Sofia Vergara is right to say, “Great hair starts with the scalp”. Ladies, I hate to break it to you, but your shampoo- conditioning routine isn’t giving your hair the love it so desperately needs—even if you’re using Head and Shoulders. Though your favorite drug store shampoos clean your hair, they also have sulfates and waxes which can- over time- creates build up at the top of your hair follicle. Build up becomes problematic when it leads to a dry flaky scalp, or even an oily scalp with dry ends. Both conditions seem different, but either way, your hair’s natural oils cannot evenly distribute if the cuticle is compromised by product and environmental build up. Build up stunts hair growth — something no one wants! These 5 scalp treatments will moisturize, put itch at bay, encourage hair growth (increase circulation), and become the catalyst to root-tip natural oil distribution. You need to treat your scalp first, or every product you try to use will be weakened by the amount of gunk on your head. It’s gross, but it’s so true. You can make these treatments with ingredients and agents you probably already have in your own home. These 5 treatments aren’t only cost effective, but they target specific needs for an optimal experience. Let’s get started.
1. Baking Soda & Apple Cider Vinegar: Clarifying
Baking Soda and ACV are amazing water softeners. This scalp and hair treatment is the most effective express method to rid of build up and to balance your PH levels internally and externally.
What you’ll need: Baking Soda, ACV, water.
The best environment to do this one is in the shower. Processing time is minimal, but the process can be messy.
Prepare: Bring a teaspoon of baking soda into a cup to your shower. In another cup, mix 1C ACV with 1C water. Bring both cups to the shower ledge.
Method: Take about a teaspoon of baking soda in your hand, and then add a tiny bit of water, adding more of either until it becomes a paste. Add to wet or dry hair. Flip your hair down to easily massage in a circular motion onto your scalp. You will leave this paste on your hair for 3 minutes, then you will rise thoroughly. Pro tip: Because baking soda is a stripping agent, you’ll want to use ONLY on the scalp, avoiding use on the remainder of the hair shaft.
Next, take the ACV mixture, and either dip as much of your hair into it to soak for a few seconds, or if you have longer hair, slowly pour the mixture over your entire head, including the ends. Rise with cold water to seal the cuticle.
2. Oatmeal & Brown Sugar: exfoliating and nourishing, inflammation – Soothing
This mask is especially great for people with flaky, dry and slightly irritated skin. Oatmeal is high in fiber and anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, and a very gentle exfoliator. Like baking soda, when mixed with a bit of water, oatmeal becomes a thick, nourishing paste — a paste that’s perfect for massaging into the scalp. Brown sugar turbocharges the existing, exfoliating benefits of this treatment, removing buildup, while simultaneously treating and nourishing irritated skin conditions.
What you’ll need: Oats, (or oat flour), Brown sugar, water.
Prepare: If you don’t already have oat flour, you’ll need to blend 2 tablespoons of oats in a coffee grinder or blender to make oat flour. Once you have flour, mix 2 tablespoons with 1 tablespoon of water to form a thick paste. Next, mix in 1 tablespoon of brown sugar. Bring to shower or bath ledge.
Method: Take the paste and rub into your palms. Rub into damp scalp in a circular motion. Let them mixture sit on your scalp for 5 minutes. Rinse thoroughly, then shampoo and condition like normal.
3. Olive Oil & Baking Soda – Clarifying and moisturizing
This scalp treatment will penetrate the hair follicle to produce shine and detoxification. You’ll want to warm the oil for an extra penetrative mask. This method is powerful, and for this reason, you should only apply this particular mixture once every month. People with an oily scalp — don’t shy away from this method, because the nutritive properties of the oil will slosh away dead skin — which is blocking your follicles, and causing overproduction of your own oil! This is one of my favorite masks, and because it’s great for all hair types, it’s perfect for a spa night with your girlfriends.
What you’ll need: Olive oil, baking soda, ceramic bowl, shower cap, or clear plastic bag.
Prepare: Pour around 2 tablespoons of oil into a ceramic bowl, then heat for about 10 seconds in the microwave, or until it’s warmed, not hot. Grab the ceramic bowl out of the microwave, then add a teaspoon of baking soda. Whisk together.
Method: Start parting your hair into sections. (I use either my fingers, a hair dye application brush, or a comb), to distribute evenly at each parted section of your hair. After you’re done distributing the oil mixture, massage in gentle, circular motions. Put on your shower cap, or tie a plastic bag over your hair, and let the mask sink into the follicles, for about 15–20mins. Shampoo and Condition.
4. Rosemary Essential Oil, Jojoba oil, Witch hazel – Moisturizing and Stimulating
Rosemary essential oil is one of the best stimulating agents for hair growth and circulation. One of the reasons people experience hair loss is due to a lack of circulation and blood flow to their scalp. This agent can mitigate hair loss. Pro tip: Don’t use Rosemary essential oil on its own. It needs a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, jojoba, olive oil, etc. or you run the risk of burning your skin. You don’t want this. Use a carrier oil. In addition to a great scalp treatment, this mixture can be poured into a spray bottle for an everyday hair growth treatment — how exciting! This multipurpose elixir can be used to grow sparse brows and lashes. The shelf life of this is semi-long, because the witch hazel preserves it! Also, jojoba oil contains vitamin E, which is a natural moisturizer and preservative.
What you’ll need: For daily spray elixir: 12 drops of Rosemary essential oil, 1/4c jojoba oil, two tablespoons of witch hazel.
For one-time-scalp- treatment: 3 drops of Rosemary essential oil, two tablespoons of jojoba oil, (or carrier oil of choice), a teaspoon of witch hazel, or distilled water.
Prepare: For daily elixir: Mix ingredients together in a 1 ounce amber spray bottle.
For oil treatment, mix ingredients in small container. Set aside.
Method: Daily elixir: Spray generously over scalp and hair, after your hair washing routine.
Oil Treatment: Make sure your hair is damp. Split your hair into sections with end of comb. Evenly distribute throughout scalp with hair dye comb or fingers. Let mixture process for 10 minutes. Rub in circular motion, very gently. The Rosemary and witch hazel are like an astringent, in nature, so your roots will get a nice lift!
5.Coffee grounds and Coconut Oil: Exfoliating and Stimulating
This method is for my brown, and black haired ladies! Coffee grounds are pigmented enough to slightly tint the hair. This adds a beautiful refresher to darker hair, but blonde haired ladies beware! Just like Rosemary oil, Coffee increases circulation. With regular use, coffee allows hair to exceed its normal hair growth cycle. Coconut oil can bring health back to your hair. It contains vitamin E, K, and lauric acid, making it very easily absorbed into the hair shaft. These two ingredients work synergistically to multiply the effects of one another. You can use this as a cellulite treatment in the shower, but we’ll stick to hair for now. You get bonus points if your hair smells like a frothy coconut latte once you’re done!
What you’ll need: Extra Virgin Coconut oil, fine ground coffee, ceramic bowl.
Prepare: In a small ceramic bowl, heat 1/4 coconut oil in microwave, for 20 seconds. Make sure your coconut oil is liquefied and warm, but not hot. Grind coffee until it’s very fine. Pour into ceramic bowl. Whisk together. Set aside.
Method: You can leave this mask on from 5–20 minutes, depending if you’d like the coffee to add a small tint to your hair. I like to pour the mixture from the bowl into the palm of my hands. Then, you will apply generously to scalp. (As usual), rub the mixture in a circular motion, for a few minutes until you cover your whole scalp. The coconut oil will absorb fast. Let this one process from 5–20mins. Rinse, then you’ll shampoo and condition as normal.