There are so many oils out on the market that many naturals are overwhelmed about which oils they need to accompany them in their journey. After many years of product testing oils on my natural 4C hair I have a few favorites that I go to for different reasons. In this post I will be discussing my top go-to oils for natural hair. I will only be discussing my favorite carrier/base oils. Although essential oils are great to use for a lot of different reasons, I want to focus on the base oils.
Base oils are what you can use to dilute essential oils and are typically pressed from the seeds of plants. Many oils do different things and have various effects on the hair. Most commonly, oils are used for moisture retention (for example the L.O.C. method) and used to heal and nourish the scalp for healthy development of hair. Some naturals use one type and others, like myself, use many different types at different times or various ones for treatments. Hopefully my list helps you decipher which oil is best for you.
My Go-To Oils:
1. Argan Oil – This oil is pretty pricey. Although it is sensitive to light and must be stored in darker bottling it holds an impressive punch. This fact also lets you know if it is authentic Argan oil. Packed with Omegas and a great source of vitamin F and E I use this oil whenever I deal with heat to avoid or decrease the possibilities of damage. This oil deep penetrates the hair shaft and provides a great barrier when I flat iron my hair or deep condition under a dryer.
2. Olive Oil – I add two tablespoons of olive oil to my conditioner to produce soft and shiny hair. I use it as a part of my hot oil treatments and pre-poo’s. More importantly I eat it. All three ways promote healthy hair growth. I use extra virgin olive oil to avoid chemicals that many company’s use to stretch the oil. Olive oil rules and is a favorite by many naturals.
3. Shea Butter – Almost all the products you buy as a natural you will see this in them. This “oil” is solid but can be melted down to oil form. Just like olive oil it is a natural conditioner. However it is also a moisture sealant that can be used to heal the scalp and follicle and used as a butter to style hair. As a unrefined oil you gain the most nourishment from Shea Butter. Also, because many hair care company’s offer this product it’s easy to find. Another plus about Shea Butter is that it can be used all over your body and can improve your overall complexion.
4. Castor Oil – I didn’t think about this oil until I used it for five weeks and found a great difference in the thickness of my hair. I had been having issues with my edges due to excessive styling and wearing head scarfs, headbands and brushing my hair into high puffs. So I used castor oil five times a week for five weeks and voilà! My hair was nice and thick and seemed stronger. Currently, I use castor oil on my edges and ends to reduce breakage. Although they say that Jamaican Black castor oil is wonderful and is leading the trend in castor oil amongst naturals, I actually fell in love with the regular CVS Castor Oil Laxative. Go fig? Caution: It stimulates your hair follicles so it will itch when you first use it.
5. Coconut Oil – This oil is not the best oil to me because not everyone can use it. Although it can be used for hair, body and eaten for those who prefer a healthier lifestyle, this oil cannot be used for naturals that are protein sensitive. However, if you’re not a natural who deals with protein sensitivity (click here to see my short video on Protein Sensitivity and alternatives) Coconut Oil is the holy grail! Firstly it smells great. Not only does it strengthens the hair and adds a glorious shine it can even be used as an alternative method for pre-poo and deep conditioning wash! Cool thing about coconut is that it lays on the hair shaft like a protein treatment would so you will see many people use coconut oil with protein treatment.
1. Alma Oil – Cleansing, preventing grays, deep conditioning, promotes shine
2. Grapeseed Oil – Sensitive skin, great for mixing with essential oils
3. Jojoba oil – Pricey. Great for mixing and conditioning hair and skin, closest oil to the natural on our scalp!
4. Sweet Almond Oil – Hair and skin oil
What oils do you use? Are the oils listed above good or did I leave some out? I want to hear about it! Let me know in the comments below!