There has been an increasing interest in hair growth in the US recently, with the hashtag #hairgrowth attracting 183M views on TikTok in the last month and 13B views overall. Interestingly, it is a widely discussed topic amongst the younger generation, with 70% of engagement coming from 18–24-year-olds. Many videos show users experimenting with a range of hair growth-promoting products in their beauty routines.
Milena Prinzi, hair expert at All Things Hair, takes a look at the most popular natural hair care remedies, giving her verdict on whether or not they actually help to improve hair growth.
Thanks to TikTok’s viral power, rosemary tea has recently become the go-to fix for hair growth. Rosemary is an evergreen shrub characterized by needle-like leaves, originally from the Mediterranean but now widely available worldwide. It’s a traditional folk medicine used to cure various illnesses, including peripheral vascular diseases and hair loss.
Is it just a TikTok myth, or does it really work?
Prinzi sheds light on this natural remedy: ‘It’s not all smoke and mirrors. Rosemary is recognized as an anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial ingredient, both important properties that stimulate hair growth and mend those bothersome hair breakages.’
‘Rosemary actually mimics the action of minoxidil, that well-known constituent found in hair loss solutions, including the famed Rogaine. In fact, a comparative study on the effects of minoxidil and rosemary oil has shown little to no difference between the two study groups, with both achieving hair growth in six months.’
‘Rosemary contains ursolic acid, which stimulates blood circulation and can help deliver essential nutrients to the scalp. This can have multiple positive effects, including healthier and shinier hair. What’s more, rosemary tea’s anti-inflammatory properties work wonders against itchy scalps and other scalp irritations.’
Not to be confused with rosemary oil, rosemary tea is a homemade solution you can make by boiling a few rosemary sprigs in water and letting it brew for 5 minutes. Then, strain the reddish liquid into a spray bottle and spray it directly onto your scalp when you wash your hair.
Another buzz-worthy ingredient in the hair care world is rice water. Rice water is the starchy liquid that’s left over after you cook, boil, or soak rice. It is said that rice water traditionally originated in Japan when women had floor-length hair. Rice water was known to be their secret for maintaining the length and health of their hair.
Are there real benefits of this miracle ingredient?
Prinzi says: ‘While more research is needed to confirm this, some anecdotal evidence suggests that rice water may help reduce hair loss or shedding. Rice water is rich in essential nutrients that nourish the hair follicles and promote healthy hair growth.’
‘The amino acids present in rice water can help strengthen the hair shaft, making your hair smoother and helping to detangle it. Rice water also contains compounds with anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce scalp irritation and dandruff. A calm and healthy scalp provides an ideal environment for hair to grow.’
Rice water is easy and inexpensive to create at home. Simply rinse one cup of rice, then mix with one cup of water until the mixture becomes cloudy. Then, strain the rice and store it for use later. Put the rice water into a plastic container, cover it, and let it sit at room temperature for 12-24 hours to ferment. You don’t want to let the water sit longer than 24 hours because it’ll go bad. After it has sat out, refrigerate it until you’re ready to use it. To apply, shampoo and condition your hair as usual, then, once your conditioner is rinsed out, apply the rice water all over your hair. Make sure to focus on your scalp, too. Let the mixture sit on your hair for 2-5 minutes, and then rinse it out.
We’ve seen many people Googling ‘caffeine for hair growth’ recently, and there is some truth in this sudden obsession. Caffeine is considered a natural hair follicle stimulant, which is found not only in coffee beans but also in many plants and ingredients. Research has shown that it can stimulate an enzyme known as DHT that is related to male alopecia patterns. Caffeine also provides numerous benefits to the hair, such as protection against UV radiation and an increase in blood circulation in the hair follicles.
Prinzi comments: ‘As well as blocking the effects of DHT in the hair follicles, caffeine also stimulates hair shaft elongation, which results in longer and wider hair roots, giving it a full appearance. In addition, caffeine also prolongs anagen in the hair growth stage. Rather than stripping the hair’s natural oils, caffeine actually seals in hydration. The best part about this wonderful natural ingredient is that it is readily available in many forms; it’s affordable and efficient.’
When using caffeine for hair growth, it’s important to add ingredients that are rich in protein and antioxidants, such as natural oils, coffee, and yogurt. For instance, Greek yogurt works as a moisturizer for dry hair, making the hair strands softer and smoother. You can make a DIY hair mask from coffee and Greek yogurt by combining 1 teaspoon of castor oil, 1 teaspoon of coconut oil 1 tablespoon of pure instant coffee, and 2 tablespoons of Greek yogurt in a glass bowl. Then apply to dry hair in equal sections, massaging it in, then gathering it in a high bun and wrapping it in kitchen plastic. Leave for 20 minutes, then rinse and shampoo out with lukewarm water. Use once a week for shiny, hydrated hair!
For more hair care tips, please visit https://www.allthingshair.com/en-us/
About Milena Prinzi
Milena Prinzi is an award-winning editor with over fifteen years of experience in print and digital media. She’s currently the Editor-In-Chief of Unilever’s editorial property Allthingshair.com, where she leads all content strategies and production. She’s a beauty and wellness connoisseur who particularly enjoys everything homemade.
About All Things Hair
Allthingshair.com is your source for the latest hair news. Featuring thousands of in-depth articles, inspiration galleries, and step-by-step tutorials from our team of experts. Allthingshair.com delivers professional hair care and styling tips from some of the world’s biggest hairstylists and hair care brands such as Dove, TRESemmé, Nexxus, Suave, Axe, Love, Beauty and Planet, SheaMoisture, and TIGI. On Allthingshair.com you can search through a directory of fresh hair content ideas, brush up on your styling know-how, and learn game-changing secrets from our talented editors and experts.