8 Herbs & Oils that Promote Hair Growth

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By Cipriana of Urbanbushbabes.com

For years I used products containing mineral oil to coat my strands. Many manufacturers use mineral oil in a majority of products that contain synthetic ingredients because of its behavior as a preservative. Mineral oil is the result of the distillation of petroleum which acts as a saran wrap against your scalp, slowing down one of the skin’s main job which is to eliminate toxins. On the other hand natural oils are easily absorbed by the skin.

When I used products that consisted mostly of synthetic materials such as Blue Magic I’m not going to lie my hair did grow, but it was not until I switched to all natural products that I began to see the true potential of my growth capability. Before the change in my regimen I experienced a GREAT deal of shedding and dandruff. Now those days are far behind. I’m still fascinated by how are body responds to topical products. Not only is it important to watch what we put into our bodies but what we put on it as well.

My boyfriend’s grandfather is full Cherokee Indian and when we met three years ago he always talked about the importance of what you put on your body, coming from a background of ancestors rich in a holistic lifestyle. But I could not and would not give up my trusty Coconut Blue Magic until just about a year ago. When I finally gave in to the natural “stuff” I was determined that this was just a trial period and I would be back on my good old Blue Magic in no time. Well it’s been a year later and I am still using the natural “stuff”. For years I had been so accustomed to my hair feeling greasy from the mineral oil based products that it took me a while to really understand what my hair felt like with natural oils.

Again I am not here to force you into switching into an all-natural regimen, do what works best for you, but I did come across two interesting articles from ehow.com about the usage of certain natural oils by Native Americans and the distinct benefits the hair reaps from each of these natural oils.

1. Jojoba Oil

Jojoba oil is an extract of the Jojoba plant found in California, Arizona and parts of Mexico. Jojoba oil has been used for hundreds of years by American Indians to moisturize and grow hair. The molecular makeup of jojoba has similar characteristics to the natural oil the glands of the scalp produce. Jojoba oil can be purchased at herb shops and can be applied directly to your hair or you can add a few drops to your favorite conditioner to promote hair growth. Jojoba is hypoallergenic and will not harm your hair or scalp. Aloe vera is another product used by Native American Indians to promote hair growth and is also an excellent moisturizer for your hair.

2. Wheat Germ/Aloe Vera/Coconut Milk

Mix 1/4 cup of wheat germ, 1/4 cup of aloe vera and 1/4 cup of coconut milk and use this product as a natural shampoo. Aloe vera can be purchased at drugstores and herb shops and can also be applied directly to the scalp as it will open pores on the scalp that may have previously been blocked and will allow the hair follicles to grow. The American Indians also used and continue to use several kinds of oils to promote hair growth such as emu oil, rosemary oil, and mustard oil.

3. Peppermint Oil

A few drops of any of these products can be massaged directly into the scalp to stimulate the hair follicles and promote hair growth. Peppermint oil is also a good scalp stimulator but must be diluted before application. Mix 3 drops of peppermint oil with 3 teaspoons of water and massage into the scalp. These oils can be purchased at herb shops and all are hypoallergenic and not harmful to the hair or scalp.

4. Lavender Oil/Lavender Water

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia or Lavandula officinalis), native to the Mediterranean, is now grown in temperate climates worldwide. For centuries, lavender has been used by herbal practitioners to prevent baldness and to encourage new hair growth. Lavender contains potent anti-bacterial agents that soothe and heal scalp infections. It is useful in treating dandruff and adds volume to the hair shaft. Place a few sprigs of lavender in a glass container and cover with extra-virgin olive oil and cover tightly. Place in a cool, dark spot and allow to age for 3 to 4 weeks. Use the lavender infused oil as a daily scalp massage. Apply and leave on overnight. In the morning, wash hair with a gentle organic shampoo and style as usual.

A daily rinse of lavender water (bring water to a boil, add a few sprigs of lavender, reduce to simmer for 20 minutes, then cool) will impart a delightful fragrance and shine to hair. Apply lavender as a daily rinse after shampooing.

5. Burdock Root Oil

Burdock (Arctium Lappa) root oil, also known as Bur oil is one of the most important herbs used to restore hair. Burdock promotes healthy hair by relieving scalp irritations and improving blood circulation to the hair follicle. Burdock root oil supplies natural phytosterols and important essential fatty acids to hair roots, and has been traditionally used to reduce and reverse hair thinning. It is a key ingredient in many hair restoration treatments.

6. Saw Palmetto

Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens) has been used for centuries as both a food staple and as a healing medicinal herb. The herb produces a dark red berry which is dried and then pulverized into a fine powder. Saw palmetto is available in several forms including ointments, capsules, tinctures and teas. Recent scientific studies have shown that Saw Palmetto may have beneficial effects for those suffering from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH); male pattern baldness and other conditions associated with excess DHT (male hormone) production.

7. Stinging Nettle

Stinging Nettle (Urtica Diocia), found growing naturalized across America, blocks the conversion of testosterone into DHT. Excessive DHT contributes to hair loss in both men and women. Stinging nettle can be purchased in either pill or capsule form and is said to be more effective when used in combination with saw palmetto. Nettle can be harvested in the wild (use gloves as the leaves are covered with tiny hairs that cause a stinging sensation upon contact with human skin). The fresh leaves can be submersed in olive oil in a glass jar. Seal and place in a cool, dark spot for 2 to 3 weeks. Apply the oil in an invigorating scalp massage. Stinging nettle essential oil is frequently an ingredient in organic shampoos and conditioners.

8. Rosemary

Used for centuries in cultures worldwide to promote hair growth and delay the onset of gray hair, Rosemary oil stimulates blood circulation of the scalp. A refreshing daily rinse of rosemary leaves simmered in water retains hair color. The rinse is most effective on dark hair. A few drops of rosemary oil can be added to olive oil and used as a scalp massage oil.

So interesting! Ladies, have you tried any of these? How do they work on your hair?

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  • Lovell

    Can these oils be used on babies?

    • Essential oils are strong, especially if they are pure, so make sure to use a carrier oil. I use My Sisters’ Natural products on my niece, she is just one year old, and they use organic coconut oil and pure essential oils. So just be careful with the products you choose and their chemical content, and the ratios when using the oils yourself.

      • Maybe that is why my hair has been shedding? The content if the pure oils I add to my product. Do you think so?

        • It could be. The balance is important. Too much or too little plus what it’s in can make a big difference.

      • Lovell

        Ok thank you
        She is 6 months born with a full head of head then got cradle cap and it thinned and she has a large bald spot
        I will try mixing the oils with coconut oil

  • devona

    How much to use and can you put them together. What us your regimen

  • I was suggested this web site by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as no one else know such detailed about my trouble.
    You are amazing! Thanks!

  • Pingback: Afro-textured hair: hair growth and length retention (part 1)()

  • Hollywood

    What kind of carrier oils can i use.

  • I was wondering how much rosemary to olive oil should be mixed? The article states “A few drops of rosemary mixed with olive oil and massaged into scalp.” but how many drops of rosemary and how much olive oil? THANKS SO MUCH

    • I use 20 drops when I have a full 8 oz bottle

  • YelloGurl121

    I just love all the info you’ve given on natural oils. I have alopecia on both sides of my temples. A condition that I’ve endured for what seems a lifetime. I’m totally fed up with trying different creams, ointments and drops that claim to work or your money back only to have them send you though loops in order to get some of your money back. There are so many great oils, my question is, which oils and carrier oil is best to massage my problem areas.
    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated

  • Cozmo Experiences

    Hello everyone; Dab this blog was helpful in me deciding to try oils to save my colored hair from front breakage. I believe I read that you dont see much difference between castor or Jamaican castor oil? So Im thinking of getting/mixing Sweet almond oil with either one of the castor oils & coconut oil. But Im still a bit confused as to how to mix them for every other day use. According to somethings I’ve read I should get an empty bottle (spray or nozzle) & put equal amounts of each. So can I buy both oils in the same ounce bottles, pour each in empty bottles & done I have my mixture. Help how do I mix these oils for every other day use? I will also do pre-shampoo & pre-heat style (I still hot comb-dont judge me…lol).

  • Eve

    You gave so much oils how do I use them? Do I mix all the oil in one bottle beside the 1/4 cup of wheat grem and th1/4 cup of aloe vere andthe1/4 cup of coconut milk I’m confuse please help me I need to grow my hair

  • Ms. Vyk

    My advice as to the mixture of oils is this: Add 3 drops each of rosemary, lavender, peppermint essential oils to 1 cup distilled or bottled drinking water and 1/4 cup of your favorite carrier oils–black castor oil, evoo, jojoba or almond oil (I mix all 4 together). Put in a spray bottle and “test” to see if it’s strong enough in terms of the smell of the essential oils. Add a few more drops if you want a more definite smell, but not too many. The peppermint is really good for scalp stimulation, so I prefer that smell to be the strongest. I have been using this formula for 6 months now and am happy with the results: healthy scalp and lustrous hair. I spray every morning before I apply my moisturizing products and styling aids for the day. Spray a bit at night, too. Sometimes I’ll mix with BEE MINE conditioning spray for even more sheen. Experiment and good luck!

  • mspitre

    my daughter is 3 years old and she has eczema and she also have either psoriasis or eczema in her head she gets red patches on the front part of her hair now ithas thins out and has bald spots in the front of her hair what oils or grease that I can use to promote hair growth or make your hair thicker in the front

    • Mrs.WF

      My three year daughter has eczema as well. I am a hair stylist and I remembered from school one of my teachers saying olive oil was the best thing to use for any hair type because of all the natural minerals and vitamins in it. My whole life my grandmother swears by olive oil for her skin and hair. Long story short I put olive oil in a spray bottle messaged my daughter scalp every morning and night with it. I also used neutrogena t-gel shampoo every 2 weeks until the eczema flare up cleared then only as needed afterwards. My daughter no longer has bad flare ups on her scalp and is now back to a full head of hair. You can also mix in a few drops of peppermint oil with the olive oil after the eczema calms down. Good luck!

  • Raven Johnson

    The wheat germ??
    Wheat germ oil or the actual package that looks like wheat? Googled it because I’ve never heard of it and both popped up

    • BellaAddisa

      The wheat gern oil. The best place to purchase it is on Amazon or in the lower 48 Whole Foods Store. But I would recommend Amazon as the best place and prices. Cheers Raven!

  • Lucy

    Hi please help I’m 45 white lady my hair is very thin around my hair line it makes me very self conscious .. I see people recommend castor oil and even animal bone marrow!!! Has anyone had good results with either of these ingredients … Please I’m at my wits end :( ???

    • BlueCornMoon

      I’m African American & am having great success with this essential oil formula for my nape & temples. It works better than the steroid shots ( OUCH !!) & creams I got from a dermatologist. Go to this site: http://www.blackhairinformation.com/hair-care-2/hair-treatments-and-recipes/how-to-use-essential-oils-for-your-beautiful-black-hair/

      2 drops thyme essential oil

      2 drops atlas cedarwood essential oil

      3 drops lavender essential oil

      3 drops rosemary essential oil

      1 teaspoon jojoba oil

      4 teaspoons coconut oil

      Put your essential oils into a 6 oz brown, blue or green bottle. Then add your carrier oils (jojoba/coconut). Shake the bottle or turn it upside down a few times and allow it to rest in a dark, dry cool place for about a week. This will give your oils a chance to bond with each other.

      I’ve been using it for about a year & a friend of mine just started it over the summer & has new hair growing in. I apply it to my scalp 3 times a day.

      • Sri Jackson

        This sounds great… question though, should I put this mixture in a glass bottle?

    • fancycoils

      I’ve used castor oil for years. It’s is a great humectant, but did nothing for my hairline on its own. Pumpkin seed oil contains ingredients which help to rejuvenate scalps that suffer from female/male pattern baldness. Black seed oil thickens hair and aids against premature greying. You can purchase them at luckyvitamin.

      I have three long, grey hairs and since I’ve been using my special oil blend (1/3 pumpkin seed, 1/3 black seed, 1/3 castor) topically, one has developed a brown root/base. I also have a nice crop of baby hairs in a section where before it was almost bald. I might have better results if I actually massaged my scalp; but I don’t, so whatever.

      Once or twice a week, I saturate my hair and scalp with my special oil blend, put on a plastic bag/cap to trap the heat and let it marinate overnight. The next day cleanse as usual. Every night I apply a few drops to the problem areas…assuming I don’t plan to wash the next day…I don’t want my hair to be too oily.

      Caveat…these oils do not smell pretty on their own. They are strong, nutty oils and the scent reflects that. I tried to add a few drops of a fragrant oil to try to mask the scent, but it didn’t do a good job. However, the natural scent of the oils will dissipate throughout the day.

  • Nice post…so winter beneficial for healthy natural hair regimens too! -#eTeamNHN

  • olecia

    I live in Jamaica and i dont know where to jojoba oil what oil can i use

    • OBJECTIVELYyours

      Is it possible for you to get it online? There may be an store online that you can purchase from. Check out ebay (look for top sellers who ship internationally). You can also check iherb too. Also, you can purchase a hair product that contains jojoba in it. However, if these aren’t options, then just use any natural oil that is easily available to you. Coconut Oil and Olive Oil are just as good as jojoba oil. As long as you’re consist and give your hair plenty of TLC, it will be strong and healthy.

    • Janell

      Jojoba oil is sold at Fontana from the brand Ors

  • Kamila


    Can you please share your regimen, especially your water based growth aids.

    I have seborrheic dermatitis and psoriasis as well.

  • Wheat germ oil is one of the highest sources of natural Vitamin E. This vitamin makes hair stronger, thus preventing breakage. Personally I love the earthy smell also. I mix mine with Rosehip oil and Rosemary oil to encourage growth of stronger and longer natural hair.

  • Gazelle Pezeshkmehr

    I’ve made the same mistake once so I feel you :(
    Here’s how I saved my hair. First of, there are 3 oils that need to become your new best friends. Coconut, Argan and Shea butter, and here you need to invest! You HAVE to get them all raw, organic and extra Virgin, otherwise the process they go through will strip them of the different fatty acids and their nutritional effects. So go get these.

    Start with washing your hair with baking soda, and condition it with apple cider vinegar. This will remove any product build up. Do this once a month. Stop washing your hair often. You see the wheat germ, aloe vera coconut milk shampoo in this article? It’s the bomb! But, only once a week. You can wet your hair more often, but no washing it all the time.

    Now, everytime you want to wash it, you need to do this the night before, heat up some water, add some shea butter and coconut oil in a smaller bowl, and let it melt in the warm water. While warm, massage the oil (here it will be super helpful with a couple of drops of lavender and rosemary essential oil, no more than 2 drops each as it becomes harmful because it’s so strong) into your scalp for 3 to 5 minutes. Then sit down and bend your head down as far as it goes and keep your head there for 5 minutes. This brings allot of blood circulation to your scalp which promotes hair growth. Pack the hair in and sleep with it. Wash in the morning.

    Everytime your hair is damp, massage a tiny amount of Argan oil in it. Argan oil is a light oil, which means it absorbs quickly and doesn’t give you a greasy look. Also this is the oil with the highest amount of natural e vitamin which does wonders for your hair.

    Lastly, protein protein protein. Eat it, rub it in, use it as a mask whatever your imagination brings you to. Our hair is built up on it and your hair is in dire need of it to rebuild the damage.

    Also, in this stage it’s in, you need to protect your hair from the sun. Coconut oil and Shea butter are naturally spf 5 to 10. But if you get carrot seed oil you’ll get naturally spf 50, basically sunblock.

    Alright, truly lastly, do not use towels on your hair, ever again, the towels harsh texture rips the follicles of your hair and leaves it damaged and frizzy. Use an old cotton t-shirt instead.

    Phew, good luck darling, may you get your beautiful mane back ASAP ;)

  • Rebecca

    I used to be slim in my high school days, but since college I have been gaining weight, so much so, that I now look bad, and everyone around is commenting on my weight. I did try some weight loss programs but honestly could not stick to any for too long, none of them showed results anyway, and my problem is not solved a bit. Please, please can anyone suggest me a good way to lose weight? Thanks in advance.

    • Emma

      This may be too late to respond, but I’ll still give you an answer. 1. Cut all the crappy foods, junk out. Stop eating sugary good such as cakes, candies, etc. Eat more healthy food. Veggies, fruits, egg, wheat breads, etc. Start cooking more like rice with chicken and veggies. 2. Exercise! Learn to motivate yourself to get up and walk or run outside or hit up the gym. Do this at least 3 times a week. 3. Drink teas. Teas like oolong is very good for your stomach and can aids in many way to “clean” out your stomach. Also drink kombucha!! 4. Control yourself! Do not eat when you’re not even hungry. Only eat when you are. This information is all based on my experience. I lost a lot of weight and very quickly. Btw, it is best to eat healthy organic food. My reason is that organic food doesn’t have all that toxic stuff that nonorganic normally have. In addition, if you’re going to eat healthy to look good on the outside, why not ear organic to take care of what’s going on in the inside? If you want any more advice, you can email me at emmamesadieu92@gmail.com. Trust me, take these advice and you’ll see the weight falling off. This worked for my mother!

  • Clarissa Griffin

    Make money selling my hair growth oil in your salon!!!

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