The use of almond oil for hair health dates back to ancient Egyptian times. It is one of many oils that can be used on the hair as a natural deep conditioning treatment. Sweet almond oil is recommended over the bitter version, which is primarily used in cooking. One of the many benefits of almond oil is that it is a natural product with no chemical additives.
Using almond oil for hair conditioning adds shine and silkiness. Many users feel that it can also reduce split ends and breakage. Almond oil can also help alleviate scalp itch and inflammation. The sweet smell of the oil will linger on the hair, providing a fresh, natural scent. This may also offer an aromatherapy benefit to users.
Ancient Egyptian use of almond oil for hair included mixing it with castor oil. Almond oil is applied easily by dipping fingertips into a small amount of the oil and running them through the hair. It may also be applied, in drops, directly to the scalp and gently massaged in. Almond oil conditioning treatments can be left on the hair for 15 to 30 minutes. Warm water should be used to rinse the oil, and rinsing can then be followed with a mild shampoo.
The use of almond oil for hair growth has not been scientifically proven but many users believe that it does have this benefit. The oil is a source of protein and it, combined with massaging of the scalp, may indeed stimulate hair to grow. Massaging the scalp is thought to improve the blood flow to the scalp and increase oxygen to hair follicles.
This oil can also be mixed with other natural ingredients to personalize a hair treatment. Jojoba oil, egg yolk, mashed avocado, olive and sandalwood oils all offer additional benefits. On its own, almond oil is not greasy and will not weigh the hair down the way heavier oils can. Rather, it acts as a carrier oil and mixes well with other ingredients.
Using almond oil for hair conditioning has the added advantage of being from nature, as opposed to other, chemical-based treatments. While it is not inexpensive, only a small amount is needed, so the overall cost should be less than store-bought hair treatments. Some almond oil products may also include vitamin E, which is also good for hair.
Almond oil may also be used on the skin to soothe and soften it. It can be used before and after shaving as a moisturizer, and is excellent for use as massaging oil. Using almond oil for hair or skin treatments of any type should not be done by anyone with any allergy to nuts.