Why hair oiling is the perfect winter hair remedy
Looking for some serious self-care this winter? Look no further than this hair healing ritual that doubles up as a pamper sesh.
Summer seems like a lifetime ago. And as we embrace autumn and all the seasonal changes that come along with it, it’s imperative that we adapt our haircare routine too. Common hair concerns during the cooler months tend to be dryness and brittleness. But fear not: incorporating hair oil into your regime can rescue weather-worn tresses. In fact, it’s a tried and tested approach for maintaining moisture and healthy hair.
Hair oiling is a traditional method that has historical roots in India as well as throughout Africa and the Diaspora. The image of a black mother applying oil or grease to her daughter’s scalp is an enduring one. Harnessing the healing properties of natural oil by applying it to the hair and scalp is proven to prevent dryness and breakage. And this timeless ritual continues to be very effective for most types of afro textured hair.
During these times of heightened stress and anxiety as we all try to function as best as we can amid the pandemic, a scalp massage using therapeutic oils is also a great way to practice some self care. So from new launches hitting the shelves to some cult favourites, here’s our pick of top oils for your arsenal that have been designed to fix hair concerns of every kind while revitalising the scalp and calming the mind...
Whether you’re pre-pooing (using a treatment prior to washing your hair) or applying oil as part of your post-shampoo regime, deep treatments are great for reducing damage and dryness. Whatever your hair’s porosity, Wow Oils Extra Virgin Oil (£7.99) works wonders at replenishing weather-worn strands. For a deep conditioning pre poo treatment, try Leonor Greyl L’Huile L’Huile De Leonor Greyl (£29.60) and Olaplex No.7 Bond Oil (£26) that can be used without heat or steaming.
Specially formulated scalp oils like ORS Saw Palmetto Oil (£5.66) or Afrocenchix Lightweight Scalp Oil (£15.99) are great for this time of year. Indulging in a five minute massage will open up the pores, reinvigorating the scalp and alleviating tightness – a common symptom of dryness. The pipette on Affirm Progrowth Oil (salon-only) is useful for sectioning and applying the oil directly. Massage in a circular motion using the tips of your fingers, allowing the oil to penetrate the scalp.
When preparing your hair for a blow-dry, oil-based heat protectors are great for shielding the hair from thermal damage. Opt for lightweight misting sprays such as KeraCare Thermal Wonder 6 in 1 Protector (£9.50) or Design Essentials Coconut & Monoi Oil (£11.48), which pack a serious hydration punch with only a small amount of product required. Alternatively, if you’re air drying or want something a little heavier, reach for a cocktail mix like Ojon’s Rare Blend Oil (£12) for a moisture hit.
The L.O.C method consists of layering the hair with a liquid, oil and cream to prevent moisture loss. The oil acts as sealant, smoothing down the cuticle to reduce split ends while restoring the natural lustre of the hair. Multi-blend formulas like Herbal Essences Hair Oil Blend (£2.97) and Ouidad Mongongo Oil (£38) double up as a leavein conditioner and finisher. Meanwhile, Aveda Dry Remedy Oil (£22) has a spa-like scent that will leave you feeling relaxed in no time.