Castor oil packs have been used to help the body break down scar and tough tissues, as well as to help detoxify the Liver.  Castor oil itself is a moistening herb and can help relieve the sensation of dryness and tightness associated with not enough Blood or lubrication.

Here is my cheat method for easy castor oil “packs”. I prefer this method because it allows you to gently massage the area with a loving touch before applying heat:

  1. Lay on your back, comfortably, on top of a towel (in bed, the couch, on the floor, wherever you can most relax.)
  2. Pour a generous amount of castor oil onto the skin, rub in, let sit a minute then pour more oil so it pools on skin, then cover with an old thin towel
  3. Cover the towel with a piece of parchment paper or another old thin towel
  4. Lay a heating pad over the towel, turn the heating pad on medium (or higher as tolerated, don’t burn yourself)
  5. Check skin after 10 mins, if there is no more oil, apply more – if there is oil, check again in 10 mins.
  6. Apply oil two to three times during the “cheat” method – sitting with the pack on for 30mins.
  7. Store the two towels in a bag, follow with the cycle of three days on, four days off, for at least four weeks. Ensure you are eating whole foods, and drinking enough water to support your body’s processes.
  8. Within your first menstrual flow, you should notice a difference with your period and cramps.
  9. Continue the cycle for three months, if needed. If you do not notice relief by the end of the three months (or see absolutely no improvement after the first cycle), consult with a qualified herbalist for additional support.

I like the “cheat” method because when the towels get stale smelling, or discolored, you can wash them or throw them out.  I’ve used a standard castor oil pack in the past, and much prefer this method because of the self-massage that is involved.

Bonus tip: Castor oil packs are also great applied to sore and tender breasts – you will fell a pulsing sensation, almost like your muscles are twitching.

TCM Patterns most affected with Castor Oil Packs: Liver Qi Stagnation/Qi Stagnation, Blood Stagnation, Cold Stagnation, Blood Deficiency