During the fall and winter months, our hair can get a little dry and dehydrated. Here is my quick and easy recipe for a Coconut Milk Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment.
4 ounces of organic coconut milk
2 teaspoons honey
1 drop of essential oil
Mix together the coconut milk and honey. Add the essential oil. Stir or shake to mix well. Shelf life is a few days. Refrigerate when not in use (be sure to label it well!). You may need to stir it or shake well before each use.
If your hair is very dry and thick, you may prefer to shampoo your hair first, apply the deep conditioner, and then wrap your hair in a towel or a shower cap. Leave it in the hair for 20 minutes to a couple hours. Then rinse well with water.
If your hair is normal to oily, or very finely textured, you may want to follow the directions above OR you may want to dampen your hair (don’t wash it yet), apply the deep conditioner, and then wrap your hair in a towel or a shower cap. Leave it in the hair for 20 minutes to a couple hours, and then shampoo the mixture out. You can use a detergent based shampoo, (real) soap, or soap nut decoction.
Many people like to mix a small amount of coconut milk deep conditioning treatment with their regular shampoo or conditioner, and use it daily (no need to leave it in the hair. Just use your shampoo and conditioner like normal). If you add this to your regular shampoo or conditioner, you’ll need to store your shampoo and conditioner in the fridge and use it up quickly. Or add a preservative. (Many store bought shampoos and conditioners that contain honey or coconut milk have preservatives in them. But if you are adding honey and coconut milk to your store bought shampoo or conditioner, the amount of preservative in the formula does not take into account your additives, so you must store it in the fridge, or add more preservative).
Other people may prefer to mix the coconut milk deep conditioning treatment with their regular conditioner, and then use this mixture as a deep conditioner. Leave it in your hair for 20 minutes to a couple hours, and then rinse well.
If your hair is very long or very dry, you can easily double or triple this recipe. But if you make a double or triple batch (for a single time use), don’t use more than 1-2 drops of essential oil. Essential oils are very concentrated and many can be irritating or potentially toxic when used in excess amounts, so don’t use more than a drop or two for each treatment. However if you are making double or triple batches for multiple uses, then it is fine to use a drop for each use.
Coconut milk and honey are emollients and leave the hair very soft and shiny. They both contain nutrients or trace minerals. If you are vegan, you can omit the honey or you can use agave. Many essential oils are great for the hair: I recommend ylang ylang, lavender, or rosemary, which are excellent for all hair types!
If you use canned coconut milk, your deep conditioning treatment will be a little thicker than if you use coconut milk that is packaged in the paper cartons (the kind in the paper cartons are usually diluted with water. It is fine to use either kind of coconut milk though). I recommend using organic coconut milk as most brands usually have less and safer additives.
My eco living article on making soap nut decoction for cosmetics and house cleaning:
An eco living article for another great deep conditioner recipe:
About The Author:
Li Wong is the owner of Earth Alkemie, an all natural, vegetarian skin care and mineral makeup company. She has a B.A. in Environmental Studies (Biology) and a M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy. Li has been crafting natural cosmetics and studying aromatherapy and herbalism since 2001. Environmental interests include conservation, botany, ethnobotany (uses of plants by indigenous peoples), mammals, organic standards in cosmetics, urban wildlife issues, environmental education and awareness, and public perception. She is the all natural beauty website’s Eco Living and DIY Natural Beauty Formulating Expert, and the anb’s mall Eco Living writer. http://www.anbportal.com/meet_the_all_natural_beauty_experts.htm
For more information on environmental issues, Eco Living, natural cosmetics, aromatherapy, and herbalism check out: Solarkat’s Eco Blog: http://solarkateco.blogspot.com/
For information on Earth Alkemie's products (skin care, hair care, DIY raw ingredients, and containers), properties of natural ingredients, the benefits of natural cosmetics, and green business practices, please visit Earth Alkemie’s blog: http://www.earthalkemie.com/blog