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Amla Oil For Hair: Benefits & Possible Side Effects


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What Is Amla Oil?

The Indian Gooseberry commonly known as Amla has been used for centuries and centuries as a major Ayurvedic and medicinal herb for a variety of purposes. Mainly, Amla oil is always related to nourishing hair follicles and even more, it's related to your mom or dadi giving you a refreshing and relaxing Amla oil massage. 

How Is Amla Oil Made?

Early done by our ancestors, which is still carried forward with tradition, Amla oil was made by first completely drying the amla fruit and soaking it in a base oil like mineral oil. The tiny green and sour fruit have been tropically grown in many Asian countries like Sri Lanka, Pakistan, China, Malaysia, and majorly in India. This Amla oil is either applied directly to the scalp or consumed as an oral supplement for hair care. There are many claims made that Amla oil boosts hair growth which has led the hair industry to bring in Amla oil as the centre ingredient in every hair oil. However, there is not enough scientific evidence to support these claims. 

Making amla oil at home is very easy, most people make their own amla oil and apply it to the scalp depending on their specific preferences. This allows people to pick their own concentration and choose the potency and dose making it a healthy and nutritious oil blend. The dried or even fresh or frozen amla fruit is blended first to extract the juice. Next, it is carefully strained with a sieve to remove the extract. Use one tablespoon of oil, this could be coconut, olive, virgin oils, sesame, etc as an oil base as long as it is pure and potent. The amla and now the oil is meant to be mixed together for a minimum of five minutes. You can either use a blender or simply whip it. Normally, solid hot oils are heated on a very low flame until the oil has completely melted and mixed. That's it, once the oil is still warm, gently apply the oil onto the palms and to the scalp. 

If you wish to opt for amla oils for hair that are available in the stores around you, opt for the ones that contain an amla oil concentration of 7.5 percent solution with water. This is because you do get oils that are less concentrated and mixed more with high water content, therefore, be mindful of the concentration and follow the instructions on the bottle or mono carton. 

Amla Hair Oil Uses

It’s no doubt that the topical application of amla oil is preferred over-supplementation. It helps to boost hair health and nourish the scalp thoroughly. Below are a few ways one can use amla oil for hair.

Apply Amla Oil To The Scalp

In combination with other hair oils like coconut, sesame, olive, or extra virgin olive oils as a base, amla hair oil works wonders to condition the hair follicles and strengthen the root. A warm head massage using amla oil is always good for calming the nervous system and at the same time promoting nutrient-rich blood flow to the follicles to stimulate natural, healthier, thicker, and stronger hair follicles thus managing the effect of hair fall caused due to Dihydrotestosterone.

Amla Hair Oil As A Pre-Hair Wash Detangler

In most people with curly hair or tangles, detangling before a hair wash always seems like a time-consuming task. This is where amla oil comes into play. On days when you have to wash your hair, apply the amla oil to the hair lengths and not the scalp for easier detangling and to make the best of its moisturizing property. Do this 3 hours before washing hair. Let it stay till it detangles the hair completely before washing it off. If you feel that time is too less before a hair wash, you can simply warm up the amla oil blend immediately just before use and let the oil stay for a long until it activates. Wash the hair after proper detangling of the hair. You can also use a comb for this after applying oil as it will smoothing detangle the hair strands or you could just run your fingers across the lengths. 

Amla Hair Oil Benefits

In reality, amla or amla oil is packed with nutrients. It contains amino acids, proteins, carbs, iron, and many more macro and micronutrients. Many people use amla and amla oil for hair basically to avail the rich Vitamin C and Vitamin A that it contains. Organic amla hair oil is filled with fatty acids, this is why the oil is believed to work wonders and provide hair follicles with the necessary strength to grow in a healthy manner. Apart from its nutrients, it is also known for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Amla hair oil benefits are listed below. 

It Prevents The Dandruff-Causing Fungus 

Amla contains anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties which means it easily prevents the growth of dandruff-causing fungus. Along with dandruff, it also keeps parasites like hair lice from preying on the scalp. Ultimately, it helps to soothe the scalp by preventing itching and flaking. 

It Moisturizes Dry Hair 

Amla oil is very hydrating in nature. This means it helps with moisture retention in the hair and scalp. In cases of dry hair, this amla hair oil benefits the scalp by thoroughly nourishing it and keeps dry and brittle hair strands at bay while deeply conditioning the hair lengths. 

It Delays Premature Hair Greying 

Amla oil conditions hair and protects hair from frizziness and other hair damage. This great Ayurvedic herb is said to delay greying of premature hair follicles that are losing out on melanin pigment. 

It Provides Hair With Strength 

Along with its beneficial nutrients, it also contains pectins and phytonutrients that build follicular strength. Doing so, also helps in improving the overall appearance of the hair and builds on hair quality and structure. 

Amla Oil For Hair Growth

While many people also associate amla oil with hair growth, one might wonder if it’s actually true? The truth is that there is very limited research that states that Amla oil is beneficial for hair growth by just topical application. There are some studies suggesting it may help with hair loss, but these were conducted primarily in labs and not human populations. A study was conducted examining 17 plants that have been ideally used for the sole purpose of hair treatments and among them, amla oil had shown to be the second inhibitor of 5 alpha-reductase which is the main conversion enzyme that is responsible to make testosterone to dihydrotestosterone - the main hormone responsible for genetic or pattern hair loss in individuals. However, it has not been proven how well it actually works when applied directly to the scalp and moreover, it was a study that was not performed as a clinical trial ( in humans) and was just done as a lab analysis. 

Here’s Why Amla Oil Alone Is Not Beneficial To Hair Fall Control 

Hair fall occurs due to multiple internal factors and so does hair growth as it just doesn’t depend on a few basic nutrients, this is why amla oil alone cannot do wonders for hair fall control or growing new hair. 

Lack Of Sleep: The Circadian cycle also called the sleep-wake cycle plays an important role in hair health. This is why sleep is of utmost importance when it comes to literally any organ activity. Irregular sleeping patterns also aggravate stress and cause hair thinning. A hormone called melatonin is released during sleep which is also essential for the smooth functioning of the hair cycle. This also works against DHT - the main hormone responsible for hair fall which causes DHT to unbind from the hair follicle receptors.  Lastly, if melatonin is not produced in equal amounts due to not getting proper 8 hours of sleep, this can hamper the cycle and cause hair thinning. This is why just applying amla oil cannot improve hair growth but what it can do is relax the body to induce sound sleep. 

Low Energy Levels: The body's ability to convert the food we eat to energy is what determines how much or how less energy we have. This is called metabolism. A good metabolism is required for the body to break down nutrients from food and supply it through the blood to the follicles. If the metabolism is slow that means most of the body's energy is being utilized to break down nutrients and supply it to other parts of the body other than hair. This is when hair gets neglected and causes DHT to carry out its regular activity of causing hair fall

Nutritional Deficiencies: Hair needs food too. Biotin, iron, zinc, etc as in all macro and micronutrients are required by the hair for it to grow in an ideal manner. This means that when any of these nutrients fall short in the body, it aggravates the hormone DHT and the excess of it has a negative effect on the hair strands and reflects as hair thinning along with looking dull, and lifeless.

Those individuals who have tried using amla oil for their hair claim that it keeps away dandruff and soothes an itchy dry scalp. 

Does Amla Oil Work For All Hair Types? 

The powerful Ayurvedic herb is said to work on all hair types especially straight hair and frizzy, dry hair preventing hair damage. It is applied to a dry scalp to help retain the sebum otherwise lost and helps to maintain a balance in the scalp pH from time to time, thus keeping the scalp completely hydrated. The characteristic antioxidant property of amla oil is essential in building hair keratin and promoting overall scalp and hair health. 

Side Effects Of Amla Oil 

Ideally, there are no such side effects of amla oil for hair. However, the biggest drawback is that amla oil has not been thoroughly researched and may cause side effects or some allergic reactions if not used properly or especially in those cases where individuals are hypersensitive when it comes to their skin. It is unknown whether amla oil interacts with other medications taken by mouth or when applied to the skin. Thus, due to limited resources of research articles, very little is known about the safety of short- or long-term use of amla oil. In case, one notices any side effects, stop using amla oil immediately and contact a health expert to help you tackle the side effects. What can help is this small test before going full-fledged with the application of amla oil. Here’s what can be done as a precautionary measure. Do a simple and small patch test on the back side of the head. It will ensure that there is no issue of irritation on sensitive skin or a hypersensitive or allergic reaction. 

Takeaway

People who are pregnant or breastfeeding and children should not take amla oil in any form. Not enough research has been done on these populations. Always speak with your healthcare provider before starting any supplements.

FAQs

Q1 - How To Use Amla Oil For Hair Growth

The best way would be by consuming it. Amla or amla oil is packed with nutrients. It contains amino acids, proteins, carbs, iron, and many more macro and micronutrients. Many people use amla and amla oil for hair basically to avail the rich Vitamin C and Vitamin A that it contains. Organic amla hair oil is filled with fatty acids, this is why the oil is believed to work wonders and provide hair follicles with the necessary strength to grow in a healthy manner. Apart from its nutrients, it is also known for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Q2 - Is Amla Oil Good For Hair?

Organic amla hair oil is filled with fatty acids, this is why the oil is believed to work wonders and provide hair follicles with the necessary strength to grow in a healthy manner. Not just this, it contains antibacterial and antifungal properties that prevent the growth of dandruff-causing fungus.  Amla hair oil benefits the scalp by thoroughly nourishing it and keeps dry and brittle hair strands at bay while deeply conditioning the hair lengths. 

Q3 - Can We Mix Coconut Oil And Amla Oil For Hair? 

Making amla oil at home is very easy, most people make their own amla oil and apply it to the scalp depending on their specific preferences. This allows people to pick their own concentration and choose the potency and dose making it a healthy and nutritious oil blend. The dried or even fresh or frozen amla fruit is blended first to extract the juice. Next, it is carefully strained with a sieve to remove the extract. Use one tablespoon of oil, this could be coconut, olive, virgin oils, sesame, etc as an oil base as long as it is pure and potent.

Q4 - How To Prepare Amla Hair Oil

The dried or even fresh or frozen amla fruit is blended first to extract the juice. Next, it is carefully strained with a sieve to remove the extract. Use one tablespoon of oil, this could be coconut, olive, virgin oils, sesame, etc as an oil base as long as it is pure and potent. The amla and now the oil is meant to be mixed together for a minimum of five minutes. You can either use a blender or simply whip it. Normally, solid hot oils are heated on a very low flame until the oil has completely melted and mixed. That's it, once the oil is still warm, gently apply the oil onto the palms and to the scalp. 

Q5 - Can We Mix Castor Oil And Amla Oil For Hair?

Yes, you can mix castor oil or any other oil and use it as a base with amla oil 

Q6 - Does Amla Oil Helps In Hair Growth

The truth is that there is very limited research that states that Amla oil is beneficial for hair growth by just topical application. There are some studies suggesting it may help with hair loss, but these were conducted primarily in labs and not human populations. A study was conducted examining 17 plants that have been ideally used for the sole purpose of hair treatments and among them, amla oil had shown to be the second inhibitor of 5 alpha-reductase which is the main conversion enzyme that is responsible to make testosterone to dihydrotestosterone - the main hormone responsible for genetic or pattern hair loss in individuals. However, it has not been proven how well it actually works when applied directly to the scalp and moreover, it was a study that was not performed as a clinical trial ( in humans) and was just done as a lab analysis.

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Zahra Lokhandwala

Hair Coach

Zahra is the hair coach-in-chief at Traya. She works closely with the doctors to monitor all cases. She is a fitness freak and has not touched sugar in years!

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