Coconut oil is a centuries old remedy for many conditions related to the skin and hair and the active ingredients have all shown to have cosmetic benefits. However, there is some confusion when it comes to hair thickness, partly due to misleading advertising but also due to incomplete understanding of how or why hair thinning occurs.
Methods of Hair Thickening
There are 3 ways any product can increase hair thickness, be it coconut oil or a branded product off the shelves.
1. Adding Nano-fibers
Nano fibre technology covers bald spots and temporarily thickens hair by attaching these nano fibres onto regular hair strands. This gives a much fuller look, however you are literally adding small fibres on to your hair so once your hair has been washed, it returns to its original thickness.
This type of hair thickening adds a fatty layer which causes the hair shaft to expand, making hair look thicker. This is the most popular and easiest type of hair thickening to achieve and is commonly used to claim thicker hair by hair shampoo brands which use glycerin (fat). Many oils, including coconut oil, fall into this category as it is mainly fat.
Whilst hair is technically thicker, it is not growing thicker which means after a few washes without the substance being applied, hair will return to normal.
This type of hair thickening occurs from the roots. When greater circulation is provided to the hair follicles alongside nutrient dense blood, thicker hair is grown. With this kind, hair maintains the thickness so long as the scalp is healthy and you are obtaining enough nutrition from your diet.
Why Does my Hair Thin
The reason you are probably asking whether coconut oil thicken hair is because your hair has thinned past it’s normal level. This will occur when there is constant inflammation on the scalp and the amount of collagen in your diet is low as these combined effects lead to hair miniaturization, as discovered by Japanese scientists.
So whilst coconut oil will make your hair thicker, it will primarily be the extrinsic type of hair thickening as it swells the hair shaft. Therefore, there is no long term benefits of applying coconut oil for hair thickness. There is one exception to this rule, which is if you massage the scalp. This helps increase blood circulation to the follicles and contribute to better hair quality however, this must be done in tandem with inflammation reducing methods and dietary control.