It’s no secret that natural, Afro-textured hair requires lots of moisture in order to thrive and remain healthy. Did you know that there are specific Ayurveda herbs you can use to maintain healthy, hydrated, and flourishing natural hair even if your hair has become dry and your ends are crispy and brittle?
There are numerous spirals and turns in a single strand of kinky, curly, and Afro-textured hair which means that the natural oils from your scalp aren’t able to travel to the ends of the hair strand easily. The natural oils produced by your scalp serve a purpose and that is to maintain proper lubrication for your scalp and your hair strands to prevent the hair from becoming too dry leading to damage and breakage.
Almond Oil (Badam Ka Tel)
Almond oil is a light, nourishing oil that contains Omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, and magnesium to help strengthen and fortify the hair. Almond oil is phenomenal and works great on all hair types, even naturals with fine, low-density hair can reap the benefits of this nourishing oil. It won’t weigh your hair down or cause it to feel too oily or greasy. Almond oil is incredibly nutrient dense, making it ideal for treating dry, damaged hair in addition to preventing hair loss and eliminating dandruff.
How to Use: Add a few drops of almond oil to your favorite shampoo or conditioner to reap the benefits of this nourishing oil. You can also use almond oil as a pre-shampoo treatment or hot oil treatment without worrying about weighing your hair down.
A superior Ayurveda gem, aloe vera contains more than 70 nutrients that will help restore and strengthen your natural hair. Known for its amazing healing properties, aloe vera comes from a class of plants known as mucilage plants which produce a thick, slippery substance or gel. The gel is popularly used to naturally detangle the hair but it also works great for those with dry hair because aloe vera can also balance the oil production of the scalp. If you find that both your hair and scalp are usually dry and flaky you may want to add aloe vera to your natural hair care routine.
How to Use: The easiest method to incorporate aloe vera into your hair care routine is by using aloe vera juice or gel. The gel, of course, is much thicker than the juice but either one can be incorporated into your hair care routine. You can add it to your hair care products, your spray bottle with a little water, or mix 1 part aloe vera juice and 1 part water for a natural hair rinse.
Amla (Indian Gooseberry)
Amla contains one of the highest levels of vitamin C than any other source in addition to its powerful antioxidant, minerals, and amino acid content but it also has wonderful conditioning properties to help soften moisturize dry hair. As a natural hair strengthener, amla starts at the root of the hair fortifying it against breakage while improving the hair’s elasticity. Additionally, the oil can drastically help with excessive shedding and give fine hair the appearance of being thicker while working to improve the overall state of your natural hair.
How to Use: Amla is available in both a powder and oil form. The oil may be the quickest and easiest method to use but the powder is usually the purest form. You can mix 2 tablespoons, or more if needed, with a few drops of lemon or lime and water until it forms a paste. Apply and allow the paste to remain on the hair for 15-20 minutes before rinsing.
Brahmi is used in Ayurveda for its superior ability to acts as a natural growth aid for the hair but also for its nourishing power for both the hair and scalp. If you’ve been suffering from dry, itchy, and flaky scalp Brahmi is a lifesaver that works to balance the amount of oil (sebum) that your scalp produces while combating dandruff and improving the luster of your natural tresses.
How to Use: Brahmi is available in both a powder and oil. Make a natural hair mask using Brahmi and amla powder. Add water to make a paste and apply it as a hair mask.
Bhringraj (False Daisy)
Also known as ‘Trailing Eclipta’, Bhringrajis a deeply moisturizing herb that is especially beneficial for those suffering from dry, parched hair or itchy scalp. Bhringraj works well for balding hair and is often used as a natural remedy for alopecia. Used in many popular hair oil blends, Bhringraj has been known to reverse hair loss and help control premature graying. It comes in either a powder form or oil. Both can be used regularly on the hair to treat various scalp disorders.
How to Use: Bhringraj oil can be mixed in with your shampoo and conditioner, or use it to make your own nourishing oil blend. The powder form can be mixed with water and other complementing oils such as amla or almond oil to create a hair mask.
Henna is a natural herbal conditioner and hair dye that repairs and strengthens weak and damaged hair. It is mostly used for its ability to deposit color onto the hair naturally and without damaging the hair but it also acts as a temporary shaft thickener. Henna can improve hair growth, stop excessive hair fall, treat and prevent dandruff, repair split ends, and encourage smoother and shinier hair.
How to Use: Henna powder can be used by mixing a few tablespoons with water and an acidic juice such as lemon juice, green, or black tea to help release the coloring abilities. Mix the paste with
Marshmallow Root (Khatmi)
Marshmallow root is an ancient herb that has an amazing amount of slip and is mostly known for its superior detangling properties. It contains vitamins A and C that work to strengthen and restore dry, damaged hair. Marshmallow has amazing conditioning and softening properties that can make dry, dull, and brittle hair feel like silk. It will add luster and sheen to your hair to help restore it to its natural glory.
How to Use: Add approximately one tablespoon or marshmallow root leaves to 2 cups of hot water (not boiling) and steep the roots for approximately one hour while the water cools down. Strain and allow the leaves to cool to room temperature before using it on your hair. You can use the tea mixture as a natural hair rinse to help soften and detangle the hair or add it to hair conditioner for extra slip.
Neem is one of the best natural remedies for combating dandruff and dry hair. It’ antimicrobial properties make it great for treating head lice, scalp fungus, eczema, and dermatitis of the scalp. Its conditioning properties help soften the hair and promote moisture retention.
How to Use: Neem is available as an oil or powder. It can be used alone but for an extra conditioning and strengthening boost, try a hair mask made of neem powder, tulsi, amla, and aloe vera gel or juice.
Tulsi (Holy Basil)
Tulsi contains several vitamins and minerals to help strengthen, restore, and fortify the hair. With superior antioxidant properties, it can help improve blood circulation in the scalp and promote hair growth from within while combating dry, itchy scalp, repairing damaged hair, and adding moisture to your thirsty strands. Tulsi is an ideal Ayurveda herb to use for dry, brittle and extremely dry hair.
How to Use: Soak dried tulsi leaves overnight with amla powder and water. The following morning, use the mixture as a shampoo or pre-shampoo treatment to reap the benefits of this amazing Ayurveda herb.