How To Use Lavender Oil For Scalp & Hair Growth

Everyone wants to have luxurious and healthy hair. The best way to achieve that is through proper hair care and giving it the necessary nutrients to grow. While plenty of ingredients and treatments claim to help with hair growth, the most important process involves the scalp. Before the hair strands, you need to concentrate on the scalp, as it's the center where your hair growth will happen. A healthy scalp will produce healthy hair, pushing the process along. 

Health says your hair can grow around one-and-a-half inches every three months and go through four growth stages. Factors such as lifestyle, illnesses, aging, and more can affect the length of each phase. However, there are a few tricks to speed up growth and get your hair to your desired length faster. Ingredients like lavender oil have given hope to those looking to get longer locks faster.

In a 2016 study published in the Toxicological Research, lavender oil managed to help with hair growth in the follicles of mice. "Lavender oil possesses antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties and can help increase blood circulation in the scalp," Esther Olu, cosmetic chemist and licensed esthetician, tells Shape. To get the best out of lavender oil, you'll need to apply it carefully and correctly to maximize your results.

Before you use lavender oil on your hair and scalp

While we all wish we had the time to make our own hair products, plenty of lavender oil products for purchase still do the trick. Although these products are easy to obtain and save time, there are some things you'll want to know beforehand. As Medical News Today mentions, you can buy essential oil products for the hair — including lavender oil products — that are diluted with other ingredients like carrier oils, which is necessary because lavender oil on its own is very concentrated.  

When picking out your products, you want to keep an eye out for natural products. Healthline says it best: "The more natural ingredients and carrier oils, the better." You want to look for ingredients containing lavender hydrolate or essential oil primarily. Products that come as a serum or oil might have more benefits, as you can apply them directly to your scalp.

According to board-certified dermatologist Nava Greenfield, lavender oil can cause irritation for some individuals and can produce allergic reactions (via Byrdie). "Even if you are not allergic to lavender, the immune system in the skin can develop allergies and result in dermatitis," Greenfield tells Byrdie, recommending those with sensitive skin to conduct a patch test beforehand. Greenfield also mentions that if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you should avoid using it, as there "is not enough information to know if lavender is safe to use" for those individuals. 

Add lavender oil to your shampoo and conditioner

The easiest way to apply lavender oil to your hair is through products that you use daily. Since lavender essential oil is harsher than other lavender oils, you want to dilute it with other products. Healthline suggests dropping a few pumps of shampoo or conditioner onto your hand as usual during your shower, adding a few drops of lavender oil to your chosen product, and mixing them in your hands. After mixing them, apply the product to your hair as usual. 

While direct and prolonged use of diluted lavender oil is beneficial, adding it in diluted form via your everyday hair products also has some perks. As WebMD points out, regular lavender oil "deep conditions the hair, keeps it shiny, and helps control dandruff." By acting as a hydrating component, lavender oil can add that extra oomph to your favorite products, taking the health of your hair to the next level.

Apply it as a hair mask

If adding lavender oil to your hair seems like too much work, you can incorporate it into your existing weekly hair routine. Although adding it to your day-to-day products might see results sooner, you can also make it into a relaxing hair mask that makes for the perfect self-care routine. Esther Olu recommends mixing a few drops of lavender oil with a carrier oil like jojoba or grapeseed oil to dilute the product (via Shape).

"If not diluted, [essential oil application] can increase the risk of one's scalp and skin being exposed to irritation and other side effects," Olu warms. When mixed, you can continue the process by applying the mixture to your hair strands and scalp. Leave it on for around 30 minutes before washing it out. 

This mixture will give your hair the extra shine and softness needed to look and feel healthy. Over time, it may even help with growth and thickness. Plus, adding more moisture to the hair will help detangle it and prevent it from getting tangled and knotted (and when your hair gets twisted, rough detangling can make it easier to get damaged!). 

Incorporate lavender oil into your weekly scalp massage

Using scalp massagers has recently become more popular as the benefits include stimulating hair growth. For those looking to grow healthy and shiny hair, adding lavender oil to a weekly scalp massage can help boost the blood flow through the scalp. Like with your hair mask, you want to begin by picking out a carrier oil that will help dilute the lavender oil to become less irritating for the scalp.

"Using your fingers, apply six to eight drops of the oil into your scalp and to the tips of your hair strands, then massage for three to five minutes," says Yoram Harth, a board-certified dermatologist and the medical director of MDhair to EatingWell. "Incorporating a scalp massage into your treatment [can help] stimulate blood flow,"  dermatologist Dendy Engelman adds.

After your time is up, rinse and wash your hair as usual. Use a scalp massager to spread the product throughout the scalp and help stimulate hair growth even further with an invigorating but gentle massage. As Aleta Simmons, a board-certified dermatologist, says to Byrdie, "Scalp massagers can cause mechanical stress on the scalp, potentially leading to alterations in gene expression. These changes may lead to increased hair thickness."