DIY Hair Growth Serum with Castor Oil and Aloe Vera (Good for Lashes and Brows Too)

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(This post contains affiliate links.)

I’ve made this hair mask dozens of times, and this mix is my favorite. Castor oil, while effective, is very, very thick, and if you have finer hair or an oily scalp, getting it out could take 3-4 (obnoxious) washes. But, I’ve found a way to remedy this by adding in about twice as much aloe, and about half as much olive oil (per castor oil). I decided to use fresh aloe leaves which I found at a Mexican market near my house. Store bought aloe gel will work just as well. Cutting up your own aloe is a little bit more work in this case, but worth it. I got about 3/4 of a cup of gel from this one leaf and it’s super fresh and practically tasteless. One video I watched described fresh aloe taste as sort of a slimy cucumber. That’s about right. Years ago I read the bitter flavor from the aloe comes from this yellow film that sticks to the edges of leaves, which comes out as a reaction to being cut. Think of it as sort of an epoxy or glue for this healing plant to self-heal. So if you can avoid the yellow parts (which you can, especially on larger leaves) then you can avoid the entire sour, bitter taste that is sometimes associated with traditional aloe vera products, and easily add the extra from your leaves to your morning smoothie or smoothie bowls, after sun care, and other face mask recipes. Note that fresh aloe needs to be stored in the refrigerator and will keep up to 10 days, adding a little bit of citric acid can help extend the life of this plant, but it cannot be stored on your counter top like conventional Aloe Vera gels which contain preservatives. That said, the cooling, after sun soothing effects of this plant are magnified by keeping it stored in the fridge. If you come home with a sunburn, or just skin is just a little fatigued from being outdoors all day, you’ll be glad you have it around. I’ve been using a few teaspoons a day just as a preventative measure to prevent any damage, redness, or inflammation on my skin in the summertime.

Here’s what you’ll do:

How to cut your aloe vera (if using fresh)

  • Trim the narrow edge off at the top of the leaf, think how you trim asparagus or snap peas, cut off the excess that is basically too chewy to eat.

  • Trim off roughly an inch and a half off of the bottom.

  • Trim approximately half an inch off of the sides, where the spikes are. You should now have a long leaf with no edges left.

  • Taking a cheese knife or very sharp medium sized knife, begin cutting from the top or the bottom of the leaf. I started at the top. You’ll want to stay about an eight of an inch away from the skin. Once you cut a few inches in you should be able to pull the skin of the aloe naturally to the end, or keep cutting.

  • Do the same on the other side, until you’re only left with the inner leaf.

  • From there you’ll pop your aloe in a blender and blend roughly 30 seconds. You’ll have a frothy mix of fresh aloe gel, ready to use for anything you want.

  • Store in the refrigerator, keeps for 10 days

Note: It may sound a little involved, but trust me, it’ll take 5 minutes, and once you’re used to it — it’s like peeling any other fruit or vegetable.

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“The reason aloe is used for hair growth may be that it is rich in proteolytic enzymes, which heal dead skin cells while encouraging the growth of new skin cells on the scalp.” - Woman’s World


“Aloe has a similar pH level to your hair's natural pH level, a high water content, and is filled with vitamins and minerals. Aloe contains 75 active ingredients like essential amino acids and minerals like copper and zinc that have been clinically proven to help with healthy hair and hair growth." - Elle


According to University of Hawaii researchers, we can trace the use of Aloe Vera for hair loss back to the ancient Egyptians. In fact, Aloe Vera contains enzymes that directly promote healthy hair growth. These proteolytic enzymes are able to eradicate dead skin cells on the scalp that could be clogging the hair follicle, not allowing for the proper penetration of nutrients in the hair. - Simply Organic Beauty


castor oil can in fact be useful in certain cases of hair loss. castor oil in general, unlike most other oils, which can veer mostly fatty, castor oil has a nutritional makeup composed of a powerful mix of proteins, vitamins, fatty acids, and antioxidants (aka the internal workings of all the buzziest hair supplements on the market). Thus, it comes as no surprise the oil is a wonderful way to nurture the scalp and fragile hair follicles while simultaneously encouraging healthier, faster hair growth. - BYRDIE


Castor oil can be used on the scalp to help prevent and remedy hair loss and it is effective at this for several reasons. Its antibacterial and antifungal properties make it beneficial against follliculitus, dandruff, and scalp infections and its ricinoleic acid content helps increase circulation to the scalp and improve hair growth. - Wellness Mama


“It leaves the hair brighter also due to its high concentration of antioxidants. it’s also rich with proteins and other nourishing minerals, which help to strengthen hair and over time and with repeated use make it stronger.” - Well + Good

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Here’s what you’ll need:

DIY Hair Growth Serum with Castor Oil and Aloe Vera


  • Warm up castor and olive oils on top of a kettle or over warm water. This makes castor oil much easier to blend.

  • Add in Aloe Vera and stir well or mix in blender.

  • Add in peppermint oil for a cooling effect on your scalp. If you plan on using this mix around your brows or eyelashes leave out the peppermint oil, or warm up a few drops in your hands and work through hair.

  • Section off hair in four pieces, and apply mix starting at the scalp and working down to the ends. Note: It’s smart when using new or homemade remedies to patch test on your wrist or the back of the hairline, just in case.

  • Leave mix on your hair, Brows, and/or Lashes for 30 minutes before washing and conditioning as usual.

  • Use twice a week for best results.

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