Nature has quite a few tricks up its sleeve when it comes to beauty and there are plenty of natural ingredients to choose from. Especially during the winter time, your hair needs an extra hand to look its best, so here are a few natural extracts which can give your hair that extra shine and smoothness you’re looking for.
Argan oil is obtained the fruits of the argan tree, a tree indigenous to Morocco that lives up to 200 years. Moroccans have been using this oil for centuries, in their diet as well as for cosmetic purposes.
Despite its somewhat unpleasant smell, argan oil boasts moisturizing, healing, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which can greatly benefit your skin as well as your hair. Due to its fatty acids profile and high vitamin E content, it’s very useful for treating damaged hair, irritated scalp and split ends.
Look for conditioners and hair masks containing high amounts of argan oil, especially if you have dry or treated hair, or you can make your own, mixing it with other reputedly beneficial hair oils, such as coconut or olive oil.
Extracted from the Acacia Concinna shrub which grows in India, Shikakaï powder is a traditional Ayurvedic remedy, used as a natural shampoo and conditioner. It is supposed to clean in a delicate manner, strengthen the roots and leave your hair soft, smooth and silky.
It can be used for any type of hair, but it is especially useful for dull, tangled or greasy hair. You can make your own Shikakaï shampoo by mixing boiled water with the powder, and mixing until you get a smooth paste.
For medium length hair, you should add 20-25 g of powder to 40-50 ml water. Massage your scalp with the mixture after you’ve let it cool for 10 minutes, leave it on for 5 minutes, and rinse with plenty of water.
Amla powder is obtained from the Emblica Officinalis tree, from the dehydrated amla fruits, also known as Indian gooseberry. The fruits are rich in vitamin C, and the extract is supposed to act as a conditioner, stimulate hair growth and provide volume and vigour. It is also said to prevent hair loss, premature greying and dandruff.
You can prepare it with water, which yields a paste, or macerate it in your favourite oil.