Everyone loves their thick long tresses or strong short hair, as long as they are healthy and dandruff free. However, these days due to stress, anxiety, food habits and the overall lifestyle the quality as well as the quantity of our hair is deteriorating and decreasing. Hair fall, roughness, and dandruff are the major woes of today's generation. Receding hairline, balding, horseshoe-shaped hair feature, unexpected hair loss from a certain region of the head are not uncommon. Generally, one can observe 50-100 strands of hair breakage every day, and that is normal.
Hair is made up of a protein called keratin that is produced in hair follicles in the outer layer of skin. The hair that you see is actually a string of dead keratin cells. The life cycle of hair has three stages:
- Anagen: active hair growth that lasts anywhere from 2 – 6 years.
- Catagen: transitional hair growth that lasts 2 – 3 weeks
- Telogen: resting phase that lasts for about two to three months. During the end of the resting phase, the hair is shed and a new hair replaces it and the growing cycle starts again.
Now the question is what causes hair loss? There are a wide variety of reasons for breakage and hair fall. Production of abnormal levels of androgen hormone (in both males and females) is one important reason for hair loss. Childbirth, stress, and illness could also be a reason for temporary hair fall. Drugs used in cancer treatment, birth control, blood pressure and blood thinning may also cause hair loss too. Genes from both the parents may also determine a person’s hairline. Autoimmune diseases, cosmetic procedures and medical conditions like thyroid disease, lupus, diabetes, anaemia also cause hair fall. A low protein diet or severely calorie-restricted diet may result in temporary hair loss. Too many reasons and too little hair!
Natural oils for hair care
There are a number of oils that can prevent hair-fall, promote hair growth, strengthen hair follicles and bring back lustre to our potentially damaged hair.
Black seed oil
Black Seed Oil is an answer to multiple hair problems. Also known as Kalonji Oil in India, it has strong medicinal benefits when used as part of a regular regimen. Since it is anti-inflammatory, black seed oil is great to soothe scalp conditions that cause inflammation, flakiness, and sensitivity. It may also remove viruses and fungal infections, so those infected with lice can also benefit. Black seed oil has a hoard of nutrients in it. Massaging the scalp with Black seed oil, nourishes our hair and makes it healthy. As far as natural hair is concerned, Black seed oil may help in regrowing certain thinning areas on the scalp too.
Another oil that has proven to be a boon in the modern day cosmetic industry is Jojoba Oil. This oil is much similar in composition to the oil produced by human skin which is known as sebum. Jojoba oil being the closest in construction to the human sebum is a natural replacement for it as well. When the body is unable to produce enough sebum to protect against harsh external elements, Jojoba oil can be the perfect skincare solution. It also helps strengthen hair follicles on the scalp causing hair to grow stronger and healthier. The presence of Vitamin E, conditions the hair shaft making the hair shinier, adding volume and density.
Moringa Oil is yet another oil that has been extensively researched and has been in use since thousands of years, thanks to its numerous benefits. The moringa tree is also known as the miracle tree and the oil is one of the best that one can ever find. It has a complex and rich assortment of essential minerals, vitamins, and nutrients. Moringa oil also has a high concentration of Vitamins A, E and all the B Vitamins. When applied on the scalp this natural source of vitamins promotes healthy blood circulation and also healthy hair follicles. Moringa oil is also packed with omega-3 fatty acids which is very beneficial for our skin and hair. Also rich in sulphur, this oil helps our body produce more collagen and keratin naturally.
Sweet almond oil
The last oil that we are going to look into is Sweet Almond Oil. It contains all kinds of healthy ingredients for hair like omega-9 fatty acids, phospholipids, vitamin E, and magnesium. It is an emollient, meaning it can fill in gaps in our hair at a cellular level. Almond oil diminishes friction while hair styling, which makes it less prone to breakage and split ends. Vitamin E present in almond oil is a natural antioxidant, that can combat environmental stress around our hair which in turn makes our hair healthier and stronger.
The four oils discussed, have proved to be very good for both skin and hair. They have all the nutrients present in them that make them optimum for personal care as well as hair care.