What Are the Benefits of Peppermint Oil for Hair?

By Dan Ketchum

Packed with menthol, peppermint oil adds a tingly punch to many off-the-shelf beauty products ranging from shampoo to toothpaste. However, this age-old topical treatment isn't just there for its refreshing sensation and wintry scent; beauty practitioners agree that peppermint oil packs coif-friendly benefits ranging from hair hydration to follicle stimulation.

essential oils with mint
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Small vials of peppermint oil.

Moisturizing Menthol

Topically applied peppermint oil serves as a lightweight moisturizer, particularly for those with scalp problems. As an astringent, this treatment helps normalize oily scalps. Its pH-balancing qualities also make it useful as a dry-scalp treatment. Peppermint oil's hydrating properties help reduce hair frizz, bestowing locks with a bit of gloss. As a light oil, this home remedy moisturizes without leaving a greasy residue.

Potential for Growth

One of peppermint oil's most well-known beauty applications is its use as a do-it-yourself hair-growth aid. Although no scientific studies back up the theory, beauty experts such as Juliette Samuel, esthetician and founder of Nyraju Natural Skincare, and the University of Maryland Medical Center purport that peppermint oil stimulates follicles and increases circulation to encourage hair growth. As a hair-growth remedy, peppermint oil is often mixed with coconut oil and glycerin.

More Perks

When added to topical hair treatments, peppermint oil offers antiseptic and antimicrobal properties, says health author and physician Joseph Mercola. These properties may ease hair disorders such as lice and dandruff. Samuel particularly recommends peppermint oil for African-American hair care, due to its pH-balancing and conditioning properties. Peppermint famously features a fresh, bright scent.

Beyond Your Locks

Peppermint oil's potential benefits don't end at the hair -- this salve also has positive effects on skincare. Because it normalizes oil secretion, Dr. Mercola reports that peppermint oil helps prevent acne. Peppermint's antibacterial effects also fight breakouts. Just as it serves as a scalp normalizer, this oil may help control excess oil production for those with combination skin. In addition to its skin-pleasing cooling sensation, peppermint oil's moisturizing ability makes it an effective lip balm.