Essential oils are far more than just sweet smelling, they can also provide a myriad of benefits in skin and hair alike. Just like the skin care products I was applying to my face; I was as equally worried about the products I was using to wash my hair. Many commercial hair care products contain harmful chemicals like preservatives, fragrance oils, and other synthetics that causes dryness, make your hair brittle and irritate your scalp… owch! My hair is blonde, very fine, with dry ends and an oily scalp. So, I’ve always struggled with finding the perfect all-round product for my hair, and I was constantly switching products and routines to find the perfect formula. With a few of my own tests at home, I finally found some combinations that do the trick, and I am avoiding a lot of hidden nasty chemicals often found in commercial hair care products.
Everyone’s hair is different so it’s important to see what works for you by trying them out and learning for yourself. I’m not promising that you’ll wake up with Rapunzel-like hair overnight, but they can keep hair strong with less breakage, resulting in healthier, longer hair. Note that this list isn’t comprehensive, but rather five of my personal favourites just to get you started.
What are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are derived from the seeds, roots, fruit, stems, bark, leaves, grasses and flowers of plants and trees and are highly concentrated. Each one has different fragrance and therapeutic qualities and benefits, from treating insect bites, to reducing anxiety and aiding hair health. Essential oils can help you improve the health of your hair with very little risk of side effects at an affordable price point. When used in haircare formulations, the benefits can include:
- An increase hair growth, strength and shine
- Increases blood circulation, stimulating hair roots
- Balances sebum production
- Cleans and cleanses the skin
- Kills and clears harmful microbes
- Deodorises and makes hair smell amazing (Hard to explain the scents, you’ve just got to try them for yourself!)
5 Essential Oils for Hair Health
- Lavender: Gentle and relaxing.Soothes the scalp and deeply conditions the hair. Helps to control dandruff and adds shine.
- Rosemary: Stimulates hair roots, increases circulation improving hair growth and thickness. Helps to control dandruff and dry scalp
- Chamomile: adds shine, softens your hair and soothes your scalp.
- Peppermint: cooling and calming. Excellent for oily hair and scalps, stimulates and promotes the health of hair follicles.
- Geranium: strengthens and nourishes the hair with amino acids, promotes hair growth (I love the aroma of my hair after using this oil!).
How to Use Essential Oils for Hair
Because essential oils are so concentrated, a little goes a long way. You’ll only need a couple of drops for each application, and it is crucial that you mix essential oils with a carrier oil. My personal favourite carrier oils for my hair are, Jojoba Oil, Grapeseed Oil, Coconut Oil and Argan Oil. If you don’t have a carrier oil, you can mix a couple of drops with your regular shampoo or conditioner. Because essential oils are so concentrated, a little goes a long way. You’ll only need a couple of drops for each application, and it is crucial that you mix essential oils with a carrier oil.
Carrier Oil Method: Dip the fingers into the oil mixture and massage into the scalp to stimulate blood flow, then make your way to the ends of your hair. Depending on my hair wash routine, I sometimes like to leave my oil mix overnight, this allows the max time for the oils to fully penetrate the strands, otherwise you can leave it on for 30 minutes and shampoo and condition as usual. I generally do this method twice a week, but see what works best for your hair texture.
Shampoo Method: Add one drop of essential oil to a small handful of your shampoo, massage it into your scalp, and wash your hair as normal. Apply several times a week.
Bonus Hair Health Tip: Use Rose Water as a final hair rinse for ultra-hydration.
Go a Step Further in Your Natural Hair Care Routine
Why not try your hand at making your own natural shampoo bar? If you love zero-waste living and want to reduce plastic (approx one 100g bar = three regular bottles of regular shampoo) try these fabulous shampoo bars. Grab my freebie below and start making your own natural solid shampoo! You can also play around with the oils to customize them to your own particular hair requirements. Enjoy!
Essential Oil Safety
Essential oils are 100% natural and very beneficial for your hair, however they’re also highly concentrated so it’s essential that they are diluted with another product like a carrier oil (carrier oils and essential oils are not the same), shampoo or conditioner. Never use them directly on your skin (including your scalp) as this can cause skin irritations. Keep essential oils away from your eyes, mouth, ears and nose. If irritation does occur, consult your doctor as soon as possible. Some essential oils are not suitable for pregnant women or children so do your research first. Please follow the correct safety advice for any ingredient type you are using.
The essential oils listed in this article are available for purchase at Eco Modern Essentials.