Lemons provide a natural way to add highlights to blonde and light brown heads everywhere, but there's so much more these yellow fruits can do. From ridding yourself of an oily scalp to smelling like fresh lemons after a rinse, lemons can do wonders for the health of your hair. Better yet, they aren't just for those who want highlights with their oily scalp treatment. Use a lemon rinse for five minutes or less and brunettes, redheads and even blondes will never see a sign of lightening.
Benefits of a Lemon Rinse
Lemons have astringent qualities, which means they can tighten your skin and your pores. When the pores on your scalp shrink, there isn't as much space for oil to seep out and get into your hair. If you have oily hair, a lemon rinse is your new best friend. When lemons aren't making your scalp a less greasy place, they're using their alpha hydroxy acids to exfoliate dead cells, which is code for no more dandruff. Of course, if you're after those natural highlights, this lemon rinse is for you too, thanks to its natural bleaching qualities.
How to Make a Lemon Rinse
A lemon rinse is one of the fastest and easiest hair DIYs around. You'll need two to three lemons, a small juicer, strainer and 3/4 cup of water. Chop up the lemons and juice them until you have 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Strain the juice into your measuring cup and fill the measuring cup to the 1-cup line with warm water. The rinse is going on your head and you don't want to freeze or burn, so pick the water temperature that works best for you.
Applying the Lemon Rinse
Take the lemon rinse into the shower with you. After you've washed your hair, pour the lemon rinse over your scalp slowly, rubbing the rinse into your scalp. Let the rinse sit in your hair for three to five minutes and then wash it out with water. If you're looking to lighten your hair, leave the rinse in for up to an hour before washing it out. You can also put the lemon rinse in a spray bottle and spritz your hair before you go out in the sun to enhance the highlight effect.
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Although lemons are perfectly safe, they contain a lot of acid, so close your eyes when pouring the rinse over your head to avoid stinging your eyes. Lemon juice can also dry out your hair if you use it for too long or too frequently. If you notice your hair is lacking in its essential oils, hold off on the lemon rinse until your hair is back to a happy state. Unless you're after highlights, you'll want to use this rinse no more than a few times a week for a few minutes at a time.
Based in Los Angeles, Sarah Lorsch has been writing fashion and lifestyle articles since 2008. She holds a BA in journalism from California State University, Northridge, where she graduated cum laude. When Lorsch isn't writing about fashion, which is rarely, she spends her time repurposing $1 vintage disasters into wearable masterpieces.