Maintaining your dreads involves the application of healthy oil to keep them moisturized, shiny, and strong without breaking. But do you know what oil is best for dreads?
Natural oils are good for dreadlockss as they help maintain, moisturize, and improve their texture and growth. Oils in this category include Coconut oil, Peppermint oil, Rosemary oil, Tea Tree essential oil, Cedarwood oil, sage oil, and castor oil. They are all suitable to maintain your dreadlocks, but some are better than others.
Read on to find out the best oils to use, why you should use oil on your dreads, and how often you should apply them.
Why Do You Need to Use Oil in Dreadlocks?
The dreads is a natural hairstyle that requires moisture to maintain its shine and beauty. There are so many reasons you need to use oils on dreads, and I would highlight a few of them here.
- Add moisture: This is important as oil on dreads ensures they remain moist, healthy, and shiny. One of the major reasons hair becomes brittle or breaks is lack of moisture. Besides, when moisture is insufficient in hair, it results in various uncomfortable situations, including dandruff. Oils are hydrophobic and waterproof because they resist water and often create a thin film around hair that traps moisture already present in it, ensuring hair dry out does not occur.
- Treatment of breakage and frizz: Extreme hair dryness could cause hair breakage or split ends and become ragged. This hair condition is common on dreads, and it makes them look unsightly and rough. Using oil to treat this condition keeps the hair moisturized from the scalp to the ends. The oil helps coat the hair strands, retaining the moisture and reducing the chances of breakage.
- Repair damaged Hair: For dreads damaged by chemicals like shampoo and other products, oil would help repair the damage. It would also help restore hair elasticity.
- Improve Growth: Natural oil contains essential vitamins and minerals to make your dreads grow optimally. It does this by nourishing hair follicles and improving blood flow in the scalp.
- Improves Hair Sheen and Shine: Oils, when added to dreads, improve their shine, making them more attractive. Some oils also have natural scents, which they imbue into the hair giving your locs a pleasant smell.
The Best Oils for your Locs
Natural dread oils are most suitable to be used on your dreadlocks. But we would advise you to use a mixture of natural oils. This helps to maximize their advantages while improving the effects of each other.
Below is a list of natural dread oils you can use and their benefits.
Coconut oil gives your dreadlocks a beautiful sheen. The oil has antimicrobial properties that help limit bacterial, fungi, and dandruff growth. It also helps detoxify and moisturize your scalp, protecting hair from breakage and split ends. It improves hair growth by boosting blood circulation in the scalp. It is a rich source of Vitamin E and K, which keeps your hair soft and hydrated.
This is a highly potent oil for your dreadlocks. I advise you to use this oil with a carrier oil to avoid any form of irritation. Using Peppermint oil on your hair helps stop dread balding and receding hairlines.
It leaves your dread looking fresh after a workout and helps promote hair growth. Peppermint oil helps improve the moisture content of your hair. It also helps control dry scalp and dandruff often seen during the locking stage.
This oil contains essential vitamins and minerals that effectively treat hair and scalp damage. Rosemary Oil helps boost hair growth, control dandruff and is ideal for exfoliating dead cells from the scalp.
It has medicinal properties that help nourish and moisturize the scalp protecting it against any form of irritation. Massaging this oil into your scalp also helps improve blood circulation, leading to optimal dread growth.
Tea Tree Oil
This oil comes from Melaleuca Alternifolia leaves, which grows primarily in Australia. It is a potent oil and requires a carrier oil for direct use on the scalp. Tea Tree essential oil helps control the growth of microorganisms like bacteria, fungi and viruses on hair.
This oil reduces itching, dandruff, and any other form of irritation dreads might cause on the scalp. Before using this oil, you must carry out a patch test to ascertain your hair tolerance level before liberal scalp application.
This oil works by balancing the oil-producing glands found on the scalp. It helps promote optimal hair growth, reducing hair loss and thinning. Cedarwood Oil helps prevent dread balding by boosting hair regeneration.
Its antimicrobial properties help prevent the growth of microorganisms like fungi, bacteria and viruses. Messaging cedarwood oil into your scalp helps improve blood circulation and promotes healthy hair growth.
Sage Oil is abundant in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. It is a rich source of Vitamin A, B, C, Potassium and Calcium. It helps increase hair strength, which reduces breakages and split ends.
The Vitamin C content of this product helps boost collagen levels in the hair, improving hair growth while reducing hair loss. Its antioxidant properties help eradicate inflammations on the scalp, leaving your dreadlocks and scalp healthy.
Black Castor Oil
This oil is rich in triglycerides, making it ideal for treating dry scalp and hair while ensuring no dirt remains on hair. It has humectant properties that keep the hair hydrated over a long period.
Black castor oil also has antimicrobial properties which help protect the scalp from bacterial infection. Rich in fatty acid, this oil helps improve hair texture, making it soft.
Hemp Seed Oil
Hemp seed is another oil that you can put on your dreads to help strengthen them. Hemp seed is rich in antioxidants (like Vitamin E) and fatty acids that work to strength hair, retain moisture and help increase hair growth.
A recent study showed that 89% of participants who applied hemp seed oil to their hair saw benefits and improvement to their hair in just 6 weeks.
Black Seed Oil
Black seed oil is an excellent option for maintaining a health scalp. This oil has been shown to help reduce dandruff and eczema due to it’s anti-bacterial properties. Many people who have used black seed oil for these issues have reported improvement in their conditions within 3-4 weeks of applying the oil to their scalp.
Some studies have also shown that black seed oil also help promote hair growth.
For more detailed information on the best hot oil treatments for your dreads, check out this article I wrote:What is the Best Hot Oil Treatment for Locs (Click here)
How Often Should You Apply Oil?
It is best to oil your dreads regularly, with a time gap of about 2 to 3 weeks. The aim of applying oil to your dreadlocks is to moisturize them. If your hair moisture content is optimal, there is no need to apply oil.
But when the moisture content is suboptimal, the dreads might face dermatitis, psoriasis, itchiness, eczema and dandruff. All these are unpleasant hair conditions which you should try to avoid. But this does not mean you should apply oil every time.
Only apply oil to your dreads if they start feeling dry or brittle. Using oil daily on hair could loosen them, which is unsuitable for the whole locking process.
Too much oiling of your hair would also lead to a relaxed scalp, making it more sensitive and resulting in more hair fall. If your hair is thick or you have a dry scalp, we suggest you oil once a week.
How Do You Apply Oil to Dreadlocks?
There are many ways to apply oil to dreadlocks, and some methods are more suitable for different times or reasons. Below is an easy step on how to apply oil to dreads.
- Wash hair: To do this, wash your hair with residue-free shampoo. Afterwards, remove the excess water using a towel or squeeze it out with a cloth.
- Detangle the dreads: This is a good step to a successful oil application. It involves ensuring that all the strands stand apart from each other.
- Get Your Favorite Oil: We stated earlier in this article the best types of natural oil ideal for you in maintaining your locs and their benefits. You could also use a mixture of these oils for optimal results.
- Add a little water to the mixture: While some people feel this is counterproductive, it is not. A little water helps ensure a perfect blend of the oils. It also helps optimize the potency of some oils that might be too harsh for direct application on the scalp.
- Put the oil and water mixture in a spray bottle or tube with a nozzle. This would help make it easier to apply the oil application.
- Shake the mixture well to ensure a perfect blend
- Apply oil to hair roots: Apply the oil directly to dread roots using the tube. Do this by applying pressure on the bottle or using the spray lever.
- Massage Oil into the scalp: Using your fingertips, massage the oil into your scalp until it is completely oiled. When oiling, you should focus on the scalp because massaging the oil into your scalp will stimulate the follicle and improve hair growth. You must avoid applying the oil directly on your dreads as it would increase the weight. Excess oil on locs also attracts dirt and lint.
Well-maintained dreadlocks is a beauty to behold, and the easiest way to keep your dreads looking beautiful and healthy is by oiling them regularly. With everything mentioned above, you can tell oils that are good for your locs and how they can benefit them.
You should also note that while these oils are great treatments for your locs, they are not the ultimate solution. You should make use of shampoo, conditioners, and other great natural hair treatments suitable for your dreads.
Additional Treatments for Your Dreadlocks
Keeping your scalp and locs healthy will go a long ways in helping to keep them growing and looking amazing. In addition to the oils that were mentioned above, there are additional treatments that you can use to help keeping your locks in excellent shape.
One of those treatments is rose water spray. Rose water is a made up of two basic ingredients – rose petals and water. This solution is when you are short on time. You can simply spray your hair and go. To learn more about Rose Water spray, you can check out my article here.
Another solution that is great for your dreads, but certainly a bit more time consuming that the quick rose water spray is doing a hot oil treatment. Hot oil treatments will take about an hour to complete and should be completed about once per month. For more details on hot oil treatments, you can check out this article that I wrote.
For more information on maintaining your dreadlocks, please click here.