Onions are great not just for your body but also for your thinning strands. This mineral-rich vegetable is proving to be a natural remedy for hair growth.
Onion juice when applied to the scalp can be used to prevent hair loss, stimulate hair growth, nourish the hair, soothe an irritated scalp, and ease dandruff. It works by rejuvenating the scalp cells and hair follicles to help you get a full head of hair.
Onions contain phenolic compounds and sulfur, (1) which facilitate hair growth by influencing the state of the skin, lowering sebum secretion, and activating hair growth. (2) Sulfur is also present in keratin, which helps in the maintenance of skin, hair, and nails.
Onion juice helps to boost blood circulation, and the antioxidants in onion juice may help in reversing premature hair graying.
Benefits of Onion Juice for Hair Growth
Onions offer the following hair benefits.
- Rejuvenate hair follicles – Onions are rich in sulfur, which nourishes the hair follicles and, in turn, encourages hair growth on the scalp.
- Increase blood supply to the scalp – Applying onion juice to the hair and scalp could increase blood supply to the hair follicles, which helps in hair growth.
- Protect from hair thinning and breakage – The sulfur in onion juice helps in preventing hair thinning and breakage.
- Fight dandruff – Onions exhibit antibacterial properties that keep scalp infections, including dandruff, away, promoting healthy hair growth.
- Reverse premature graying of hair – Applying onion juice to the scalp can help in controlling and reversing premature graying of hair as it increases catalase in the scalp.
What Science Says About Onion Juice and Hair Growth?
A study was conducted to test the effectiveness of onion juice in the treatment of patchy alopecia areata (a condition that leads to patchy hair loss) among two groups of people. The group that used onion juice was advised to apply the onion juice twice daily for 2 months.
After two weeks of treatment with onion juice, regrowth of coarse hairs was observed. At 4 weeks, hair regrowth was seen in 17 patients, and at 6 weeks, hair regrowth was seen in 20 patients.
The study showed that onion juice can be an effective topical therapy for people suffering from patchy alopecia areata. (3)
How to Make Onion Juice at Home?
- Peel 5–6 onions, wash them, and then chop them finely.
- Make a pulp out of them in a blender.
- Pass the pulp through a sieve to strain out the juice.
How to Apply Onion Juice on Hair?
- Dip a cotton pad in the juice, and dab the juice on the entire scalp or only on the affected area.
- Massage the area gently with your fingers for about 10 minutes so that it penetrates well into the scalp.
- Allow the juice to remain in your hair and scalp for 15 minutes.
- Wash it off after 15 minutes with a mild shampoo and conditioner.
How Often to Use Onion Juice on Hair?
Use this onion juice treatment 2–3 times a week. You will notice a visible difference in your hair after a month or two of regular use.
How to Make Onion Hair Oil at Home?
- Cut up 8–10 onions. Blend them and strain the juice.
- Prepare an onion paste with 1 onion.
- Heat up 1 liter of coconut oil in a saucepan.
- Add the onion juice and onion paste to the oil and mix them well.
- Heat the saucepan on medium flame.
- After the first boil of the oil, lower the flame while stirring the oil continuously for a few minutes.
- Put off the flame and let the oil cool down.
- After it’s cooled completely, strain the onion oil into an airtight glass container.
How to Apply Onion Oil on Scalp and Hair?
- Take some drops of onion oil in your palm and thoroughly apply them to your scalp and hair.
- Massage the oil on your scalp in circular motions for 15–20 minutes, concentrating on the bald or thinning hair spots on your scalp.
- Leave the oil on your scalp and hair for an hour before washing it off with a mild shampoo.
- Repeat this process 2–3 times a week for hair growth.
Will Coconut Oil and Onion Juice Help Improve Hair Health?
Coconut oil and onion juice are a great combination as they have antibacterial and antifungal properties. (4)
Coconut oil penetrates the scalp well and has been used since times immemorial by women to nourish and hydrate the hair due to its antimicrobial and antioxidant properties. (4)
You can make your own onion hair oil at home (see next section). But if you cannot do so, you can purchase commercially prepared coconut with onion hair oil as well as onion hair shampoos and conditioners. There are many good brands selling these products nowadays.
Precautions While Using Onion Juice on Hair
Even though there are not many known side effects of using onion juice on your hair, it is recommended to avoid it if you are allergic to onions. Using onion juice directly on the scalp may cause irritation, itching, and redness.
It is recommended that you conduct a patch test before applying it by dabbing a small amount of onion juice on your skin and waiting a few minutes to see if it causes skin irritation.
General Queries Related to Onion Juice
Which type of onions should I use for this treatment?
You can use any onions available in your locality, be it red or white. Do not use spring onions.
Is there a way to get rid of the onion smell after using it?
Yes. After applying onion hair oil, rinse your hair with a mixture of a few drops of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar and a cup of water. This gets rid of the pungent smell of onions.
Can onion juice be left overnight on the scalp and hair?
If the odor isn’t bothering you and if your skin doesn’t react to it, then you may leave it on your hair overnight.
Can onion juice be stored for a long time?
You can store fresh onion juice for up to 4–5 days in the fridge, but it can leave a bad odor in the refrigerator.
Using onion hair oil and onion hair shampoo can be effective for some people but may not work for others as they are not a miracle cure for hair loss.
To see significant results, you need to be persistent in using the treatment for at least 2 months.
- Koh E, Surh J. Influence of sulfur fertilization on the antioxidant activities of onion juices prepared by thermal treatment. Preventive nutrition and food science. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4935244/. Published June 2016.
- Goluch-Koniuszy ZS. Nutrition of women with hair loss problem during the period of Menopause. Przeglad menopauzalny = Menopause review. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4828511/. Published March 2016.
- HK; SKEA-O. Onion juice (allium cepa L.), a new topical treatment for alopecia areata. The Journal of dermatology. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12126069/.
- Saxena R, Mittal P, Clavaud C, et al. Longitudinal Study of the scalp microbiome suggests coconut oil to enrich healthy scalp commensals. Scientific reports. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8012655/. Published March 31, 2021.