Often, the quest for soft, shiny and healthy hair seems endless. The natural community has been searching for a suitable replacement for castor oil.
The perfect replacement for castor oil could be lanolin oil. Your favorite beauty and hair products likely contain lanolin oil among their ingredients.
The softening properties of lanolin are famous for skin, but can they be used to soften your hair as well? Let’s take a look into this.
What is lanolin oil?
Sheep’s skin secretes lanolin oil, it may even be referred to as sheep sebum. The sebaceous glands in sheep produce lanolin, which is a very greasy substance.
About 25-30% of the weight of lanolin is water in its natural state. It penetrates the skin very well and enhances moisture retention when used on the skin or hair.
Lanolin is a natural substance that is meant to condition and protect sheep’s wool.
That is why it is being promoted as a natural skincare remedy and is widely used in moisturizers, hair care products, and soaps. Lanolin oil may already be present in some of the products you use.
There are some breeds of sheep which produce a greater amount of lanolin than others. For that reason.
The purpose of these breeds is often just to produce lanolin oil for human use.
How is lanolin oil extracted?
How are humans able to obtain it? The lanolin oils in sheep’s wool are extracted by centrifuging their wool after shearing.
By doing so, oil is separated from other contaminants and chemicals contained within the wool. Afterwards, the oil is used as a component of skin and hair care products or can be used as it is.
How to Use Lanolin Oil for Hair
As a pre-shampoo treatment on damp hair, lanolin is best to add to your hair care routine.
If you would like to apply it more effectively, heat it for about 15 seconds before applying a small amount to your entire scalp.
Lanolin can also help retain moisture in wet hair if applied to the shaft and ends after a shower.
Benefits of Lanolin Oil For Hair
With so many Lanolin Oil Benefits for your body and homemade products, you’re going to love using this liquid wax.
Lanolin provides moisture, which is one of its major benefits. Cosmetic ingredients like this are extremely moisturizing and provide great protection for your body from head to toe.
In order to reduce breakage and dry out of hair strands, hair care routines that maintain the hair’s protective layer, or cuticle, for as long as possible are recommended.
Moisturizing hair with lanolin, oils and conditioners helps prevent dryness and reduces the risk of breakage and damage. Below are the major benefits of using lanolin oil for hair:
1. Great moisturizer for hair
Lanolin’s fatty acids work to keep hair supple, flexible, and free of breakage, just as it moisturizes the skin.
You can replace your daily moisturizer with lanolin if your hair is damaged and dry.
Additionally, its water-retaining properties allow it to be used as a natural and inexpensive leave-in conditioner, as it keeps hair hydrated for a considerable amount of time.
2. Perfectly Conditions Hair
Hair strands are naturally protected from damage and kept soft by the sebum secreted by the scalp. We can use lanolin in the same way our body uses sebum for our skin and hair.
You can keep using a commercial conditioner if you care for it, but simply applying lanolin after a shower can give your hair a healthy shine and softness that it desperately needs.
3. Moisturizes scalp
The growth of hair can be very slow or even nonexistent without a healthy scalp. Not only does sebum moisturize the hair, but it also moisturizes the scalp.
Dry, flaky scalps, which often impede healthy hair growth, are often caused by inadequate moisture.
By applying lanolin to the scalp, it can soothe itching and irritation, as well as moisturize and protect the scalp from any further occurrence of these conditions.
4. Helps seal the texture
“Sealing” is important for textured hair. ‘Sealing’ involves the application of heavier oils or butter to the hair after moisturizing to seal moisture into the scalp.
The waxy texture and thick consistency of lanolin make it ideal for this use. Lanolin has the added benefit of trapping water, which makes it even stronger for sealing.
Properties and Uses of Lanolin Oil
Organic compounds such as wax esters, fatty acids, and other organic compounds combine to form lanolin.
Its emollient properties make it an ideal ingredient for skin and hair care products, and it is recommended for people with very curly or wavy hair.
Besides rehydrating, regulating, and retaining skin moisture, it also leaves the skin soft, smooth, and radiant.
Among its uses are as a stabilizer and an emulsifier in ointments, as well as in zinc oxide medication. Often used by the leather industry, lanolin oil is also beneficial as an anti-corrosion agent or lubricant.
Lanolin is also found in many products for infants, including baby oil and diaper cream. A wide range of over-the-counter products contains lanolin, including:
- Lip balms
- Eye creams
- Shampoos and Conditioners
- Shaving cream
- Makeup and makeup removers
Besides its use in cosmetics, lanolin oil has many other industrial applications. Paints and varnishes use lanolin oil to control fluidity, and inks use it to inhibit penetration.
It is also used for polishing abrasives and used in paper industries because it makes paper soft.
(Note: Lanolin is obtained from the wool of sheep without testing animals or causing cruelty to them. The sheep’s wool is allowed to grow back naturally.)
Risks and Side Effects of Lanolin Oil
Generally speaking, lanolin oil is relatively safe. There are, however, some situations where it may cause unpleasant side effects, and at worst, be dangerous.
1. Lanolin Allergies
Although it’s not common, some people are allergic to lanolin. Lanolin is also not recommended for those with wool allergies.
Symptoms of an allergic reaction to lanolin include swollen eyes, lips, throat, mouth, and even shortness of breath.
Lanolin oil is commonly found in many household products. Medicated shampoos, lotions, creams, lipsticks, baby oil, diaper-rash products and makeup removers are among those products.
Lanolin poisoning can occur from swallowing such products. Lanolin Poisoning can cause diarrhea, vomiting, rashes, redness of the skin, and other reactions to the skin.
If you experience any of these symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.