Home Beauty Argan oil is a popular natural haircare ingredient. Here, two trichologists and a stylist reveal the benefits and fallbacks of the oil.

Argan oil is a popular natural haircare ingredient. Here, two trichologists and a stylist reveal the benefits and fallbacks of the oil.

by белый

Dull-looking hair got you feeling down? It’s time to supplement your regular hair-care routine with argan oil-infused products. One of the most popular natural haircare ingredients, argan oil works to lock in moisture, detangle strands, prevent oxidative stress, and promote shine. In other words, it’s your ticket to a good hair day. Intrigued? Keep reading to learn more about this must-try ingredient. 

What Is Argan Oil?

Argan oil is a natural hair-care ingredient found in many shampoos, conditioners, and hairstyling products thanks to its hydrating and shine-enhancing effects. 

“Argan oil is a natural oil derived from the kernels of the argan tree, which is native to Morocco,” says board-certified trichologist Helen Reavey. “It's often referred to as ‘liquid gold’ due to its rich composition of beneficial nutrients, including fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamins.”

Meet the expert

    Helen Reavey is a USTI board-certified trichologist and CEO and founder of Act+Acre. Anabel Kingsley is a trichologist who works between London and New York City. Garren is a celebrity hairstylist and R+Co co-founder.

Together, these nutrients deeply nourish and protect the hair and scalp. “Argan oil’s moisturizing properties can help tame frizz and flyaways, leaving the hair smoother and more manageable. Plus, the antioxidants help protect the hair from damage caused by free radicals and environmental factors,” Reavey points out. And then there’s the shine factor. Argan oil is perhaps most beloved for adding instant lightweight luster to locks. 

In short, argan oil makes hair look and feel healthier—and it doesn’t take very much of the rich ingredient to enjoy such results.

Benefits of Argan Oil for Hair Growth

Argan oil is a popular natural haircare ingredient. Here, two trichologists and a stylist reveal the benefits and fallbacks of the oil.

Given how healthy argan oil can make hair look, many people wonder if the natural ingredient is also responsible for hair growth. “While argan oil can’t directly promote hair growth, it can help create a healthier environment for hair follicles to thrive, potentially supporting hair growth indirectly,” Reavey says. 

Trichologist Anabel Kingsley tacks onto this, noting that since argan oil protects against oxidative stress, it helps reduce damage and breakage, which can make hair look and feel fuller overall. 

Still, she admits that argan oil’s primary benefits are hydration, texture, and shine. “While oils won’t promote hair growth from your scalp, they can work to smooth the outer hair cuticle, locking in moisture and adding shine,” she explains. 

Who Should Use Argan Oil

All hair types can benefit from using argan oil, Reavey says. “However, individuals with extremely oily scalps may want to use it more sparingly to avoid weighing down their hair,” she admits.

Kingsley says the same goes for folks with ultra-fine hair. “Finer hair textures should apply argan oil sparingly to avoid weighing the hair down and adding oil to the roots,” she reveals. 

In general, celebrity hairstylist and R+Co co-founder Garren says it’s all about using the proper amount for your hair type. “Argan oil is great on fine hair, thick hair, and curly hair—it just depends on the amount you use,” he explains. “If you use too much on fine hair, the hair could become kind of oily—so take it in small steps when applying [pure argan oil]. Two to three drops goes a long way.”

How to Use Argan Oil for Hair 

Argan oil comes in many different haircare forms. It can be found in shampoo and conditioner (like the R+Co De Luxe Reparative Shampoo and Conditioner, $49 each), as well as serums (like the Oribe Gold Lust Nourishing Hair Oil, $59) and sprays (like the Moroccanoil Protect & Prevent Spray, $30). While all of these products have specific instructions, pure argan oil (like the Josie Maran The Original 100% Pure Organic Moisturizing Argan Oil, $39) and argan oil-heavy hair oils (like the Act+Acre 5% Argan Repair Hair Oil, $50) can be used as leave-in treatments, pre-shampoo treatments, and even as a hair mask. 

See also
Kérastase’s Blond Absolu Cicaflash Conditioner repaired a beauty editor’s bleached curly hair. Shop it for $25 on Amazon.

"Argan oil can be used as a nourishing treatment pre- or post-styling to smooth, lock in moisture, and add shine,” Kingsley says. “It will also provide slip for detangling. As an oil, it can add weight, which might be beneficial for coarse or coiled hair textures but heavy for finer hair. So I’d advise that those with fine hair double shampoo to ensure the oils are properly removed and don’t cause limp or greasy strands.”

No matter how you incorporate pure argan oil into your hair-care routine, Kingsley advises being light-handed. “If applying pre- or post-styling, start small and apply from mid-length to ends—you can always add more later, but too much can make hair appear greasy,” she advises.

When to Avoid Argan Oil for Hair 

Argan oil is a popular natural haircare ingredient. Here, two trichologists and a stylist reveal the benefits and fallbacks of the oil.

Argan oil is a safe, natural ingredient. The only time it needs to be avoided is if you have an allergy or an extremely sensitive scalp. “Argan oil is generally well-tolerated but those with extremely sensitive scalps should patch-test before using it extensively,” Reavey says.

A Word to the Wise

If you use argan oil on your hair post-shampoo, be mindful of how much heat you apply. “Oils have a higher boiling point than water, and thus you can create boiling points along the hair shaft,” Kingsley warns. To avoid such a scenario, consider only applying constant heat to your hair (such as with a 3-barrel curling iron) for a few seconds as opposed to five to 10. 

Frequently Asked Questions

    How long can you leave argan oil in your hair?

    Since argan oil can be used as a leave-in or wash-out treatment, there’s no rule for how long it can be left on your strands. “It's safe to leave it on overnight or for a few hours as a deep conditioning treatment,” Reavey says. “Leaving it on longer shouldn't cause issues but it's unnecessary for most people.”

    Is it okay to put argan oil on hair every day?

    You can absolutely use argan oil-infused products in your daily hair-care routine, you just want to be careful not to get too much on your scalp. “Applying oils to the scalp can cause or exacerbate scalp concerns such as dandruff, so always avoid this if you have signs of irritation and or flaking,” Kingsley says. “Dandruff is an oily (not dry) scalp condition.” With that in mind, Kingsley says that pure argan oil treatments should ideally only be used once a week.

    Should you put hair oil on wet or dry hair?

    Either works. “Applied to wet or dry hair, argan oil has two different effects,” Garren says. “You can apply it to wet hair and let it dry naturally or blow it dry; it will seal the cuticle and make hair shiny. Or use it on dry hair and saturate mid-lengths to ends to enhance the wave pattern and eliminate frizz. This is great, especially with very long hair.”

You may also like