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How To Use Hair Oil: What You Need to Know To Soak Up Every Benefit

by The Hairstory Team|6 May, 2021|Blog / Tips / 

In recent years, hair oiling has gained popularity in the U.S., but its roots (pun intended) go back more than 5,000 years.

Hair oiling comes from Ayurveda, which is thought to be the world’s oldest healing science. This ancient ritual involved coating the head in oil and massaging it into the scalp to rejuvenate, moisturize, and nourish the hair.

Today, hair oil has the same benefits, but in the form of an effortless styling product that can be used every day. So before you raid your kitchen cabinets for a homemade treatment, let’s brush up on the right oil for you and how to oil hair daily for smooth, shiny strands.


Before we dive in, let’s break down the difference between the traditional practice of oiling hair and using hair oil. The former involves pouring oil onto your head and massaging it into your scalp, a process that proponents claim can strengthen follicles and stimulate growth. However, for some hair and skin types – most notably, people with oily scalps – this has the potential to clog pores, lead to skin problems, and result in greasiness or dullness.

Using hair oil, on the other hand, is simply the practice of applying oil to your strands – concentrating mainly on the mid-shaft and ends. This application works wonders for frizz control, enhanced shine, and protection against damage and dryness. Best of all, it’s generally appropriate for people with all hair types.

There are also ways to reap the benefits of oil without using it directly. Cleansers like New Wash contain essential oils and can effectively deliver them to your hair and scalp as you lather.


Using hair oil regularly restores vitamins and minerals that can get stripped away if you wash frequently or use a detergent-based shampoo. Hair oiling can also help protect from breakage, decrease frizz, and lend polish and shine to damaged strands.

Protects your hair from damage and breakage

If you get into the habit of oiling your hair regularly, you’ll begin to notice that it feels stronger and shinier. Coating your hair with the right oil provides nourishment and protection all the way to the inner layers of the shaft. Not only will you see less breakage, but you’ll also gain a protective layer that helps prevent damage from your blow dryer, flat iron, or other styling tools.

Decreases frizz and polishes ends

If you’re in a constant battle against frizz, hair oiling can help. Oils that are rich in Vitamin E and fatty acids lock in moisture and increase strength and elasticity, which leads to a reduction of frizz. In addition, if you have split ends, flyaways, or damaged strands, oil can hide the signs of damage while giving you a smooth, polished look.


It’s essential to remember that not all oils are good for your hair. Some can actually prevent strands from absorbing water. Others, like coconut oil, are heavy and can be difficult to wash out without a harsh, detergent-based shampoo. But the best natural hair oils can protect against a range of harmful factors, including dryness from products and damage from your heat tools.

Dry hair

If you have dry hair, consider oils that are rich in vitamins and fatty acids, which moisturize and condition, reduce frizz, and seal the cuticles. Good options include:

  • Argan oil
  • Jojoba oil
  • Sunflower seed oil
  • Safflower seed oil
  • Abyssinian oil
  • Evening primrose oil
  • Murumuru seed butter
  • Babassu kernel oil
Oily hair

If you have oily hair, you can still benefit from oil – in fact, using Argan oil in a cleanser like New Wash Deep can help balance your natural oil production. When styling, select lightweight varieties that won’t weigh down your style. Babassu kernel oil, for example, moisturizes without adding grease. Sunflower seed oil is also a good choice; it’s lightweight and helps to smooth frizz.

Essential oils

Essential oils, like lavender, lemongrass, rosemary, and tea tree, are potent, powerful and potentially harsh on skin and hair, so they’re best used in a diluted version. For example, cleansers like New Wash contain a blend of essential oils alongside other ingredients, which is a safe and effective way to distribute them throughout your strands without applying them full-strength directly to your scalp.

Therapeutic oils vs. styling oils

When choosing an oil, again keep in mind the difference between therapeutic oils and styling oils. Therapeutic oils are used for the traditional method of hair oiling. You generally use this type of oil once or twice a week, massaging it into your scalp before you go to sleep and washing it out in the morning.

Styling oil is designed to be used on a daily basis to smooth frizz, seal split ends, and add shine. There’s no need to wash it out before you style – you can keep it in until your next wash.


When you’re using it as a styling product, the best time to apply hair oil is in the morning when you’re getting ready for the day. And, if you choose a product that’s formulated with lightweight oils, like Hair Oil, you can use it every day.

How to use hair oil: damp hair

Applying hair oil to damp hair is the most effective way to address damage and dryness, because strands that are slightly wet are naturally more absorbent. Think of it this way: A completely dry sponge is slow to absorb a liquid spill. However, a slightly damp sponge is primed for absorption and can generally soak up a spill faster and more effectively. The same goes for your hair.

To apply hair oil to damp hair:

  1. Cleanse with a detergent-free cleanser.
  2. Remove excess water from your head with a microfiber towel.
  3. Work a few drops of oil through your damp hair, focusing on the ends through the mid-shaft.
  4. Allow hair to air dry (the oil will help weightlessly define your natural texture) or blow dry (the oil will seal your cuticles, allowing for a smooth, frictionless blow-dry).

How to use hair oil: dry hair

Applying hair oil on dry hair is best if you want to address specific surface or texture issues, like combatting frizziness or masking damage. The oil will smooth and add shine immediately because it sits on the surface of your strands rather than soaking in.

To apply hair oil on dry hair:

  1. Start with clean and dry hair.
  2. Work in a few drops of oil, focusing on the areas you want to tame, polish, or de-frizz.


Curly hair can be delicate and, often, very dry. By nature, curls hold less water than straight strands. Your straight-haired friends brush their hair to pull down the oil from the scalp, but oils have a harder time sliding down your curls. This leads to frizz and dullness. It can also lead to brittle and split ends.

Curls need a unique combination of moisture, protein, and oil. A blended styling oil that works well on dry hair, like Hairstory Hair Oil, will help reduce frizz and create smooth, shiny curls.


To get the maximum benefits from oil, you’ll also want to take the right approach to washing your hair. Thoroughly cleansing before using oil will prepare it to fully absorb. New Wash is a great option for this step, as it gently removes impurities and buildup, so the oil can easily penetrate your strands.

Wondering how to remove the oil when you’re ready to cleanse? If you use a heavier oil, like coconut, you may have a hard time completely washing it out. Fully dissolving and rinsing it out requires a traditional shampoo, which can strip your hair and scalp of its natural oils and create a need for more frequent oiling or additional products to replace that moisture.

However, lightweight styling oils are much easier to wash out. In fact, New Wash is designed to completely dissolve and rinse out Hair Oil – but it’s gentle enough to do so without stripping away your hair’s natural barrier. You’ll end up with clean, hydrated hair that’s primed and ready to benefit from your next application of oil.


To style with hair oil, make sure to choose a product that’s specifically designed for the task – one with lightweight oils that won’t weigh your look down or make it appear greasy.

For a simple, everyday look, apply oil to damp, cleansed hair and then let it air dry. The oil will help define your natural texture and result in a shiny, smooth, and frizz-free style.

For a sleek, smooth blowout, work some oil through your damp hair before applying heat. The oil will help seal your cuticle, ensuring a polished finish.

You can also use hair oil in combination with your other styling products to boost their benefits:

  • For a super-moisturizing curl cream, mix a few drops of Hair Oil with a pea-sized amount of Hair Balm.
  • For a styling balm that’s spreadable and easy to work though thick hair, add Hair Oil to Hairstory Hair Wax.
  • For a glossy finish after heat styling, use a blend of Hair Oil and Dressed Up.


Hairstory Hair Oil is a lightweight oil blend that’s designed specifically for everyday styling use. On the surface, it helps smooth frizz and flyaways and add shine – but it boosts hair health from the inside out, too. Hair Oil penetrates the cuticle to infuse each strand with vitamins, antioxidants, and fatty acids, leading to more moisture and less damage.

Hair Oil contains a unique mixture of lightweight oils, including:

  • Evening primrose oil
  • Safflower seed oil
  • Abyssinian oil
  • Argan oil
  • Murumuru seed butter
  • Babassu kernel oil
  • Jojoba oil
  • Sunflower seed oil

And, it’s specifically designed to pair perfectly with New Wash. A non-detergent cleanser, New Wash easily removes Hair Oil, as well as other product buildup and dirt, while maintaining your natural moisturizing barrier. Together, New Wash and Hair Oil promote the health and integrity of your hair and scalp.


Hair oil may have ancient roots as a special treatment, but today, it’s all about the ease of everyday styling. A few drops a day, and you’ll get to ensure a glossy, frizz-free style and look forward to strong, hydrated hair.


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Gavazzoni Dias, Maria Fernanda Reis. “Hair cosmetics: an overview.” International journal of trichology vol. 7,1 (2015): 2-15. doi:10.4103/0974-7753.153450. URL

Cloete, Elsabe et al. “The what, why and how of curly hair: a review.” Proceedings. Mathematical, physical, and engineering sciences vol. 475,2231 (2019): 20190516. doi:10.1098/rspa.2019.0516. URL

by The Hairstory TeamThe Hairstory Team

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