Seaweed is bursting with nutrients and has become a very popular food in recent years. But seaweed is also making its way into beauty and haircare and in this article, we reveal five incredible benefits of using seaweed for your hair.
Written By Summer Wise
There are many benefits of seaweed for hair. Seaweed contains calcium, iron, zinc, and omega-3 rich fatty acids that nourish your scalp and keep your hair shiny.
Seaweed also contains anti-bacterial properties which help maintain a healthy scalp.
What Is Seaweed?
Seaweed is the general term used to refer to many species of marine plants. A form of algae, most types of seaweed grow along rocky coastlines or along the ocean floor, ranging in color, size, and texture.
You have most likely seen seaweed washed up upon the beach or along the bottom of the shallows.
Varieties of seaweed can also grow in rivers or lakes, but all seaweed provides food, habitats, and more for marine life.
Not all types of this algae are useful to humans, but some have been found to hold great benefits. One such species is spirulina, perhaps the most used in the health and beauty industries.
Other varieties that are popular for cuisine or health benefits are kelp, wakame, and nori.
Many seaweeds grow upward to absorb sunlight, enriching them with vitamins A, B, C, and E while the ocean itself gives the plant high amounts of elements such as zinc, iron, and iodine.
Benefits Of Seaweed For Hair
There is still much to be discovered about the extent of seaweeds benefits but the main benefits of using seaweed for your hair and scalp are:
The high iodine content in seaweed makes it anti-microbial which may help with dandruff and preventing infections of the scalp.
This means it will prevent the growth of bacteria and other microbes on the scalp which can lead to fungal infections or skin irritation.
In fact, one study found that the application of a specific Pacific red seaweed to rats caused an increase in hair growth rate and healing. More research is needed, but it could indicate that seaweed can help with hair growth and general well-being.
Keep Hair Shiny And Glossy
The fatty acids in seaweed coat the hair strands and help to keep them protected and smooth while the other nutrients enrich the hair and follicles. All of this combined results in shiny, healthy hair.
The fatty acids omega-3 and omega-6 make it great for enriching the hair follicles and potentially encouraging hair growth by maintaining healthy hair follicles which is where the hair grows from the root in the skin.
The enzymes and antioxidants in seaweed help to remove dirt and oils from the scalp, preventing product buildup or similar issues.
By clarifying the scalp, using seaweed will help to prevent build-up and potential skin issues on the skin of your scalp.
How To Use Seaweed For Hair
Seaweed can be used for hair either by consuming it regularly or by using topical treatments in a routine.
Many recipes are simple and easy to make at home once you have access to dried seaweed or a seaweed powder.
Here are two recipes for topical hair treatments involving seaweed that are simple to create at home:
Organic Seaweed Clay Shampoo
You will need:
- 1 Tbsp Dried Seaweed
- 2 Tbsp Clay Powder
- 1 Cup Hot Water
- Add one tablespoon of dried seaweed into a bowl and add one cup of hot water. Make sure the water is not boiling as this will destroy the seaweeds beneficial properties.
2. Leave the seaweed to soak in the water for half an hour. You will find the seaweed and water becomes a little ‘slimy’ and this is when you should add two tablespoons of clay.
3. Mix well until the paste is silky smooth and thin but not watery. Apply to hair and massage into the scalp, leaving it on for up to 10 minutes.
This natural alternative to shampoo should absorb excess oil from the scalp due to the clay, while the seaweed adds hydration, vitamins, and other essential benefits to the mixture.
Organic Seaweed Hair Mask
You will need:
- Half Cup Olive Oil
- 1 Tbsp Dried Seaweed/Seaweed Powder
- Half Cup Conditioner
- Mix in a bowl equal parts of oil and conditioner to create a thin but not watery paste. Add a tablespoon of seaweed powder to the mixture and combine well.
2. Apply to hair as a mask and leave to absorb for half an hour.
3. Rinse out of the hair with water and your hair should be left feeling healthier with the oil and seaweed coating the hair strands.
This will help to promote smoother, softer hair by keeping the conditioner treatment contained within the hair and creating a protective barrier between your hair and the outside elements.
The conditioner of your choice will give the hair the conditioning it needs while the seaweed and oil work to keep that hydration within the hair by coating the strands.
Our Favorite Seaweed Hair Products
So, how can you combine seaweed into your daily routine outside of mealtimes?
Using a product that is infused with seaweed can be the best way to get these beneficial algae into your hair regularly.
Here are a few of the best seaweed-themed products for your hair:
Bumble and Bumble’s shampoo contains Spirulina and Kelp to add essential vitamins and elements to this shampoo.
Spirulina is a blue-green alga renowned for its health benefits and Kelp is a large, brown type of algae found along coastlines. The formula removes build-up on the scalp and leaves hair clean and soft.
Using a wild-harvested Kelp named rockweed or “Ascophyllum nodosum”, this conditioner brings the antioxidant, vitamin-rich nature of seaweed into combination with citrus and land plant extracts.
The result is a great conditioning formula with a refreshing scent all within a vegan, cruelty-free product.
This gel features extracts of Irish moss, a red algae type found across the Atlantic Ocean, and Bladderwrack which is a brown seaweed found throughout the North Sea, the Pacific, and Atlantic.
Combined with aloe vera, this gel is safe to use all over the body but works great for your hair and scalp as a mask before washing.
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