When searching for hair oils to add to your natural hair regimen, it can be a complicated task choosing the most suitable one. Hair oils will greatly depend on the current needs for your tresses such as its texture, how the oil will be used, and even the season. With the many oils and various oil concoctions, a natural girl can never go wrong with selecting a penetrating hair oil, also known as carrier oils.”One key to whether or not an oil penetrates into the hair is the amount of triglyceride and short-chain fatty acids it contains – as well as how the components of the triglyceride are arranged. Lipid molecules need to be small to penetrate into hair – less than 18-20 carbon atoms…” (Source) Most oils on the market are either mineral oils or are oils that have long-chain fatty acids that will not penetrate the hair, instead, both types of oils will sit on top and coat the hair shaft. Penetrating hair oils are excellent for improving and maintaining the health of your natural hair since they have substantial amounts of nutrients and vitamins that will seep deeply into the hair shaft. Penetrating hair oils promotes growth, prevents hair loss, alleviates a dry & itchy scalp, gives your kinks coils, or curls extra luster, and promotes overall good health of the hair. To get the most out of these amazing benefits be sure to try out our 5 easy ways to use oil for your natural hair!
Coconut oil is the richest natural source of medium chain fatty acids which have antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. Because of coconut oil’s structure, it penetrates and stimulates the follicles of the hair better than most oils and works best when it’s used in small amounts. Coconut oil is high in lauric acid and is potent in protein which makes it great for assisting with conditioning and for hair growth. When coconut oil is used as a pre-poo it reduces protein loss. However, because of its high protein content, too much coconut oil will cause the hair to become brittle and to break off. In addition to coconut oil’s many benefits, it’s great for protecting your tresses against the sun’s harmful UV Rays.
Palm kernel oil comes from the seed (the kernel) inside the African Palm tree. It has a light texture and is reddish gold in color. Traditionally, kernel oil was harvested in the Savannah region of Africa. Local tribes used it for hair and scalp treatments as well as for medicinal purposes. Palm kernel oil works efficiently and effectively without the use of chemicals or additives. The oil provides potent moisture that’s great for weekly deep conditioning treatments and is a great option for those who have dull, dry, and lackluster tresses. palm kernel oil has a similar composition as coconut oil; it is able to deeply penetrate the hair shaft to repair and lock in moisture deep within. When purchasing this oil, be sure to buy palm kernel oil, which derives from the seed instead of red palm oil which comes from the entire palm fruit. As with coconut oil, use palm kernel oil in moderation to prevent the over saturation of the hair.
Avocado oil is loaded with Vitamins A, B, D, and E and works wonders on dry, brittle, and damaged hair. Avocado oil contains protein, amino acids, iron, copper, magnesium, and folic acid. Avocado oil also contains high amounts of fatty acids which make the tresses soft and creates optimal shine. The vitamins in the avocado oil assists in preventing damage, protects the scalp, and gives much-needed nutrients to the hair follicles. This amazing oil contains natural humectants that attract and locks in moisture. Avocado oil can be extremely beneficial to women who enjoy being out in the sun for long periods of time because of its capabilities to perform as a natural SPF that will protect your tresses from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.
Olive oil has high moisturizing properties that make it a superb oil to use on your tresses and scalp. It assists to make the hair healthier, shinier, stronger and even longer. Olive oil helps with reducing dandruff and makes hair softer. Olive oil has an abundance of Vitamin E. This vitamin works as an antioxidant, assists in stimulating growth, and combats premature graying. Olive oil is generally cheaper than coconut oil and has a longer shelf life. It’s one of the more thicker oils mentioned which makes it great for dense hair types and is excellent to use during the cold weather months. Because of the oil’s high viscosity and immense nutrient content, olive oil is excellent for protecting against hygral fatigue which causes physical hair damage. It prevents the diffusion of water in the hair and prevents aggressive chemicals and free radicals from penetrating the hair. Since olive oil has thick compounds it is able to stick to the strands of the hair to reduce friction.
Babassu oil comes from the Brazilian nut tree that’s harvested similarly to coconut oil. It absorbs well into the hair for a non-greasy, non-slimy feeling. Just like coconut oil, babassu oil is excellent because its fatty acids are able to deeply penetrate the hair shaft, unlike most oils. However, unlike coconut oil, babassu oil is comprised of smaller fatty acid chains which make it able to penetrate the tresses easier than coconut oil. In addition to babassu oil being able to penetrate the hair, it has a less distinctive and light weight smell. Babassu oil assists in repairing damage, adds luster to dull tresses, fights against breakage, promotes overall good hair health, and works as an exceptional scalp treatment because of its anti-inflammatory properties.
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