trichology and is a practicing consultant in one of the internationally renowned skin clinics in Hyderabad, India. She believes in a holistic and patient-centric approach to develop customized treatment plans for full bio

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