It should be no surprise that after all the wonderful things I’ve told you about plant-based oils, that I’m writing again about oil and what it can do for your hair. Since all hair is dead above the surface of the skin, you won’t be able to reverse damage or revitalize dead cells. Oils can be absorbed and fill in areas where the outer layer of hair is often missing cells from damage by heat styling or chemical treatments such as permanent dyes and straightening. A hot oil treatment for the hair also benefits the scalp by improving circulation and dissolving buildup from sebum and hair products containing silicones. A quick fix for dry, over processed, or dull locks, a hot oil treatment will do the job.
The best oils for restoring shine and luster to hair:
Olive Oil – penetrates deep and absorbs quickly, with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties for strength and shine;
Castor Oil – contains anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties to strengthen hair and help balance the scalp’s pH; promotes new growth;
Jojoba – contains vitamins A, C & D, its structure is similar to sebum (the natural oil your body produces to protect your skin and scalp);
Coconut Oil – is high in vitamin E and other nutrients that are easily absorbed by the hair, making it shinier, thicker, and healthier; helps prevent itchy scalp and dandruff.
Use any of these oils as a stand-alone treatment or in any combination. To add even more benefits of the treatment, add a few drops of the following essential oils:
Bergamot – to promote hair growth;
Rosemary – stimulates roots and increases circulation;
Lavender – for shine, deep conditioning, and growth;
Geranium – strengthens hair;
Chamomile – adds softness and shine, and soothes the scalp;
Clary Sage – promotes growth and stimulates the scalp.
To mix your hot oil treatment, use about one half ounce to one ounce of oils, depending on hair length and thickness. (Long and thick hair will need up to two ounces of oil.) Use 5 or 6 drops of essential oils per ounce of the oil mixture. You can mix up enough oil for several treatments and store it in a bottle with a tight fitting lid.
Warm the oil by placing the bottle in very hot water and letting it sit for a few minutes. Apply the oil to the scalp, a little at a time, until the scalp is lightly saturated – you don’t have to drench yourself. Massage the oil into your scalp for a few minutes with light circular motions with the pads of your fingertips – you don’t want to scrape or scratch your scalp with your fingernails. Work the oils into your hair by combing with your fingers down through your hair, applying a little extra oil on the ends. Pile your hair on top of your head (if it’s long) and wrap in a towel or put on a shower cap. Leave the oil on your hair for at least 30 minutes, overnight is even better. Wash your hair as usual, and lightly condition it after shampooing.
Enjoy your soft, shiny, healthy hair and scalp!