Oils that penetrate the hair: olive, coconut and avocado oil
I always like to add oils to my conditioners and I don’t just add for the sake of adding. There are 3 major types of oils I add to my conditioners: essential oils, ceramide-containing oils and penetrating oils. I’ve talked about essential oils in different posts. I’ll be talking more about the ceramide-containing oils soon. Today, I just want to outline the penetrating oils.
Coconut oil: It has the smallest molecular size of all the oils and penetrates the best. It is the only oil that has been scientifically proven to penetrate the hair. When used before shampooing, it is absorbed by the hair cuticle and can help prevent hygral fatigue. When you pour water on your hair, it expands and as it dries, it contracts. Hygral fatigue is the damage that occurs in the hair due to this expansion and contraction. This is why I usually love to use coconut oil as my main pre-poo oil. I don’t mix it with my deep conditioner or use it to seal my hair. I find that when I do this, it makes my hair hard. I think it is because coconut oil helps to preserve the protein content of the hair shaft.
The following two have also been shown to somewhat penetrate the hair shaft:
1. Olive oil. This oil is easily found and you can use it to pre-poo, mix with your deep conditioner or as a hot oil all by itself. It is a bit heavy but will also be good to use as a daily sealing oil. I don’t usually use olive oil in my regimen and to be honest, I don’t know why.
2. Avocado oil. I love avocado oil the best of these 3 oils. It leaves my hair feeling smooth when I occasionally use it as a pre-poo.
I ALWAYS mix it in my deep conditioner. Since it is not as heavy as olive oil, I think it is also a great daily sealing oil.
Other oils that are hypothesised to penetrate the hair shaft are:
- Camellia oil;
- Castor Oil;
- Palm Kernel oil; and
- Sweet Almond oil.
Do you use these oils regularly in your hair regimen?
Edited 19th January 2015
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