5 Oils That Are Perfect For Self-Care For Your Hair
Oiling our hair is a part of the 5000 year old Ayurvedic tradition that has regenerative properties and is relaxing for the mind and body.
Massaging your scalp and oiling your strands or the good old champi (Did you know that the word shampoo has come from our very own Champi) is now being recognized by beauty and wellness practitioners world over as the ultimate in self-care – one that helps your hair too in many ways.
This age-old practice (part of 5000 year old Ayurvedic tradition) has regenerative properties and is relaxing for the mind and body. According to hair care expert and stylist Najeeb-Ur Rehman, “Hair oiling and massaging the scalp gently helps to stimulate the roots and improve circulation in the scalp. It is ideal for reviving chemically damaged, dry and brittle hair. And not to forget, the simple act of massaging your scalp is so relaxing especially when you are stressed.”
Oiling your hair at least twice a week is ideal for keeping your strands in top shape. Rehman recommends oiling very dry and breakage prone hair and keeping it overnight. This not only protects weak, damaged strands but also seals rough hair cuticles and reduce the appearance of split ends.
How Hair Oils Benefit Your Hair
Hair oil whether in its raw, pure form or infused with herbs and essential oils offers multiple benefits. Massaging your head twice or thrice a week improves circulation to the scalp that strengthen the roots. In fact, if you are looking for shiny, soft strands then smooth on some oil on your strands, keep overnight and wash off the next morning. It is the oldest known hair conditioner.
If you want to revive dull, breakage-prone strands, weekly hot oil treatment is what you should aim for. Regular scalp massage with warm oil also alleviates dry, itchy, irritated scalp condition.
Even if you are not plagued by any hair issues, it is a good idea to oil your scalp and hair to nourish the roots and improve hair texture.
Different Oils And How To Use
When choosing a hair oil for your hair type, Rehman suggests picking up natural, cold-pressed oils. “They are rich in minerals, vitamins and essential fatty acids that form protective layer on the strands, improving tensile strength of your hair. They help all hair types,” he adds.
Extracted from the fresh coconut meat, coconut oil contains high levels of omega 3 that penetrate easily into skin and hair. It is rich in saturated fats, vitamin E and antioxidants that strengthen strands and soothe scalp. Pick up extra-virgin, cold-pressed variant as that is gentle on your hair and is one of the best kinds if you want thick lush hair. Treating your hair twice a week with coconut oil will help protect it against damage and keep it looking healthy and shiny.
Who is it suited for: Coconut oil is ideal for dry, dull, damaged hair and dehydrated scalp. It helps to repair brittle strands and soothe dry, irritated scalp. It helps to add shine to dull hair too. It nourishes weak roots and helps to minimise the appearance of split ends and damaged strands. Since, coconut oil can solidify at room temperature, you can heat it up lightly before applying.
How to Use: If you haveoily scalp and dry hair then apply to the strands avoiding the roots. Massage the scalp and hair. Shampoo off after half an hour. Avoid keeping it on for longer. If your scalp and hair both are dry, then apply to your hair and the roots. Massage well using circular motion. Leave it on for at least 30 minutes. You can also keep it overnight. Wash off with a gentle shampoo.
Almond oil is extracted from the kernels of the nut. It contains vitamins A, B & E, fatty acids, proteins, antioxidants, and minerals like magnesium that strengthen weak strands and moisturise the scalp. It seals the cuticles and forms a protective layer on the strands that prevents breakage. It also helps to stimulate the circulation to the roots and helps to slow down hair loss and promote growth. You can even add this pure pressed oil to your diet to sustain your hair from inside.
Who is it suited for: It is ideal for dry and damaged hair, and hair that grows slowly. It is also good for those with dry and sensitive scalp and colour treated hair. It is lightweight and gives hair softness and movement. Helps to make hair stronger and longer.
How to use: Since it is a lightweight oil, it does not clog the roots so this oil can be left overnight. Warm the oil very lightly and massage it onto your scalp. Leave it overnight and wash out in the morning. If you have very curly, wavy or brittle hair, this oil can be used as a post wash serum. Towel-dry your hair, rub few drops of almond oil in your palms and smooth it out through the length. Comb with wide-toothed comb and let hair air dry. It will be smooth, shiny and manageable.
Olive oil is derived from the olive fruit and is a rich and versatile oil that is highly moisturising. It has protective and repairing properties. It contains antioxidants, vitamin E & K, omega 3 & 6 fatty acids that prevent damage and soothe dry strands and scalp. It helps to shield the hair cuticle from damage and prevent moisture loss from the scalp. So that you hair looks nourished and smooth. It has deep conditioning properties. It protects hair from damage caused by styling tools and gives hair a sleek, smooth finish. It is a heavier oil, so people with limp or thin hair should not keep the oil on for long as it can drag down your hair.
Who is it suited for It is ideal for damaged, dull, frizzy hair. It soothes dandruff prone scalp and prevents flakes from appearing on the scalp.
How to use: Use this oil as a weekly deep conditioning treatment. Massage in enough quantity of olive oil on your scalp and strands. Keep on for half hour and wash off thoroughly with a clearing shampoo. You can combine lemon juice to this oil to fight dandruff and calm itchy scalp. Helps to restore scalp’s natural pH balance.
Popularly known as Moroccan oil, it is extracted from the nut of the argan trees. It is lightweight and is rich in vitamin E and linoleic and oleic acid that protects thin, flyaway hair without weighing them down. It nourishes greasy scalp without making hair greasy or oily. Protects hair from breakage and smoothens out frizzy, coarse and curly hair. It makes hair soft and manageable. It is a natural UV filter and protects strands from photodamage and discoloration. Gives hair shine and movement.
Who is it suited for: It is ideal for those with greasy scalp and frizzy, flyaway strands. It protects hair from damage due to styling products and heating tools. Also light enough to shield chemically treated hair.
How to use: Since it is very lightweight it can be used almost daily. You also need to use very little shampoo to rinse off this oil. Acts as an amazing conditioner for greasy hair. It can be used as a leave-in conditioner for dry, curly, and wavy hair. Just rub a few drops of this oil between your palms and smooth over your damp and washed strands to prevent frizz and keep hair in place.
When natural roots, barks, seed and herbs are added to pure oils, they become blended oils that can be used to target specific hair problems.
Amla Hair Oil: It is a blend of natural oils like coconut, almond oil or olive oil with amla or Indian gooseberry extract. It is rich in vitamin C and can be used to fight dandruff and protect hair from damage.
Bhringraj Hair Oil: It is a blend of natural oils and bhringraj (a herb from the daisy family). It restores strength to weak strands and improves circulation to the roots which in turn helps to renew hair growth. It is suitable for those who suffer from hair loss, breakage or slow growth.
Onion Seed Hair Oil: It is a blend of natural oils and black onion seed. It is ideal for hair growth and dandruff prone scalp. Softens hair and improves hair strength. It improves scalp metabolism and stimulate the root for better growth.