When it comes to hair, there are many products you can use to nourish your hair and keep it healthy. In my hair journey, oils have been really essential in keeping my hair soft, nourished and healthy. Of course there are a million types of oils out there and I’ve probably tried about 500,000 of them but these ones are the five I’ve found to be most helpful and also most accessible:
How I like to use it: pre-poos/hot oil treatments, add it to my deep conditioners, seal my hair
I find olive oil to be a VERY underrated oil yet it is one of the best oils for nourishing your hair and scalp. It is packed full of Vitamin E (which helps to repair damage and scarring) and is also loaded with omega fatty acids. It is also super accessible – you most likely have a bottle of the stuff in your kitchen or pantry right now. It is also one of the healthiest oils to eat and cook with so it’s really a double whammy when it comes to your hair. To make it even better, along with coconut oil and avocado oil, olive oil is one of the only oils that can penetrate the hair strand so the benefits go even deeper.
How I like to use it: pre-poos/hot oil treatments, scalp massages, adding it to my deep conditioners
Now everyone and their grandma, their cousin and their dog has probably tried coconut oil at this point. For so many people, it has really transformed their hair from dry and breaking to strong and nourished. As well as being antibacterial, it also prevents protein loss in the hair – therefore, it keeps your hair strong by slowing down the rate at which the protein in your strands is diminished. It is also one of the very few oils that can actually penetrate the hair strand so it works at a deeper level.
Sweet Almond Oil
How I like to use it: scalp massages, seal my hair, add it to my facial moisturiser
I loveeee sweet almond oil – it is particularly good for the ladies with finer hair strands. Almond oil is packed full of Vitamin E, which heals damage, and an emollient so it helps to soften the hair. It also has the added bonus that you can use it on your face as it is non-comedogenic (it doesn’t clog the pores). Also, due to its calcium, zinc and magnesium content (essential minerals for healthy hair), it can slow down hair loss and speed up hair growth when massaged into the scalp.
Jamaican Black Castor Oil (JBCO)
How I like to use it: on my edges, on my eyebrows, pre-poos/hot oil treatments (when mixed with other oils), adding it to my deep conditioners
Another oil that I’m pretty sure everyone has tried at some point! I like to think of this oil as ‘the thickener’. When I first went natural, I did braids nonstop for about 4 years and, thanks to some overzealous braiders, my edges were a absolute disaster until I started using this oil. After moisturising my edges, I just applied a little bit of this oil to my edges and massaged it in. After a couple of years of using this, I started making my own oil containing JBCO and using that, which I now sell. I swear by JBCO to help thicken any balding or breaking spots. Just be careful – it is SUPER thick and can clog your pores so avoid using too much, especially if you’re using it near your face. BONUS TIP: it can be used to regrow or thicken your eyebrows – I used it after a VERY unfortunate eyebrow incident and it made a huge difference in the speed of growth!
How I like to use it: seal my hair, scalp massages, adding it to my deep conditioners
Another GREAT oil – especially for the ladies with finer or thinner hair. Jojoba oil is excellent for your hair because its consistency mimics our sebum (the natural oils from our scalp) – this makes it a great remedy for dandruff. It is rich in vitamin C, B vitamins, vitamin E and zinc – all of which are essential vitamins and minerals for healthy hair. The vitamin C has the added bonus of stimulating hair growth and adding shine to the hair. In my experience, it also help with an itchy scalp because it is just the right consistency.
Tara is a hair and skincare blogger living and working in Lagos. She works a 9-5 job whilst building the business she is passionate about, Nature's Locks (a hair and skincare line of products and tools), which started out as a blog, natureslocks.to. You can find her: