Reading Time: 6 Minutes
Oils have a huge comeback – basically everywhere. In our nutrition, we long realized the benefits of natural plant-based oils. Our skin care routine now carries face oils and even our hair is treated with oils. But why are we using hair oils and how should we use it? Discover all the secrets about hair oils in this blog post.
Why you get Dry Hair in the First Place
Like with our skin, our hair gets dry when it can’t retain enough moisture. Dry hair can have a frizzy, dull and lifeless appearance. But for several reasons, our hair can get dry – especially the ends! Let’s cover first why our hair gets dry at all and then dive into how hair oils can help.
The natural skin sebum, produced by the hair follicles on our scalp, nourishes the hair shaft, by “travelling” down and covering it. There are several reasons, why this natural moisturizing effect doesn’t work for you or doesn’t work for the complete length of your hair. For one, it’s possible that your hair is so long, that this natural moisturizing effect just doesn’t work sustainably. Next to that, we can divide the reasons for dry hair into four categories: environmental, hair care habits, hair treatments and hormonal changes.
Environmental Reasons that can cause Dry Hair
Basically, your hair can get stripped of its natural protector (sebum) in summer and winter alike. In summer we spend more time in direct sunlight and swimming in salt water or even worse, chlorinated water. The natural oils are washed off and leaves us with dry hair and a sensitive scalp. But also in winter, we are prone to dry hair because of the dry air through our heating habits and of blow drying your hair.
Harmful Hair Care Habits you are maybe not even aware of
Washing your Hair
First question first – how often do you wash your hair? Nowadays, we tend to wash our hair, and body as a matter of fact, much too often and much too thoroughly. If you strip your skin and hair of the natural oils protecting it daily, they don’t have a chance to do their protective work. This might be okay if you have super short hair, but then I’m guessing you are not especially interested in a blog post about dry hair 🙂
Drying your Hair
Next – how exactly do you dry your hair? Ever thought about your routine? Do you actually rub your hair dry with a towel? Yikes! This can increase hair breakage a lot and stress your hair. Especially in its wet state, our hair is prone to breakage. Just do your hair a favor next time and just lightly wrap it in a towel for a moment. You can also gently press on the towel with your hands to relieve some extra humidity into the towel.
When you pre dried your hair with a towel it would technically be best to let it air dry. Maybe we girls can do this in summer but for sure not in winter! Hello cold! This is why experts suggest to let it air dry as long as possible and do the rest with a blow dryer. Never use the blow dryer on full heat and always move the dryer across your hair – don’t focus all the heat on one strand! So what our hair dressers tought us, taking a strand, wrapping it on a brush and blow drying it step by step isn’t really what our hair gets excited about. Don’t worry if you use this method once in a while but don’t do it daily! If you want to get straight and sleek hair anyway and don’t end up looking like under electricity, I have a trick for you. Hold the blow dryer on top of your head, and let the air flow down (on cold to medium heat). Slowly and gently brush your hair downward and let the blow dryer do the rest.
Surprise, surprise! Hair coloring, bleaching and straightening can damage your hair and make it dry and brittle. I’m sure you never heard about this one before 😉 Why is that? Well, when we colour or chemically relax our hair, the hair cells are opened. Imagine this process to look like this: the cells of the hair shaft are opened and stick away like at a fir cone. the colour goes in, or out if its bleaching, and the cells are closed again to lie back on the hair shaft. I’m sure you understand now, why this treatment can be very stressful for our hair.
This is a difficult topic to write about, as everyones hormonal constitution is different. Depending on the cycle or life span we are in, hormonal changes can cause dry, or oily hair (and skin). There is really not much preventive work you can do here…
How Hair Oils help
Oils help to nourish our dry hair. They basically replace the natural oil we washed off and help to retain moisture within your hair. You can of course do this by using the right shampoo and conditioner. Also, don’t forget to do a nourishing hair mask once a week! Nevertheless, if you have dry ends, your hair needs some more food. This is why Hair Oils are great! They really target that “lower-hair-end-area”. You should dosage your Hair Oil according to the dryness of your hair and only apply it to the lower 1/3 of your total hair length. If you apply the oil on the root your hair will loose all its volume and look greasy. If you apply it on the dry parts (ends) the oil gets absorbed nicely and doesn’t leave an oil appearance at all. on the contrary! Your hair will look shiny, healthy and lusterous.
Which Hair Oils you should use
There are literally a ton of Hair Oils on the market right now and I don’t think there is an easy recipe to choosing one. In the end, it really also depends what texture and feel you like and if you have any specific interests (e.g. all-natural). It is proven though, that triglycerides have a similar effect on our hair as our natural sebum. This is why you should look for a product with high concentrations of vegetable and fruit oils. Let me list for you here some of the best oils to look out for in your product:
- Argan Oil
- Olive Oil
- Sweet Almond Oil
- Coconut Oil
- Avocado Oil
How often you should use Hair Oils
You can use Hair Oils whenever you feel your ends to look dry and lifeless. For some (lucky) people this might be once a week, for others (like me) this is every day. Just put some drops into you palms, spread them between your hands and evenly distribute the Oil into wet or dry hair – whichever you prefer!
Leave me a comment if you have a specific question about Hair Oils!