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Argan Oil For Hair 2023: Benefits & How To Use It Effectively


Updated on - Written by
Medically reviewed by Dr G. Michael DiLeo, MD

argan oil for hair

Many of us desire to have thick, voluminous, shiny hair. With so many hair products available it can be hard to navigate the plethora of products to settle on which to buy. One product you may have heard of is argan oil. 

Argan oil for hair has been shown to provide many benefits and may even promote hair growth. Keep reading to learn more about argan oil’s benefits for hair.

Is Argan Oil Good For Your Hair?

Yes, argan oil is good for your hair! Recent research studies, which will be explored further in this article, have shown the benefits of using argan oil for hair growth. The protective hair benefit of argan oil has also been demonstrated.

This indicates argan oil can promote hair growth, reduce and prevent hair breakage, treat and prevent damaged hair, and prevent dry hair.

What Is Argan Oil?

Argan oil[1] is a non-refined vegetable produced from the argan tree, Argania spinosa. It is native to Morocco and has adapted to cultivation in drylands.

Argan trees are very beneficial as their leaves, fruits, and oil are abundant in nutrients and bioactive compounds that can reap nutritional, cosmetic, and economic benefits. 

Argan oil can be produced in cosmetic grade or food grade oil. The process for cosmetic-grade oil involves using cold-pressed unroasted argan kernels, whereas the process for food-grade oil involves using cold-pressed roasted kernels. 

While there is argan oil for food and argan oil for cosmetics, it is important to note that they are not interchangeable. You should not consume cosmetic-grade argan oil. If you want something edible to help with hair health, check out these foods

Cosmetic argan oil can be found in several skin and hair products. Argan oil can be applied directly onto the hair or skin, or alternatively, it may be one of the ingredients in a skincare or hair product.

Argan Oil Benefits For Hair

As mentioned above, many argan oil hair benefits can revamp lifeless hair by providing protection and nourishment. Here is the latest research on this topic, providing you with up-to-date facts.

Hair Growth


Is argan oil good for hair growth? A 2022 animal study[2] investigated if argan oil could promote hair growth since it is rich in oleic acid and linoleic acid. These are essential fatty acids that have been shown to provide benefits for hair. 

The study determined that hair tonics with 1%, 2%, and 3% argan oil concentrate lead to increased hair growth in mice.

So, is argan oil good for hair growth? It is important to note that these findings were not in humans. However, such results are promising until proven otherwise in human studies. 

That being said, there are many argan oil-infused products available on the market, such as those that enhance hair collagen. If you buy such a product, it will likely be a product that stimulates hair growth with argan oil as an ingredient.

Hair Loss Prevention Potential


A 2021 cell study[3] investigated if linoleic acid and oleic acid isolated from cluster mallow seed extracts could reduce hair loss. The researchers determined that linoleic acid isolate may be able to reduce the dihydrotestosterone signaling molecules and thereby induce hair growth. While this study did not look at argan oil, it did show potential hair loss prevention benefits of linoleic acid, one of the nourishing fatty acids in argan oil. 

Does this mean we can use argan oil for hair loss? Proof has yet to be conclusively documented, so further ongoing research must be completed.

Post-Treatment Hair Protectant

argan oil for hair

A 2013 study[4] investigated if argan oil or cupuaçu seed butter in hair conditioners could provide a protective effect post-hair dye treatment. 

Hair dye may result in damage as it causes the hair cuticle to open so that the dye colorants can be absorbed. Unfortunately, this also reduces hair softness and brightness and can make hair more difficult to comb. 

The study found both the argan oil and cupuaçu seed butter-infused conditioners can protect hair compared to non-infused conditioners. This protection was evidenced by a decreased protein loss from hair, meaning a decrease in hair damage caused by the hair dye. It should be noted, however, that this study was limited to only Caucasian hair.

Pre-Treatment Hair Protectant

argan oil for hair

A 2022 study[5] also investigated whether argan oil has a protective effect on hair; however, they investigated using argan oil as a pre-treatment before hair exposure to oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs with many hair dyes or heat-related hair treatments leading to damage.

The study determined that hair treated with the argan oil pre-treatment significantly reduced protein loss, indicating argan oil is effective at protecting hair against oxidative damage.

How To Use Argan Oil For Hair?

While argan oil can be used just as is, you can certainly find numerous hair care products with this liquid gold argan oil, with its health benefits. Some products you could consider trying are argan oil-infused shampoo, a leave-in conditioner, or an argan oil hair mask.

When purchasing products for your hair, be sure to consider your hair type and if the product you are purchasing is best suited for you. For example, if you have fine hair or thin hair, you would want product marketing towards your hair type, avoiding products for thick hair. 

Listed below are suggestions for ways to incorporate argan oil into your hair care routine. Keep in mind these are only suggestions, and it is best to always follow the instructions for any cosmetic product you purchase. 

How much argan oil to use on hair will be different for each product, so be sure to read the label before trying out a new product.

  • Add a few drops of argan oil to wet, damp, or dry hair to nourish the hair strands and make your hair softer and silky.
  • Use argan oil in a hair-straightening heat-protectant product before using heat styling tools to protect your hair and neutralize hair damage.
  • Apply shampoo containing argan oil as an ingredient onto wet hair and follow up with argan oil as a hair conditioner, to moisturize and prevent dry hair and to make your hair soft.
  • Massage pure argan oil into dry ends to moisture and enhance appearance.
  • Use a post-dry hair treatment infused with argan oil to reduce damage, restore hair health, and leave an amazing shine.

Precautions & Side Effects

While we know argan oil provides many hair benefits, we do have to consider whether there are any risks. You may be wondering if argan oil can possibly be bad for hair or can argan oil can even cause hair loss. 

Fortunately, there does not appear to be any scientific evidence to justify these concerns.

If you are trying an argan oil product and find it is not working for your hair, you could always try a different product. As mentioned above, there is more than one hair type, so not all products will work for everyone.

It is always possible, however, that argan oil can cause allergic contact dermatitis, which is a reactive skin rash. Therefore, caution should still be exercised new trying out any new hair product.

You must keep in mind that is very easy for hair products to transfer from your hair onto your face, which is a more sensitive skin type than the scalp. Also, applications of products in direct contact with the scalp, often allowed to linger, can invite a skin reaction. 

Is It Safe To Use?

In general, yes, it is safe to use argan oil. The best way to avoid a bad reaction to a cosmetic product is to always be sure to do a patch test when using a new product. If you tend to be sensitive to cosmetic products, you can wait a few days to ensure you are not reacting.

Also, always follow the instructions on the product label and use the product only for its intended purpose. 

If you do have a bad reaction to a hair care product or to any cosmetic product, stop using it immediately and seek medical treatment if unsure.

Other Hair Growth Oils

While argan oil may help with hair growth, there are plenty of other hair oils available that may help as well:

Final Thoughts

Applying argan oil to hair can result in healthy hair. It can be used in many different forms as many products are available. Research has shown that argan oil works in terms of providing hair protection and may stimulate growth and reduce hair loss. 

Overall, it is an easy-to-use product with a fragrance that has been described along a wide range of impressions, from a mild, sweet scent similar to olive oil but with a more organic, sour scent to a light citrus fruit fragrance. If you are looking to try out something new in your hair care routine, why not try out this oil for hair? 

+ 11 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

  1. Gharby, S. and Charrouf, Z. (2022). Argan Oil: Chemical Composition, Extraction Process, and Quality Control. Frontiers in Nutrition, [online] 8. Available at: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fnut.2021.804587/full.
  2. Rahmasari, D., Setya Fazri, Z.E. and Chasanah, U. (2022). Hair Growth Promotion of Argan Oil (Argania Spinosa Skeels) Nanoemulsion Hair Tonic Preparation With Mice (Mus Musculus). KnE Medicine. [online] Available at: https://knepublishing.com/index.php/KnE-Medicine/article/view/11913.
  3. Ryu, H.S., Jeong, J., Lee, C.M., Lee, K.S., Lee, J.-N., Park, S.-M. and Lee, Y.-M. (2021). Activation of Hair Cell Growth Factors by Linoleic Acid in Malva verticillata Seed. Molecules, [online] 26(8), p.2117. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8067726/.
  4. Faria, P.M., Camargo, L.N., Carvalho, R.S.H., Paludetti, L.A., Velasco, M.V.R. and Gama, R.M. da (2013). Hair Protective Effect of Argan Oil (<i>Argania spinosa</i> Kernel Oil) and Cupuassu Butter (<i>Theobroma grandiflorum</i> Seed Butter) Post Treatment with Hair Dye. Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications, [online] 03(03), pp.40–44. Available at: https://www.scirp.org/journal/paperinformation.aspx?paperid=36776.
  5. Sharifi, N., Hamedeyazdan, S., Shokri, J. and Monajjemzadeh, F. (2022). Argan oil as a pretreatment of human hair before exposure to oxidative damage: Attenuated total reflectance and protein loss studies. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, [online] 21(10), pp.5010–5017. Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35226791/.
  6. Oh, J.Y., Park, M.A. and Kim, Y.C. (2014). Peppermint Oil Promotes Hair Growth without Toxic Signs. Toxicological Research, [online] 30(4), pp.297–304. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4289931/.
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  9. Riangjanapatee, Pornthida, et al. “Development of Tea Seed Oil Nanostructured Lipid Carriers and in Vitro Studies on Their Applications in Inducing Human Hair Growth.” Pharmaceutics, vol. 14, no. 5, May 2022, p. 984, doi:https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics14050984.
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Written by:

Health Canal Staff

Medically reviewed by:

Michael DiLeo

Medically reviewed by:

Michael DiLeo

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