There has been a rising controversy on the benefits of Peppermint and its effectiveness on hair growth. Peppermint has been widely used a flavoring in foods, for its fragrance In cosmetics and as a supplement in health conditions. It is believed to be highly beneficial for hair, with a rising curiosity on its effectiveness on hair growth being hampered by little research available.
Origin of Peppermint Oil
Peppermint Oil comes from peppermint (Mentha and piperita), also its latin name. It is a hybrid mint, a cross between water mint and spearmint, and is a native of the Mediterranean but is now also cultivated in Italy, USA, Japan and Great Britain. The plant that has been cultivated since ancient times in Japan and China has now become widely spread across the world.
Peppermint has two main constituents namely methol and methone. Menthol is responsible for many of the benefits of Peppermint Oils. It gives peppermint its taste, smell, and cooling sensation. It is the active ingredient when it comes to its powerful healing effects on our bodies and the Peppermint Oil effect on hair growth. Peppermint Oil is the essence of Peppermint extracted into oil. Some Peppermint Oils are stronger than others as they are made with modern distillation techniques.
Is Peppermint Oil good for natural hair?
Peppermint Oil is believed to be beneficial to natural hair because it contains menthol which increases blood flow into the hair follicles while causing a cooling effect. An increased blood flow into the hair follicles increases activity in the hair follicles hence the positive impact on hair growth. In this study, Peppermint Oil outperformed menoxodil a well renowned hair loss and hair re growth product meaning that it stands as a better hair growth product compared to other products.
Benefits of the Peppermint Oil on hair growth
Peppermint Oil is packed with nutrients and minerals which are beneficial for hair growth. Here are some the benefits that make it a power pack for your hair.
- Rich in nutrients – Peppermint Oil contains calcium, copper, folate, iron, potassium, magnesium, and manganese. It has omega-3, vitamins A, and C, and the menthol, which leaves a cooling effect on your scalp.
- Antiseptic properties – In most regions of the world and particularly eastern and western traditional medicine, Peppermint Oil has been used for its antiseptic properties. This property helps with rejuvenating the scalp damaged by dandruff and hence has a positive impact in maintaining a healthy mane.
- Anti bacterial properties – The bacterial community of hair consists of Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria depending on how they can be classified. According to an Arabian journal, Peppermint Oil and menthol contain anti bacterial properties against both bacteria strains. It is also found to contain anti viral activities and hence promotes the health of your hair.
- Anti inflammatory properties – Peppermint anti inflammatory property makes it effective in relieving pain and discomfort. Combined with its anti bacterial powers, Peppermint Oil is an essential oil that you should not miss for your hair and especially when you have problems with dandruff which can sometimes make you scratch leading to a damaged scalp and weak hair.
- Remedy for hair loss/Vasodilating and vasoconstricting effect – Peppermint Oil has been widely used as a remedy for hair loss. This is because the menthol in Peppermint essential oil is a vasodilator, meaning it causes the hair follicles to expand thus increasing their blood flow. This in effect leads to more activity on the hair follicles thus encouraging hair re-growth. A 2014 Toxological research, indicates that Peppermint Oil promotes hair growth without any toxic signs. It also out performs minoxodil in its effectiveness.
How to use Peppermint Oil for Hair Growth
1. Use it to massage your scalp
There is nothing as refreshing a stimulating scalp massage. It will rejuvenate your hair and scalp and leave you feeling great. Apply oil using a dropper either directly into the scalp and massage with your fingers. Alternatively, rub some oil into your fingers then apply into the scalp.
2. Mix with your Shampoo/Conditioner.
Give your shampoo or conditioner a power boost by adding a few drops of Peppermint Oil into it. The Peppermint Oil will play an effective role in ensuring that the blood circulation to the scalp increases hence promoting hair growth.
3. Make a Peppermint Oil pre poo
You can easily make your own Peppermint Oil pre poo. Whether you use coconut oil or jojoba oil as your carrier oil, you can add a few drops of Peppermint Oil to the mixture and apply it to your scalp 20-30 minutes before your normal cleansing routine.
4. DIY Oil blends to solves various problems
While there are many oils in the market that contain Peppermint essential oils, there is no limitation to your creativity in adding it to your home made oil. Add a few drops of Peppermint Oil into other carrier and homemade oils and apply according to your home care regimen. Although most essential oils blend well with one another, Peppermint Oil particularly blends well with, eucalyptus, lavender, marjoram, lemon and rosemary.
Extraction of Peppermint Oil
The chemical components of Peppermint Oil are menthol, menthone, 1,8-cineole, methyl acetate, methofuran, isomenthone, limonene, b-pinene, a-pinene, germacrene-d, trans-sabinene hydrate and pulegone. Peppermint Oil is extracted from the whole plant above ground just before flowering mainly through steam distillation from the fresh or partly dried plant.
Important things to note before using Peppermint Oil:
- Undiluted peppermint essential oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin. To avoid this, always use carrier oils such as coconut or jojoba oil to minimize on this effect.
- Avoid getting Peppermint directly into your eyes. This may cause irritation.
- Effect of Peppermint on on Children has not been widely researched and therefore it is best to avoid using it on children.
- It is important to check the labels when purchasing Peppermint essential oil. Make sure that they are acceptable for skin/scalp/hair contact.
In Summary: Peppermint Oil is one of the important essential oils for hair growth. Whether you are looking into boost your hair growth or simply revitalizing your hair, it is a good oil to consider. Always do a patch test before applying the oil directly to you scalp, if you experience a burning sensation, you can dilute the oil by adding it to a carrier oil.