For all the modern advances in Science, there is yet to be a synthetic substance that can replace a natural product with more benefits and no disadvantage. Case in point is coconut oil for hair.
Try scouring through your neighborhood supermarket racks for hair care products. You’ll discover that most of them, if not all, contain coconut oil as listed in the label. Other chemicals and formulations are also included in the list and have useful value, but since they are not natural ingredients, their health safety is suspect.
You’ll also notice that mixing coconut oil in commercial hair care products is just done in small amounts. This does not maximize the benefits of the oil. Better use pure virgin coconut oil for hair care to get maximum benefits and safe use, even for children.
The oil is rich in fatty acids that nourish and moisture the scalp and hair without depleting your budget. Coconut oil is the natural and most effective product to combat the two most problematic hair conditions – Dandruff and lice, among other hair problems.
What You Need to Know About Coconut Oil for Hair
It may never have crossed your mind that the versatile oil, although still growing in popularity, has already been a staple hair care product way back in ancient Polynesian cultures as recorded in historical papers of the Polynesian Cultural Center in Oahu, Hawaii. It was in 1999, in a study published in the “Journal of Cosmetic Science”, that the beneficial properties of coconut oil were seriously and scientifically scrutinized. The study particularly highlighted the hair-breaking reduction quality of the oil. Later in 2005, the Journal of Cosmetic Science, in a study, claimed that coconut oil has a better hair follicle penetration than other oil contents of commercial hair care products, including the vaunted mineral oil.
Gene Ashburner, the author of “Coconut Oil: Amazing Health, Skin and Cooking Benefits”, verified that oil is a superior and natural hair care product for moisturizing dry scalp, removing frizz, exterminating lice, preventing dandruff and promoting hair growth. The oil is valued for medicinal, skin and hair nourishment, culinary, lubrication and many other prime purposes.
However, it is not by accident that the oil is so vital and useful. Coconut contains rich vitamins, minerals and substances in abundance. Just for the hair, coconut oil contains lauric acid, components with anti-microbial properties and fatty acids that give strength to hair, while conditioning the scalp and promoting hair growth. Since coconut oil is a natural product, there should be no fear in suspecting it for harmful contents. The pleasant smell, smooth feel to the skin, and the amazing sheen it brings to spent and dry hair will immediately convince you to use coconut oil.
How do you take good care of your hair? Are you eating the right amount and right kind of food so that your body, including your hair absorbs the vitamins and nutrients it needs to stay healthy? Well-maintained hair is not supposed to be dry and brittle. Drinking lots of water daily is an effective, safe and economical daily habit to keep hair in good shape. However, as you age, the natural self-healing hormones of your body begin to be dormant, which is where additional hair care treatment becomes necessary.
Treat your hair with conditioners, shampoos and other hair care products. The commercial versions of these products are not cheap and may contain harmful ingredients in its chemical composition. On the other hand, the use of natural coconut oil for hair produces the same increased volume and shine. Additionally, the oil is filled with antioxidants and natural substances that can neutralize bacteria, fungus, virus and other oxidation agents while promoting hair growth. Keeping a bottle of coconut oil always in your home will not mean digging deep in your pocket. The following are 7 ways to use coconut oil for hair:
- Long Lasting Conditioner
Coconut oil has been used as an excellent conditioner since ancient times. It is not difficult to discover the benefits of the oil since coconut is abundant and readily available in the surroundings. There are other oils like sunflower and mineral, which are good hair care oils but their availability is not easy. And according to the Journal of Cosmetic Science, in one of their well-publicized study, coconut oil is the only oil that controls protein loss and is superior to the two mentioned oils. The study also suggested avoiding mineral oil for hair, especially among children. The hair protein protective quality of coconut oil can be attributed to the lauric acid content. The beneficial acid uses its low molecular weight to penetrate the hair shaft, providing vitamin, mineral and medium-chain fatty acid nourishment.
Excessive combing and brushing can damage the hair. Daily use of coconut oil can lessen the damage by using it as a leave-in conditioner, or excessive conditioner left for hours or overnight. Use your best judgment when determining the amount of oil conditioner.
- Harmless Hair Grower
Thinning hair is a serious hair problem and a cause of self-confidence issues. Affected individuals spend huge amount of money to address the issue. If you are suffering from hair loss, try using the inexpensive coconut oil to arrest thinning hair and promote hair growth for longer, thicker hair growth. Thanks to the lauric acid content of coconut oil; the acid inherently and easily penetrates hair shaft to provide deep penetrating nourishment to greatly improve general hair healthiness.
- Effective Dandruff Treatment
You may not be aware of it, but people have already been using coconut oil to combat dandruff for over a hundred of years already. Dandruff is a hair and scalp problem that needs to be investigated fully to be able to find the cause and effective solution. Dry scalp is the usual suspect, followed by sensitivity to strong chemicals in hair care products and the third likely cause is fungal attack found in yeast form of malassezia. Medium-chain fatty acids, lauric acid and capric acid contained in olive oil have powerful antifungal antiviral and antimicrobial characteristics that fight malassezia fungus and kill viruses and bacteria infecting your hair scalp.
Ironically, prescriptions and over-the-counter shampoos may be detrimental to solving your dandruff problem. If the root cause of your itchy and flaky scalp problem is fungal, the chemicals in shampoos may aggravate the condition. Applying coconut oil will moisten the dry scalp and rubbed off the flaky dandruff safely and inexpensively. The harmful ingredients found in commercial shampoos are propylene glycol, sodium lauryl sulfate, propylene glycol, parabens and many others. The more expensive anti-dandruff shampoos are even more harmful as they contain selenium sulfide, magnesium aluminum silicate, and ammonium laureth sulfate that are strong and irritating. Avoiding the bad side effects of this shampoo can be accomplished by using coconut oil with results visible in only a week’s time.
- Hair Styling Oil
If you are one of the many men and women who pay special attention to styling their hair to look their best in schools, offices, gatherings and parties, you should not overlook the versatile olive oil as a helpful and inexpensive hair styling alternative to commercial hair care products. In an effort to style your, you cannot help using curling irons, hot rollers, flat irons and hair dryers that remove moisture from your hair and scalp that causes dying making the hair shaft brittle and prone to hair tangling. Coconut oil for hair styling not only gives shine and volume but also rejuvenates hair from thermal damage caused by hot styling paraphernalia like iron and dryer. Use proper amount of the oil depending on hair volume, length and texture to handle fly away, frizz and other hair conditions. Frizz is a problematic hair condition with thick curly haired individuals in humid climates. However, it can be fixed easily with coconut oil by penetrating curly hairs. The oil can be applied for the entire day but is advised to be used sparingly and with sense like light touch-ups.
- Lice Treatment and Prevention
This little known use for coconut oil is as effective as it is obscure. But according to a published study of European Journal of Pediatrics, it is proven by scientific tests than a combination of coconut oil and anise spray is more powerful and effective in eradicating lice than the traditionally prescribed permethrin lice treatment. As proof, validated records showed that there was 82% success rate with coconut oil and anise spray compared to only 42% success rate with permethrin. In addition, 33 of the 50 respondents reported scalp irritation with the traditional treatment while none with coconut oil.
A parallel study that was well received and was published by the Israel Medical Association, this time using a combination of coconut oil, anise spray plus the addition of ylang ylang oil, proved to be even more effective with validated 92.3% success rate without serious health consequences and side effects. Coconut oil has deep penetrating capability to stay glued to the scalp and hair shafts repelling lice and prevent the hatching of their eggs. The addition of essential oils from ylang ylang, tea tree, and anise helps in lice eradication. The success rate was nearly 100%.
- Sunscreen Oil
Most people think that only the skin should be protected outdoors without considering the skin. Skin and hair are both subject to sun damage and can be helped by the natural sunscreen protective quality of coconut oil, which has an SPF of 8. Undue exposure to sun causes dryness which leads to the strands of hair getting brittle and looking spent. By applying coconut oil on hair as a leave-in conditioner, the hair is guaranteed to be moist all the time and with all day protection. You do not have to worry about the effectiveness and safety of the oil because even children can use the natural product.
- Hair Detangling Substance
If your hair gets entangled, it is not so easy to disengage the strands and can even cause breakage and other physical damage to the hair at times. By applying coconut oil, the hair shaft gets penetrated reducing hair break stress. The oil also stays on the surface of the hair so that knots are easily removed after washing the hair during evenings and mornings.
DIY Coconut Oil for Hair Tutorials
Coconut oil, in combination with any of the essential oils like lavender, wintergreen, thyme and tea tree, forms an effective and safe dandruff remover and preventer because it has anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal contents that combat dandruff causing fungus and yeast.
- The Best Dandruff Treatment
Step 1: Add 5 drops of any of the essential oils or a combination, into 2 teaspoons of coconut oil. Wash your and dry them incompletely leaving some moist to ease application and massaging of the oil. Start massaging the scalp from the neck to forehead including the part behind the ears. Use a shower cap to completely cover the entire scalp and let it sit for 20 to 30 minutes. Apply mild heat by exposing your scalp to sunlight or by the use of a low setting hair dryer.
Step 2: Remove the cap and rinse the scalp completely with mild shampoo and water. For maximum effectiveness, repeat the procedure 2 to 3 times a week and you can also sit the oil overnight instead of just 20 to 30 minutes. Secure the shower cap is to avoid staining your pillow cover sand bed sheet.
- Treating Hair Loss and Promoting Hair Growth
Step 1: Add 4 drops of rosemary essential oil, a known hair growth promoting substance, into 1 teaspoon of the versatile olive oil and mix thoroughly.
Step 2: Massage the oil mixture into the scalp for 10 minutes. Make sure that the massaging is gentle and complete so that blood circulation is improved while getting the benefits of soothing experience.
Step 3: After the 10 minute massage, completely cover the scalp and hair with a shower cap. Let the oil mixture sit for 2 hours up to overnight if you have a means to do so. The longer the sitting time, the more the oil deeply penetrates the scalp.
Step 4: Remove the shower cap after sitting time and thoroughly rinse the scalp and hair with mild shampoo and water. Vitamin K and E that is contained in the coconut oil is responsible for reducing dandruff, a major cause or hair loss. Do the regimen 3 to 4 times a week to fully reap the benefits.
- Taming Hair Frizz
Step 1: Prepare the hair by mild shampooing and incomplete drying. Put in your warm palms from about ¼ teaspoon to 1 teaspoon of natural and virgin coconut oil and spread it in the palms by carefully rubbing to avoid spillage. Smooth the hair by gentle touch of the palms with oil from root to tips.
Step 2: Blow dry and style the hair according to desire. The hair will soon be soft and shiny and you get another benefit from coconut oil usage.
Disguising split ends is also easy and effective by including in the frizz treatment an additional special hair end coconut oil application.
2 Most Important Homemade Coconut Oil for Hair Products
- DIY Hair Conditioner
Step 1: Prepare the materials that you will need: glass cup, small bowl, shower cap, and comb.
Step 2: Heat the coconut oil by first pouring 1 cup of hot water into the small bowl you just prepared. You will use this hot water heating procedure because any other drastic heating method like microwave or flame heating in pan can degrade the substances in the oil or totally break them down.
Step 3: Scoop 2 teaspoons of coconut oil, which is solid at room temperature, from the jar and into the ready glass cup. Extra virgin coconut oil that is organic and sustainably harvested is preferred.
Step 4: Place your prepared cup of solid coconut oil into the bowl of warm water. Allow the solid coconut oil to melt slowly without degradation. Pure and virgin coconut oil is in a solid state at cold temperatures but easily transitions to the liquid state at 76 degrees Fahrenheit and above.
Step 5: Now that the oil is in the liquid state, gently massage it to your scalp and throughout your hair. Use your judgment if there is a necessity to prepare another batch of coconut if your hair is too long or voluminous. You may also decide to dampen your hair when massaging if working on a dry hair is difficult for you. Most individuals prefer the easy spread of oil when the hair is damp.
Step 6: Use your comb to evenly massage the hair and deeply touch the roots and scalp. The procedure is not only beneficial to the hair and scalp but also very soothing and relaxing to spent hair and scalp. Make sure that the scalp is totally treated with the oil but with naturally oily hair, the treatment can just start at mid-shaft, a few inches above the scalp.
Step 7: Cover your head with a shower cap making sure that the entire hair is inside the cap. Leave it for a minimum of 30 minutes but preferably overnight. Allowing the hair and scalp to be in contact with the oil for a longer time makes for deep penetration and better nutrient absorption.
Step 8: Rinse off the oil by shampooing your hair and doing another shampoo session once more if necessary. Warm water is helpful in removing oil from your hair. You have now successfully conditioned your hair.
- DIY Lice Treatment
Step 1: Mix 3 tablespoons of coconut oil with 1 teaspoon each of tea tree oil, anise oil and ylang ylang oil. This quantity is good enough for a shoulder-length hair but needs to twice the amount for long hair.
Step 2: Massage the solution all over the scalp and work through the hair until the end part. Gently comb the hair with a fine toothcomb. These two steps should soothe and relax your head. Cover your head with a shower cap making sure that all the hair is inside the cap. Allow the oil to sit on your hair for 2 hours and find ways to apply heat either by sun exposure or intermittent warm hair drying.
Step 3: Remove the cap after 2 hours and comb the hair thoroughly once again. Combine 2 cups of apple cider vinegar with 1 cup of water and mix them by shaking inside a small spray bottle container. Use ½ of the bottle content spraying the scalp and hair. Try to lean over the sink and pour the remaining mixture evenly over the hair with the aid of light massaging.
Step 4: Rinse your hair thoroughly preferably with slightly warm water and use a fine toothcomb to aid in rinsing. After washing, apply a light application, this time with coconut oil only. Cover the hair entirely with a shower cap and allow s for sitting some time before doing the final rinsing, this time with shampoo and water.
Step 5: Repeat lice treatments as a customary procedure every 5-10 days for 2 weeks. This will guarantee the complete eradication of all lice, including their eggs. It is also good to comb your with a fine toothcomb every night before sleeping and in the morning upon waking up. Habitually use coconut oil for styling your hair and as a leave-in conditioner.
Coconut oil is excellent in terminating and driving away lice. At the first sign of lice outbreak, immediately use coconut oil as a leave-in conditioner.
Hollywood Celebrities Who Patronize Natural Oil for Hair Products
Hollywood is a show business where investing in looks and healthcare reaps lucrative dividends. It is understandable that the celebrities in Hollywood are extremely wary of the beauty products they use and are educated and knowledgeable regarding what harmful chemicals to avoid. Several celebrities are very vocal about their leanings toward organic skin and hair care As if on an organic crusade, these celebrities openly promote the use of natural products over synthetically manufactured ones. The use of virgin coconut oil for hair is one of the most promoted advocacies.
The use of coconut oil is not exactly a novelty as ancient folks used the oil extensively in the past. Nor is it passé as society is undergoing a trend towards environmental friendliness and organic product usage. Safe to say, the versatile coconut oil is here to stay among celebrities and non-celebrities like you. Top Hollywood celebrities who use coconut oil for hair management and also have strong belief that the use of the oil is not just a fad include:
- Miranda Kerr
A staunch supporter of nature and an avid organic product user, Miranda prefers to prevent skin and hair dryness by the use of coconut oil over commercial moisturizing products. According to Huffington Post, her cupboard is never empty of the oil, as she uses it to gently remove stubborn and skin-irritating make-up.
- Gwyneth Paltrow
The 45-year old versatile American actress always remain relevant because of her numerous talents like singing, doing comedies and even food writing. The Avengers star can easily pull of an Instagram bikini outfit or a red carpet hair and style elegant stunt that belies her age. According to Glamour, Gwyneth’s coconut oil writing contributions to food magazines is consistent with her affinity to her oil use for her hair care. No wonder 45 is just a number for her.
- Shailene Woodley
She is an American actress from San Bernardino County who is famous for appearing as a star in Divergent. Before Divergent she first appeared in ABC television episode, “The Secret Life of the American Teenager”. From 2008 to 2012, she wore a long hairstyle in the TV episode. The hair length was constant but the styling varied from side parted, with bangs, braided hair ends, wavy hair ends and the colors were constantly tinged mildly differently also. From 2013 to 2015 she wore a short bob that has a sharp and attractive cut and with different styling as well, including a braided hairstyle and choppy bangs that she effortlessly pulled off. All the time, she consistently used coconut oil for hair care. In an interview with The Gloss, she admitted to be a follower of Gwyneth Paltrow as far as being a coconut oil crusader for hair care.
- Mindy Kaling
The Fox and Hulu talent is a solid actress and comedian in the American showbiz scene. She is so versatile that she acts, directs, produces and also writes for her baby venture, the Mindy Project. She is conscious of her looks including her hairstyle because she has to be always in front of cameras. Interestingly she intimated in her People interview that she credits her strict adherence to coconut oil hair care to her mother.
- Kelly Osborne
Kelly is an international celebrity based in England where she started her songwriting, acting, television hosting, and fashion designing career. She owns a blog where she once posted her passion for using coconut oil for its natural quality, effectiveness, versatility and safety. She is enamored to the oil because she claims that it excellently brightens her face, restores life to her spent hair, and is readily available for wiping off irritating makeup from her face.