It wasn’t that long ago when people thought that applying oils to their hair was a fad. And rightly so! It wasn’t until recently that Westerners, especially Americans started oiling their hair, but people in the East have been doing this for over 5000 years.
Hair oiling is simple and inexpensive too. All you need to do is pour oil into your hair and massage it well enough to let the oil seep into the scalp. This can also increase the moisture, shine, and thickness of your hair as well.
Depending on which oil you use on your hair, you can get a lot of nutrition into your hair as well. Oils can not only help improve the condition of your hair but actively helps to improve inflammation, and dry skin, and has antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties.
What are the benefits of applying hair oil?
According to PubMed Central, oiling your hair can drastically reduce hygral fatigue and can play an important role in protecting you against the daily wear and tear on your hair. Oils can also improve your scalp.
People with alopecia regularly apply oil to their hair as some forms of alopecia can form scabs with blood clots on them. Applying oil to the scalp and gently massaging it while exfoliation can improve those conditions and also work to reduce hair fall.
As we will also discuss more in detail, oils contain fatty acids which can replace lipids in your hair. Lipids play a crucial role in making the hair look and feel healthy and protect you from damage and breakage. Other than that, oiling your hair all the way to the ends can also strengthen the hair shaft and reduce frizz.
However, for those with already oily hair and scalps, the oil can clog up the pores which can lead to more problems than solutions, such as greasy and dull hair. For those with oily hair and skin, avocado oil can be of relief as it’s extremely light and doesn’t feel as greasy as other oils.
Vegetable Oil vs. Essential Oils
Vegetable oils are also known as fatty oils, base oils, or carrier oils. They are mostly extracted from nuts, seeds, berries, flowers, or leaves. They also tend to be a lot greasier and oilier than their counterpart, essential oils.
Essential oils are typically extracted from various plants, including flowers, trees, grasses, leaves, and roots. They can also be extracted from things like leaves, berries, resin, cones, firewood, needles, rhizomes, fruits, and shells.
Plants use these essential oils to send a strong aroma to signal to pollinators or to ward off predators. However, essential oils can also be extremely concentrated. Some oils may cause some people to suffer from skin irritation and allergies. So typically, essential oils are usually mixed with a carrier oil for better results.
Comparison of hair oils for your hair
Of course, the kind of hair oil you use for your natural hair depends on a lot of factors. Starting from the type of hair you have to what kind of results you want to get. With that in mind, let’s look into the five different oils that can add value to your life and nutrition to your hair almost immediately.
#1. Coconut Oil
- Did you know that coconut oils contain medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) which provide nutrients for the hair and the body if digested? Some studies found that around 50% of the MCFAs in coconut oil play a role in the oil’s anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and anti-fungal
- Its anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties can also prevent yeast infections.
- Some evidence also points to how coconut oil can prevent and treat mild to moderate cases of chronic skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis and improve certain skin conditions such as eczema.
- Coconut oil contains lauric acid that has a high affinity for hair protein that along with the structure of the oil allows it to seep through the hair shaft and into the follicles. This prevents the hair from damage that is caused due to protein loss and ultraviolet (UV) exposure.
- Coconut oil contains the following nutrients and minerals: Lauric acid, Myristic acid, Palmitic acid, Monounsaturated fats, Polyunsaturated fats, Plant sterols, and Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs).
- It is also safe and effective as a moisturizer for many conditions, such as xerosis and rough and dry skin, but it’s also a great moisturizer even if you don’t have any skin conditions. It is a proven method to reduce dandruff, dermatitis, and psoriasis as well.
- According to the Journal of Medicinal Food, it was found that virgin coconut oil is the best option for killing bacteria, viruses, and fungi when applied anywhere on your body, including the scalp, as it contains lauric acid compared to unrefined coconut oil.
- The antioxidants in virgin coconut oil can also improve arthritis symptoms in individuals.
- The attributes and qualities of coconut oil mentioned above can also help you grow longer and shinier hair.
- Coconut oil can reduce everyday wear and tear if applied consistently and regularly.
- Some uncommon benefits of coconut oil are that it can prevent lice and hair loss.
When to apply:
It’s best to apply coconut oil to your hair just before or after washing it. This reduces protein loss from your hair as mentioned before. Applying it before or after a shower also reduces the damage done on it while washing the hair as well.
This is because water can change the structure of your hair when you wet your hair. Secondly, applying oil after washing your hair can also make the hair softer and smoother, reducing friction. So it makes it less likely for the hair to break as well.
You can also use coconut oil as a conditioner by combing your hair from the mid-section to the ends with a small amount of coconut oil. Simply apply it after shampooing your hair.
Another way to use the oil is to apply it after shampooing and conditioning but just before brushing or combing your hair. Finally, it is the perfect oil for scalp treatment. Make sure to apply a little bit of the oil on your scalp right before bed and massage it. Then, leave it overnight and wash it away in the morning.
#2. Avocado Oil
Avocado oil is one of the few lightweight oils that you can apply on your hair for styling purposes. It can be absorbed into the hair faster than other oils and works best with curly, frizzy, or coily hair.
- Avocado oil is composed of vitamins, antioxidants, and monounsaturated fats. According to a paper on the National Library of Medicine, vegetable oils can coat the hair follicles in the scalp to prevent damage to the base of the hair and to prevent hair breakage as the hair grows longer. Monosaturated fats, contained in avocado oils, are better able to penetrate deep inside the hair follicles as well.
- Avocado oil can help keep the skin on the scalp moisturized and hydrated. That removes dandruff and stops the hair from flaking and drying out.
- Avocado oil can help with reducing breakage while brushing or tying up your hair.
- Detangling your hair has never been easier as avocado oil can lubricate your hair. All you need to do is apply the oil to the end of your hair. Just coating the ends with a small amount of oil can make your hair smoother for combing and brushing. Combining avocado oil with a wide-toothed comb can also detangling easier and also help spread the oil evenly across the hair.
- Avocado oil can also offer protection from damage from the environment. If you’re traveling or live in a big city, you’re bound to come across pollution, be under the sun, or visit the sea or the swimming pool. Avocado oil can offer protection from all of this, all with a thin layer of avocado oil.
When to apply:
Avocado oil is best applied twice a day. As part of a routine, you should apply it in the morning and once again, at night.
You can use avocado oil for scalp massages. For scalp massages to work out, heat a little bit of the oil, separate the hair and apply it bit by bit over the scalp. Then massage the head in small circular motions.
You can also use avocado oil as a conditioner in the same way you would use coconut oil as a conditioner, which is mentioned above.
#3. Jamaican Black Castor Oil
The Jamaican Black Castor Oil heavier compared to other oils. As mentioned before, an excess of it it could easily clog up your follicles and make your hair feel heavy and hot. However, you can apply extremely small amounts of it to reap all the benefits of this Castor oil.
- Jamaican Black Castor Oil can work with hair of all types and textures.
- JBCO can also improve acne-prone areas and other skin infections. It has naturally occurring antibacterial and antifungal properties.
- It can help grow hair in patchy areas in a short time.
- It can be easily absorbed the scalp, so you don’t have to worry about staining your pillow or clothes.
- It can prevent hair breakage, dandruff, eczema, and dry and itchy scalp.
- It contains qualities to moisturize, thicken, and increase hair growth.
- JBCO can also work to strengthen the hair thanks to the omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids it contains. It also works on thin hair that appears thicker and fuller.
- As if all that wasn’t enough, it can also increase blood flow to the scalp and allows nutrients to travel deep into the hair follicles.
- It can heal and prevent split ends and also detangle your hair smoothly without all the fuss.
- JBCO can also stop the growth of scar tissue thereby making scars a little bit invisible. It can even heal scars that aren’t old and deep.
- Unlike, other oils coconut oil can also be applied to eyelashes, eyebrows, and beards as well.
- The omega-9 fatty acids can help control the production of sebum which protects the skin. Too much or too little sebum can essentially cause dry skin and acne.
When to apply:
Take a small amount of the oil and apply it to the roots and scalp of your head just before going to bed. Make sure to properly massage it.
You should also use JBCO as a hot oil treatment at least once a week. For this, take a large amount, enough to cover the whole head and all of your hair, and massage it into the scalp and hair. Cover the hair with a plastic cap and let it rest for 15 to 30 minutes. Then, rinse it off with some cold water.
As mentioned before, you can also apply JBCO on your eyebrows, eyelash, and beards. Apply a small amount of it right before going to bed at night on any of the places you have patchy hair. However, for beards apply 6 to 8 drops every day and massage the oil properly.
#4. Jojoba Oil
Jojoba oil is one of the most popular carrier oils right now. It is also consistent in structure to the natural oils that are produced by the scalp, making it one of the best oils to moisturize your hair. Jojoba is quickly absorbed by your hair as well so forget about feeling oily and greasy with this one.
- Jojoba oil provides rich nutrition as it is extracted from jojoba seeds by cold-pressing.
- It contains vitamins and anti-inflammatory properties. The anti-inflammatory properties help with improving eczema and psoriasis.
- It contains vitamins A and E, and omega-6 fatty acids which aid in its moisturizing properties.
- It has a similar structure and composition to sebum, which provides natural moisturization of the skin and the hair by acting in place of the sebum.
- Jojoba oil has a longer shelf life due to its composition being stable.
- It can prevent premature aging thanks to it being rich in vitamin E and improving skin texture, tone, and elasticity.
- Jojoba oils contain docosanol that can help with reducing cold sores thanks to its inhibiting effects on the virus that causes cold sores.
- It can remove dandruff thanks to the palmitic and stearic acid in it. Both the acids are great for conditioning and protecting the hair.
- It promotes hair thickness and hair growth thanks to vitamin B and C, zinc, and copper found in the oil. Zinc is important for tissues in the hair to grow and is also great for the surrounding oil glands.
- It prevents premature gray hair thanks to the copper found in it, as well as the vitamin E and C.
When to apply:
For skin problems, even on the scalp, apply a couple of drops of the oil on the area you want to do it consistently once or twice a day.
You can also use jojoba oil as a conditioner. Simply take a small amount of the oil and apply it to the scalp and the hair strands only after you shampoo your hair.
For removing dandruff, it’s best to apply jojoba oil 20 minutes before shampooing. You could follow this by conditioning your hair with jojoba oil as well.
To benefit from its strengthening qualities and prevent hair loss, you can also apply a few drops of it on the scalp and leave it overnight.
#5. Grapeseed Oil
Grapeseed oil is perfect for curly hair. It’s also best to use on hair that is hard to manage and is comparatively lightweight.
- Grapeseed oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids.
- Grapeseed oil works for almost all hair types and is especially beneficial for those with thin and fine hair.
- It carries antioxidants, such as vitamin E, flavonoids, linoleic acid, and OPCs which help with hair growth and vitality.
- Linoleic acid in grapeseed oil is known to be a natural remedy for baldness.
- It can help elevate rashes, acne, and premature aging as well.
- Some important studies show it has natural moisturizing properties and can hydrate the hair without feeling greasy due to its lightweight texture.
- It can smoothen the hair and prevent split ends or frizzy hair.
- It can prevent the production called DHT which helps weak hair follicles to strengthen and can turn back hair loss and thinning.
- Grapeseed oil can also reduce dandruff due to its rich nutrients and balsamic properties.
- It can strengthen weak hair and reinstate shine thanks to its rich quantities of omegas, vitamin E, and antioxidants.
- Due to containing high amounts of phenolic compounds it can also protect the hair from UV rays as well.
- It can also help restore shine and vibrancy to dull and dry hair.
- Grapeseed oil can also help with decreasing the visibility of scars, remove makeup, lightening the skin, and tightening pores thanks to its rich omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acid contents.
- It can also help reduce stress and anxiety if used for aromatherapy and aromatherapy massage.
When to apply:
Apply a few tablespoons of grapeseed oil into your hair and scalp and massage it all over before shampooing. You can apply it at night just before going to sleep.
Grapeseed oil can also be used easily as a conditioner just like the other oils mentioned above as well as for scalp treatments. When used for conditioning, make sure to add only a small drop grapeseed oil before shampooing. If you’re using it for scalp treatments, apply a few drops into your scalp and massage it two times a week.
As you can see, the oils can add so much nutrition and benefits for your hair depending on your needs and the type of hair. Applying hair oils regularly will solve a lot of problems like dry hair and scalp, breakage, split ends, and much more. The best way to find out which oil is the perfect solution for you is by trial and error. To reap all the benefits of the oils listed here follow the guidelines on the label of the oil you buy and the directions that have been provided here.
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