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Looking after your black hair can be time consuming and confusing and is often a very long journey. Black hair is unique as it has a rather unusual structure of follicles and flat hair shafts, making it more susceptible to breaking compared to other hair types. (1)(2)
Unlike straight hair, which may naturally appear well hydrated and glossy, black hair often leans toward the drier side.
This is where the significance of oiling comes in. Hair oils are incredible allies in fighting dryness, preventing knot formation, strengthening fragile strands, and promoting hair growth. (1)
But what’s the ideal frequency of oiling black hair to keep it looking its best? While many experts commonly recommend oiling your scalp twice a week, it’s important to note that the right frequency can vary.
This article will look into how often to oil black hair.
Consider these points when it comes to the frequency of oiling black hair.
If you’re one of those people who have very tight curls that are referred to as hair type 4C, then you can expect your hair to be very dry. Experts recommend oiling your hair 2-3 times a week. This will give your hair the much-needed hydration and moisturization.
However, if your hair is curly but not very tightly, just loosely, you have type 4B hair, which needs to be oiled 1-2 times a week to manage frizziness and keep the hair moisturized.
Lastly, black hair can be type 4A, which means the curls are very loose and more hydrated than those of 4B and 4C. This type of hair doesn’t need to be oiled a lot. You can get away with oiling it once a week. (4)
The frequency of oiling black hair also depends on its porosity, which defines the hair’s ability to absorb and retain moisture.
For people with low-porosity hair, which tends to resist moisture absorption, a once-a-week oiling routine is usually enough. This also avoids product buildup.
Medium-porosity hair is happy with an oiling frequency of 1-2 times a week, which maintains a moisture balance.
For individuals with a dry scalp, it’s recommended to oil both the scalp and hair more often, typically around 2-3 times a week. This habit helps battle away dryness and discourages the presence of flakiness.
On the other hand, if you’re wrestling with an oily scalp, a less frequent oiling ritual, usually once a week or once in 10 days, is the better choice.
Here are some of the best oils that work amazingly for black hair.
1. Coconut oil
When it comes to nurturing black hair, coconut oil stands out as a versatile and beloved choice. It has exceptional moisturizing properties.
What truly sets it apart is its extraordinary power to be readily absorbed by the scalp, ensuring effective nourishment. (6)
2. Castor oil
Another exceptional option for taking care of your black hair is castor oil. It excels in hair hydration, making it an excellent solution for preventing dryness.
3. Olive oil
Olive oil acts as a natural hair moisturizer, effectively sealing in moisture and ensuring that your hair remains adequately hydrated. It also enhances hair elasticity, leading to healthier and more resilient strands. (9)
4. Argan oil
Extensive research has highlighted argan oil’s potential to combat a common issue—frizz, often seen in black hair—and to shield the hair from damage.
What’s hair porosity and how does it matter when it comes to oiling?
Hair porosity influences how much your hair drinks up oil. Low-porosity hair requires only once-a-week oiling.
How do I know if I’m using too much oil?
If your hair gets greasy or collects stuff, you’re overdoing it. Keep it balanced and watch out for that greasy feel.
Caring for black hair can be complex due to its unique structure, which makes it prone to breakage and dryness.
Oiling is vital for combating these issues, with the frequency depending on factors such as hair type, hair porosity, and scalp condition.
The recommended oils for black hair care include coconut oil, argan oil, castor oil, olive oil, and tea tree oil, each offering distinct benefits to keep your hair healthy and vibrant.