Your hair is a sign of youth and beauty, and the way you style your hair reflects your personality.
Hair comes in many different lengths, styles, colors, and textures. And whether you have long, wavy, short, straight, frizzy, smooth or shiny hair, you need to take good care of it.
When it comes to hair care, regular hair oiling is a must. There are different types of oil that you can use on your hair, but one of the most popular is coconut oil.
In particular, extra-virgin coconut oil is highly beneficial for your hair. Rich in antimicrobial properties, lauric acid, and medium-chain fatty acids, coconut oil helps strengthen hair, condition the scalp and promote hair regrowth.
Also, this all-natural, multipurpose oil is rich in vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that are beneficial for hair.
Here are some of the benefits of using coconut oil on your hair.
1. Treats Hair Loss
Due to extensive use of hair styling tools and products containing harsh chemicals, hair loss is common.
But with regular use of coconut oil, you can keep your hair in good condition and prevent hair loss. In fact, massaging the scalp with coconut oil will increase blood flow to the hair follicles, condition the scalp and enhance the strength of your hair’s roots.
This, in turn, prevents hair loss and strengthens the hair shafts.
- Wash your hair thoroughly and let it dry completely.
- Apply some lukewarm extra-virgin coconut oil on your hair.
- Massage the oil gently into your scalp for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Leave this on for at least 3 hours before washing it out.
- Oil your hair at least once a week. If you have dry hair, twice a week is advisable.
2. Repairs Damaged Hair
Coconut oil is packed full of nutrients that help treat damaged hair. It easily penetrates deep into the hair shafts, in turn making your hair healthy and preventing the protective cuticles on the surface of each hair strand from becoming damaged.
A 2003 study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Sciences reports that coconut oil, being a triglyceride of lauric acid (principal fatty acid), has a high affinity for hair proteins and, because of its low molecular weight and straight linear chain, can penetrate inside the hair shaft. This helps in preventing hair damage (1).
- Use lukewarm coconut oil to massage your scalp. Leave it on overnight. Wash your hair the next morning with a mild shampoo. Do this 3 or 4 times a week.
- Alternatively, mix 3 tablespoons of warm coconut oil into ¼ cup of honey. Blend them thoroughly, then apply it to your damp hair. Let it sit for 20 to 30 minutes, then rinse it out with warm water. Do this 1 or 2 times a week.
3. Prevents Dandruff
Dandruff is an irritating as well as the embarrassing problem that you can easily get rid of using coconut oil.
Dandruff can be caused by an overgrowth of fungus or yeast on the scalp, and coconut oil’s antifungal properties help eliminate dandruff. The oil also moisturizes the dry scalp and provides relief from itching, one of the common symptoms of dandruff.
- Mix 3 to 4 tablespoons of coconut oil with half that amount of lemon juice.
- Rub it on your scalp and massage for a few minutes.
- Wear a shower cap and allow it to sit for at least 20 minutes.
- Wash your hair with a mild shampoo.
- Use this remedy 2 or 3 times a week.
4. Kills Hair Lice
Coconut oil also helps keep your hair and scalp free from lice. The lubricating nature of coconut oil will stop the lice from moving around freely, preventing them from multiplying. The oil will also suffocate the lice and eventually kill them.
A 2010 study published in the International Journal of Dermatology found coconut oil to be more effective than some harsher chemical treatments for lice (2).
Another study published in the European Journal of Pediatrics in 2010 found that a spray containing coconut oil and aniseed oil was an effective treatment for lice (3).
- Warm up 2 to 3 tablespoons of coconut oil and add a little camphor to it.
- Apply this oil all over your head, and massage it into your scalp.
- Cover your head and hair with a shower cap, and leave it on overnight.
- The next day, wash your hair with shampoo and let it air-dry.
- Comb it with a nit comb.
- Use this treatment daily for 5 days to eradicate lice.
5. Strengthens Hair
Hair grows when given enough nourishment. Although hair is made of protein, it needs a fair amount of vitamins and other essentials to be strong.
A regular head massage with coconut oil is beneficial for your hair’s health. Apart from providing nourishment to the hair follicles, it improves blood circulation to your scalp. This means more nourishment reaches the hair shafts.
- Massage warm coconut oil into the roots, scalp, and hair before going to bed. Wash it out in the morning. Do it twice a week.
- If you have oily hair, mix coconut oil with castor oil in equal proportions and use it as described above.
6. Adds Shine to Hair
To get shiny hair, proper nourishment is important. You can nourish your hair shafts by applying coconut oil to your hair regularly. The oil also helps restore moisture to dry and damaged hair, leaving your hair shiny and healthy.
- Apply warm coconut oil on your hair, from the root to the ends.
- Massage for a few minutes, then wrap your hair in a shower cap.
- Leave it on for at least 30 minutes. If possible, leave it overnight.
- Rinse your hair with water, then shampoo and condition like normal.
- Do this twice a week.
7. Tames Frizzy Hair
Frizzy hair is difficult to manage and tame. But with the help of coconut oil, you can easily control your frizzy hair.
Frizzy hair needs extra moisture and coconut oil is a good option to add moisture to your hair. The oil will help seal the moisture into your hair strands and also condition your hair.
- On days when your hair seems all out of control and frizzy, rub some coconut oil on your palms and run it through your hair lightly. This will cause the frizz to settle immediately.
- On an ongoing basis, massage your hair with lukewarm extra-virgin coconut oil 2 or 3 times a week.
1. Rele AS, Mohile RB. Effect of mineral oil, sunflower oil, and coconut oil on prevention of hair damage. Journal of cosmetic science. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12715094.
2. Asenov A, Oliveira FA, Speare R, Liesenfeld O, Hengge UR, Heukelbach J. Efficacy of chemical and botanical over‐the‐counter pediculicides available in Brazil, and off‐label treatments, against head lice ex vivo. International Journal of Dermatology. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1365-4632.2009.04335.x. Published February 19, 2010.
3. Burgess IF, Brunton ER, Burgess NA. Clinical trial showing superiority of a coconut and anise spray over permethrin 0.43% lotion for head louse infestation, ISRCTN96469780. SpringerLink. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00431-009-0978-0. Published April 3, 2009.