Coconut oil is the one ingredient that just about works for anything and everything. What else can you cook with, eat and use on your body and hair?! While it’s comedogenic and can be troublesome on the skin, it does wonders for your hair. Whether that be as a hair mask or conditioner it’s easy, affordable and shows that simple and easy is sometimes the best way to go!
Coconut oil is a versatile ingredient that’s really beneficial when used in your hair routine! It can be used as a hair mask, conditioner or even a detangler but all it’s uses share one common factor; it helps to hydrate and improve the quality of your hair. As many hair products grow in price, coconut oil is a cheap, natural and plentiful option that will make an immediate impact.
What are the benefits of coconut oil in your hair?
Coconut oil has endless benefits for your hair. The vitamins and fatty acids it contains helps to improve the health of your scalp and promotes hair growth. It helps to eliminate dandruff and improves the health of your scalp which leads to growth. It works as a leave-in or mask to combat frizzy, tangled hair and it even helps to remove lice as a natural, non-toxic alternative!
Coconut oil fixes everything and everyone trying to grow and promote the health of their hair should have a stash. Pro tip is always go for unrefined coconut because that means it’s untouched and still has all the nutrients you want to add to your hair. You can find unrefined coconut oil in the baking aisle at the grocery store!
How to use coconut oil as a hair conditioner
Coconut oil as your hair conditioner or used in tandem with a hair conditioner can really help to pump moisture back into your hair! Coconut oil works as an occlusive meaning it traps in moisture. So, to get the most out of it, it needs to be applied on a hydrated surface.
Step 1: Wash your hair like usual.
Coconut oil works best when your hair is wet because it traps in moisture! If you don’t wash your hair just make sure you wet your hair before applying the coconut oil.
Step 2: Use your conditioner like normal and don’t wash it out.
Apply your conditioner and don’t wash it out! What? Coconut oil locks in moisture so you’ll get the best results if you apply conditioner and layer coconut oil on top of that. It’ll leave your hair insanely soft, hydrated and silky relatively quickly.
Step 3: Apply the coconut oil.
Apply the coconut oil on your wet, conditioned hair and leave it for 15 minutes. The coconut oil will lock in the moisture and nutrients from the conditioner leaving your hair soft, hydrated and extra smooth. Leave it on for about 15 minutes so it has time to sink into your hair.
If you have thin hair that gets weighed down easily, then skip on the conditioner and go for the coconut oil. If you prefer to just apply coconut oil onto your wet hair, look to using coconut oil as a hair mask instead!
Step 4: Wash it out.
Washing out the conditioner and coconut oil completely is so important or else your hair will feel greasy. Rinsing your hair with cold water is a good way to make sure it’s all out.
How to use coconut oil as a hair mask
If you don’t want to layer coconut oil over your conditioner then this is a better option for you! As always, you want to start with wet hair so the coconut oil can trap the moisture in. Using coconut oil as a mask is fun because you can DIY your own version depending on your hair type.
Step 1: Wet your hair.
Your hair must be wet! Coconut oil needs to be on wet hair to trap in the moisture. Make sure to towel dry your hair because it needs to be wet-damp, not sopping, dripping wet.
Step 2: Decide what to add into your coconut oil.
If your hair is dry, honey or avocado may be a good add-in. Or just stick with coconut oil! Alone it is more than enough to help add some hydration into your hair.
Step 3: Apply the coconut oil!
When it’s time to apply coconut oil, be generous! Apply it all over your hair then pull it back into a bun. If you’ve applied just the coconut oil to your hair as a mask, leave it on for as long as you can. Overnight is a great option and works best when you sleep with a hair cap on.
If you’ve added honey or anything else with the coconut oil, wash it out after 20 minutes.
Step 4: Style and dry your hair as usual.
If you really want to see the benefits of the coconut oil, lay off the heat for a bit. The coconut oil will hydrate and defrizz your hair so it should air-dry a bit better then usual.
Our favorite coconut oil products for hair
There are tons of ways to use coconut oil in your hair whether that be pure, unrefined coconut oil or products containing coconut oil. You may find that coconut oil works better as a mask while products containing coconut oil are better suited as a leave-in conditioner. You just want to find what works without being greasy on your hair!
Viva Naturals Organic Extra Virgin, Unrefined Coconut Oil
If you’re looking for good ol’, plain coconut oil to use on your hair there is no need to spend a lot of money on it! When looking for coconut oil to use on your hair or skin, unrefined is always the way to go. Unrefined coconut oil is free of any additives or extra chemicals. Refined is bleached and stripped of the nutrients so it’s better aimed for cooking as it has less of a coconut scent and flavor.
When using coconut oil on your hair or skin, you want the benefits and nutrients so always go for unrefined.
Where to buy: Amazon
Shea Moisture 100% Pure Coconut Oil Leave in Treatment
This leave-in conditioner contains coconut oil, coconut milk and almond oil to eliminate frizz and detangle the hair. This leave-in comes in a spray bottle and it’s a great option if you want to get the benefits of coconut oil without the messy application! It’s free of sulfates and parabens and it’s curly hair friendly.
Where to buy: Amazon
IGK Rich Kid Coconut Oil Hair Gel
This coconut oil hair gel works on wet or dry hair but will never make it greasy. It adds shine while creating the perfect lived in, beachy texture. Like coconut oil, this product is super versatile and can be used virtually in any way. It has a bergamot smell so if you don’t love the coconut smell, this doesn’t have that.
It’s vegan, cruelty-free and free of sulfates and parabens.
Where to buy: Amazon
Coconut oil is an insanely versatile product when it comes to hair and you can’t beat how affordable it is. When using coconut oil for your hair, remember to stick with virgin and unrefined as it’s untouched and still contains all the nutrients. There’s no need to go for high-end coconut oil when the one at the grocery store works just as good if not better!
Once you start using coconut oil, it’s uses only grow after you discover what it can do for your hair. For some, it can help to banish dandruff and even promote hair growth like a natural Rogaine. Coconut oil’s possibilities are endless so next time you’re looking for a new hair mask, it’s so worth trying!
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does my coconut oil melt?
Coconut oil has a low melting point so you may notice that hot weather causes the white, oily substance to melt and go clear. If you’re using unrefined coconut oil, which is what you should always use on your hair, it melts even quicker.
Notice how in colder weather your coconut oil will harden but is easily melted with the heat of your fingers? If it’s melted it will easily harden in the fridge for a little bit. Melted or solid coconut oil is not better than one or the other. If you’re applying solid coconut oil to your hair, it will melt with the heat of your fingers.
Does coconut oil work for low-porosity hair?
No, coconut oil would not work for low porosity hair because it would not absorb into the shaft and would just form a layer over the hair. Low porosity hair has a hard time holding moisture so applying coconut oil may even dry out your hair. If you have low porosity hair, jojoba oil will work better as it’s a lighter oil.
If you have high porosity hair, coconut oil is a great option because it prevents water from entering the strand and locks in moisture.
Can I use coconut oil to style my dry hair?
Totally! When using coconut oil on dry hair the key is to avoid anywhere near your roots. Once you touch the roots it will start to look greasy fairly quickly. Instead keep the coconut oil for the ends of your hair as a way to hydrate, keep it looking smooth and camouflaging split ends. Use it in place of a hair oil.