Facts Checked By Freewill Beauty Experts - Written by Shreya Singh (Pharmacist) on 29th Oct 2020

 Using Baby Oil For Hair: Benefits, Treatment & Risks 

Using Baby Oil For Hair

 Olive, coconut and argan oils are well-known choices,
but could baby oil work too? Read on to find out. 

Most of us might be having a half-used bottle of baby oil lying around in our medicine cabinet from the last baby shower. After all, who can ever get through a full bottle of baby oil?

It is one of those products that is so ubiquitous in modern life that most people don't stop to think about what it is and what its hidden potentials and benefits are.
People have most commonly been using it to hydrate and massage their little one's skin, but not anymore!

Tempted by it's gentle and lightly fragrant essence, you must have wondered if you could use baby oil for your hair. 

And what if we told you that adding a few drops of baby oil in your beauty and hair care routine can work wonders? 

Given that it is meant for babies' tender skin, this alone makes it a safe and chemical-free ingredient that can be utilized by people struggling with unruly, dry, and lackluster hair and wish to use something with fewer chemicals on their tresses. 

Still, not convinced?

Read on to find out how this inexpensive yet miraculous oil acts as a useful go-to for achieving that smooth, shiny, and salon-worthy locks; that'll forever change your perception of the product! 

First off, what is baby oil?

Baby oil is a synthetically produced, colorless, odorless, and perfumed mineral oil, typically used for sealing in moisture and keeping the skin of infants soft and supple but can also be utilized by adults.

Like petroleum jelly, it is also manufactured from the byproduct, which is leftover during the oil refining process. It is further purified until it becomes safe for use in skincare and other beauty purposes.

The sole ingredients in most commercial baby oil products are 98% mineral oil and 2% fragrance. Mineral oil is a non-comedogenic ingredient (i.e., it won't clog up your pores) and non-drying, which helps create a moisture barrier on the skin to lock in hydration, keeping the delicate skin of babies soft and supple.

Moreover, it is free of harmful chemicals like parabens, phthalates, dyes, and scents and is clinically proven to be safe for use on babies.

Therefore, if you wish to apply it to your hairs, it's harmless to do so.

It is one of the most readily available and economical products in the skincare market that can be utilized for its versatility that goes way beyond the infant's praxis.  

Purported benefits of using baby oil for hair 

Unlike other conventional hair oils that are naturally derived from various plants, baby oil doesn't have any medical research or reliable studies backing up its benefits for hair. However, it can be beneficial for hairs in similar ways and possess many personal uses and powers.  

Here are some of its excellent anecdotal benefits for hair: 

1). Moisturize your hair: 

As claimed by the Johnson & Johnson company, baby oil can effectively act as a gentle emollient and add up to "10 times more moisture on wet skin".

Thus, it can seal in moisture in the scalp and prevent it from evaporating out by creating a moisture barrier on the surface.

Therefore, it can help prevent your hairs from drying out while styling or ironing. It also helps protect your tresses from the harmful effects of various environmental aggressors such as wind, pollution, and sun rays. 

2). Say goodbye to flyaways: 

Don't you hate those pesky strands of hair that don't line up? They can stand straight up and ruin your perfect hairstyle.

Thankfully, a few drops of baby oil in your tresses can work wonders to tame those pestering pieces of hair in an instant. Take some drops of baby oil on a cotton pad and very gently smooth it over the top surface of your hair. It can make your daily frustration of taming unruly pieces of hair no longer an issue. 

3). Get rid of the frizz: 

We know that the early morning battles with tangles and the struggle of trying to tame the frizz can get annoying after a certain point.

Fortunately, baby oil in your hair can take care of the frizz in no time.

As the baby oil seals each hair cuticle, applying a modest amount of it on your freshly washed hair can do the trick in giving you that super sleek, smoother, and glistening mane of frizz-free strands.  

4). Repair your hair: 

Regular use of blow dryers, harsh chemicals, and other styling tools tends to make your hair brittle, frizzy, and prone to breakage. Baby oil could be one of your best bets for alleviating several hair problems and preventing heat damage.

Apply a few drops of baby oil on lengths and ends of your hair, comb it out to make it tangle-free. Its subtle provision to your locks daily could eventually enhance the overall health and strength of your tresses. 

5). Soothes dry scalp: 

A flaky, itchy, and dry scalp can host a plethora of other hair problems by damaging the hair roots and impeding hair growth. Moreover, if your mane is overwashed or not oiled, your dry scalp could lead to dandruff due to a lack of adequate moisture.

Therefore, it is essential to cure dryness and flakiness by conditioning your scalp and hair roots with baby oil therapy before washing your hair.

Its moisturizing properties help rejuvenate your scalp, ultimately giving you firmer, softer, and healthier looking hair. 

6).Treatment for head lice: 

A practical, non-chemical method of controlling head lice in adults and children is baby oil. Owing to its high mineral oil content, it helps get rid of lice and lice eggs. However, you can increase the treatment's efficacy by using it in conjunction with other chemicals formulated explicitly for head lice.

Condition your hair with baby oil at night, wrap the head with a towel to avoid staining sheets and pillowcases. Leave it on nighttime/overnight or for at least 8 hours before washing it off in the morning with shampoo to remove the oil. 

7). Make your hair strands more robust and healthier: 

Constant stretching or pulling and color dyeing your hairs can be highly damaging for your tresses. Also, the highly porous nature of hair often leads to swelling and weakening of the hair strands.

Using baby oil as a pre-shower treatment can decrease hair strands' porosity, making it more robust and preventing it from breakage, entangling, and frizzing.

Also, it is an excellent way of repairing dry, split ends. Just apply a tiny dab of baby oil to the ends of your hair. It will instantly provide shine and nourishment to your strands.

Risk factors and side effects 

As claimed by Johnson & Johnson, the manufacturer of a renowned brand of baby oil, this mineral oil is dermatologist tested and hypoallergenic. It indicates a mild formula that won't cause any allergic skin reactions in most people.

However, like any other traditional oil, baby oil can block your skin pores and irritate your scalp. It can further lead to acne development if the oil drips and accumulates onto your hairline or forehead.

Also, performing a patch test before its generalized use is highly recommended to avoid any potential risk of an allergic reaction. 

Words of wisdom from Freewill:  

  • Avoid using baby oil directly on your mane and always use it sparingly to avoid build-up. You can soak a tissue or cotton pad with the oil and then apply it to the top of your hair. As overdoing it can make your scalp an oil slick and weigh-down your hair into a greasy mess. 
  • While shampooing, wash off the baby oil carefully from your hair using warm water. In case you have a naturally oily scalp, you may consider shampoo twice to ensure that the oil is washed out thoroughly. 
  • Refrain from using baby oil on your eyebrows or eyelashes, as it can be irritating for your eyes. 

The Takeaways

With the fall season upon us, hydrating and moisturizing are the key to keeping our hair healthy and happy even in the chilly, dry climates.

Although medical research proving the benefits of baby oil for hair is yet to come, incorporating baby oil to your hair care product line-up could be your latest bet to help maintain frizz and keep away flyaways. This would also help seal in moisture, strengthen, and add shine to your tresses.

It has been extensively sold and tested worldwide by the manufacturers and is safe to use for babies, children, and adults.

If you wish to use baby oil in your current hair care regimen, start by reading up on the ingredients and learning the different ways in which it can benefit your hair.