If you have been keeping tabs on hair trends, you’ve probably seen countless adverts promoting Jamaican Black Castor Oil (JBCO). If not online, you’ve probably seen it in a magazine or at a popular natural hair shop, lined up as one of the best products that promote hair growth. JBCO, has in the recent past become one of the most highly sort after natural hair product.
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What is Jamaican Black Castor Oil?
Jamaican Black Castor Oil is a type of Castor Oil made from roasting the castor beans (ricinus communis)
Castor Oil has several uses other than applying it on your hair. It is used for industrial applications as a lubricant, as an additive in cosmetics and foods and in hair care to promote healthy hair growth. According to a 2012 study, Castor Oil contains high amounts of ricinoleic acid an omega 9 fatty acid which makes it have antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti inflammatory properties.
There are two types of Castor Oil namely; Yellow Castor Oil, made from cold pressing fresh castor beans, and Black Castor Oil, made from roasting the castor beans and then using high temperature heat to extract the oil. The black castor oil is often referred to as the Jamaican Black Castor Oil, mainly because the method of extraction was developed in Jamaica.
Benefits of Jamaican Black Castor Oil on Natural Hair
Hair oils extracted from seeds, nuts or fruits have the ability to give hair a health boost. Jamaican castor oil is not different. Here a few benefits to note.
1. Promotes hair growth
The Jamaican Black Castor Oil is rich in ricinoleic acid (also referred to as the omega-9 fatty acid). This acid is responsible for improving one’s blood circulation to their scalp and this result in hair growth. Additionally, the Jamaican Castor Oil nourishes the scalp thereby strengthening the hair from its roots which alleviates thinning hair thus promoting growth. An important point to note is; the Jamaican Black Castor Oil works for all hair types. It moisturizes, thickens, and strengthens the hair.
2. Prevents splits ends
The Jamaican Castor Oil can be used to heal and prevent split ends. Split ends happen as a result of your hair becoming dry, brittle and frayed either due to extreme weather conditions or bad hair care techniques. JBCO is useful as it moisturizes the hair and helps cure split ends. This is possible mainly because the oil is rich in Omega 9 fatty acids which helps keep the hair moisturized. The black castor oil can also be used to prevent hair loss problems.
3. Prevents itchy scalp and dandruff
A combination of dandruff and an itchy scalp can be so annoying and especially to those with voluminous hair. Jamaican Black Castor Oil is scalp nourishing treatment for dandruff and an itchy scalp. The rich nutrients it contains include Vitamin E, Omega 6 and Omega 9 nutrients which help to keep the hair smooth and moisturized.
4. Improves luster
Jamaican Black Castor Oil is known for is lustrous abilities. According to a 2003 study, castor oil was found to increase hair gloss. Once applied to the scalp, castor oil enhances the health of the hair follicles thus promoting healthy, lustrous hair.
Can you use JBCO as a conditioner?
While castor oil is a natural conditioner, it is heavy and has an unpleasant smell. While you might not use Jamaican Black Castor Oil as the main conditioning agent, the oil can be mixed with your regular deep conditioner to make a powerful mix. Add two table spoons of castor oil to your regular deep conditioner. Apply to the hair and cover with a shower cap and then seat under a steamer for 20-30 minutes. Rinse out, apply leave in and style. The oil will leave the hair looking gorgeous.
Jamaican Castor Oil vs Regular Castor Oil for hair growth
If you are wondering why there’s all the hype about Jamaican black castor oil and not the regular castor oil, which is readily available, it is time to take notes.
The difference between the usual castor oil, and the Jamaican black castor oil, is in the oil extraction methods. For the Jamaican Black Castor Oil extraction, the beans of the castor plant are roasted and ground into a thick paste before being boiled in a pot of hot water. The difference in density between the oil and water, allows the oil to rise to the surface enabling it to be skimmed into individual bottles, which now hold the JBCO. On the other hand, regular castor oil is produced by cold pressing the beans mainly by putting them raw through a press without roasting in high temperatures. The base remains the same. However, ricinoleic acid is present in both oils thus making castor oil equally effective in promoting hair growth and helping with hair loss.
Another outstanding difference is the alkalinity element. The roasting process of the castor oil results in a dark ash which gives black castor oil its rich colour. The ash gives it an alkaline element which increases the friction between the hair cuticles leading to breakage. As such the the oil application should be done at the root and should be followed up with a ‘closure’ routine
How to use Jamaican Black Castor Oil for Hair Growth
Ensure your scalp is clean before applying the black castor oil. To reap off maximum benefits from this oil, use your fingers as the main applicator. Start off by applying the oil to your scalp so as it is richly absorbed into the hair follicles. Massage gently into the scalp to ensure that the oil is well distributed and easily absorbed into the scalp. If you’re interested in using Black Castor Oil for hair growth, besides massaging your scalp, you can also add a few drops of oil into the hair midsection and ends as this will also help protect the hair from breakage.
While there’s no ideal time to use the magic oil, letting it sit in for a while is beneficial. After massaging the scalp with the oil, cover your head with a shower cap to prevent drippings or staining. Let it sit for at least two hours before washing. Alternatively, for maximum benefits, leave the oil to seat overnight.
Additionally, a hot oil treatment using Jamaican Black Castor Oil is recommended once a week. Apply a generous amount of oil and massage it gently into the scalp and then stay under a dryer for up to 15 minutes before rinsing it off.
How often to use Jamaican Black Castor Oil for hair growth
JBCO should not be used too frequently, once a week is the recommended frequency, according to various hair experts. When used more frequently, it raises concerns such as matting or acute hair felting, a rare hair scalp disorder, whereby the hair becomes twisted, entangled as a hard stony mass resembling the birds nest. Castor is heavy oil that is difficult to remove from the hair. Alternative recipes call for diluting it with other plant derived oils such as coconut or jojoba. Combining the oils also helps in diluting its unpleasant smell.
Castor oil is an age old beauty treatment that has been used over the years. There are a countless number of benefits of incorporating the Jamaican Black Castor Oil into your natural hair regimen. Try it! I use the Sunny Isle, Replenish & Rejuvenate as it is readily available in my local store and has worked really well for my hair. You can get this Brand or any other that you like from Amazon on this link.