Have you ever heard of using tea rinses for hair? It is the same thing as using unsweetened herbal infusions on your hair to penetrate the hair strands thus giving the active ingredients in the various tea mixtures a chance to nourish the hair. There are numerous tea infusions that can be used on the hair, usually if the herb is used as oil or has other benefits for hair, then it can be used in its raw, steeped form.
Herbs like rosemary, stinging nettle, burdock root and even peppermint can be used as a tea rinse on the hair. Lately, there has been a buzz about using black tea rinse because of its caffeine content, there was a study recently done that indicated that caffeine has a good effect on hair loss if used moderately. If used heavily it has the opposite effect. Black teas and green teas rose prominently in the ranks of hair treatments because of their caffeine content, anecdotally several persons have reported that the use of tea overtime helped with their hair texture and thickness.
Benefits of Using Tea Rinses
- Moisture– Tea rinses are a great way to get moisture in the hair between your regular washes. Some persons will use the tea rinse as a middle of the week hair refresher, especially if they exercise. Some tea rinses are excellent for keeping the scalp supple and free from dryness.
- Strengthens Hair– Depending on which tea rinse you use, you will find that overtime the hair feels strengthened and less prone to breakage.
- Hides Gray– There are some tea rinses that can cover gray hairs overtime with consistent use.
- Prevents and Treats Dandruff– there are some herbs which are better at treating dandruff than others, they can be used as an infusion and applied to scalp.
- Stimulates The Scalp And Helps With Hair Growth– some herbs including peppermint are good stimulants; we know that they make a good tingly oil but they can also be used as an infusion.
- Reduces Oil Build Up On The Scalp– overproduction of sebum is usually the precursor to certain conditions including dandruff. Some teas, including sage can be of help with this condition.
Which teas are best to use for hair?
Please see List of Herbs That Are Beneficial To Hair, there is a long list of herbs and their uses for hair. If you have any access to these herbs in your back garden or health shop you can make a tea rinse from any of them according to your hair needs. The following is a list of the popular tea rinses and their uses.
- Rosemary– excellent for all hair types and problems. It acts as a tonic and conditioner, gives luster and body to hair, stimulates growth, helps with dandruff, and brings out dark highlights in the hair. Please see Black Tea Rinse and Rosemary For Darker Hair Color or Sage, Rosemary and Apple Cider Rinse or Gray Hair Cover Shampoo Recipe .
- Stinging Nettle– rich in minerals and vitamins and contains a whopping 40% protein per ounce. It conditions hair, improves color and texture, helps with dandruff and irritated dry scalp and contains nutrients for hair growth. It is also used as a hair softener. Please see Herbal Shampoo For Itchy Hair or Stinging Nettle (Cowitch) and Jojoba Conditioner Rinse For Transitioning Hair.
- Hibiscus– Hibiscus infusions are great as a final herbal rinse and provide excellent slip and detangles naturally curly hair instantly. Please see Hair Recipes For Dry, Damaged Hair a sorrel conditioner is included in the list along with instructions.
- Burdock Root– Burdock Root is traditionally used to promote hair growth and reduce hair shedding. It is also purported to stimulate hair growth, when used weekly, as a final rinse. Please see Hair Recipes For Shedding and Breaking Hair for a recipe, which includes burdock root power.
- Horsetail– contains silicon, which strengthens tissues in your body including your hair and skin. Horsetail is great for hair rejuvenation and is very effective in the promotion of hair growth; it also seals the hair cuticles and stops hair breakage. It can be used topically on the hair as a rinse or it can be done as a tincture and massaged into the scalp.
- Black Tea– Black tea contains a relatively high amount of caffeine. The caffeine blocks dihydrotesterone (DHT), the hormone that is thought to be responsible for some forms of hair loss. It also reduces hair shedding, adds sheen and softness to hair, it darkens hair or brings out highlights. Black Tea Rinse and Rosemary For Darker Hair Color
- Green Tea- Helps to combat hair loss, soothes the scalp and helps with scalp irritation.
Where Can I Find These Herbs
There are various forms that the herbs can be found in and quite a few places to pick them up:
- Fresh from your garden.
- Dried and sold in stores, farmers market, online.
- Tea bags.
- Spice section in your local supermarket.
How To Make A Tea Rinse
1. Fresh Herbs
You will find that when you use fresh herbs in some cases the herbs are very potent especially peppermint (even more so than the oil in my opinion). The method for making a tea rinse from fresh herbs is pretty basic. Leaves and flowers take a shorter time to infuse with water than roots. The infusion time and strength of the infusion all depends on the time that it takes to soak the herbs in hot water.
Method For Preparing Fresh Herbs:
Very similar to fixing tea. Wash herbs thoroughly, place in a bowl big enough for the quantity of your rinse (4 cups of water should be fine). Boil water, pour over herbs and cover. Leave to infuse for an hour or two or even overnight. The longer the time left to infuse, the greater the potency. Alternatively you can put the herb in boiling water, leave on for 15 minutes or more and then cover until cool. Strain and then use as a rinse.
2. Dried herbs
Dried herb is usually concentrated, so quarter cup or a tablespoon is usually potent. If mixing herbs to make a rinse, maybe half a tablespoon each would suffice.
Method For Preparing Dried Herbs
Boil 4 cups of water or more to boil depending on your needs. If your final rinse is too strong you can add some water to dilute it. After the water reaches boiling point add the herbs and then leave to simmer for about 15 minutes. Turn off fire, cover and then leave to infuse for an hour or more. When cool strain out the solids and then use your rinse.
3. Tea Bag
Using tea bags for rinses is very similar to making tea except that you would use more water and more tea bags.
Method For Preparing Tea Bags
Use one tea bag for every cup of water you intend to use. The bags are usually packaged to be potent for a cup of tea. So if you are going to rinse your hair you would need more than a cup of water. 4 cups is my suggestion. Catch the water after you rinse your hair and use it again and again until your entire head is well rinsed. Bring the amount of water you want to boil and for every cup of water add a tea bag, cover the water and allow the tea bag to steep. Remove it and then rinse. Alternatively, you can open the tea bags and use the method for dried herbs above. If working with black tea, it stains so wear a shirt you don’t mind getting messed up.
When To Use Tea Rinses
- Tea rinses can be used in lieu of shampoo and conditioner as a mid-week refresher for your hair. If you have dry hair make sure that you are using a tea rinse that will make your hair supple. It can be helpful to people who sweat in their hair a lot or are frequent exercisers. The tea rinse can rinse out sweat and dirt while adding nutrients. Rinse hair with ordinary water and then rinse and re-rinse with your herbal infusion. Depending on your rinse and the potency of it that can be your final rinse. Air dry and style as usual.
- Tea rinses can be used as a pre-shampoo formula or put in hair overnight. If you want to accomplish certain results for example, reduce dandruff or itching hair, a peppermint tea rinse can be massaged in the scalp and used as a pre-shampoo.
- Tea rinses can be used as a final rinse after you condition your hair. This final rinse is what several persons swear by in their regular regimens, natural and relaxed hair ladies have very positive things to say about the effects of tea rinses on their hair.