Winter hair given you the frizzies? Indoor, over heated air left your scalp fry and itchy? Michelle found a moisturizing DIY hair mask you can make up in your kitchen and asked me to give it a whirl.
To make the hair mask you’ll need:
3 tablespoons coconut oil at room temperature
3 tablespoons Amla oil (I bought mine at Amazon)
3 tablespoons Neem oil (check your local natural provider or online)
1 tablespoon honey
Mix ingredients in a small bowl. The consistency will be like a thick balsamic vinegarette.
My neem oil was only 2 tablespoons so, since I have short hair, I cut the recipe down to 2/3. It was actually still too much and I could have cut it down to a 1/3 recipe. Michelle had warned me before hand that the neem oil was fairly stinky. It wasn’t as bad as I had thought, but the combo of oils and honey makes for a strange sort of almost peanut sauce smell. Not offensive, but I don’t see a lot of up close and personal time with a partner when using it! Also, the directions suggest that you keep it in overnight. I’ll confess I was a little worried about getting stinky neem oil soaked in to my pillow, but I was also a little freaked out about getting thick oil all over my face while sleeping. I tested it out for five hours during the day and wore a thick, absorbent sports head band to keep the oil from running down onto my face or neck. That was only really marginally successful as I ended up with oil on the back of my shirt and felt like I had to wipe my face off every 20 minutes or so.
To get the mixture out you have to shampoo your hair. It took two shampoos for me to get it all out of my hair and I followed it up with my usual conditioner. I let my hair dry naturally without any product to get the full effect of the treatment. My hair was very soft but I don’t know that it looked any different. I think if you have particularly dry hair this treatment would make some difference. If not, you could probably get a similar effect with a number of other commercially available hair oils.
Here’s some info on the oils.
Neem oil – From the fruits and seeds of the neem tree, neem oil is high in triglycerides. It’s a viscous oil that has a strong somewhat peanut and garlic scent. It is often used in cosmetics and Ayurvedic treatments in India. In Ayurvedic medicine it is considered a treatment for acne, fever, leprosy, malaria, and tuberculosis. Folk remedies run the gamut of everything from a cure for lice to contraception. I didn’t test these claims!
Amla oil – Amla oil is from the Indian gooseberry and is often used in Ayurvedic treatments. It is high in essential fatty acids and vitamin C. It’s generally sold in something like sesame or coconut oil. In Ayurvedic it is a common treatment for dry, itchy scalp brittle hair. It can have a rather musky smell, but the one I purchased was fragranced.
These oils have been in use and revered for a long time and have no side effects when used properly. Overall I can’t say I would try the mask again for myself, but with my hair short I don’t get the dry ends that I used to. If you have dry hair or scalp though this easy to make mask is worth a try!