Has the secret to achieving your dream hair been in your kitchen cabinet all along without you knowing it? Many may be familiar with the benefits of using honey as an alternative to sugar, but what some may not realize is that this antioxidant-rich, natural ingredient also has immense benefits for your hair.
Let's Talk About Honey
As we already know, honey is produced by honey bees, but did you know that there are over 300 different types of honey? The type of honey produced depends on the flower blossom visited by our bee friends and where the nectar was collected from. Once nectar is collected in the bee's body, it is stored inside the honeycomb, where it is converted into simple sugars. The honeycomb design and constant fanning from the bees' wings causes water evaporation, leaving sweet, delicious honey with that thick consistency.
The remaining honey contains the following properties: fructose, glucose, maltose, sucrose, water, high sugars, ash, and other micro properties. Due to its unique chemical composition, honey can be stores indefinitely without rotting or going bad.
Raw, organic honey is packed with an endless list of essential nutrients, enzymes and antioxidants that work together flawlessly for both your health and beauty routine. It’s your best friend when you’re sick for easing throat inflammation and suppressing a cough, and works wonders to provide a natural boost of energy. Honey also doubles as an effective skin care secret weapon with its natural antibacterial properties to help reduce redness and inflammation.
If honey is able to do all this for your health and skin, then why wouldn’t these benefits translate to your hair? Initially honey may seem a little daunting and may not seem like the most logical ingredient to apply to your hair considering its thick, sticky consistency, but not to fear! Honey actually dissolves in water, which means it will effortlessly wash right out. Follow along for all the ways you can reap the benefits of incorporating honey into your hair routine for shinier, brighter and overall healthier hair:
1. Natural Conditioner
Dry hair and frequent breakage are common hair concerns for many women, but honey may be exactly what you need to combat these hair issues. Honey is a humectant, which means it absorbs the moisture from the air and seals it into your hair and skin. Honey is also an emollient, which means it has the ability to provide natural softness. Both these properties are the driving force in what makes raw honey one of the most ideal DIY natural conditioners, especially since you don’t have to worry about questionable chemicals and preservatives that other hair products tend to use.
2. Hair Lightening
Honey contains the enzyme glucose oxidase, which slowly releases hydrogen peroxide over time. Hydrogen peroxide is known for its ability to lighten and brighten, which means when you let honey sit on your hair for an extended period of time in the sun, your hair will gradually become lighter. Often when we decide to lighten our hair, many consequences come alongside it like breakage, dryness and overall dull tresses. Honey does the opposite, providing moisture and conditioning while lightening. It’s a win-win. Of course, the results are much more subtle than those of professional hair lighteners or bleaches, but if you’re looking for natural, sun-kissed highlights then honey can be a great natural alternative.
3. Stimulates Growth
Honey itself does not magically make your hair grow, but it does have the antioxidants and nutrients to strengthen hair follicles and minimize damage. Stronger hair follicles means a dramatically reduced chance of breakage and in the long run, less breakage means the ability for the hair to grow out longer. Honey also helps to reboot and stimulate dormant follicles, which further contributes to thicker, more voluminous hair
4. Fights Unwanted Dandruff
Raw honey is a natural antibacterial with additional antifungal properties. This makes honey ideal for breakouts on the skin, but this also translates to your hair health by minimizing unwanted dandruff. One study revealed that after a group suffering with dandruff applied a formula of honey diluted with water onto their scalp for a few weeks, the results were as follows: “Itching was relieved and scaling was disappeared within one week. Skin lesions were healed and disappeared completely within 2 weeks.” To make this remedy even more enticing, the study also stated that none of the patients had a relapse and a few even found that they had significantly less hair loss.
5. Adds Shine
Heat styling tools, bleach and sun exposure all have detrimental effects on the health and lustre of our hair. Honey has proven to counteract all these effects and locks in moisture to tame frizz and bring life back to the hair. Honey both prevents and restores damage, which in turn, adds back shine and restores the original luster of the hair.
HONEY HAIR MASKS
Have we convinced you to incorporate honey into your hair routine yet? If so, there are multiple ways to do so. One way is to simply add a few drops into your shampoo or diluting the formula with water, but our personal favourite is using honey as part of our self-care routine in the form of a DIY hair mask. Check out a few of our favourites below:
Coconut Oil & honey
Coconut oil is amazing for deep conditioning and detangling the hair. It provides a surge of moisture and always leaves the hair unbelievably soft and silky after. Coconut oil has endless benefits for your hair, but when mixed with honey, the two make for a seriously powerful DIY hair mask.
Try it: mix two tablespoons of Coconut Oil with one tablespoon of honey. Apply liberally to the bottom two-thirds of hair if you have an oily scalp, or if you have a drier scalp, apply it to your roots as well. Be sure to start at the ends of your hair strands and work your way up when applying. Let the mask sit for 20 minutes, and rinse well. If you want even deeper conditioning, let the mask sit in your hair overnight with a shower cap and wash in the morning.
Banana & honey
Bananas are an amazing source of vitamin B6, vitamin C, and potassium, all of which are essential for hair health and promoting hair growth. Adding honey into the mix will add even more softness and strengthening properties.
Try it: mix one ripe banana with ¼ cup of honey and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. The olive oil will help to effectively mash the bananas. Blend the ingredients until the consistency is smooth, and add more olive oil if necessary to achieve a smooth texture. Apply to damp hair starting at the bottom and working your way up. Allow to sit for 20 minutes then comb through to remove any banana residue. Rinse well.
Yogurt, honey & Coconut Oil
The lactic acid in yogurt helps to cleanse the hair and scalp, while the protein helps to bring nourishment and strength. Combined with hair care powerhouses honey and Coconut Oil, this mask is sure to leave your hair silkier and healthier than ever.
Try it: combine 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt with 1 ½ tablespoons of honey and ½ teaspoon of Coconut Oil. Apply thoroughly to hair working from the ends and massaging into hair towards the scalp. Let sit for 20 minutes, then rinse.
The next time your tresses are in need of a little TLC, be sure to take the natural route and look to your kitchen cabinet for smooth, healthier, shinier hair - no chemicals needed.
Written by: Olivia DiPede