Showing posts with label Underrated. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Underrated. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Underrated || Babassu Oil for Hair and Skin

Like coconut oil, babassu oil is extracted from a kernel of the palm tree family – the babassu tree, to be exact.  More importantly, it has similar composition and proportions of fatty acids as coconut oil.  (The fatty acids include lauric, myristic, palmitic, stearic, and oleic.) If you desire some the benefits of coconut oil but (for whatever reason) dislike the actual oil, you might want to continue reading ... 


1.  It is less/non-clogging.  One downside to using coconut oil is that it is high on the comedogenic scale.  Babassu oil, on the other hand, is supposedly not as clogging (if clogging at all).  If you are prone to getting acne from coconut oil use, try this babassu instead.  

2. It does not leave a greasy feel.  Unlike coconut oil, babassu oil lacks a greasy feel after application. Some even say that it appears to penetrate better than coconut oil.

3. It is not expensive.  Depending on where you make your purchase, babassu oil is comparable in price to coconut oil.


1. Use it to seal your ends.  After a fresh wash and condition, apply a little bit of the oil to your ends.  A little goes a long way.

2. Use as a pre-shampoo treatment or to enhance a conditioner.  Use babassu alone or with other ingredients as an overnight pre-poo treatment.  Add some melted babassu oil to your conditioner for an enhanced conditioning treatment.

3. Use it to whip shea butter.  Mix a little babassu oil with shea butter (and other oils, if you wish). 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Underrated || Lanolin or Lanolin Oil for Hair

Disclaimer: Lanolin is not recommended for use by those who have wool allergies.

Lanolin is a natural, waxy substance extracted from the wool of sheep (and, in rare cases, other wool-bearing animals).  Unfortunately, it has been labeled a "bad" ingredient in certain hair care communities, possibly because it is a barrier to water.  However, outside of this reality, lanolin can be very useful in other arenas of hair care.  If you don't know much about it, you might want to continue reading ...


1.  It seals in moisture.  Lanolin, secreted by the sebaceous glands of sheep in order to protect the skin and wool from the harsh environment.  It would then not seem unreasonable that lanolin would work well as an effective sealant on our own hair.  Though this waxy, thick substance locks out moisture (i.e., preventing water from penetrating the hair) it also locks in moisture (i.e., retains water that is already present in the hair strand).  NOTE: If you have fine strands, lanolin may feel too heavy; try the oil form (of lanolin) instead.

2. It has conditioning properties.  Lanolin can be very lubricating.  

3. It can aid in styling.  Due to the waxy consistency of lanolin, it can help to define twist outs, braid outs, and roller sets.  It can also help to smooth down any frizzies or stray hairs and add shine (or sheen).


1. Use it to seal your ends.  Depending on your hair texture and density, lanolin may or may not be too heavy for use.  If it is too heavy, try using it sparingly or opting for lanolin oil instead.

2. Use as a pre-shampoo treatment or to enhance a conditioner.  Use lanolin (or lanolin oil) alone or with other ingredients as a pre-poo treatment.  Add some melted lanolin (or add lanolin oil) to your conditioner for an enhanced conditioning treatment.

3. Use it to make a styling pomade or grease.  Lanolin can be used alone or mixed with butters and/or oils to create a pomade or grease.  Check out this previous post on a hair grease recipe using lanolin.  (The recipe creator is Lola Zabeth.)

4. Use it as an anti-humidity agent.  Because lanolin can act as a barrier between your hair and the environment, it can work well to protect your styles from being ruined by humidity.  

Monday, October 22, 2012

Underrated || Cupuacu Butter for Hair and Skin

Cupuacu butter is starting to attract some popularity but has been underrated for a while.  If you don't know much about it, you might want to continue reading ...


1.  It is VERY moisturizing.  Cupuacu butter has an amazing ability to absorb and retain water, thus restoring moisture to dry hair.  Think moisturizer and sealant in one.

2.  It has emulsifying properties.  This butter is said to aid in the stabilization of an emulsion.  (An "emulsion" is a system (as fat in milk) consisting of a liquid dispersed with or without an emulsifier in an immiscible liquid usually in droplets of larger than colloidal size).


1. Use it straight or mix with other ingredients to make a whipped butter.  Cupuacu butter can be used alone (since it is already soft and moisturizing on its own) or mixed with oils, others butters, or aloe vera to create a whipped body or hair butter.  

2. Add to a conditioner.  Add some cupuacu butter to your conditioner to make it more moisturizing.

3. Use as a styling agent.  Cupuacu butter can be used alone or mixed with a gel for twisting, twistouts, braids, braidouts, or for use as a general styling agents.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Underrated || Mango Butter for Hair and Skin

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While shea butter is extremely popular in hair care and skin care, mango butter is not heard of as much.  Chances are, if you have not tried mango butter, you may be missing out ... especially if you are not a fan of shea butter.


1.  It is moisturizing and does not sit on top of the hair.  Ladies who have tried both shea butter and mango butter tend to agree that mango butter is more moisturizing and absorbs into the hair better.  

2.  It has emollient properties.  Mango butter can help to smooth the hair and skin as well as seal in moisture.

3.  It provides more hold and definition.  At room temperature, mango butter is more solid than shea butter.  It is probably because of this characteristic that it is able to provide more hold and definition compared to shea butter.  

4.  Light to mild, sweet scent.  If you find the nutty scent of shea butter a bit strong or odoriferous, you may prefer the milder, sweet scent of mango butter.


1. Mix with an oil (or oils) to make a moisturizer.  For moisturizing, mango butter is best used when mixed with an oil (or oils).  Since it is fairly hard at room temperature, the butter should be melted first.  Then add olive oil, coconut oil, safflower oil, grapeseed oil, and/or your favorite oil to create a more pliable moisturizer than may be applied to the hair or skin.

2. As a holding agent.  Melt the mango butter slightly and apply it to the hair prior to twisting or braiding.  

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Monday, August 13, 2012

Underrated || Grapefruit Essential Oil for Hair

DISCLAIMER: Essential oils are very potent. Please consult your doctor before using them, especially if you are pregnant, breast feeding, or have a medical condition.

First off, grapefruit essential oil should not be confused with grapeseed oil.  The former is an essential oil and pressed from the grapefruit.  The latter is a carrier oil and pressed from the seeds of grapes.  Grapeseed oil is growing in popularity in hair care, but grapefruit essential oil is relatively less known.  Now for why this particular essential oil is underrated ...


1.  It has a sweet, light fragrance.  While peppermint essential oil can be a bit strong in aroma and lavender a bit weak, on this scale, grapefruit essential oil sits relatively close to lavender.  Grapefruit is almost in the realm of lemongrass essential oil, but weaker and much sweeter in terms of scent.  

2.  It blends well with other essential oils.  Grapefruit essential oil can be mixed with many other essential oils to create interesting blends.  It blends especially well with lavender essential oil.  Some also state that grapefruit blends really well with the essential oils of bergamot and basil.


1. As a hair deodorizer/perfume.  Add several drops of grapefruit essential oil to a few ounces of water in a spray bottle.  Spritz your hair and scalp to hold off on wash day a bit longer.  Grapefruit essential oil has the right intensity of aroma to leave your hair smelling fresh and sweet without being overpowering.

2. As a moisturizer fragrance.  Add several drops of this essential oil to give your moisturizer a sweet, citrusy scent that is subtle.

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Underrated || Safflower Oil for Hair and Skin

Many women use olive oil, coconut oil, and even jojoba oil on their hair in some fashion, but few use or know about safflower oil.


1.  It is inexpensive.  Compared to your more popular hair oils, this one is fairly inexpensive.  Depending on where you purchase safflower oil, it can cost almost 20-50% less than extra virgin olive oil or extra virgin coconut oil.

2.  It is very moisturizing.  The safflower oil sold for cooking purposes is generally high in oleic acid, which is a fatty acid that possesses conditioning and moisturizing properties.

3.  It is fairly light.  The consistency of safflower oil is somewhere between that of jojoba oil and olive oil, and somewhat similar to grapeseed oil.  Thus, if you find olive oil to be too heavy and jojoba oil to be too light, safflower oil may be worth a try.


1. As a sealant.  Depending on your hair, safflower oil may work just fine as a sealant after a good wash and deep condition.  I used to use this oil as a sealant during humid weather when my hair didn't require a heavy product.

2. To enhance a moisturizer.  This oil can be use to enhance your current moisturizer.  It works really well in whipped butters.

3.  To enhance a lotion.  Yes, it can be used on the skin too!  You can add this oil to your body lotion or facial moisturizer.

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