CASTOR SEED OIL
Scientific name: Rincis communis
Origin: Mediterranean Basin
Form: expeller pressed oil
BEST FOR ALL SKIN TYPES, ESPECIALLY BLEMISHED
- base oil
- pigment dispersion
Castor Seed Oil is an anti-inflammatory, a superior humectant and skin conditioner, which creates a protective barrier against the elements. Castor oil provides excellent stability, gloss, and pigment dispersion characteristics. Known for its use in fighting acne.
Castor oil is a vegetable oil obtained by pressing the seeds of the Castor plant (Ricinus communis). The common name "castor oil", from which the plant gets its name, probably comes from its use as a replacement for castoreum, a perfume base made from the dried perineal glands of the beaver (castor in Latin).
Castor oil is a colorless to very pale yellow liquid with a distinct taste and odor once first ingested. Its boiling point is 313 °C (595 °F) and its density is 961 kg/m3. It is a triglyceride in which approximately 90 percent of fatty acid chains are ricinoleate. Oleate and linoleates are the other significant components.
Castor oil and its derivatives are used in the manufacturing of soaps, lubricants, hydraulic and brake fluids, paints, dyes, coatings, inks, cold resistant plastics, waxes and polishes, nylon, pharmaceuticals and perfumes.
Castor oil is famous as a source of ricinoleic acid, a monounsaturated, 18-carbon fatty acid. Among fatty acids, ricinoleic acid is unusual in that it has a hydroxyl functional group on the 12th carbon. This functional group causes ricinoleic acid (and castor oil) to be more polar than most fats. The chemical reactivity of the alcohol group also allows chemical derivatization that is not possible with most other seed oils. Because of its ricinoleic acid content, castor oil is a valuable chemical in feedstocks, commanding a higher price than other seed oils. As an example, in July 2007, Indian castor oil sold for about US$0.90 per kilogram (US$0.41 per pound) whereas U.S. soybean, sunflower and canola oilseeds sold for about US$0.30 per kilogram (US$0.14 per pound).
This hard and shiny oil can be found in most cosmetics, and acts as a barrier agent and protective medium against harsh conditions and extremes. Very soothing to the skin when included into cosmetic applications. Stores well under most conditions. Avoid extreme heat. Castor oil is soluble in alcohol.
Color- Light gold
Acid Value- 0.39
Peroxide Value- 1.55
Iodine Value- 87.18
Hydroxyl Value- 161.31
Specific Gravity (Density)- 0.9569
Average composition of castor seed oil / fatty acid chains
Ricinoleic acid 95 to 85%
Oleic acid 6 to 2%
Linoleic acid 5 to 1%
Linolenic acid 1 to 0.5%
Stearic acid 1 to 0.5%
Palmitic acid 1 to 0.5%
Dihydroxystearic acid 0.5 to 0.3%
Others 0.5 to 0.2%
Alternative medicinal use
In naturopathy castor oil has been promoted as a treatment for a variety of human health conditions. The claim has been made that applying it to the skin can help cure cancer. However, according to the American Cancer Society, "available scientific evidence does not support claims that castor oil on the skin cures cancer or any other disease."
- castor oil: penetrates deep into the skin due to low molecular weight; ricinoleic acid, the main component of castor oil, has powerful anti-inflammatory properties