6 Effective Ways To Use Coconut Oil For Curly Hair

Get the most out of this widely-used oil to boost your mane's health and nourishment.

Reviewed by Sergio R. Cardona Perez, Certified Trichologist Sergio R. Cardona Perez Sergio R. Cardona PerezCertified Trichologist facebook_icontwitter_iconinsta_icon
Written by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma linkedin_icon Experience: 7 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Madhumati Chowdhury MA (English Literature) linkedin_icon Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , MA (Mass Communication & Journalism) Joyce Joyson MA (Mass Communication & Journalism) linkedin_icon
Last Updated on

Maintaining healthy hair is difficult, especially for curly hair because it might attract excess dirt, grease, and sweat. Mother nature has provided a beautiful solution for that – coconut oil for curly hair. Coconut oil strengthens the roots, moisturizes the strands, and improves hair health. This article explains different ways to use coconut oil to get bouncy, voluminous, and beautiful curls. Keep reading.

protip_icon Before You Get Started
  • Covering the head with a shower cap after applying coconut oil can boost the oil’s efficacy. The heat helps it penetrate the hair shaft better.
  • Determine your curl type and porosity before using coconut oil. It may cause protein build-up in dry and coarse kinky hair, as it does not absorb coconut oil.
  • Tie your hair loosely and wear a satin bonnet to bed. It will prevent breakage and keep the curls healthy, smooth, and strong.

What Is Coconut Oil?

Coconut oil, as the name suggests, is obtained from coconuts. The white flesh of coconuts is dried in the sun and pressed to extract coconut oil rich in saturated and unsaturated fats. The oil oxidizes slowly and can be stored for about 6 months at 24o C without getting rancid. But what makes coconut oil so good for curly hair? Keep reading to find out.

Why Is Coconut Oil Good For Curly Hair?

Coconut oil for curly hair
Image: Shutterstock
  • Detangles curly knots: Curly hair tends to get dirty, rough, and tangled easily. Such hair is also naturally weaker than straight hair. Applying lukewarm coconut oil adds a slip to the hair cuticles, making hair detangling easy and less painful.
  • Moisturizes coarse, curly hair: The oil has excellent moisturizing properties thanks to its saturated and unsaturated fats. It provides hair hydration and reduces frizz, dryness, and roughness. It adds shine and definition to hair.

A blogger, experimenting with coconut oil for her hair, shares, “Well, I tried it (since I have a ton of the unscented kind for making soap) and it washed out really easy, left my hair very soft and, most amazingly, my hair is super shiny, but not at all oily. The other weird thing is that the curls in my hair are a lot more defined, probably because the cuticle is less frizzy (i).”

  • Provides deep conditioning: Coconut oil also conditions your hair deeply when you leave it in for 30 to 45 minutes. Washing the oil off afterward with a shampoo for curly hair will leave your hair feeling soft, shiny, and smooth.
  • Improves hair tensile strength: Combing, styling, and detangling your hair may lead to breakage. Regularly applying warm coconut oil can help improve hair tensile strength. It also can reduce hair fall due to hair breakage.
  • Reduces hair damage: Applying too many hair products, hair treatments, and inadequate hair care can damage your curls over time. Applying coconut oil to your hair can prevent this damage. Its hydrating properties help restore shine and smoothen hair texture.

Using coconut oil on your curly hair is simple. You may choose one or more of the following 5 simple methods.

6 Ways To Use Coconut Oil For Curly Hair

1. Coconut Oil Mask

Coconut oil mask for curly hair
Image: Shutterstock

Massaging warm coconut oil over your curls once or twice a week can help. It costs less, and the process is quick.

Method: Take a tablespoon of coconut oil. Heat it for 2 to 3 seconds in the microwave. Let it cool down a little. Gently massage it over your hair and scalp. Leave it on for 30 to 45 minutes. Wash with shampoo. Apply a curly hair conditioner.

Note: You can also lightly apply coconut oil to wet hair to enhance your curls.

2. Coconut Oil And Almond Oil Mask

Coconut oil and almond oil work great for moisturizing coarse and dry hair.

Method: Mix 1 tablespoon of coconut oil with 1 tablespoon of almond oil. Section your hair and apply it from the roots to the tips. Tie your hair up in a bun and wait for 30 minutes before washing.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can also mix ½ a tablespoon of aloe vera gel with it to treat damaged dry hair as aloe vera gel is a natural moisturizer.

3. Coconut Oil And Lime Juice

Lime juice is great for treating dandruff. However, applying it directly to your scalp may cause irritation. Mixing it with coconut oil can help.

Method: Take 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and massage it over your scalp and hair strands. You may take a little extra coconut oil and massage it just on your scalp. Dip a cotton ball in the lime juice and dab it on your scalp lightly. Wash after 10 to 15 minutes.

Note: Do a patch test to see if you have a sensitive scalp. If yes, do not use lime juice.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can combine 1 tablespoon of raw honey with coconut oil and apply after shampooing and rinse after 30 minutes. The result would be dandruff-free hair thanks to honey’s anti-fungal properties.

4. Coconut Oil And Egg White

Coconut oil and egg white for curly hair
Image: Shutterstock

Egg white is loaded with albumin protein. It helps restore hair shine and smoothens texture without making the hair oily or dry. Moreover, the egg white alone does not smell as bad as the yolk.

Method: Use a yolk separator to separate the egg white from the yolk. Add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil to the egg white and mix (do not beat). Section your hair and apply the mixture to the roots and strands. Leave it in for 30 minutes before washing with a shampoo.

5. Coconut Oil And Fenugreek

Fenugreek helps reduce hair loss and boosts hair growth.

Method: Soak 1 tablespoon of fenugreek seeds in 3 teaspoons of water overnight. Use the same water to make a paste of the seeds. Add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil to the paste and apply it to hair roots and strands. Wash with shampoo after 20 minutes.

6. Coconut Oil Detangler Spray

This DIY detangler spray is an affordable and easy hack to detangle frizzy, curly hair.

Method: Mix half a cup of water and apple cider vinegar each in a glass spray bottle. Add two teaspoons of coconut oil and 15-20 drops of essential oil. Shake well and use as required on wet hair. Comb gently with a wide tooth comb, starting at the tip of the hair. Comb your way up the hair, detangling as you go. Shampoo your hair afterwards as this may weigh down your hair.

Note: You can add two teaspoons of jojoba oil for added benefit.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can also mix ginger juice with coconut oil to fight hair loss as ginger contains magnesium, potassium, fatty acids, and vitamins that strengthen hair.

To properly understand how good coconut oil is for curly hair, here are a few before-and-after pictures. Take a look.

Coconut Oil For Curly Hair – Before-And-After Pictures 

Before and after pictures of using coconut oil for curly hair
Image: IStock
Before and after pictures of using coconut oil for curly hair
Image: Shutterstock

Coconut oil helps reduce the tangles and adds definition to the curls. But how often should you use coconut oil? Keep reading to find out!

How Often Should You Use Coconut Oil For Curly Hair?

Apply coconut oil to your hair at least once a week. If you can squeeze some time out for any of the masks mentioned above, nothing like it. Massaging the scalp once or twice a week also helps improve blood circulation and strengthen the hair roots.

Infographic: Benefits Of Oiling Curly Hair

While moisturizing oils like coconut, olive, or avocado oil penetrate the hair shaft and scalp to nourish them from within, sealing oils like argan or jojoba oil work as a sealant and act as a leave-in conditioner. Check out the infographic below to know the benefits of oiling your curly locks regularly.

benefits of oiling curly hair (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Curly hair attracts sweat, dirt, and grease and requires good care. Thankfully, using coconut oil for curly hair can address most of these issues due to its moisturizing, hair-smoothening, and deep-conditioning properties. It also helps detangle the strands and reduce hair damage to a great extent while providing hair nourishment. You can also use this oil in combination with natural remedies like lime juice, fenugreek, egg white, and almond oil to keep your curly hair nourished and frizz-free. Try massaging your scalp with coconut oil at least once a week to improve blood circulation and strengthen the hair roots.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it okay to leave coconut oil in your hair overnight?

Yes. You may leave coconut oil in your hair overnight if your hair is dry and needs extra nourishment. However, this oil is comedogenic and might block your pores, leading to breakage and other scalp-related issues if your hair is oily.

Do you put coconut oil on wet or dry hair?

It depends on your preference. For example, if you have frizzy hair and need deep conditioning, you can apply coconut oil on dry hair for better absorption. Similarly, you can coat your wet hair with coconut oil as a finishing treatment for extra gloss.

Does coconut oil dry out curly hair?

No. On the contrary, coconut oil is super hydrating and beneficial for dry and damaged curly hair.

Does coconut oil make your hair greasy?

Applying too much coconut oil on your scalp and hair can attract dirt and dust, making your hair look greasy.

Key Takeaways

  • Curly hair tends to be dry, unruly, and tough to maintain and manage.
  • Natural oils and emoluments like coconut oil can help nourish, moisturize, and manage your curls better.
  • Coconut oil masks enriched with other herbs and natural ingredients can help enhance their nourishing effects further.
coconut oil for curly hair

Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team


Learn how to fix dry, curly hair with a hot coconut oil treatment! Revive your curls and get them looking healthy and shiny again with the help of the tips mentioned in the video below. Check it out now!

Personal Experience: Source

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Sergio R. Cardona Perez
Sergio R. Cardona PerezCertified Trichologist
Sergio Cardona is a certified trichologist, a passionate professor, an international public speaker, and an advocate of the trichology profession, with 21 years of experience. Currently, he is an Advisory Board Member, Trichology Professor and Director of Communications for the World Trichology Society.

Read full bio of Sergio R. Cardona Perez
Arshiya Syeda
Arshiya SyedaSenior Editor
Arshiya Syeda is a senior editor at StyleCraze with 7 years of experience. Prior to that, she was a content writer and combined her writing and research skills to write over 200 high-performing articles on hairstyles, hair care, and skin care.

Read full bio of Arshiya Syeda
Madhumati Chowdhury
Madhumati ChowdhuryAssociate Editor
Madhumati is an associate editor with seven years of professional experience. She has previously worked as an editor, proofreader, and a writer with various organizations, helping her navigate through the various facets of content creation and refinement with ease.

Read full bio of Madhumati Chowdhury
Joyce Joyson
Joyce JoysonBeauty & Lifestyle Writer
Joyce Joyson is a beauty and lifestyle writer with over a year of experience crafting short-form content for the beauty, fashion, and lifestyle niches. She has a triple majors bachelor’s degree in History, Political Science, and Geography from IIS University and a master’s degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Kristu Jayanti College.

Read full bio of Joyce Joyson