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Walnut oil is typically cold pressed and has a pale yellow appearance. It normally has a light taste and little to no smell. As with several types of hair oil, there are numerous supposed benefits of walnut oil for hair. It shares several of the same benefits as other nut-based hair oils, such as cleaning the scalp, moisturizing hair, preventing hair loss while encouraging growth, and keeping strands stronger and healthy. Walnut oil may also help to make the hair color appear more vibrant and lustrous.
It is believed that the walnut oil cleans the scalp of excess dirt, sweat and dead skin cells. Mixed with other hair oils, such as jojoba oil, it may also kill head lice. Several people also note that it has a slight astringent quality that further helps to keep the scalp feeling cleaner for longer stretches of time. The application of walnut oil for hair cleansing also suggests it may be effective in removing signs of cradle cap in infants.
Many people primarily use walnut oil for moisturizing hair since the oil is rich in fatty acids that promote strand hydration. This also helps to prevent dandruff, also known as seborrheic dermatitis. Walnut oil also contains antifungal properties that are believed to combat several infections that may affect the scalp and cause hair loss, such as ringworm. The high concentration of Omega 9, 3 and 6 also help to prevent balding by strengthening the hair follicles. Hair is believed to have improved growth due to the stronger strands and possibly due to a cleaner scalp.
The walnut husk is frequently used as a natural hair dye and to bring out the natural highlights in hair. Although using walnut oil for hair dye may not be effective, it is believed that the oil may accentuate the hair's natural color. In fact, several proteins found in walnut oil are believed to enhance color and make it appear more vibrant.
During what is referred to as the Elizabethan Era in Europe, several women used walnut oil for hair growth prevention on the face. This was to keep hair from growing along the forehead, and application typically begun in childhood. There is no concrete evidence of its effectiveness for this purpose.
Generally, it is recommended to use walnut oil for hair treatments at least twice a week for the most noticeable results. It may be used on its own, but it may work best if mixed with other carrier oils. Walnut oil is considered safe for most people, though is not recommended for those who suffer from nut allergies.