The plant-based oil train (featuring fan favorites like coconut, jojoba and tea tree oils) is adding a new passenger and yup, it works for all hair types. Grapeseed oil can help a bunch of different hair woes, and whether you have fine hair or curly hair, the oil packs a ton of benefits to keep strands looking and feeling healthy. But there’s one question that’s been on our minds: Does the oil really help with hair growth? Here’s everything you need to know about grapeseed oil for hair, according to Ebony Clark-Bomani, master cosmetologist & product educator for The Mane Choice.
What is grapeseed oil?
Grapeseed oil is derived from, well, grapes. It’s mostly used for wine or a replacement for vegetable oil in cooking, but most recently it has become a staple in the beauty community. At first glance, grapeseed oil is odorless, weightless and boasts a clear finish that works for any hair type.
Tell me, can grapeseed oil jumpstart hair growth?
Yes and no. A Japanese study tested this theory on mice, but there aren’t many human studies that indicate that grapeseed oil helps with hair growth.
However, the components found in the oil suggest that it might be a possibility. “Grapeseed oil has the potential to aid in healthier hair overall,” says Clark-Bomani. She highlighted that the oil contains antioxidants and omega-6 fatty acids that have been shown to boost hair growth. Key ingredients like linoleic acid, polyphenols, oligomeric proanthocyanidins (aka OPCS) and vitamin E stimulate circulation, improve elasticity and repair collagen.
Got it. Can grapeseed oil fight dandruff too?
Again, it’s debatable. There’s no scientific evidence to make this 100 percent true, but the oil does have nutrients and emollient properties (the substances responsible for moisturizing and decreasing itchiness) that could help reduce dandruff. Because grapeseed oil is considered one of the most lightweight oils, people with fine or oily hair can benefit from massaging the oil onto the scalp without worry about buildup, flakes or weighing down your hair. “One of the most common myths is that it is heavy simply because it's an oil. However, grapeseed oil is incredibly lightweight,” says Clark-Bomani.
While the plant-based oil might be good for hair growth and combating dandruff, it begs the question—are there other benefits of grapeseed oil to keep in mind?
5 Benefits of Grapeseed Oil
- It strengthens strands. People with weak, damaged or brittle hair should use grapeseed oil to strengthen and improve strands. The antioxidants (like OPCS) and vitamin E can bring volume and health back to your locks. Apply a nickel-sized amount onto your hair, cover with a shower cap and wait for 20 minutes before rinsing and finishing your hair care routine as normal. Use this treatment once a week for better results.
- It restores shine. “When it comes to the appearance of your hair, grapeseed oil can help boost your hair's natural shine and radiance. It's incredibly light in texture and can serve as a nourishing oil for the hair and scalp,” says Clark-Bomani. The fatty acids work to improve shine to all hair types. Mix water and a few drops of the oil in a spray bottle before spritzing some through your hair a few times a week to maintain vibrancy.
- It reduces frizz. You can rely on the oil to tame flyaways and frizz. If you have curly or natural hair, the oil can tackle any breakage or delicate strands. Apply a nickel-sized amount on damp hair before combing it through (with a heavy focus on your ends). Do this twice a week before building up to daily use.
- It increases moisture. The linoleic acid found in the oil can restore moisture back to the scalp. Those with dry or chemically-treated hair should use a few drops into their go-to conditioner or apply as a scalp treatment to hydrate and soften hair.
- It soothes and nourishes the scalp. The anti-inflammatory properties can soothe an irritated, itchy or dry scalp. Apply a nickel-sized amount of grapeseed oil to the scalp, massage the product for a few minutes before rinsing (or leaving it as a leave-in).
OK, what can’t grapeseed oil do?
- While it may fight dandruff, it cannot be a substitute for treating skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis and fungal conditions.
- As mentioned above, there’s a lack of clinical evidence of grapeseed oil being the magical ingredient to fixing all your hair problems especially overnight. The plant-based oil has plenty of benefits, but it’ll take time and it might not work for everyone. It’s all about testing the oil and being patient with the results.
Is grapeseed oil safe?
Unless you’re allergic to grapes or have highly sensitive skin, grapeseed oil is safe. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, the oil is safe to use on your hair in moderate amounts. If you do experience any irritation, stop using the oil immediately and consult with a medical professional.
It’s an important thing to prioritize the quality and purity of the grapeseed oil you’re using since Clark-Bomani tells us there’s been some controversy surrounding grapeseed oils that are heavily processed. “Research shows that commercially available grapeseed oil is made using chemical solvents, like, hexane. Hexane is classified as an air pollutant and neurotoxin,” she tells us. “Cold-pressed or expeller-pressed grapeseed oil does not use chemical solvents or high heat when processed and is a better choice than oil made with solvents.”
You’ll want to find an all-natural oil that can get the job done (aka give you the healthy and voluminous hair you deserve).