I tried out three DIY hair treatments, and here's what happened
Full disclosure: I have never been an advocate for DIY hair treatments. But this week, I’m diving head first into some of the most popular recipes for hair treatments that I’ve found through Pinterest. Because Pinterest just does that to you, right? But also because It’s been a few years since my last foray and the market for natural treatments has vastly expanded. Even the product line that has my loyalty, Kevin.Murphy, uses essential oils in lieu of synthetic fragrances because of the way each essential oil acts as a biocatalyst to the other micro-cultivated ingredients. The beauty industry is changing and evolving, you guys. So while I’ll always be a proponent of professional, salon shampoos and conditioners, I know you are probably going to use DIY treatments as supplements. Let’s dive in to the three treatments I tried and I promise to give you my professional, unbiased opinion.
Treatment 1: Cinnamon Shine & Growth Treatment
-1 Tbsp Olive Oil
-1 Tbsp Cinnamon
We’ll start with the first treatment I tried. I had literally never heard of this idea before, but I was kind of into it when I saw the recipe. Cinnamon is known to many in the “natural” scene as a hair growth stimulator and a shine inducer. It’s also full of compounds that provide antifungal and antibacterial properties, so I could really see how using cinnamon in a once a week treatment can help detox the scalp, keep it clean and gently stimulate blood circulation for added growth. My biggest test for whether I loved this treatment or not was going to be if it truly left my scalp and hair feeling clean after using it or if I experienced a lot of buildup.
Here’s what I found:
The first thing I noticed was how HOT this made my scalp, even after washing. I know that’s from the cinnamon stimulating the blood circulation to my scalp, but it was definitely a bit much for me. I couldn’t leave it in the full ten minutes because I was burning up. And also because I just don’t love the smell of cinnamon, I was a bit self conscious about the way my hair still had a scent of cinnamon even after washing. The last thing I noticed that I didn’t love was how hard it was to work the oil out of my hair. I had to wash three times to feel like my hair was really clean afterwards and even once I got all of the oil out, my hair looked pretty greasy after styling. It was a slick ponytail day for me afterwards!
Treatment 2: Coconut Oil & Lemon Scalp Exfoliant
-1 Tbsp Coconut Oil
-1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
I was a bit weary to try this one out because of the lemon component. I’ve seen lemon lighten virgin hair in splotchy patterns and in an undesirable orange hue, so I was a bit nervous about lifting my untouched roots. And lemon can also be quite drying, so I wanted to make sure my hair wouldn’t feel like straw afterwards. However, the coconut oil element really sold me on trying it out. I know that coconut oil is very high in minerals and vitamins and is deeply moisturizing, so I really wanted to see how this blend would come out.
Here’s what I found:
Once I applied it, my hair felt dry and hard, so I was nervous. I’m guessing that was the lemon acting as a sort of astringent. The smell was nice and natural, but not too overbearing. Once I washed my hair out and blow-dried it, I loved the way my hair felt. It was moisturized from the coconut oil, my scalp was exfoliated and felt clean from the lemon and I also had this perfect amout of slip to my hair that let me blow-dry with a great balance of shine and volume. And best of all, my hair looked totally clean and not at all greasy! Yay!
Treatment 3: Aloe & Green Tea Moisture Enhancer
-1 Cup Aloe Vera
-1 Cup Green Tea
-A few drops of lavender oil
For the final treatment, I wanted to find something that could be used on a daily basis and could act as a supplement to any shampoo or conditioner. This recipe was the perfect blend of ingredients and utilized my favorite essential oil, so I had to give it a go. Aloe vera is used naturally as a burn aid to help minimize redness, heat and permanent damage. And of course, it stimulates healing. Lavender is an awesome ingredient in a lot of my favorite hair products that works to balance sebum production. I actually spray lavender on my pillow each night while I sleep to reduce the impact of oil. And green tea of course is full of antioxidants and vitamins which gives it the power to soften and restore hair. Needless to say, I was excited to try this one out and see if it worked as well as the chemistry behind each ingredient made me think it would.
Here’s what I found:
Okay, I loved this one. I sprayed this treatment on after washing and before blow-drying and my hair literally dried in like 3 minutes. . .my whole head! I was really excited that it dried so quickly and as it dried, it felt incredibly soft, but it still had texture to hold a style. I’ve literally never used a natural treatment that worked as well as this one and I’m really happy I ended up trying it! When I was done, I put my spray bottle in the fridge to keep it and I will definitely use it again on those days when I want to get out the door quickly and still have shiny, soft, bouncy tresses.
The Final Analysis
My overall take on the three treatments I tried and the DIY experience in general is that it can work for most women when done correctly. You have to do your research to find out how to solve your specific problems and you’ll need to be very targeted in your approach. But I do think that some of these that I tried could be really beneficial for the right person. For me, I would definitely use the coconut oil and lemon exfoliant again as well as the aloe spray!
However, I felt like the ingredients, especially the oils were quite heavy and after several treatments, they could really start to weigh the hair down or give a greasy appearance. I really believe that these treatments should be used in conjunction with a professional, salon guaranteed hair care regimen as a base. Or even just adding in a detox shampoo like Kevin.Murphy’s Maxi.Wash to get in and get the job done in between natural remedies. At the end of the day, hair strands and scalps need to be exfoliated and cleaned and I believe that after trying these DIY recipes out, you’d really need to have something else to supplement that can get in there and do the job. Everything in moderation, as they say, and I think that perfectly applies to the world of DIY hair treatments!
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