Coconut oil great benefits for curly hair have been the subject of a long-running controversy, with some arguing that it should never be used and others in great favor.
Curious about which is true? I will answer your questions concerning coconut oil’s advantages and which of the two claims is real.
What is Coconut Oil?
Coconut oil is a naturally processed oil that is taken from coconuts and has numerous advantages for the hair, skin, and even nails. It solidifies when the temperature is cool and has a thicker weight consistency.
Because it is a triglyceride of the primary fatty acid lauric acid, which has a strong affinity for hair proteins, coconut oil can permeate the hair shaft due to its low molecular weight and straight linear chain.
And, Because it is an emollient and has an affinity for proteins, coconut oil can penetrate the hair shaft and seal in moisture by forming an oily coating. This increases strength, shine, and manageability while reducing protein loss.
For finer and denser hair types, it is generally not advisable to use coconut oil because, due to its consistency, It may cause the hair to become weighed down. To increase the advantages of coconut oils, there are numerous options.
Benefits of Coconut Oil
Overall, coconut oil works well on curly hair and is worth a try.
- Hair conditioner
- Makes hair stronger and less brittle
- Hydrate the scalp
- lower protein loss
- Promote hair growth
- Coconut oil acts as a penetrative oil and sealant.
Best Ways To Use Coconut Oil For Curly Hair
There are several ways to take advantage of coconut oil, so try them all out and see which works best for your hair. The effectiveness of coconut oil as a sealant relies on how porous your hair is; hair types with higher porosities are better suited for this.
1. Pre Poo
A pre-poo is treating your curly hair before a shampoo process. The standard shampoo typically contains a harsh surfactant that can strip the natural oils. Using coconut oil as a pre-treatment can help prevent that, and, can also help in repairing the hair if it is suffering from damage.
For this process, a hot oil treatment would be best. Add your coconut oil into a bowl, heat it, and when it has cooled off a bit. Apply coconut oil liberally all over your head, including the scalp, cover hair in a plastic shower cap, and let it sit for up to an hour. Wrap your hair in a warm towel to give heat to assist the product in permeating the hair.
After that, go in for a good wash; consider replacing the standard shampoo with a sulfate-free moisturizing shampoo. Wash it out thoroughly and continue your routine as usual.
2. Dry Detangling
Coconut oil helps make detangling easier, and this can be done on dry hair. Start by sectioning your hair into four quadrants, add a small amount of coconut oil into your palms, rub them together, and apply section by section as you finger detangle, or use a wide tooth comb.
Afterward, you can wash it immediately or let it sit as a pre-poo treatment.
3. Scalp Treatment
Massage your scalp with coconut oil if you have dandruff or a dry, itchy scalp. After softening a small quantity of coconut oil between your hands, use your fingertips to massage your scalp.
In addition to its calming benefits, massaging the scalp can promote hair development by enhancing blood flow to the hair follicles. If you need to, wash it out after 10 minutes following the treatment.
4. Coconut Oil as a Leave-In Conditioner
Coconut oil can be used as a leave-in conditioner, as it contains emollients, however, a normal leave-in conditioner might encompass a broader range of components designed to keep hair moisturized all day long.
Coconut oil as a leave-in is applied after a wash as you’ll typically apply a leave-in conditioner, raked in from the mid-lengths to the tip. You should use a small quantity when applying coconut oil, a little goes a long way.
5. As a Sealant
Following the LOC or LCO method, which signifies the steps at which a moisturizing product is added to the hair, with the leave-in conditioner as first, followed by either oil or cream.
The LCO method indicates that oil is the last step and happens to be a sealant that locks in all the moisture. And, coconut oil can be used in that form, but as stated earlier, determine your hair porosity before deciding on using a heavier-weight oil or products.
Heavier weight products are better suited for high porosity hair because they can absorb moisture easily and lose it too. However, for finer and low porosity hair types, a heavier weight product would weigh the hair down, causing it to look greasy and product buildup.
And, as a sealant, it helps to tame frizz and add shine. It can be used to scrunch out the crunch, the crispy feeling brought on by the gel.
To scrunch out the crunch, pour in a few drops of coconut oil in your palms, rub them together, and scrunch by cupping the curls and wrapping the curls upwards as you give the hair a good squeeze. Keep at it until you can no longer feel the cast.
6. Coconut Oil as a Deep Conditioner
Is this possible you might be wondering, to use coconut oil as a conditioner or a deep conditioner? but the majority of folks swear by this.
A deep conditioner is engineered to infuse moisture and penetrate the hair’s inner cortex and coconut oil can penetrate the hair shaft due to its structure and protein affinity.
To deep condition with coconut oil, section your hair and apply it in sections working from the mid-lengths to the tips. Or, add a few drops of oil to a deep conditioner. After that, put your hair up in a bun and cover it with a shower cap or a hooded dryer for low porosity curlies and let it sit for 30 minutes to two hours and give hair a good rinse.
6. Coconut Oil as an Overnight Treatment
Apply coconut oil as a pre-poo overnight treatment the night before washing your hair. Afterward, wrap your hair in an old t-shirt for added heat and to retain moisture.
Go to bed and wash your hair, as usual, the next day, making sure to rinse off the oil to prevent buildup thoroughly. You should stay away from the scalp if you have thin hair.
Does Coconut Oil have a Negative Effect on the Hair?
Coconut oil is considered safe; however, putting way too much than your hair needs, especially for finer hair types, can leave it feeling greasy, weigh down and cause buildup.
There have also been dryness and brittleness from the frequent usage of coconut oil. However, as hair is specific to the individual and needs differ, coconut oil can’t be said to be the causative factor.
The Bottom Line
These techniques can be used regularly or once in a while, depending on your hair type and porosity. Coconut oil can safely be used before and after a wash, preventing damage and giving you healthier hair.