Learn how to get more luster, shine, and bounce from your daily hair care
We love that our readers are curious and cautious about everything they put in and on their bodies. When looking for natural ingredients for hair, you might feel like you’re in an endless sea of unproven claims and 20-letter chemical names. That’s why we put in special effort to simplify your beautifying process – after all, health is beauty!
We’ve narrowed down our list of natural ingredients for hair health to these four big league players: citrus, caffeine, tea tree oil, and coconut oil. Each ingredient serves a specific purpose, which is why we’ve chosen our favorite products that showcase each ingredient’s true benefits.
However, if you’re a DIYer, you can feel empowered to mix and match any of these ingredients with favorites of your own. Each ingredient is categorized by the FDA as generally regarded as safe (GRAS). So go ahead, ‘do you!
Why We Picked These 4 Natural Ingredients for Hair Health
We want our readers to know that they’re getting the creamiest of the crop when it comes to natural hair ingredients for hair. We picked these ingredients because they’re backed by science to improve hair health, giving you stunningly brilliant locks with little to no extra effort.
Citrus, caffeine, tea tree oil, and coconut oil have been used for hundreds of years in their indigenous countries and around the world because their benefits were obvious. Their continued use throughout the years has prompted scientists to dig a little deeper. In this article, you’ll find links to the studies that back these four natural ingredients for hair health.
#1: Citrus for Shine
You may have used lemons to lighten your hair, but did you know that citrus fruits and extracts add shine to your hair, too? Often used as natural preservatives in organic hair care products, citrus from fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, bergamot, yuzu, and kumquats, have a broad spectrum of antimicrobial and antioxidant effects. Citrus essential oils are abundant in terpenes, carotenes, coumarins, and flavonoids, adding to their nourishing and refreshing power. Since citrus increases photosensitivity, basking in the sun will help you get the shiny highlights you’re looking for. Just be sure to wear SPF on your skin!
Using the citrus fruits yuzu and pomelo, 100% PURE has crafted a delightfully shine-worthy shampoo. Scented naturally from titular fruits, this shampoo nourishes and buffs your hair for a natural shine. Yuzu and pomelo work to remove hair-dulling buildup, restoring your hair to its original luster like the gorgeous bronze goddess you are.
#2: Caffeine for a Healthy Glow
Ah, where would we be without coffee? Stimulating, energizing, and amazing for hair? That’s right. The same effects your morning cup has on you – namely, increased blood flow and improved energy – caffeine has on your hair.
In fact, studies show that caffeine applied topically to the scalp boosts hair growth and thus length by 33%-40%. It does this by inhibiting a hormone called DHT that is a major factor in androgenetic alopecia (hair loss, common in both men and women). Caffeine encourages your body to create more ATP, a hormone that promotes hair growth, creating long, stronger strands.
As we all know from drinking one cup too many, caffeine also encourages blood flow. When applied to individual hair follicles in one study, caffeine was absorbed into the bloodstream quickly. This absorption causes blood to pump thoroughly through the scalp, reintroducing vital nutrients your hair needs to stay healthy.
Tree To Tub understands that fuller hair means healthier hair. That’s why they’ve fortified their all natural shampoo with caffeine to stimulate stronger, longer locks of hair. This blend uses soapberries as an all natural substitute to harsh chemical surfactants. Enjoy a voluminous soak knowing your scalp is being properly taken care of.
#3: Tea Tree Oil for Dry Scalp, Dandruff, and Flaking
Tea tree oil has become a popular hair and skincare tool, especially among those suffering from minor skin ailments. You may have heard about its effectiveness against acne-prone skin as its an essential oil that is particularly high in antibacterial qualities. But did you know this moisturizing oil can act as an impressive defense against dry scalp, as well?
Tea tree oil was shown in a study to effectively soothe the scalp and reduce inflammation. This calming effect of tea tree oil can be used in the face or scalp to reduce itching, flaking, and irritation. It’s non-comedogenic, so you won’t have to worry about it clogging your hair follicles, either.
Simple. Inexpensive. Effective. These three words don’t mix with most of the products you’ll find at the drugstore. But Maple Holistics has achieved the golden triangle of hair care with its tea tree oil based shampoo.
#4: Coconut Oil for Bounce and Elasticity
When you want a little extra bounce per ounce, try adding coconut oil to your hair care routine. Coconut oil has been shown to penetrate the hair cuticle and cortex, adding a protective effect. As a result, coconut oil has a positive benefit on tensile properties in hair. In other words, it helps keep hair springy and reduces breakage.
We typically recommend purchasing unrefined coconut oil to use as a natural ingredient for hair, but you can read about the costs and benefits of using refined or unrefined coconut oil here.
Detoxify your scalp with the antimicrobial and soothing benefits of tea tree oil. They’ve also added botanical keratin, rosemary, and lavender oils to strengthen and stimulate hair growth and prevent hair fall.
Leaping Bunny Cruelty-free, Sulfate-free, Paraben-free
Designed for frizzy, damaged hair, Acure’s vegan shampoo capitalizes on the protective benefits of coconut and marula oil. Since we’ve already been over the benefits of coconut oil, you may be wondering what marula oil is. Marula oil is packed with amino acids, essential fatty acids, and antioxidants. It’s the yin to coconut oil’s yang, as it helps smooth curly or frizzy hair while moisturizing the scalp, for the ultimate in hydrating shampoo.
Here’s to Healthier Hair!
More beautiful hair starts with better health and hygiene. Whether you’re making DIY shampoo or taking extra care reading labels, we salute your efforts to improve your health – and look – with natural ingredients for hair.