Essential oils have been established ingredients in hair care recipes for a long time. You will often find Lavender, Chamomile, Rosemary and Tea Tree in shampoos and conditioners, and for good reason—these oils can actively support the health of the scalp and hair follicles. But which are the best oils for you? Here’s a look at many essential oils and carrier oils used in hair care. Before creating an effective formula you must first understand what carrier base oils vs. essential oils are.
Essential oils come in concentrated form and have a high aroma intensity.Due to their strength, Some people will mix an essential oil with water if they do NOT intend to apply the oil to their skin or scalp. Before adding an essential oil to any part of your hair or skin you will need to dilute them in a Carrier oil.
Essential oils are distilled from the plants and roots which give them their strength in aroma. Where as Carrier oils are pressed from the fatter material such as the seeds, nuts and kernels. If a carrier oil posses a strong aroma they are NOT a pure carrier oil. Carrier oils can go bad over time, while essential oils do not, however, essential oils do lose their potency as they age.
To successfully begin to blend hair oils, use the following 3-2-1 ratio as a general guideline that can be adjusted according to your own personal preference.
- 3 drops of a top note essential oil,
- 2 drops of a middle not essential oil
- 1 drop of a base note.
Keep in mind that what works for some may not work for others since we all have a different personal chemistry. Remember, moderation is the key.
Even though you still will need to add water to a moisturizer to distribute the oil evenly through your hair, diluting essential oils with water will not be as potent as mixing them with a carrier oil. If you are trying to use the oil to control dandruff or thinning hair, I would not recommend using water. Adding a carrier oil to your essential oils will work much better on the scalp especially if you have a trouble spot. Our scalps produce enough oils on their own.
For dilutions: 1% essential oil in a carrier = 8 drops of essential oil per each ounce of carrier oil.
A natural homemade hair care recipe can help or alleviate whatever ails you. For example, if you are experiencing hair loss, try adding rosemary EO to a carrier oil such as avocado oil. This remedy will help slow or even regrow the hair that is thinning.
Another example is a remedy to treat major dandruff. Use Jojoba oil with Tea tree essential oil according to the dilution above to combat an itchy scalp and do away with those white flakes for good.
Essential Oils and Your Hair Type:
Dry Hair: Lavender, Carrot seed, Sandalwood, Cedar wood, Peppermint.
Oily Hair: Lemon, Bergamot, Juniper, Rosemary, Thyme, or Ylang-ylang.
Normal: Patchouli, Juniper, Rosemary, Lavender, Geranium, Clary sage.
Consider the chart below to figure out which oil is good for what and what mixture will work best with each ailment.
|Basil Oil||Oily Hair ~ Stimulates Scalp ~ Promotes Hair Growth|
|Bay Oil||Combats Hair Loss ~ Improves Scalp Health|
|Bergamot Oil||Antiseptic Properties ~ Wonderful as Scalp Treatment|
|Cedarwood Oil*||Controls Production of Sebum ~ Controls Dandruff|
|Chamomile Oil||Conditions Fine-Normal Hair ~ Golden Highlights|
|Cinnamon Oil||Thickens the Hair ~ Scalp Circulation|
|Clary Sage Oil||All Types of Hair ~ Dandruff Treatment|
|Eucalyptus Oil||An Antiseptic ~ Helps to Remove Dandruff|
|Frankincense Oil||Treats Dry Scalp|
|Geranium Oil||Helps Restore Balance to Oily or Dry Hair|
|Jasmine Oil||Antiseptic Qualities ~ Relieves Itchy & Dry Scalp|
|Lavender Oil||Normal Hair ~ Treatment for Itchiness, Dandruff & Lice|
|Lemon Oil||Oily Hair~Highlighter~Dry Scalp, Dandruff & Lice|
|Myrrh Oil*||Dry Hair ~ Treats Dry Scalp, Dandruff & Lice|
|Orange Oil*||Controls Production of Sebum|
|Palmarosa Oil||Increases Flexibility ~ Prevents Breakage|
|Patchouli Oil||Oily Hair ~ Dandruff Treatment|
|Peppermint Oil||Promotes Hair Growth ~ Removes Dandruff & Lice|
|Rose Oil||Fine Hair ~ Nice Fragrance ~ Soothes Scalp Irritation|
|Rosemary Oil||Hair Growth~Helps Thin Hair & Hair Loss~Dandruff|
|Sage Oil||Prevents Dandruff ~ Strengthens the Hair Follicles|
|Sandalwood Oil||Antiseptic, Astringent & Anti-inflammatory~Soothes Dry Scalp.|
|Tree Tea Oil*||Controls Dandruff & Dry Scalp|
|Ylang-ylang Oil*||Oily Hair ~ Dandruff Treatment ~ An Antiseptic|
* Controls and balances the productions of sebum (the hairs natural oil). Jojoba (carrier) Oil is an excellent oil to massage into the scalp for it is very close to the hairs natural oil, Sebum.
|Almond Oil||Non-greasy, Light Oil ~ Absorbs Easily into Hair|
|Apricot Kernel Oil**||Dry Hair ~ Contains Linoleic Acid|
|Avocado Oil||Heal Scalp ~ Hair Nourishment ~ Hair Growth|
|Calendula Oil||Inflammation or Damaged Hair ~ Soothes|
|Castor Oil||Hair Growth – Reduce Hair Thinning|
|Coconut Oil***||Softens Hair ~ Conditions Scalp|
|Grapeseed Oil**||Light, Odorless, Vitamin Rich ~ Adds Moisture|
|Hazelnut Oil**||Medium Weight ~ Absorbs Easily into Hair|
|Hemp Oil||Replenishes Hair ~ Gives Body & Sheen|
|Jojoba Oil||Light Moisturizer ~ Fungicide ~ Mildew Controller|
|Olive Oil||Control Dandruff & Dry Scalp|
|Rice Bran Oil||Strengthens Hair Shaft ~ Prevents Split Ends|
|Vitamin E||Improves Circulation ~ Prevents Breakage|
|Wheatgerm Oil||Dry, Mature, Damaged Hair ~ Moisturizes|
**Contains Linoleic acid which is important for cell health.
***Rich in lauric acid, which is known for being antibacterial and anti-fungal.
Essential Oils That May Cause Sun Sensitivity
· Bitter orange (cold pressed)
· Grapefruit (cold pressed)
· Lemon (cold pressed as well as distilled)
· Lemon verbena
· Lime (cold pressed as well as distilled)
· Tangerine (cold pressed)
* Unless it is bergaptene-free oil – sold as Bergamot FCF.
Important Note: When applying a new oil, test one drop on a small patch of skin first (e.g., on the underside of the forearm). Skin sensitivity is highly individual. If the skin feels hot or turns red, apply a vegetable oil (e.g., olive or almond) to the area, which will dilute the essential oil. Washing with water is less effective.
As an alternative to using essential oils you can mist your hair with a flower water ~ try rose, orange or lemon. Flower waters are known by a variety of names, including hydrosols, hydroflorates and distillates and they are produced by steam-distilling plant materials.
Their properties are similar to those of essential oils, but since they are far less concentrated there is no need to add additional water before using them in a mister for your hair or clothes. Essential oils can also have a drying effect on the hair, so if your hair type is naturally prone to dryness then misting with a flower water may be a better alternative for you.