I have recently had some treatments on my hair and it has made me wonder, what herbs would be good to help restore my hair?
Natural hair treatments have been used since the early days of civilisation. From the Ancient Egyptians using Rosemary Oil for hair growth to an Aztec clay hair mask. So now that I may have gone too far at the hairdressers I need a quick fix for my brittle ends. I have found a lot of homemade options that I want to share with you all!
Herbs for natural hair growth
First I need to look at why my hair is not growing as thick as it used to. Main reasons for this could be stress related or a minor inflammation. Any inflammation will cause hair follicles to struggle to grow naturally. This therefore means that I will need to use herbs that are a natural anti-inflammatory.
- Rosemary – as mentioned above Rosemary has been used for thousands of years and the Egyptians swore by it for baldness and hair loss. I don’t mean you need to worry about loosing all of your hair before you consider using rosemary oil, but it will help to thicken the hair and encourage new growth. It has soothing qualities but if used undiluted it can be too strong for our scalps, so mix with an olive oil, or coconut oil, in a 50:50 ratio. This is thought to help stimulate hair growth.
- Dried Mint – The reputation of mint is such that it can stimulate blood circulation. Take a few sprigs of mint, dry them out and then grind into a powder with a Pestle and Mortar then introduce the olive oil. Once it is combined massage into the scalp. With this one it becomes a relaxing option anyway and can be part of a homemade spa treatment. When you think about the reasons for hair loss, the worse that can happen with this remedy is it helps relax you and that reduces your stress levels and your hair growth can continue.
- Lavender oil with Evening Primrose oil and olive oil. This will allow for a deep massage that can be left on for a few hours to form a better quality of relaxation. If this works to relax the scalp the theory is that it will allow the hair follicles to grow through. Again this could be completely coincidental as the relaxing qualities of lavender are widely known, however there are also anti bacterial qualities which will help with all sorts of growth.
Herbs To Eat For Hair Growth
If we are looking to heal the external elements of our body we will need to balance the internal as well. If we ask ourselves which vitamins help to thicken hair growth the answers will help us to decide which herbs to grow and eat.
In order to have healthy hair growth we need to have a balanced diet. Vitamin A keep the hair moisturized and sebum being produced. Then you will benefit from Vitamin B as it has been used to help treat hair loss. Vitamin C is great to target hair loss as we have mentioned that stress is major contributing factor and Vitamin C and Vitamin E are known to help combat stress levels with helpful antioxidant properties. Alopecia is linked to vitamin D deficiency, so my adding to your diet may mean this can be lessened. Iron helps blood flow, therefore by eating herbs which are rich in iron you may be able to increase blood flow to encourage hair growth.
So let’s look at herbs that are rich in these vitamins and iron.
- Sorrel is rich in Vitamins A & C. In fact a cup full a day will give you more than your RDA, but in reality you may want to use in smaller quantities due to its strong flavor. Iron and B6 are also present in smaller quantities. Eating sorrel with kale and spinach would be the ideal companion to get the balance.
- Parsley is rich in vitamin C & A, but also minerals like iron that we know are great for blood flow. Again though you may not be eating in the quantities you need to increase hair growth. But by incorporating more parsley into your diet you will increase your intake of those great vitamins and minerals.
- Mint does contain lots of helpful minerals and vitamins, but we tend to use this strong flavored herb in small amounts. So sensibly we would use mint as a garnish but perhaps add it as an essential oil to massage the scalp.
- Fennel is a fantastic source of Vitamin C and also Vitamin B6. It has such low cholesterol that it is perfect used in so many dishes. Fennel bulb is easy to eat in large enough quantities and it has a lovely aniseed like flavor, but when roasted it is a lot less pungent and really rather gentle.
- Basil is stuffed full of antioxidant vitamins. This makes it perfect for those who want to increase hair growth. It is also one that you can easily eat in quantity. You can make pesto and use more basil than a portion a day, meaning you can get your RDA with basil.
- Lemon Balm is known as a relaxing herb. It contains ingredients that will help release the stress hormone. Meaning it can help reduce those stresses that may be linked to hair loss.
- Lovage is like many other leafy greens in that it contains a high concentration of vitamin C. This is linke dot reducing hair loss as we have seen the connection to the antioxidant qualities of vitamin C. These antioxidants are known to reduce stress hormones which is linked to some forms of hair loss. Lovage is also very easy to grow and tastes like a leafy celery, perfect is salads or stews. It is possible to very easily eat lovage in large quantities, certainly large enough to make an impact to our diet.
- Garlic is a fabulous source of Vitamin B6 and C also Iron. Personally I think that it is easy to include large quantities of garlic into your diet. You can roast whole cloves and eat them with simple roast Camembert or meat dishes. Garlic will not make you the most popular person, but try parsley afterwards to cleanse your breathe.
- Tarragon is surprisingly rich in vitamin content and 2 tablespoons alone could be enough to give you 4% of your Vitamin A & C and 6% of your vitamin B6 each day. A great improvement and not too hard to sneak into meals.
Moisturizing Herbs For Your Hair
You can get more moisture into your hair and scalp by various means. So I wanted to list a few of my favorites below
- Mint clay hair mask. To make a clay hair mask you will need 1/2 cup Indian healing clay, 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, almond oil and mint essential oil. Use water and apple cider vinegar to get the consistency right. Apply to the head and massage into the scalp. Leave until the clay is drying off and then rinse out. The mint will invigorate the scalp whilst the mask is great for cleansing and giving moisture to the hair, offering a thickening effect.
- Lavender essential oil mixed with olive oil or warmed coconut oil. Mix a few drops of each and apply to the scalp. Massage it in and allow at least ten minutes for the relaxing effects to develop. Rinse out with warm water.
- Rosehip, egg yolk and coconut oil. Mix together in a bowl the egg yolk and 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, warm it gently and squeeze the rosehips into the dish. Apply to your hair at the scalp and work out from there. The egg yolk will give added volume and moisture.
- Lemon juice + Lemon Balm warmed through with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Let the ingredients steep and then apply to your hair. The vitamins and astringent qualities will awaken follicles and encourage hair growth.
- Avocado + Lavender Oil makes a great hair mask. Apply to the base and leave for ten minutes. Rinse through with cold water for the ultimate gloss.
- Cinnamon and Coconut oil mask. 2 teaspoons of cinnamon for 2 tablespoons of coconut oil. Warm the oil and add the cinnamon, apply to the base of the scalp and allow the cinnamon to waken up the scalp, this will encourage hair growth.
- Mint Tea, Lemon Juice and Apple cider vinegar rinse. Mix the three ingredients together and use to wash through your hair for a glossy finish. The mint and lemon juice will wake up the scalp and encourage hair to renewed growth. This should help thicken hair.
- 2 Tablespoons Honey, 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil and 1 Teaspoon of lavender oil. Mix together and apply to the base of your hair. Leave for around half an hour before rinsing. Try to massage into the scalp as much as possible.
Herbs are a great way to encourage hair growth, but significant hair loss should be a call to visit your local Doctor. Make sure to eliminate all of the possible medical reasons for your loss, before then trying some of these ideas.