Some might say avocados are now just as ubiquitous as apples.
The social media marketing of avocados, used for way more than guacamole, has reached an all-time high (read: not one week goes by where you don’t see a picture of avocado toast Instagrammed).
Remarkably, this sought-after green fruit is just as multifaceted in the beauty industry (when it comes to avocado oil), as in the food and health industries.
Avocados are like the people you know who are, simply put, just good at everything.
What is an avocado?
The avocado is one of the most popular superfoods. Avocados, also known as “alligator pears,” are produced mainly in Mexico/Central America, with California following close behind.
You don’t have to feel bad about eating this “fatty” fruit – it’s the best kind of fat you can consume. These are the good, monounsaturated fats, overflowing with vitamins and minerals.
Even better, they have the highest amount of protein of any fruit.
Where does this magical avocado come from? It begins as the fruit of the avocado tree, then to produce oil, it is pressed from the pulp surrounding the avocado pit.
Note: this is one of the only edible oils that does not come from a seed. It is also one of the few oils that can penetrate the hair cuticle to condition and moisturize the hair.
What do avocados have to do with hair?
Hair loss (that is not linked to genetics or health conditions) often occurs when it has been exposed to the elements: extreme heat, sun, cold, or elements that we self-impose; i.e. chemically loaded products and styling tools.
More commonly, vitamin/nutritional deficiency can also cause hair loss or slow hair growth. Your hair follows your body’s response to an unfulfilled diet – it becomes dull, a bit lifeless, dry, and doesn’t grow at the rate it used to.
Avocados are high in vitamin B and E, which both work at the cellular level to protect and strengthen hair.
While vitamin B is essential for growth, vitamin E helps repair the scalp (which might prevent hair growth in the first place).
The monounsaturated fatty acids in avocado oil will nourish and strengthen from the inside out.
Avocados as a conditioner to promote hair growth
If you are looking for a quick way to decrease dryness and increase smoothness of your hair, turning to avocado oil might be the way to go.
Making your own conditioner is easier than it sounds: mash an avocado, add a teaspoon of avocado oil, and combine. Done! The high-fat content will make your hair less dry and prone to breakage, in addition to promoting regular hair growth.
Avocado oil in a hair mask
Mask Recipe #1:
- 1 avocado
- 1 banana
- 1 tbsp avocado oil
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp honey
Blend the avocado and banana first, and then add the oils and honey. Apply the mask to the hair for as long as you would like. Rinse with your usual shampoo and conditioner.
Mask Recipe #2:
This recipe scares me because it involves a raw egg, but the results are worth it:
- 1 mashed avocado
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 spoonful of water
Massage into the hair, relax to allow maximum absorption of nutrients. Rinse with your usual shampoo and conditioner.
The power of an avocado oil massage
Take a nickel-size amount of avocado oil and massage it into your scalp for several minutes. This will stimulate blood flow and unclog blocked follicles. This helps to fight against hair loss.
Avocado oil can also be used as a leave-in conditioner, detangler, or antibreakage solution.
A hot oil treatment?
My personal favorite is the hot oil treatment: take avocado oil, extra virgin coconut oil, a warm towel, glass jar, and a saucepan.
- Boil water in saucepan
- Use equal parts avocado and coconut oil (3-5 tbsp each) and combine in a jar / bowl
- Feel free to add a “boost” with lavender and rosemary essential oils. They also have beneficial effects on the hair and help you to relax.
- Place the jar/bowl of oil in the hot water for 60-75 seconds
- Test the temperature of the oil before applying to your hair
- Massage the mixture into wet, washed hair and wrap it with a warm towel. Relax.
The final takeaway
Certain brands are introducing hair products infused with a derivative of avocado, but they will never be as potent or nutritious as the real thing.
At the end of the day, will avocado oil it promote healthy hair? Yes. The nutrients from avocados are easily absorbed into our scalps and hair.
But, as commonly found in the beauty world, there is no direct relationship between avocado oil and hair growth.
It is a great moisturizer, conditioner, and dose of vitamins. But, avocado oil still isn’t as beneficial as a beauty product when compared to eating avocados as part of your well-balanced diet.
On that very topic, what are the other benefits of avocados when it comes to your health?
The Health Benefits of Avocados
The avocado’s benefits are nothing new to the world. Historically, avocado oil has been known for its healing and regenerative properties.
It has a treasure chest of benefits for both the hair and skin, containing antioxidants, minerals, essential fatty acids, biotin (hair growth!), and vitamins A, B, D, and E.
Avocado oil is also frequently cited in research studies that illustrate these health benefits, such as preventing the development of diabetes, high cholesterol, high triglyceride levels, and obesity.
Remarkably, it has *prescription drug* status in France due to its proven ability to counter the negative effects of arthritis. As I said, good at everything.
Health benefits in detail
- 1/5 of a medium-sized avocado has only 50 calories + 20 vitamins and minerals
- Completely cholesterol and sodium free
- Can increase your “good” cholesterol by 11%
- Can reduce your triglycerides by 20%
- Reduces your risk of heart disease, cancer, and fluctuating sugar levels
- Contribute to your body’s absorption of essential nutrients such as lutein, alpha and beta carotene
- Contain 26% of the recommended daily value of vitamin K, 20% folate, 17% vitamin C, 14% potassium (more than bananas!), 13% vitamin B6, and 10% vitamin E
And there’s more!
- The fats of an avocado contain oleic acid, linked to reducing inflammation and having positive effects on genes connected to cancer
- High amounts of fiber
- Relieves symptoms of arthritis
- Full of antioxidants to fight off free radicals
How has avocado oil worked for you and your hair? Let us know in the comments!