Why Oiling Your Scalp May Not Be Such A Bad Idea

The Natural Hair Jury is still out on whether or not oiling one’s scalp is beneficial, but it alleviated the pain caused by styling tension on my tender skin.
Publish date:
March 31, 2014
How-To, dry skin, DIY, natural hair, olive oil, scalp, tension

A few weeks ago, I noticed that the hairstyles I’ve been
wearing for ages had been the cause of terrible, recurring headaches.

It was really strange at the time, because these hairstyles
weren’t particularly new or tightly braided. I couldn’t for the life of me
figure out why I could only find relief by taking down my hairstyle every
night, until I massaged my scalp one evening: it was dryer than the Sahara at
midday, and tender to the touch.

Horrified that I let this happen, I grabbed my
trusty bottle of olive oil that I keep in my bathroom, oiling my scalp and
massaging the oil into my skin. As if by magic, the tenderness slowly abated,
as though soothing rains were tempering my desert-scalp’s agony.

The Natural Hair Jury is still out on whether or not oiling
one’s scalp is beneficial, or even necessary, many claming that the supposed
need to do so is an old-fashioned myth. I’d bought into this line of thinking
right up until my headaches started, immediately abandoning it once
moisturizing my aching scalp alleviated the weeks of pain caused by any
amount of styling tension on my tender skin.

Unnecessary or no, it helped my
hair. That’s the whole point of a beauty regimen, right?

Before you begin, there are some important things to take
into consideration:

• Not everyone needs to
oil their scalp. Adding the extra oil to your scalp is really helpful if you
have dry skin that needs the moisture. If you generally have oily skin, oiling
your scalp may be unnecessary.

• When putting product directly on the scalp, it’s a good idea
to stick to something light. Thicker greases like shea butter,
while marvelous when used on the hair shaft, will contribute to buildup on the scalp.

Even taking that into consideration, which oil you use can make a huge difference, as well. The
viscosity of castor oil is perfect on my tiny curls, for instance, but it would
probably weigh down the hair of someone with a looser curl pattern. It’s also
worth noting that astringents like tea tree oil dry out the skin: the exact
butt opposite of what we’re looking to accomplish.

That said, I’d go with a non-astringent that the rest of
your skin reacts well to. If you notice that olive or coconut oil makes you
glow, try using it on your scalp! What works for any one scalp is an enormously
unique thing, so follow your own reactions before conventional wisdom.

Let’s get started!

First you’ll want to take your hair out of whatever adorable
hairstyle you doubtlessly have it in.

From there, part your hair down the center, and use a bottle
with a nozzle tip to dot oil directly on your scalp. Try to avoid squirting oil
on your scalp with wanton abandon, because very few things are more awkward
than having to wipe away rivulets of oil trickling down your face. Trust me,
it’s weird and uncomfortable.

Continue parting your hair down both sides of your head,
lengthwise. Oil each part as though lightly irrigating the rows of ebony wheat
that are your gorgeous hair.

After your scalp is dotted with your oil of choice, use your
fingers to lightly massage your scalp to work it in and spread the oil to other
parts of your head. Now is the perfect time to bust out one of those goofy head
massagers, if you’re fortunate enough to own one.

That’s it! Put your hair into whatever adorable hairstyle
you have in mind for the day and take the world by storm with your newly
moisturized scalp.