Using Glycerin for Hair Care to Better Your Hair Health

glycerin for hair

This post was most recently updated on May 6th, 2023

Curly, thick, dry, or frizzy hair? Are you wondering if glycerin is good for such hair? Here we cover how using glycerin for hair can actually lead to hydrated silky tresses that don’t tangle as easily so you can enjoy more and more great hair days.

But where do you start? There is way too much information (and misinformation) out there, and figuring out how to get optimal benefits out of glycerin and finding out if it is right for you might be a tough and difficult decision.

We are here to help you figure out everything you need to know – from what is glycerin, to the best ways to use glycerin for your hair!

Using glycerin for hair - good or bad

Is Glycerin Good for Your hair?

Glycerin has long been a commonly used ingredient in many hair care products and beauty regimens. This affordable yet effective ingredient acts as a natural humectant.

What does that even mean?

It means Glycerin can actually pull in moisture from the air, keeping hair hydrated and healthy!

Who is it for?

While most reviews glorify glycerin for its effect on curly, thick, or frizzy hair, glycerin is in fact beneficial for all hair types. If you are suffering from hair damage and breakage, continue reading because glycerin just might be the ingredient to help you. 

Because of glycerin, hair will appear to grow faster because it’s not breaking off at the ends, and it will strengthen your existing hair. Glycerin also conditions dry scalp and can be used as a leave-in treatment to help with dandruff. 

Here are some more benefits of using glycerin.

Benefits of Using Glycerin

Read these top 5 points on how glycerin helps to beautify hair.

1.       Moisturizes and hydrates hair

Glycerin is mainly sought out for its hydrating properties. It helps retain moisture and hydrate dry hair and also improves scalp health, making hair soft and frizz-free.

2.       Heals split ends

Split ends are often the result of brittle, dry and frayed hair. Using glycerin will moisturize the hair from within, treating and preventing your split ends.

3.       Damage control

Heating, styling, chemicals, pollution… we live in a world of hair damage. Glycerin helps to repair damaged hair. The moisturizing properties will keep your hair and roots healthy, while controlling future damage.

4.       Reduce scalp itching and dandruff

An itchy scalp = a dry scalp! It is natural for the scalp to dry out in winter. Glycerin’s anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties will protect your hair from dryness. Once your scalp is nourished, you’ll have a dandruff free head.

5.       Hair growth

Glycerin is going to help improve your scalp health and moisturize your hair. This will prevent breakage and split ends. As a result, your hair growth is optimized.

These are the multiple benefits of glycerin. Next let’s check how to use it on hair.

How to Use Glycerin on Hair

NEVER use UNDILUTED glycerin on your hair.

Given that it is highly humectant, when it doesn’t have water in the environment, it would suck out all your cortex’s water (yes it is scary as it sounds!). 

Glycerin can be very effective when mixed with the right ingredients. Here are a few ways you could try out.

Hair Spray

You can make your own natural hair spray by mixing glycerin with water or with the oil of your preference. These are some of the best combinations that we like.

Glycerin Hair Spray - Using glycerin with water or oil of choice
  • Glycerin + rosewater

This is a great combination (which also smells great) that can be used as a hair mask or hair spray. 

Add 2 tablespoons of glycerin to ½ a cup of rose water and ½ cup of distilled water. If you are using it as a mask, leave it on for 30 minutes and rinse thoroughly.

  • Glycerin + olive oil

Olive oil is excellent for blood circulation in the scalp. It also has antioxidant properties which will keep your scalp healthy and infection free. 

Add 2 tablespoons of vegetable glycerin and 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a cup of distilled water. Store it in a spray bottle and you’re good to go.

How to use glycerin with olive oil
  • Glycerin + coconut oil

Rich in vitamins and essential fatty acids, coconut oil will also strengthen the hair with its deep conditioning properties.

Add 1:1 tablespoon of glycerin and coconut oil into a cup of water to create a natural hair spray.

  • Glycerin + jojoba oil

Jojoba oil is a wonderful oil that protects hair from dryness, breakage, and split ends.

Add 2:3 tablespoons of glycerin and jojoba oil into one cup of water and use it as a hair spray.

Next let’s check out how to use glycerin in a DIY hair mask.

Hair Mask

Using a glycerin hair mask is a great way to nourish your hair and address problems of dry hair and split ends. Here are some great combinations.

Glycerin as a hair mask
  • Lemon essential oil + glycerin + egg
glycerin + lemon + oil

Lemon has antibacterial properties and will reduce excess oil buildup and control dandruff. Eggs are a great addition to this due to its high protein and biotin content. This mask will help damaged and undernourished hair recover. 

Add 3-4 drops of lemon, 2 raw eggs, and 1 tablespoon of glycerin. Mix it well and apply the mask onto your scalp and hair. Leave in for 30 minutes and rinse with water.

  • Glycerin + Aloe Vera
Glycerin + Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is full of great nutrients, amino acids, and enzymes. A mask of aloe vera and glycerin will leave your hair shafts healthy while adding moisture and nutrients.

Add 2-3 tablespoons of glycerin to some fresh aloe vera gel. Apply the mixture on your hair and scalp and leave it on for 15-30 minutes. Rise off with water.

  • Castor oil + egg + glycerin

Castor oil is great for hair growth. Adding it with the protein and biotin eggs will leave your hair feeling rich and damage free.

Add 2 tablespoons of castor oil and 1 raw egg to 3 tablespoons of glycerin. Mix it well and apply on your hair and scalp. Rinse off thoroughly after 20 minutes.

  • Honey + glycerin
Honey + glycerin

This sweet combination will lock in the shine and help restore the natural luster.

Mix 3 tablespoons of honey and 2 tablespoons of glycerin with water and apply it to your scalp and hair. Leave on for 20 minutes and wash it off with water.

Next let’s see how to use glycerin with hair conditioner.

Hair Conditioner

Given that hair conditioners are all about moisturizing hair, glycerin is one of the best natural hair conditioners. Mix glycerin with your conditioner at a 1:5 ratio and apply it to wet hair after shampooing. Leave it on for 3-5 minutes and rinse off with water.

Note: If you experience any adverse discomfort while using glycerin with these mentioned ingredients and products, stop usage immediately and consult a doctor. To be on the safe side, it is better to do a skin patch test first. Remember your safety comes first!

Store-bought Glycerin Hair Products

If mixing and DIYs isn’t for you, don’t worry there are some great hair products with glycerin. Here are some great options.

NOW Solutions | Vegetable Glycerin

NOW Solutions Vegetable Glycerin

Amazon’s Choice Product

4.7 Stars with 37,200+ Ratings

Multi-purpose product that can be added to your cosmetic applications for improved skin and hair health.

Bumble and Bumble | Styling Creme

Bumble and Bumble Styling Creme

Cruelty free brand

4.6 Stars with 1,300+ Ratings

This is a unisex styling creme by Bumble and Bumble containing glycerin that is designed to give your hair volume and fullness. The creme also helps to control frizz. Bumble and Bumble also have their range of shampoos and conditioners if you want to check them out. 

OKAY | 100% Pure Glycerin Oil

OKAY 100% Pure Glycerin Oil

Amazon’s Choice Product

4.6 Stars with 500+ Ratings

Silicone and paraben free product that can be used on skin to counter eczema and psoriasis as well as on hair to hydrate and moisturize it.

Next let’s check out when glycerin is safe to use and when to avoid.

Is it safe?

Glycerin is a safe ingredient to use on hair. However there are some things to keep in mind.

  • Avoid using glycerin on broken skin 
  • Never use undiluted glycerin
  • If you’re going to be using heat styling tools, use glycerin sparingly. Given that glycerin conducts heat well, it will damage your hair.

When to Avoid?

Keep your weather channel on. It is best to take the weather conditions into consideration before using glycerin. In a dry climate, glycerin may actually draw moisture out of your hair to balance the moisture in the atmosphere. 

So AVOID using glycerin based products in dry climates with low humidity.

What Type of Glycerin is Good for Your Hair?

There are two types of glycerin, natural and synthetic as shown below.

 Natural glycerin

Vegan glycerin is derived from plants like coconut, soy, palm, etc. Non vegan is derived from animal fat.

Synthetic glycerin

This is a petroleum based glycerin found in nutritional supplements and pharmaceutical drugs.

Our vote is for natural glycerin as it contains natural humectants.  

Final Thoughts

Glycerin is a wonderful and effective ingredient that’s hard to go wrong with. It’s a natural moisturizer and when used right, it will make your hair look and feel like a celebrity. 

But it is important to remember, like with any ingredient, effectiveness lies in using it right. Use it with the right ingredients in the right ratios if you are making an at-home hair treatment using glycerin. Buy quality glycerin from the shop. Avoid diluted glycerin, glycerin on broken skin, glycerin with styling tools, and in dry climates with high humidity.

Hope this article helped you in any way and let us know of your experience with glycerin in the comment section below. Click here to learn more about natural remedies for hair fall and natural DHT blockers.

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