Herbs for Strong, Healthy Hair | Three Recipes

Herbal Hair Rinses | Holistic Habits

We all want a thick, shiny mane and there are many herbal and holistic techniques that can help!

Hair fall, thinning and breakage are all quite common and can arise from nutritional deficiencies, medications and hair styling habits.

We will look at several herbs and I will share 3 recipes for healthy hair:

  1. Hair & Scalp oil to promote hair growth and moisture
  2. An herbal vinegar rinse for itchy scalp and to promote hair shine and strength
  3. An herbal tea blend high in nutrients to boost hair, skin and nails from the inside out

Hair & Scalp Oil

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of treatment" is a nice old saying that fits well here. You want your hair to come out of your head thick, healthy and at a faster rate in the first place rather than trying to coax brittle thin hair forever. You want to promote blood flow (and thus nutrient flow) to your scalp, and massaging a nutrition oil is a great way to do this.

Base: Oil

Best oils: My favorite is Jojoba because it is light and closest to our natural skin oils. Other good options are olive, coconut (melted), almond or grapeseed oil.

Castor Oil: Add in 1 part Castor oil to 5 of your base oil. Castor oil is a thick, nourishing oil rich in Vitamin E and Omega fats, and has a reputation for regrowing thinning patches.

Rosemary Oil: Rosemary stimulates hair growth and adds shine to hair. If you can plan ahead, then infuse fresh or dried rosemary into your base oil for 4+ weeks and strain. If not, Rosemary Essential Oil will be good too. Add 5drops per 2 ounces of oil (after adding Castor).

Peppermint Oil: Peppermint Essential Oil helps stimulate blood flow to the scalp, and has antimicrobial properties. Add 5 drops per 2oz oil.

Optional: Lavender Essential Oil: Because it smells so nice and helps with relaxation. Add 3 drops per 5 oz of oil.

Mix and pour into a dropper bottle.

Tania Oceana and her hair oil

How to use

  1. Distribute approx. 2ml over the scalp (which is 2 droppersful if you’re using a tincture bottle). You can section your hair out if your like.
  2. Massage into your scalp for 2 minutes. You can bend over so you are getting even more blood flow to your head – just don’t pass out!
  3. Loosely tie, braid or bun your hair (if it’s long) and leave this on for at least one hour. You can leave on overnight (i recommend using a shower cap to save your pillow) or you can add gentle heat over your head (ex. a hot towel over a shower cap) to intensify the absorption.
  4. Wash and style your hair as usual. Use 1-2x/week

Tip: You can also add a bit of oil to your tips since the bottom of our hair tends to be the most dry. Add while you are oiling your scalp.

Healthy Hair ACV Rinse

Putting apple cider vinegar may seem weird, but let's be honest, you're curious. And you will not look back after experiencing how much your hair loves this mix!
Rosemary & Sage

Base: Apple Cider Vinegar. Preferably the raw kind (the more probiotics, the better). The acidity actually help support the natural PH level on your scalp and in your hair. It’s surprisingly conditioning, yet cleansing, too. This has effectively cured my dandruff!

Rosemary: Again, it promotes strength and shine. Infuse fresh Rosemary in ACV for 2 weeks if you can, or else use 5 drops of the Essential Oil per 2 oz of the base.

Horsetail: This herbs in commonly found growing near water and is high in nutrients. The silica in particular can help strengthen hair. Allow to infuse into the ACV for at least 2 weeks, or simmer in water for 10 minutes and add to the ACV if you don’t have much time.

Sage: Another nourishing herb which adds shine to hair while also soothing a dry, itchy scalp or dandruff. Note that when used often it may darker hair, so exclude for blonde hair.

Bonus: Other gentle essential oil (like Lavender) for an added aromatherapy benefit.

How to use

Dilute 3 tbsp. of this rinse into 1 cup of water to use. There are a few ways it can be used, the most common are:

  1. After shampooing and conditioning, pour onto hair in the shower and let sit for a few minutes. Rinse and style as unusual. Note: Since I use a thick leave in conditioner, I use between shampoo and conditioner.
  2. For a refresher, if you want to go more au natural or you’re just curious what it can do, substitute your conditioner and shampoo for this cleaning and gently smoothing rinse.
  3. For those with fine, thin or oily hair, substitute your conditioner for this rinse and use after shampooing.

The vinegar smell should fade once your hair dries.

Bonus: You can use this herbal vinegar in a homemade salad dressing (though not if it contains essential oils).

Herbal Tea for strong hair, skin & nails

Many herbs are high in calcium, magnesium and iron. An herbal tea is a great way to incorporate easily assimilable nutrients into your diet. 

Base: Red Raspberry Leaf. This common herb is nutrient dense and has a mellow, pleasant flavor. It is often used during pregnancy to add nutrients and tone the uterus. Use 1 ounce of dried leaves.

Stinging Nettle

Nettle: Another nutrient dense herb, this one also help with seasonal allergies. Add 1/2 oz.

Horsetail: High in silica, this herb has a neuatral flavor and incorporates in well. Note that prolonged or excessive use may be hard on the kidneys. Add 1/4 oz.

Bonus: Not necessary, but to add a bit of natural sweetness and moisture, add 1/8 oz or 1 tbsp of Licorice root.

Combine, jar and label.

How to use

Add 1 oz into a quart sized jar (or about 4 Tbsp) into a quart jar and add freshly boiled water. Allow to steep for at least 30 minutes, though you could leave up to 2 hours or even overnight. Strain and refrigerate. You can drink straight or add to water (or make into lemonade), at 4 ounces 2x/day.

As always, consult a doctor when changing your diet or adding in supplements.

Loose Lead Herbal Tea by Mossy Tonic

There you have it! Some common and very helpful herbs on your healthy hair journey!

Let us know in the comments how these herbal tips are working for you.

And remember: Nature is sacred, and you are nature.

-Tania Oceana | Herbalist at Mossy Tonic


Rose Hip Apple Sauce | Simple, Healthy Recipe

Why would you want to eat Rose Hips?

Rose Hips by Tania Oceana
Rose Hips by Tania Oceana

Because they are chalk full of natural Vitamin C, tasty and they offer many holistic health benefits!

So what are Rose Hips & where do I get them?

If you’ve ever noticed pump, red and shiny orbs growing on rose bushes in fall, then you have seen rosehips! They are the fruit of the rose plant, and are edible – though watch out for pesticide use before consuming.

These fruits range in size, like roses do, from small and thin to large and fat. Some have ample sweet flesh while other have very little flesh and are mostly tart. A fresh, fat rose hip is a real treat!

Wild Rose in Oregon by Tania Oceana

Where do the grow? Anywhere where there are cultivated or wild roses – so mostly gardens and in the forest understory. They ripen up starting late Summer and are ready to harvest in Fall or sometimes early Winter. You want to be careful of the seeds because they have itchy hairs that are not pleasant to eat.

While fresh hips are a treat, dried hips are much more accessible and fairly easy and affordable to purchase. I highly recommend getting deseeded hips because it’s quite the process to separate them out yourself.

Did you know? Many edible fruits and berries belong to the Rose family, such as Apples, Peaches and Raspberries!

Rosehips as a Medicinal Herb & Food-as-Medicine Plant

Besides being very high in Vitamin C, rosehips also contain flavonoids, antioxidants, quercetin, pectin and more. This combination is beneficial for general and systemic inflammation and support healthy immune function.

Pictured: Dried, Fresh with other Rose Family plants and living Rosehip

There are too many health benefits to squeeze into one article, so check out this study entitled “Assessment of rosehips based on the content of their biologically active compounds” to learn more and how exactly these compounds benefit us via www.Sciencedirect.com

The various anti-inflammatory compounds can be useful in many inflammatory and autoimmune issues, such as arthritis, allergies and IBS.

The pectin is especially soothing to the digestive tract, and can help bulk up and moisten the contents in our bowels (such as with constipation).

“Rosehips contain a large range of important dietary antioxidants. The high antioxidant activity is mainly attributed to ascorbic acid that typically ranges from 3 g/kg to 40 g/kg [5], which is fairly more than any other commonly available fruits or vegetables” Sciencedirect.com

Incorporating wild and nutrient dense food into our diets is an excellent way to add variety and to “let food be thy medicine” as ancient Greek physician Hippocrates proclaimed.

Learn more about Roses HERE

OK So how do I prepare them?

Big batch of Rosehip Sauce from last year!

RECIPE TIME!

 Rose Hip Apple Sauce 
The Super Simple Healthy Snack!

 1/2 cup (or 1 part) Dried & Deseeded Rosehips

 1 cup (or 2 parts) Apple Juice (preferably Organic and 100% juice)* 

Add to a clean jar, combine by stirring and put a lid on. You want there to be room at the top of the jar so that the hips can expand. Put a label on your jar and refrigerate. The next day, or 24 hours later, check the consistency. Viola!

You can add more hips or juice to thin out or thicken up your sauce. The hips should be soft and the texture similar to apple sauce. You can use powdered Rosehips for a smoother texture, just make sure to break up any clumps.

Enjoy as a jelly, as a desert topping or straight out of the jar!

Check out my latest video on how and why to make Rosehip Applesauce

*Looking for a low or sugar free option? You can either use a juice with less sugar, cut the juice with water and/or substitute Stevia (a sweet and no-sugar herb). Since Stevia is so sweet, I suggest a ready-to-go product over the raw powder which varies quite a bit. My personal go to Stevia is this one by Pyrue because it doesn’t contain any fillers.

Bonus: More scientific studies on the anti-inflammatory benefits of Rosehips HERE

And last but not least, I’ve been asked a lot recently about herbs in addition to Vitamin C rich Rosehips to help support our immune system. Thankfully, there are many herbal allies that may help. Check out this quick read on immune boosting herbs!

– Stay Green!

By Herbalist Tania Oceana

Soft Skin Serum for Glowing Skin

More on Roses! Rose Hip Seed Oil for Beauty

Check out our SOFT Skin Serum featuring Rose Oil for healthy and beautiful skin!

ALSO CHECK OUT:

The Natural Approach to Beautiful Skin | CLEAR SKIN ACADEMY NOW OPEN!

And check out all of our articles here!