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Oils for African American Hair

Updated: Oct 8, 2022

There are some essential oils for African American hair and some that can enhance growth and eliminate itchy scalp and more

Tea Tree Oil Helps purify the scalp to help with dandruff. Keep the scalp free of nasty bacterial and fungal problems. Along with moisturizing and balancing your hair’s natural oil it also helps unblock the clogged up follicles of your hair. Sage Oil Cleanses the impurities out of your scalp also helping with scalp conditions such as psoriasis. If combined with zinc it can help get rid of dandruff. Coconut Oil This oil does not sit on top of your hair follicles, it actually penetrates deep within the cortex to help seal in moisture.

How To: Apply generous amounts of coconut oil on dry hair and cover hair with a shower cap . Let this sit in the hair overnight, and shampoo and deep condition as usual. You can also use coconut oil to seal the hair after applying your leave-in conditioner.

Olive Oil Really good for hot oil treatments and can successfully be mixed with rinse-out conditioners. Also a great base to mix with other oils like Castor to thin it out.

How To: Warm an adequate amount of olive oil in a warm water bath. Then apply it on dry hair. Cover your hair with a fleece hat, towel or heating cap for at least 30minutes. Then, shampoo and deep condition your hair afterwards. It’s recommended that you do this treatment at least once a week. Jojoba Oil The closest to our scalp’s natural oils and can be used right out of the bottle. It’s also wonderful in mixtures with moisturizers and conditioners. Avocada Oil A very good oil for dry hair due to it’s moisturizing properties.

How To: Mash one ripe avocado and mix with one tablespoon of olive oil, jojoba oil and honey if desired. For a smoother paste, blend this mixture in a blender, this way, you won’t end up with chunks of avocado in your hair.  Apply the mixture on freshly washed hair, from the roots to the ends. Cover your hair with a shower cap. Leave it on for about 30 minutes and then shampoo your hair with lukewarm water. Castor Oil Great scalp cleanser that aids in removing toxins, and it also helps promote thicker hair growth. Can be used once or even twice a week. Peppermint Oil The one oil that helps with stimulation of blood flowing to the roots of hair which sets up proper conditions for the hair to receive nourishment for growth. Rosemary Oil If you have dry hair this oil is beneficial in getting rid of of this problem along with helping alleviate itchy scalp and dandruff. (NEVER use while pregnant as it’s DANGEROUS to unborn children) Basil Oil Stimulates blood circulation encouraging hair growth. Can be found in conditioners or shampoos that are formulated to help promote a healthy scalp. Lavender Oil Treats alopecia areata and hair loss from studies done by the University of Maryland. Combined with other essential oils, it makes a natural hair re-growth scalp treatment. Massaging it into your head stimulates the scalp along with the energizing properties of essential oils. In individuals with skin allergies or extremely sensitive skin, lavender oil may cause skin irritation. It may be poisonous if taken orally.


Rosemary Oil recipe Heat 2 tbsp olive oil. When it has cooled, add 3 drops of rosemary oil. Apply this mix to your scalp and the cover your head with a heated, damp towel. Leave on for 30 minutes, then wash off with a sulfate-free, paraben-free shampoo. This treatment helps remove oil and un-clog pores. Apply once a week.

Cedar Oil recipe An excellent remedy for dandruff and, according to one long-term experimental study, for reversing alopecia areata (often called ‘spot baldness’, it is an autoimmune disease in which hair is lost). Mix 2 tbsp coconut oil with 2-3 drops of cedar oil and massage into scalp. Leave on for 1 – 2 hours, then wash off.

Thyme Oil recipe Thyme oil increases blood flow to the scalp, thus rejuvenating hair follicles, and has antimicrobial properties which help alleviate dry scalp and dandruff.

Mix 2 drops of thyme oil and 5 drops of lavender oil in 2 tbsp organic extra virgin olive oil. Massage in and wash off after 20 minutes.

Peppermint Oil recipe. The cleansing, cooling effects of peppermint oil help to open up clogged pores and encourage the normal flow of skin oils. Mix 3 drops of peppermint oil and 4 drops of lavender oil in 2 tbsp warm coconut oil. Apply to scalp, leave on for 20 minutes, then wash off with a sulfate-free, paraben-free shampoo.

Note: Do not use a microwave to heat oils. Warm a vial of oil in a bowl of warm water.


Moisture, moisture, moisture. That’s the key to retaining hair length and healthy tresses. Black hair textures vary greatly, so knowing your hair type is a good start when deciding which treatments and oils will garner the results you want. Follow these general tips:

  • Don’t over wash – once a week is adequate. Use a co-wash containing coconut oil if you prefer a one-step approach. Optimize moisture by applying an oil mask of 1tbsp each of almond, macadamia and jojoba oil to the hair before shampooing. Leave on for 10 minutes.

  • Apply conditioner to the hair shaft only, and from the ends up. Locks wearers may need to consult their loctitian on the best way to condition locks without residue problems.

  • Seal in moisture after every wash – while hair is still damp, apply a hair serum, ideally one that contains rosemary oil, shea butter or coconut oil. Air-dry hair.

  • For daily maintenance, monitor your hair closely: you may not need to apply product daily. Avoid any preparations that contain alcohol, petroleum, mineral oil or fragrance. Sleep on silk or satin pillows or tie your hair up in a silk or satin scarf overnight. (Avoid scarves if you sweat a lot at night.)

  • Cotton and polyester pillows draw the moisture out of your hair and cause friction, which may, over time, result in breakage and dull-looking tresses. And please avoid styles that result in repeated tugging and pulling of hair. Keep scalp as clean as possible.

DIY Stimulating Essential Oils for Hair Growth Recipe


  • 5 drops of lavender essential oil

  • 5 drops of rosemary essential oil

  • 5 drops of peppermint essential oil

  • 1/8 cup of coconut oil

  • 1/8 cup of castor oil


  1. In a clean container, such as a sterilized jar, add 1/8 cup of coconut oil and 1/8 castor oil.

  2. Add all the essential oils.

  3. Shake the container gently until the oils are well-mixed.

How to Apply it:

  1. Before bedtime, massage the oil blend on every part of your scalp.

  2. Cover your hair with a shower cap.

  3. Place a towel on your pillow and get some sleep.

  4. In the morning, wash your hair thoroughly. Use an organic shampoo, if possible, to get rid of the oily feeling on your head.

You can use your blend once a week.


You can store your blend in room temperature. Make sure that you seal it tightly and away from direct sunlight.

Homemade Hair Growth Oil Recipe

You will need:

  • 10 drops rosemary essential oil

  • 5 drops lavender essential oil

  • 5 drops lemon essential oil

  • 10 drops coconut oil

  • 5 drops castor oil

  • 5 drops apricot kernel oil

How to use it:

Mix all the ingredients together and shake gently.

How to Apply it:

  1. An hour before you take a shower, apply the mixture on your scalp.

  2. Rub it gently to improve circulation.

  3. Rinse thoroughly.


Seal the container and place it in a closed area to avoid sunlight.

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