Our bodies need exercise to remain healthy and rejuvenated; our scalps are no exception. A healthy scalp requires a fresh, consistent supply of nutrients from blood circulation, and our hair follicles depend on this scalp nutrition to produce top quality hair! By encouraging and redirecting blood flow to needy scalp areas, scalp exercises can fight sluggish hair growth and help replenish hair in areas where it has become sparse or thin.
Preparing to Exercise and Massage the Scalp
Many find it preferable to exercise the scalp prior to washing the hair so that any scalp debris (i.e. dandruff) that is lifted during the exercise can be washed out immediately. Scalp exercises are done best on detangled, parted hair, especially if the hair is quite lengthy (past shoulder length).
The pads of your fingers should always be used during scalp exercising. Never use your fingernails, as this may damage and irritate the scalp skin. Be careful not to rub your fingers vigorously through your hair; you should only be rotating the skin. Though your entire scalp will benefit from exercising, feel free to focus your scalp massage efforts on areas of the scalp that are experiencing increased hair loss or thinning.
Keys to Executing the Perfect Scalp Massage Exercise
A well executed scalp massage usually incorporates stimulating essential oils and leaves the scalp feeling warm, tingly and invigorated long after the massage is complete. The best essential oils to stimulate and work a sluggish scalp are rosemary oil, peppermint oil, thyme, jojoba and sweet almond oil. Oils can be interchanged and blended to fit your tastes. These oils will encourage hair regrowth and prevent hair loss by drawing additional blood flow and nutrients to the region.
Exercising the Scalp
You should begin your scalp exercise at the hairline. Always apply a gentle squeezing, pressing and kneading pressure to the scalp as you work the skin toward the center of your face; this motion will encourage peak blood flow. Maintain your original hairline position for several minutes to help loosen your tight scalp. Gently move your fingers back 1 inch at a time from the original hairline position as you continue to squeeze and rotate the skin toward your face; this ensures that you get maximum scalp coverage. Continue this process until you have reached the nape of your neck.
Exercise caution when adding essential oils to your scalp exercises. The more concentrated and "exotic" the mixture, the more the possibility for irritation. Please seek advice on essential oil combinations if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or new to using essential oils for scalp massage.
Audrey Sivasothy, a Houston-based freelance writer, specializes in writing health, beauty, science, and policy pieces. She has published content for Turner and other clients for 4 years. She is currently writing a comprehensive hair care book on black/textured hair. Sivasothy holds a Bachelor of Science in health science/policy studies from Rice University.