Coconut oil was considered a fad, as seemingly overnight it became everyone’s best friend. Thanks to its wonderful properties though, it seems like it is here to stay. Through the years, it managed to prove itself as the go-to oil for all things skin, hair and cooking.
It can be used as a nourishing staple in your kitchen and as an amazing beauty secret in your bathroom. Coconut oil has numerous benefits, but in this post we will concentrate on what it can do for your hair.
The Science Behind Coconut Oil
In a 2003 study, they compared the hair benefits of coconut, mineral and sunflower oils. Coconut oil was the clear winner.
It is a triglyceride of lauric acid, aka a principal fatty acid and as such has high affinity for hair proteins. In terms of structure and behavior, coconut oil is almost as good as shea butter, but not quite.
It is able to penetrate inside the hair shaft and reduce the hair’s protein loss. Consequently, this makes your hair stronger and healthier.
Coconut Oil can Speed Up Hair Growth
If you use coconut oil on a weekly basis, it will strengthen your hair, reduce the protein loss, protect it from environmental factors and reduce breakage. When you combine all of this, you hair can invest more time in growth and nourishment rather than maintenance.
When your hair is dry and exhausted, it takes a lot of energy just to keep it going. When you apply coconut oil on your hair regularly, you will allow your hair to take a break and concentrate on growth.
Another one of coconut oil’s hair benefits is damage prevention. It can not only help you improve your hair’s health, but it can also prevent future damage.
You can apply it in your roots only or all over your hair before and/or after shower. If you have a fine hair like me though, I would recommend using it only before shower. Coconut oil can sometimes build up and make your hair greasy when applied on thin hair.
It is Anti-Microbial
One of its best known applications is to treat fungus, which explains why it can be effective at combatting dandruff on your scalp. Dandruff is mainly caused by yeast or fungus overgrowth, so applying coconut oil on your scalp regularly, especially overnight can be beneficial.
Healthy Scalp = Healthier Hair
This wonderful and inexpensive oil has an SPF of 8, which makes it very useful to use on your hair if you want to add some extra protection.
I find it particularly useful to spray it on my hair before heading to the beach. The SPF protects my hair from the sunlight and the fatty acids keep it moisturized, so I can go in the water knowing that my hair won’t get parched.
Are All Coconut Oils Made Equal?
As with most things in life – No.
It’s best to make sure you buy organic, first cold-pressed, unrefined, ethically sourced, non-scented coconut oil. Always use food grade coconut oil. I love this one by CocoNativo.