You’ve probably had this moment at some point: You’re doing your hair and makeup in the morning when you look a little closer and notice that you’re starting to see more and more grays pop up. While a salon appointment with your colorist may offer temporary relief, how can you slow that graying process yourself? Luckily, you don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars on expensive treatments. All it could take is an herb that you’ve definitely used before in the kitchen: rosemary.
Rosemary has long gotten hype for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, both in terms of cooking and beauty products. As we age, our scalp and hair follicles need more help fighting free radicals, which are compounds that destroy cells over time. When that happens, our cells can oxidize, creating stress that can cause a number of physiological changes, like our hair graying faster. Rosemary’s antioxidants actively fight against those free radicals to protect your hair and slow the graying process.
Want to create your own rosemary hair treatment? All you need to do is mix together eight to 12 drops of rosemary essential oil in one fluid ounce of jojoba oil, aloe vera gel, or olive oil and apply two teaspoons of it to your scalp and hair once a week. (And if you want to get even more benefits, essential oils from herbs like sage, peppermint, and thyme may be additions to consider!) Leave that oil mask on for up to eight hours, then shampoo it out. If you end up leaving it on overnight, covering it in plastic wrap or using a shower cap can ensure it doesn’t get all over your sheets. And if you want to go the super DIY route, you could even grow rosemary yourself and infuse it in a carrier oil for a few days. Presto, you’ve got your own homemade remedy!