Are you tired of trying every product from the store that promises to help with your hair loss problem? If you are, you need to try peppermint oil since research indicates that it can be of great help in boosting hair growth.
Hair loss is a topic that is often frowned upon and if the issue is not handled appropriately, it may affect the individual’s self-esteem.
We recommend natural means of treatment as these are likely to cause further complications to your hair.
So, let’s see what peppermint has to offer us in dealing with this issue.
Table of Contents
What Is Peppermint Oil?
PEO is basically oil that has been extracted from the peppermint plant. And just for clarity, this plant is a hybrid of watermint and spearmint, and its benefits are exploited by different industries.
There are many types of peppermint oils in existence with the strongest and most popular type being essential oils.
The various benefits of peppermint could be traced to a compound called menthol. This element is responsible for the unique smell, taste and cooling sensation of peppermint.
Is It Good for Hair Growth?
While PEO possesses various benefits to the skin, it would also be wise if you used it on your hair. Further, it is also handy in dealing with various scalp issues such as dryness and itchiness.
Let’s focus on the hair loss part, whereas a vasodilator, PEO helps in improving blood flow. We could attribute this benefit to the menthol compound in the oil.
Why is blood circulation important? Well, hair loss occurs when the hair follicles do not get enough blood supply.
So, when the vasodilator improves the blood flow, not only would it boost hair growth, but it would also prevent incidences of hair loss.
A study on a sample of mice in 2014 (ref), helps to advance this theory. Scientists observed that the mice with peppermint oil and minoxidil had thicker hair growing faster than the ones with alternative oils.
Of course, more of this type of research needs to be done on human beings in future to prove this oil’s impact on human being’s hair.
There is also a microvascular research (ref) that claims the menthol compound leads to the widening of the blood vessels, which in turn boosts the blood flow.
What Does the Oil do for Hair?
We can point out many reasons why peppermint oil is a popular ingredient in many brands of shampoos and other hair products.
One is that this content could leave a cooling sensation on the scalp and a pleasant scent too. Additionally, it would also help in enhancing the hair’s cleanliness.
The other apparent reason is for hair growth. However, we recommend you add PEO to a shampoo or conditioner before using it for the intended purpose.
You need to be wary of the concentration of the oil you apply since too much of it would lead to excessive tingling or a burning sensation on the head.
How to use PEO for Hair Loss
There are different ways of using this essential oil for hair loss, and we are going to guide you on how to do that.
I) Direct Scalp Massage
Start by adding a few drops to one tablespoon of the oil onto your hair before gently massaging the oil into the scalp. You are likely to feel a tingly sensation on the scalp.
Let the oil on for 15-20 minutes before washing your hair with your shampoo.
If the minty sensation gets too strong, you could either wash the scalp with shampoo ASAP. Besides that, you could add other oils to cancel out this uncomfortable feeling.
II) Adding to Shampoo/Conditioner Bottles
The only issue with this method is that you may end up adding too much peppermint essential oil to your shampoo. That is why we recommend that you add five drops per ounce of shampoo or conditioner.
Once you get this mixing right, you can continue using your shampoo or conditioner as you usually do. The only difference is that this time, you get to enjoy the benefits of peppermint essential oil.
Of the two methods of use, we believe the second one is easier to apply.
Can It Be Used as a Minoxidil Alternative?
In December 2014, a group of Korean researchers attempted to compare PEO and Minoxidil in terms of their impact on hair growth.
Note that Minoxidil is more widely researched and used for hair loss in comparison to PEO. The study was done on shaved mice, and the elements used in the experiment included:
- Pure Jojoba Oil
- 3% Peppermint Oil
- 3% Minoxidil (MXD)
All the treatments were applied on the shaved mice for six days a week in four weeks. The aim of this application was to standardize the telogen phase for all the mice.
The results showed that PEO had more pronounced effects on the hair growth. The hair follicles grew longer and thicker while the transition to the anagen phase of hair growth was faster.
Starting from week 2, the mice in the Peppermint group grew thicker hair than those that had saline or jojoba oil applied on them.
At week 3, the performance of PEO has even gone passed Minoxidil. In the final week, the PEO group showed hair growth to be at 92%. The closest element to this performance was Minoxidil which was at 55%.
On top of that, peppermint oil also registered increases in hair density and follicle count.
What these findings imply is that PEO boosts hair growth by promoting the hair dermal papilla to conserve its vascularization. This, in turn, leads to the anagen phase being induced earlier than usual.
Since the oil has been proven to stimulate hair growth in mice through several mechanisms, it could also be used in human beings as a preventive hair loss medication. Further, it could also be used for its therapeutic benefits in human beings.
What’s more, Minoxidil tends to have some very strong side effects such as headaches, dizziness, increased weight gain and some complications in breathing.
On the other hand, PEO had little or no adverse effects, and this is one of the reasons that makes it a viable alternative to Minoxidil.
We would love to know how a similar experiment on human beings would go.
Thin Hair and PEO
Since peppermint oil is crucial for hair follicle penetration and the kick-off of the anagen phase, we could conclude that it would help in the growth of healthy and strong hair.
On top of that, the oil significantly boosted the expression of IGF-1 gene, which is crucial for cell growth and survival as well as increasing the thickness of hair.
So, if you have been looking for a viable solution for AGA and other types of alopecia, PEO could be of great help.
This is due to the oil’s ability to initiate the hair growth cycle all over again.
Benefits of Peppermint oil for Hair
There are several things that PEO could do for your hair. We have broken down these benefits for you.
Boosts the oxygen levels
Before we discuss how PEO does this, we should mention the connection between oxygen and healthy hair.
Oxygen helps in suppressing the DHT hormone, which reduces follicle growth space. This would then lead to massive hair loss as the hormone would have been provided with the ideal environment to thrive in.
Therefore, as PEO boosts the flow of fresh blood, which in turn oxygen to the scalp, it provides you with a natural means of combating DHT and this means that there would be no more trying different chemicals from the shelves for this purpose.
Improves Blood Circulation
When you apply this oil topically, it boosts microcirculation and therefore allows blood to get to the hair follicles faster.
This is not a myth but a fact that is backed by Microvascular research (ref) that shows a 4% menthol solution widens the blood vessels and thereby boosting the blood flow.
An increased blood supply to the scalp would be of great help, especially if you are experiencing issues such as receding hairline or thinning hair.
How does an increased blood supply help in such conditions? There are some reasons why your hair is not growing as it should.
It may be due to the hair growth cycle getting to the resting phase (telegon) too soon, or you could be there for more than three months.
When you introduce peppermint oil to your scalp, it stimulates the hair to move back into the growth phase(anagen).
The hair production would hence start all over again.
Inflammation in the body causes an autoimmune response. This reaction ends up attacking the healthy hair follicles, with the result being hair thinning or loss.
So, with the anti-inflammatory properties, PEO ends up in promoting the growth of healthier hair pus also minimizes hair loss.
The minty scent that this oil leaves on the hair is also a reason to try out PEO. Mix it with your shampoo or conditioner and the resultant aroma is one that you are going to appreciate.
Cleaning the Scalp
The accumulation of elements such as sweat, dead skin and sebum can lead to bacterial and fungal infections if it goes unchecked.
This pile-up has the effect of inhibiting hair growth, and that is why it is vital that you remove these elements from the scalp fast.
PEO has been proven to have antimicrobial and antifungal properties to make it useful in combating Bacteria and fungi, respectively.
Even better is that you do not have to rely on harsh chemical elements for this cleansing task.
There are various scalp conditions that end up causing irritations. This creates an uncomfortable, itchy feeling that would lead to bald spots and scarring.
Menthol compound in the oil possesses anti-inflammatory properties which create a soothing feeling to the itchy scalp.
Potential Side Effects
Even though Peppermint oil is approved as safe by the FDA, a report in the International Journal of Toxicology (ref) rated the oil as having some toxicity. This is based on several studies that used high dosages of the oil.
What this implies is that littles doses of the oil could still do the job whereas high doses could be toxic.
This oil should be diluted with a carrier oil instead of being used full strength on the scalp.
Also, avoid using products that contain the oil on the face or chest of babies. This is due to the menthol, which may result in breathing complications when inhaled.
Another point to note is that if you apply the oil on sensitive skin or around the eyes, it may lead to burning or more irritation to the areas.
The is not safe for individuals with liver issues. To add to this, there are no studies to state whether PEO is safe for pregnant women.
Just to be on the safe side, take your time to read the label of a product to be sure that the ingredients are safe for skin contact.
Boosting the Effects of PEO
There is always a way in which we could improve how to get the best out of PEO. For this reason, we are going to introduce you to the dermaroller.
This is a microneeding tool that could be used to create tiny wounds on the scalp. These openings are deep and stimulate cell production plus also boosts blood circulation.
Note that these wounds are entirely painless.
This tool boosts the rate of absorption of the PEO by the scalp. Therefore, you can expect better results when you use this tool with the peppermint oil.
Tips to proper use of the Dermaroller
We are also going to give you a few pointers on how you could get maximum results due to using this tool.
I) Applying Pressure Appropriately
It is vital that you apply the right amount of pressure. This would ensure that the needles get deep to the dermal layer without causing pain or bleeding to the skin.
If you want to know that you are doing it the right way, ensure that you get a slight tingling feeling.
II) Use of the Multi-directional Method
You should use the tool in vertical, horizontal and diagonal directions. This would ensure that you cover as much of the scalp as possible.
III) Clean Up after use
Washing and sanitizing the tool after use is a crucial step. This is because it would help in minimizing the chances of the device getting any infection.
After use, place the tool in an antibacterial solution for at least a minute. After that, rinse and dry the dermaroller before storing it in a clean container.
The dermaroller should be used at least 12 hours before you apply the oil. This would allow the scalp to rest since the effects of the tool would have reduced after that period.
Best Peppermint Oil Brands on Amazon Currently
We are going to recommend some products with the peppermint essential oil that you ought to try out.
A glance at this product on amazon should give you a hint of how popular this product is. With around 20000 reviews, most customers are probably attracted by the 100% purity of this product.
II) Young Living
This is another famous brand that is ideal for topical use, and just as is recommended of Peppermint oil, a few drops are enough to do the job.
III) Majestic Pure
This product is a blend of peppermint and coconut oil, and besides hair care, you could also use it for boosting your energy levels plus soothes headaches too.
Other Uses of Peppermint Essential Oil
We know that your interest of PEO probably lies at hair care. However, we are still going to point out other uses which you could use it for.
In summary, this oil could help in:
- Eliminating nausea
- Easing muscle pains
- Relieving hot flashes in women
Where do I find it?
PEO is readily available and is decently priced as well. You could purchase it in chemists, food stores, pharmacies and other retailers such as Amazon and eBay.
You would expect a product with so many benefits to be scarce and expensive. We were equally surprised when we saw the price range in which most of the product lie.
Who wouldn’t want to have an all-natural product that you could subject to a variety of uses? This is precisely what peppermint oil offers as besides being used as a hair product, there are several other ways that you could use it.
If you doubt how useful this oil is, there are several scientific studies to back all the claims made by retailers concerning such products.
Hair loss could lead to stress and low self-esteem, so this oil could (indirectly) play a part in improving your mental well-being.
Note that you should be keen on the amount you use since this may bring about unintended side effects such as irritation and burning.
And if the condition persists, always consult a doctor as there could be more serious issues leading to this problem.