Is Olive Oil Good For Your Hair?

Olive oil is one of those ingredients you almost always have hiding somewhere in the back of your kitchen cupboard. While it is generally used for cooking (and make sure you're doing it right when you do add it to your cooking repertoire), there have been many claims made over the years that olive oil can actually be beneficial for your hair as well as your favorite Meditteranean meals. 

"In certain regions of the world, olive oil has been used in soap making as well as directly applying to hair and skin for thousands of years," Birnur Aral, Ph.D., director of the Health, Beauty & Environmental Sciences Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute told Good Housekeeping. "The claimed cosmetic benefits of olive oil for hair care range from preventing dandruff to softening and conditioning via DIY masks which are left on hair for half hour to several hours and then rinsed off," she added.

Celebrity hairstylist and licensed New York-based cosmetologist Gabrielle Corney agrees. "You can use it in so many ways," Corney revealed to Good Housekeeping, recommending olive oil as a great way to soften, moisturize, condition, and add shine to hair in the comfort of your own home.

Olive oil can weigh down certain types of hair

However, it is important to note that olive oil can weigh hair down. As Paul Windle, founder and director of Windle London, warned Glamour Magazine, "Both olive (and coconut) oils are very popular in their countries of origin. There are two reasons for this: the oils are quite heavy and suit the thicker hair types that exist in these countries and the sun as it really helps breakdown the oil and opens up the hair to absorb." 

In other words, olive oil may be more beneficial for those with thicker hair rather than thin hair. Notably, Healthline claims it can also work well for those whose hair that has been continuously color-treated or has lots of split ends.

If you use olive oil and find that it's not working for you, then all you have to do is stop using it — it's just not always suitable for everyone. Make sure, though, that you're also not making any other mistakes when you're washing your hair that could be the culprit.