Thursday, 15 August 2013

DIY Coconut Oil Hair Masque, Science and Why It's The Perfect Treatment Pre-Bleaching

Every Blog out there has extolled the virtues of coconut oil, we all know that it is cheap, readily available and makes your hair feel soft but do you know why that is? What is it exactly that coconut oil does?

Honey + Coconut Oil Vs Peroxide

The Background
Firstly the molecules in coconut oil are really small, which means that they can penetrate the hair very easily where it can nourish from within. The early science testing that took place in 2012 suggested that the hair can and does absorb up to 20% of it's weight in coconut oil. (Reference: Quantitative measurement of the penetration of coconut oil into human hair using radio-labeled coconut oil. JSCC, 2012, Vol 63.) If heat is applied this uptake can be even greater. So now we know that the hair can absorb the oil, but what does the oil do once it gets there?


In the first, very simple instance it fills up hollow shafts in your hair, effectively plumping your strands. That is why your hair always looks so thick and swooshy (Technical Term) post a coconut oil soak. This plumping action also cushions you hair against extra damage. Secondly coconut oil encourages your hair follicle to shut closed and smooth the hair shaft, as well as increasing shine this action also helps hair to lock in and retain protein. This is an amazing benefit and a jolly good reason to use coconut oil after applying a Keratin treatment. For the adverse reason do not apply coconut oil prior to a keratin treatment - you'll be locking out the good stuff!

Coconut Oil is rich in vitamins E and K and is also antibacterial, which can help with Dandruff and itchy scalp. Both Vitamin E and K are fat soluble minerals, meaning they can be used and stored by the body. Vitamin E is a great antioxidant and can help protect your hair against damage from free radicals and airbourne toxins.

Virgin, Cold pressed Organic Coconut Oil is the very best

The Real Science Bit

So why should I soak my hair in coconut oil before I bleach my hair? Coconut oil is a cheating agent. A chelating agent, or chelant, is a substance whose molecules can form multiple bonds to a single metal Ion, this bonding is called chelation. In this instance the Coconut Oil chelates the Iron and Copper in your dye to stop them reacting with the peroxide to produce free radicals and thus causing damage to your hair. Proctor & Gamble did some testing with a synthesized chelant and found that damage caused by peroxide was greatly reduced and even found that the dye uptake of hair pre-treated with a chelating agent was better. So you end up with much better condition hair and a stronger colour. There is a lot of information on the subject out there but this blog here is an excellent place to start if you want to read further.

Coconut Oil Recipes and Instructions

As mentioned before do not use a coconut oil treatment prior to a protein mask, It's like trying to enter a room through a closed door; not going to happen! For a really great at home hair mask mix your coconut oil 50/50 with honey. Simple! I have mentioned many of the benefits of honey Here and it has been used for centuries in beauty treatments, it is one thing I am never with out. Always ensure you leave any oil treatment on for at least an hour, the longer the better but, the hair needs at least 60 minutes to properly absorb any oil. If you can hack it, overnight is best. (I can do over night with only coconut oil but not coconut oil and honey, way too messy!)

For pre-bleaching always apply to at least 2 day old, dirty hair. Yes, you read that correctly and it's important. The dirty hair helps protect your scalp from chemical burns and ensures your hair is coated in those lovely, protecting natural oils. Simply saturate your hair in virgin, cold pressed coconut oil. Really pile it on, the more the merrier and all that. Leave it for as long as you can, again overnight is best, you can top up the oil just before you bleach too. DO NOT WASH IT OFF! The coconut oil needs to be present when you apply the peroxide to chelate the Iron and Copper, this is where most of the damage is prevented. The presence of the oil also provides an extra barrier for the peroxide to munch (Technical Term) through before hitting your precious locks.

I use coconut oil on my hair once a week and now always load my hair overnight prior to bleaching. There is a huge difference between the ends of my hair that had no coconut oil protection and the mid lengths which did. Sorry for such a wordy post, but there is just so much great information to share with you. Are you already using coconut oil? If so how do you apply it?

4 comments:

Alexandra said...

Amazing! I am bleaching my roots tonight and I normally do a coconut oil soak for a few hours before I wash my hair- but NEVER knew I could apply bleach on top of the oil. I am so excited to try this and see the difference!

Alexandra said...

As a follow up to the above comment- I did end up using the coconut oil pre bleaching and it did a great job! No damage and not the same dryness at the roots. Plus- it protected my hair that I didm't want to come into contact with the bleach and made it easier to comb through and part for bleach application. THANKS!!!!!!!

John Dudley said...

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Deyan Simeonov said...

Keratin treatments work great, however, you need to know how to use the products if you want to succeed. I know there probably are plenty of tutorials on the web but for your convenience I will show you this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oohJGqv4l4&feature=youtu.be. You can find all essential stuff in there and it will help you understand what to do and how to do it. Give it a view.

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