If you are one of those people who have decided to give your hair and the environment a break from the chemicals and plastic packaging found in hair products then it’s time to consider making your own shampoo bars. Include some natural oils to the lye and water and then add some of the essential oils that can help tackle any hair or scalp issues. Natural oils have the ability to boost your hair health because they penetrate the hair shaft. Working from within to make the hair smooth, moisturize the scalp and prevent damage to the hair from styling and natural elements like the sun, wind, and cold.
The benefits of using a shampoo bar
Firstly, they are great for the environment and for you. Secondly, when you travel you don’t need to worry about the weight and size of your hair shampoo or that it might spill. Shampoo bars also take up less space in your shower or bath area. Heavy shampoo bottles are also quite slippery and can hurt you if they fall.
Once you have felt how gentle your hair is after washing with a shampoo bar you won’t want to go back to shop-bought shampoos again and will also be able to customize them by using your favorite oils.
Natural oils for your hair in alphabetical order:
The list of oils that you can use for shampoo bars is long. Many recipes use a combination of oils, because each one carries different properties that together will combine to give a perfect bar that carries out its cleansing, but also moisturizes and also doesn’t fall apart when used.
Lard and tallow are often used for their conditioning qualities. Lard adds harness and a creamy stable lather and a long lasting bar, while tallow also offers a stable lather that cleanses and adds hardness.
Apricot Kernel Oil
This oil makes a stable lather and it’s highly conditioning and moisturizing. Apricot kernel oil is high in vitamins A, C and E and also contains linoleic and oleic acids. It can make your soap too soft, so use it in moderation.
Produced from the kernels of the Argan tree, Argan or Moroccan oil with its rich golden color is loaded with Vitamin A and E, fatty acids, and antioxidants. It offers conditioning, moisturizing and also adds hardness to a shampoo bar and a stable rich lather. It is great for brittle, coarse and frizzy hair and protects it from heat and UV damage.
This delicious fruit is not only healthy to eat, but produces oil that nourishes even the driest hair because of its vitamins A, B, D, and E, oleic and palmitoleic acids. It is conditioning oil that gives a medium creamy lather. Perfect for people who have dry or heat damaged hair and it also helps tackle dandruff.
This oil has cleansing properties while it adds hardness and it bubbles well. It is high in vitamin E and antioxidants.
Its high content of ricinoleic acid helps heal skin conditions and it offers both conditioning and moisturizing properties to a shampoo bar. Shampoo bars with castor oil have a creamy lather and high bubbles that are stable.
Not only is coconut great to eat, but it is one of the most versatile of the natural oils for the hair and skin. It can replace a whole shelf full of beauty and hair products and smells delicious. Coconut oil is rich in antioxidants, it is antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal, and so it can treat any type of fungal conditions on the scalp. It is cleansing, adds hardness and high lather with stable bubbles. Since it can be drying, it should be used at less than 45% with other rich oils.
Another powerhouse in the family of natural oils, grapeseed oil is packed with proteins, minerals, and vitamins. The cold-pressed seeds of the grape not only contain emollients but are also antioxidant. It is highly conditioning and makes a creamy and stable lather. It helps combat hair loss, dry, dull and brittle hair that also tends to be oily.
This highly conditioning oil creates a low lather and is high in vitamins A and E. it goes bad in soap fast so it should be used in low quantities, 5 % is usually suggested, so that the shampoo bar can last longer.
This gentle oil acts like natural sebum on the skin and it’s the perfect treatment for the scalp and roots of the hair. This great hair moisturizer also has antibacterial qualities and it penetrates the hair shaft and follicle. While it is conditioning and moisturizing it makes a strong stable lather. It encourages soft and shiny hair and deals with dry, dull, damaged hair.
The antioxidants and unsaturated fats found in olive oil are well documented but don’t just use it as a salad dressing. Olive Oil helps detoxify the hair, promotes hair re-growth and prevents hair from breaking. The oil is very conditioning but low in cleansing and needs to be paired with harder oils or fats otherwise the soap will be too soft. By coating the hair shaft, olive oil protects the keratin in the hair and is great for damaged, dull and dry hair.
Shea butter is high in vitamins A and E, fatty acids and minerals and gives a silky feel to shampoo bars. It is conditioning and adds harness while it also offers a stable lather.
Sweet Almond Oil
Rich in Vitamin E, fatty acids, protein, magnesium, and antioxidants, almond oil makes a stable medium lather that is gentle on the hair. Dry and damaged hair that is prone to breakage, slow-growing hair, hair loss, and dandruff all benefit from a shampoo bar with sweet almond oil.
Buying tips for natural oil products for your hair:
Buy good quality oils that are organic, contain no additives or chemicals and are minimally processed. You can check this by scrutinizing the label.
Consider what your hair’s needs are and experiment until you find the oil that gives the best results. You could also use combinations of oils depending on the hair issues that you have.
Never apply these directly to the scalp and only dilute with other carrier oils. Test a small sample of the mix on the scalp before using or adding to products.
Less is more when it comes to using natural oils and use consistently for healthier and more beautiful hair.