Worthy Products for Summertime: Olive Oil (Extra Virgin That is)

olive oil for hair 2

So, I hope you are keeping track of my favorite hair oils. I have already covered castor oil, jojoba oil, and coconut oil. Extra virgin olive oil is among my faves for all of my hair and skin needs. You may be shocked to find out that EVOO is not just for cooking. While it is a great substitute for veggie oil in the kitchen because of its nutritional content and health benefits, it is also a powerful oil for any hair care regimen. But, since it is so heavily used in food, it is really easy to find in your local grocery store. I purchase mine in bulk from Costco.

Like many of the oils I have covered in our “Growing” theme of worth, olive oil is chock full of vitamins and natural proteins. It is also anti-fungal and antibacterial. These features make it a great oil for scalp maintenance, scalp repair, and hair growth. Comparatively, it is relatively lightweight allowing it to penetrate the hair shaft more effectively than heavier oils like castor oil.

 

My absolute favorite use for olive oil is in my homemade braid spray/scalp moisturizing mist.

Olive Oil Moisturizing Spray

½ cup or 4 oz of distilled water

¼ cup or 2 oz of Aloe Vera Juice (stored in the fridge)

¼ cup or 2 oz of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 – 2 teaspoons of your favorite condish ( I use Shea Moisture Retention Conditioner because it is awesome and I love it)

1 -2 drops of Peppermint Oil (I use this for my dry scalp. I will have a future post on this oil)

Vegetable Glycerin (as needed)

Optional: a few drops of castor oil and jojoba oil – I typically just add a bit of my jojoba-based scalp oil to the recipe to keep my scalp moisturized in the summer and winter months

To mix this recipe, I start with the water and aloe vera juice in a spray bottle. I then add the olive, condish, and peppermint oil. I will shake up the bottle until everything is distributed. Then, I spray a little on the back of my hand to test the consistency. I rub it between my fingers to check that it properly coats my skin. It should come out light with no film. Also, it should not be greasy. At this point, if it is greasy, add small amounts of water until the grease fades.

jenn faux hawk

Jenn, Braided faux hawk

Now, I will also begin adding small amounts of veggie glycerin to make the moisturizing spray stick together. I will do a future post on veggie glycerin but what you need to know is that it is a humectant. This means it pulls moisture out of the air and into its own molecules. This helps in warmer months when proper moisture is desired. But, it can have an adverse effect if used too heavily or in dry climates where there is little moisture in the air. So, use it sparingly and never ever apply it directly to the hair without first diluting in equal parts water.

**An important note about mixing liquid hair and skin products at home, I would purchase some pH balance test strips to ensure that the pH of any product is within a reasonable range. This concoction will land you somewhere between 4.5 and 5.5 on the pH scale which is where hair and skin usually lie on the chart. The more aloe vera juice used, the closer to 4.0 you’ll get. But, most home conditioners range from 5.0 – 6.0 so that can get you back in line.**

This recipe is highly flexible. You can add other oils or thicken the spray for use when you where plaits or cornrows. I used this all last summer while wearing my hair in a braided faux hawk (pic left). Like most naturalistas, I rely heavily on my kinky, coily armpit length tresses. And, this mist makes it easy for me to maintain my styles without having to restyle each day or night. I am currently rocking Senegalese Twists (stay tuned for my how to video I will be posting soon) and I use this spray each night before bed to moisturize my scalp and hair.

I would highly recommend this recipe to anyone with dry scalp or who wears twisted or braided protective styles. No matter the hair type, olive oil is a great natural moisturizer.

 

Do you use olive oil for your hair regimen? What are some of your recipes and/or favorite application strategies?