By Saman­tha Berley

Olive oil is a fan­tas­tic con­di­tion­er for hair, but there are many oth­er things about this essen­tial oil that make it a great go-to for hair care.

It’s also one of the top emol­lients that can pen­e­trate the hair bet­ter than oth­ers, and its light­weight nature makes it great for mois­tur­iz­ing.

Olive oil also con­tains anti-inflam­ma­to­ry prop­er­ties that pro­mote scalp health and pre­vent dan­druff. Extra vir­gin olive oil is also rich in high lev­els of mono-unsat­u­rat­ed fat­ty acids and vit­a­min E, an antiox­i­dant impor­tant for hair growth.

Olive oil is not like­ly to cause an aller­gic reac­tion, mak­ing it ide­al for sen­si­tive skin and hair.

DIY Olive Oil Hair Treatment

Anoth­er great thing about olive oil is that it’s a cheap and easy way to add mois­ture to your hair. Here’s a sim­ple olive oil treat­ment you can try for achiev­ing beau­ti­ful hair at home.

  1. Warm about a half a cup of olive oil in a microwave­able bowl or cup. The olive oil should be warm but not hot to the touch. If you have fine hair or pre­fer a lighter treat­ment, add coconut, sweet almond or jojo­ba oil.
  2. Pour one table­spoon of the olive oil mix­ture into the palm of your hands.
  3. Start­ing with your scalp, mas­sage the oil into your hair in a cir­cu­lar motion using your fin­ger­tips. Fin­ish by mas­sag­ing the tips of your hair.
  4. Place your oil-drenched hair into a show­er cap or wrap it with plas­tic wrap.
  5. Let the olive oil sit for between 5–45 min­utes, then rinse and sham­poo as usu­al.

Dry or Wet Hair?

Some women pre­fer apply­ing olive oil treat­ments to wet and recent­ly con­di­tioned hair while oth­ers want their hair to be dry. If your hair is wet and con­di­tioned, it will lock in the mois­ture and addi­tion­al nutri­ents when the olive oil is applied.

The down­side is that olive oil is already slight­ly more dif­fi­cult to apply due to the hair’s slip­per nature. If you apply olive oil to dry hair, it has a sim­i­lar effect, but many argue it doesn’t lock in as many nutri­ents as the wet treat­ment. Even so, it’s less of a mess than the wet method.

Many users also rec­om­mend hop­ping in the show­er and let­ting the steam do its thing to enhance the effects of the olive oil on the hair. Once you’ve washed it out, watch your step since the floor will be slick with oil.

Olive Oil in Hair Products

Although there are arguably more pop­u­lar hair oils, olive oil is well-known as a culi­nary ingre­di­ent and easy to obtain in any aver­age gro­cery store. For food and for hair, olive oil has been used since the dawn of civ­i­liza­tions, rang­ing from Mesopotamia to Ancient Egypt and Greece.

It’s no won­der then, that olive oil is found in a vari­ety of hair care prod­ucts. Olive oil pen­e­trates the hair cuti­cle so that the nec­es­sary mois­ture and nutri­ents are absorbed, leav­ing your hair not only smoother, but shinier and health­i­er as well.

Ladies, how do you incor­po­rate olive oil in your nat­ur­al hair reg­i­men?

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Leila Noel­liste, founder of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008). Social media, pop cul­ture and black beau­ty enthu­si­ast. bell hooks’ hair twin…

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58 Comments on "How to Use Olive Oil on Natural Hair"

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I mixed olive oil with some left­over con­di­tion­er and I put it in my mist­ed hair at night.