Thinning hair can have several root causes, including menopause, poor diet, and stress — but it’s always frustrating to experience, and sometimes downright embarrassing. Popular methods of getting thick and shiny hair — things like keratin treatments, for example — may help strengthen strands and reduce breakage; but keratin treatments are primarily used to accomplish straighter, less frizzy locks, not to encourage hair growth. Plus, they’re expensive to when done at a salon.
There is hope, though, and it’s sitting in your refrigerator. Eggs, it turns out, aren’t just a breakfast and baking staple — they might also be a hair growth stimulant. That’s because their yolks are packed with nutrients. Better still, they’re much cheaper (finally!) than seeking professional services at a salon. We spoke to two beauty experts about how and why egg yolks fortify thinning hair.
What are the benefits of putting raw egg yolks in your hair?
There’s no 100 percent guarantee that egg yolks will directly cause hair growth. However, the nutrients in the yolks are associated with promoting healthy strands and scalp. Valerie Aparovich, biochemist and science team lead at OnSkin, shares with Woman’s World the specific vitamins and minerals found in egg yolks — and their potential benefits for hair health:
- B vitamins improve blood circulation in the scalp, which stimulates hair follicles and promotes hair growth. Biotin levels are associated with hair strength and thickness. A biotin deficiency is often associated with hair loss and thinning. Choline supports the proper functioning of hair follicles, thus positively affecting hair growth. Pantothenic acid is a vitamin B5 that possesses hair strengthening and protective effects. A decrease in vitamin B5 leads to hair fall and dryness.
- Vitamins A and E nourish the hair, giving the strands a healthy shine and smoothness. They also promote scalp moisturizing, strengthen its hydrolipid barrier, and protect the cells from free radical damage. This provides the hair with a potent base to grow.
- Vitamin D is involved in various signaling pathways in hair follicles contributing to hair growth. With low vitamin D levels, the volume of hair naturally decreases.
- Potassium regulates fluid levels in the body. This prevents the scalp from drying out and helping to deliver vital nutrients to hair follicles — making hair stronger.
- Calcium is crucial for hair health and promotes thicker strands. A calcium deficiency can result in your hair appearing dry and brittle.
- Phosphorus plays an essential role in the energy production needed for all body cells to grow and repair, including the cells in hair follicles.
- Iron encourages the growth, firmness, and elasticity of hair. An iron deficiency leads to hair falling out and getting dull and brittle.
- Zinc promotes the development of hair follicles. A zinc deficiency slows hair growth and triggers extensive hair loss.
Are there any risks to putting eggs in your hair?
Putting eggs in your hair isn’t associated with any major health complications, unless you’re allergic to them. Still, Dr. Noor Hanif Said, board-certified dermatologist and medical director of Renaissance Dermatology, reveals three things to be mindful of when utilizing egg yolks for haircare.
“First, raw eggs can harbor bacteria like salmonella, posing a risk of infection if they come in contact with open skin [on the scalp] or are accidentally ingested,” he explains to Woman’s World. “Second, the proteins in egg yolks can be difficult to wash out, potentially leaving a residue that may weigh down your hair. Lastly, using egg yolks frequently might lead to an imbalanced scalp, causing issues such as dryness or excess oil production.”
To combat thinning, you can combine the yolks with other ingredients like olive oil and an essential oil to form a hair mask. This helps neutralize the yolks’ eggy smell, while still moisturizing your strands and scalp. Before making a DIY hair mask, do your homework to ensure that the ingredients and steps won’t cause damage.
What should I do before trying out any DIY hair treatment?
According to Dr. Said, you should always follow these five steps before using any at-home hair treatment:
- Research the ingredients and methods thoroughly to ensure they are safe and effective.
- Perform a patch test to check for potential allergies or adverse reactions.
- Be realistic about the results, since not all hacks work for everyone.
- Maintain a balanced and healthy diet, as hair health is often a reflection of overall nutrition.
- Consult a dermatologist or a haircare professional if you’re unsure about a specific method or ingredient.
Once you’re confident that the treatment is beneficial for your hair, you can proceed with trying it out. For a dermatologist-approved DIY egg yolk hair mask, check out the recipe below.
What is the best DIY egg hair mask recipe to try?
Dr. Said shares his DIY hair mask recipe, which requires less than 40 minutes of applying and sitting on your strands before rinsing it out. It’s a quick and easy way to nourish your hair before shampooing and conditioning.
- 2 raw egg yolks (cold or room temperature)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- A few drops of essential oil like lavender, optional
- Beat the egg yolks in a small bowl with olive oil and essential oil (if using) until ingredients are fully combined.
- Apply the egg mixture to your hair evenly, until all of the strands are well-coated.
- Put on a disposable shower cap (Buy from Walmart, $3.97), and let the mask sit for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Remove the shower cap before rinsing your hair thoroughly with cool or lukewarm water. Follow with your usual shampoo and conditioning steps.
Dr. Said notes that you can use this mask every two weeks or as needed, based on your hair type and condition.
Egg-cellent Hair Results
While the causes of hair thinning are wide-ranging, using egg yolks is a simple solution. It might sound odd, but it’s a hair-strengthening hack believed to date back to the 11th century; so clearly, it stands the test of time. Want to know another pantry staple that may help you turn back the clock? Read our story on the viral wrinkle-smoothing hack known as “natural botox,” which social media went bananas over — literally!
This content is not a substitute for professional medical advice or diagnosis. Always consult your physician before pursuing any treatment plan.
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