Oil Blends for Hair Growth – 12 Wonderful and Beneficial Carrier Oils You Can Use
By Jacqueline Samaroo
The use of various types of carrier oils dates back to ancient times. They have been used in many different cultures to aid massages, as medicinal treatments, for aromatherapy, and as ingredients in skincare products. Carrier oils have also been used on their own, as well as in oil blends, for natural hair growth.
Keep reading as we go through the benefits of a dozen readily available carrier oils you can add to your natural haircare routine.
For more on the benefits of oils for Black hair growth, read Why Black Hair Needs Hair Oil and 7 of the Best Ones to Use (with Product Examples!).
Here’s what you’ll find in this article:
- What are carrier oils?
- Can carrier oils be used on their own?
- 12 Carrier oils to use in oil blends for hair growth
What are carrier oils?
A carrier oil is a plant oil that can be used to dilute essential oils before these are applied to the skin. They help to carry the essential oil into your skin, hence their name. Carrier oils are also known as base oils and fixed oils (since they do not evaporate quickly when applied).
Carrier oils are a necessity as they make essential oils more convenient to use. Essential oils are very potent and volatile (evaporate easily). Applying undiluted essential oil directly to your skin can lead to burns, blisters, allergic reactions, and respiratory issues.
Many of them have little to no scent so although they are used in much greater proportion to essential oils in an oil blend, they do not overpower the essential oil’s scent. Also, carrier oils add their own individual health benefits to an oil blend but DIYers should be aware that different carrier oils will have different effects on the final color, scent, and shelf life of an oil blend.
Can carrier oils be used on their own?
Definitely! Carrier oils are nutrient-rich, generally with plenty of fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, antioxidants, and other good-for-your-hair phytochemicals. It is quite okay, usually, to apply carrier oils liberally when using them on their own. Persons with sensitive skin, however, should proceed with caution and all persons are best advised to do a simple patch test first.
12 Carrier oils to use in oil blends for hair growth
We are covering 12 carrier oils, including some of the most popular ones but this is by no means an exhaustive list. We’d love to hear from you about any of your own favorite carrier oils that did not make our list.
Here’s our selection:
1. Argan oil
Scientific name: Argania spinose
Argan oil is closely associated with Morocco where the trees are endemic and closely intertwined in that country’s culture. The oil is made from the kernels of the tree’s fruits. It is a deep yellow color and has a nutty aroma. Compared to other carrier oils, argan oil has an average absorption rate and leaves the skin feeling silky.
Benefits of argan oil for hair growth
Argan oil is one of the best-known oils in haircare. It has quite a high percentage of monounsaturated fatty acids, as well as large quantities of vitamins A and E. It is a popular ingredient in many types of moisturizing natural haircare products. It can be used as a scalp massage oil to help boost your scalp care routine.
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2. Moringa oil
Scientific name: Moringa oleifera
The moringa tree, also known as the drumstick tree, grows widely across India. Its seeds are rich in oil that is pale yellow with an earthy scent and has a long shelf life. Moringa oil gets used in a wide range of skincare and haircare products that make use of its moisturizing and anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits of moringa oil for hair growth
Moringa oil is an excellent source of fatty acids, as well as iron, magnesium, and vitamins C, B2, and B6. It also contains proteins that help to strengthen hair as the oil moisturizes and protects the hair and scalp. It has become increasingly popular as a carrier oil to use in oil blends for hair growth.
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Scientific name: Macadamia integrifolia
The macadamia tree is native to Australia where indigenous peoples have long used it as a source of food. The oil extracted from the macadamia nut can be used in cooking as well as in cosmetics. It is a lightweight oil with a clear, lightly-amber color and a mild, nutty scent.
Benefits of macadamia oil for hair growth
Macadamia oil contains several minerals, including iron, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, and copper. It has high levels of several fatty acids, so apart from nourishing your scalp it also works as an emollient, lubricating, protecting, and moisturizing both hair and scalp.
4. Grapeseed oil
Scientific name: Vitis vinifera
Grapeseed oil is a by-product of the wine-making process. The seeds are removed from the crushed grapes and the oil extracted. Grapeseed oil has a light yellowish-green color and a slightly sweet and mild nutty scent. The oil is lightweight and thus easily absorbed into the skin. For this reason, some persons prefer grapeseed oil to olive oil for skin and haircare.
Benefits of grapeseed oil for hair growth
Grapeseed oil is rich in vitamin E and has antioxidant properties to help protect cells from free-radical damage. It is also anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial, helping to heal and soothe the scalp of irritation. It leaves hair shiny and silky without any greasy buildup.
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5. Flaxseed oil
Scientific name: Linum usitatissimum
Flaxseed oil (linseed oil or flax oil) comes from the flax plant which grows in several regions around the world. It ranges from yellowish to colorless and has a nutty flavor. Flaxseed oil gets used in cooking, as a dietary supplement, and in many industrial applications, such as linoleum production.
Benefits of flaxseed oil for hair growth
Nutrient-dense flaxseed is often hailed as a superfood for your body. These nutrients also contribute to healthy hair and scalp when flaxseed oil is used in oil blends for hair growth. It is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, helping it to reduce inflammation and promote scalp health.
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6. Avocado oil
Scientific name: Persea Americana
Avocado oil is extracted from the pulp of avocados, making it a fruit oil. The cold-pressed and unrefined version of the oil is similar in both color and scent to avocado pulp. Avocado oil is comparable to olive oil in terms of how heavy and thick it is. It does have the tendency to leave skin feeling greasy.
Benefits of avocado oil for hair growth
High levels of oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid, help avocado oil effectively combat the symptoms of dry skin, including dry scalp. It also contains appreciable amounts of vitamin E, as well as vitamins A and D. You should keep in mind, however, that avocado oil usually is not recommended for acne-prone skin.
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7. Neem oil
Scientific name: Azadirachta indica
The neem tree is native to several regions in Africa as well as in India. All parts of the plant are traditionally put to use, making it culturally significant in the areas where it grows. Neem oil (margosa oil) is extracted from both the seeds and fruits of the plant. It ranges in color from dark brown to golden yellow and even bright red. It has a garlicky and peanuty scent.
Benefits of neem oil for hair growth
Neem oil is rich in phytochemicals (plant compounds) that give it a range of benefits for scalp and haircare when used on its own or in oil blends for hair growth. These benefits include being rich in both triglycerides and antioxidants, making it moisturizing, protective, and reparative for your hair and scalp.
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8. Sunflower oil
Scientific name: Helianthus annuus
Sunflower oil is extracted from sunflower seeds. It has a light amber color and a scent often described as slightly fatty. In recent years, sunflower oil has surged in popularity as a healthy cooking oil and as an ingredient in the making of cosmetics and haircare products.
Benefits of sunflower oil for hair growth
Sunflower oil is an excellent emollient that is rich in both oleic acid (a monounsaturated fatty acid) and linoleic acid (a polyunsaturated fatty acid). It also has large quantities of vitamin E. It softens and moisturizes the skin, including scalp skin, while also soothing irritation. Acting as a skin barrier, sunflower oil helps to protect the scalp from toxins and germs.
9. Shea oil
Scientific name: Vitellaria paradoxa
Shea oil comes from the oil-rich nuts of the shea tree which is indigenous to Africa. The oil is closely related to shea butter since it is, in fact, obtained from shea butter. The process involves removing components that make the butter waxy and cause it to solidify. Shea oil also has a much milder scent than shea butter’s nutty aroma.
Benefits of shea oil for hair growth
Shea oil has many of the skin and haircare benefits of shea butter. It restores moisture and suppleness to very dry, damaged skin. It improves elasticity and hydrates dry hair. Shea oil is lightweight and readily absorbed without leaving behind a greasy residue. This makes it quite suitable for regular use, including being used as a pre-poo and as an oil treatment.
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10. Coconut oil
Scientific name: Cocos nucifera
Unrefined coconut oil is derived from the fresh meat (hardened flesh) of mature coconuts. It has a distinct coconut scent and readily solidifies below room temperature. It has a myriad of uses from cooking to cosmetics to industrial applications.
Benefits of coconut oil for hair growth
Unrefined coconut oil has long been used in skin and hair care, being hailed for its high vitamin E, fatty acid, and polyphenol content. It is readily absorbed and helps to combat dryness as it conditions the scalp and hair. In fact, unrefined coconut oil, all on its own, makes an excellent leave-in conditioner. However, persons with acne-prone skin usually are advised to avoid using it.
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11. Kukui oil
Scientific name: Aleurites moluccanus
Kukui nut oil (candlenut oil) comes from the kukui tree which has important cultural significance in Hawaii where it is known as the “tree of light.” The lightweight oil is extracted from the large walnut-looking nuts and has a light to dark yellow color. Kukui oil has a very mild nutty scent.
Benefits of kukui nut oil for hair growth
Kukui nut oil has emollient properties, contributing to its moderate amount of fatty acids. It is also rich in vitamins A, C, and E. Kukui nut oil is readily absorbed by the scalp and strands, helping to eliminate the symptoms of dry skin. It does not clog pores and may actually provide some relief from acne and similar skin conditions.
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12. Jojoba oil
Scientific name: Simmondsia chinensis
Jojoba oil is a strongly moisturizing oil (more correctly, wax) extracted from the seeds of the jojoba shrub. The plant is native to California and Mexico and has traditionally been put to use by Native Americans in the region. Jojoba oil has a clear golden color and a slightly nutty scent.
Benefits of jojoba oil for hair growth
Jojoba oil contains fatty acids and triglycerides and has an extremely long shelf life. It is very close in consistency to the skin’s natural sebum which itself is a waxy/oily substance. Jojoba oil is readily absorbed by the skin and does not block pores. It has been shown to help alleviate acne symptoms.
What are your favorite carrier oils to use in oil blends for hair growth? Let us know!