Neem oil: a beauty elixir for hair and skin. Discover all its beneficial properties and how to use it on your hair and on your skin
The elixir of eternal life does not yet exist, and perhaps it is better this way, but ‘Neem oil is very close to eternal beauty. Little known, this oil with a thousand beneficial properties, if used on hair and skin brings noticeable improvements. The therapeutic properties of Neem and oil leaves have been used by ancient medical schools, in particular Ayurveda, to address a wide range of disorders. But what is Neem oil and what are the benefits it brings to our hair and skin if used regularly? We discover the virtues of this oil, its uses (not only aesthetic), where to find it on the market, the recipes to make a beauty elixir at home and the contraindications.
What is Neem Oil?
Cultivated in all the arid areas of Asia, of the Africa and Central America the Neem is a drought-resistant tree that grows very fast. The oil is extracted from the seeds, by strong pressure and is then filtered. The techniques used can depend on the quality of the oil, exactly as it happens for other types of oils: hot pressing tends to ruin the positive properties of the oil. The oil extracted from neem seeds is a natural elixir for the treatment of various types of skin, hair and health problems. It is a vegetable oil extracted by pressing the fruits and seeds of the tree of the same name. Very common in India, neem has been introduced in various tropical regions of the planet, where it is cultivated as a source of vegetable oil – neem oil – particularly exploited by the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry.
Neem oil pure is red and is characterized by a rather strong and unpleasant smell, which combines the typical aromas of peanuts and garlic. This Neem oil is composed of several substances, among which fatty acids stand out. By analyzing in more detail the composition of neem oil and, in particular, observing the acidic component, it is possible to note a certain similarity with olive oil and cocoa butter. The main fatty acid of the oil is in fact ‘oleic which gives the product a good resistance to oxidation: generous also the presence of its saturated counterpart which is abundant in cocoa butter. The oil also contains for example vitamin E . This particular composition ensures that the neem oil has interesting eudermic properties: the neem oil integrates very well with the hydro-lipid film of the skin, hindering the evaporation of the skin water. It therefore exhibits moisturizing and emollient properties, very useful in the cosmetic field.
Furthermore, numerous other beneficial properties are attributed to neem oil, among which antiparasitic, anti-inflammatory and even, antimicotiche .
Neem oil is a high quality, safe and natural organic product for skin protection which is used as an ingredient in a wide range of cosmetics and products such as soaps, lotions and creams
The various uses of Neem oil on hair
Neem oil is strongly indicated for the care of one’s hair or for sensitive skin. If you have dandruff, your head is itchy, you have redness, neem oil can help you soothe and solve the problem. Caring for your hair, in large part, is taking care of your scalp: keeping it healthy can only help you, in general, keep hair strong, neither fat nor dry. A neem based hair oil would be the best way to use it for your hair. Another possibility is to use pure neem oil directly. You can, for example, add some to your shampoo with which you can then wash your hair. If you want to go this route, add 1ml to 5ml for every 100ml of shampoo. Possibly do not mix too much, but only the necessary for immediate use. Maybe you can mix it immediately before shampooing directly into your hands
A possible use of Neem oil is to massage it on your head for a few minutes and then let it rest for at least 30 minutes. After the necessary time, you can wash your hair with neem-based shampoo. After a short time you will already be able to touch the difference. The results are rapid and visible after only a few treatments . Let’s see in detail how to use neem oil and for which treatments:
Neem oil to combat lice
Among other uses, this oil it is particularly indicated also to prevent the occurrence of lice. Lice are harmful to the scalp, causing an excess of itching and sometimes irritating the skin. Neem oil is one of the strongest natural insecticides which prevents lice from reproducing with regular application.
Just mix 1 teaspoon of neem oil with 1 tablespoon of coconut or olive oil. Massage this oil mixture on the scalp and hair and leave for a minimum period of 1 hour. Then wash the hair and rinse the oil from the hair and scalp. In the case of head lice, it is therefore advisable to pour a spoon of product on the hair, massaging the head in its entirety (attention also to the nape area and behind the ears). The preparation is left to act locally for at least an hour; subsequently the hair must be combed several times from the root to the tips with a small-toothed comb (to remove the eggs of the parasite). Subsequently, the hair is washed and the neem oil reapplies every other day until the problem is resolved.
Neem oil to reduce hair loss and make them strong
Neem oil can also improve the quality of the hair, in detail reduces hair loss . Furthermore, it was discovered that neem oil would also improve the structure of the hair, reinforcing it. Neem oil stops hair loss if used frequently and, according to some studies, it seems that Neem oil hair wrap also helps in case of scalp very fat or dry, as this oil has a balancing function. Applied to the scalp, Neem oil facilitates blood circulation by improving hair growth . Thanks to the moisturizing effect, the Neem helps reinvigorate the brittle hair, strengthening it from the root to the tip, and reduces the formation of split ends and hair loss. How to use it?
Dilute 3 drops of neem oil by mixing it with 2 teaspoons of jojoba oil. You can also add 3 drops of tea tree oil, lavender oil or any other essential oil of your choice. Give yourself a good head massage with this mix of oils every day to strengthen your brittle hair.
Neem to combat dandruff
dandruff is the scaling of the scalp caused by cell turnover. Besides being unsightly it is also a warning sign for scalp health and it is good to take the necessary measures immediately as soon as you notice the appearance of dandruff signs. Neem oil acts on the scalp moisturizing it and promoting blood circulation. In this way the hair regains its natural beauty which is then the sign of a healthy skin.
The use is very simple; just add a few drops of Neem oil to the shampoo when you wash your hair. In more serious cases, wraps can be made by mixing other natural oils, such as olive or almond oil, and then comb and cover the head with a towel overnight. The next day wash your hair and add a few drops of Neem to the shampoo.
The uses and benefits of Neem Oil on the skin
By virtue of the numerous properties that this Serbian oil finds, it is used in the treatment of skin disorders and disorders.
Given its eudermic, moisturizing and emollient properties, neem oil is an ideal product for dry skin, but not only, used to prevent and fight ‘ acne and psoriasis . In fact, applying a few drops on the face can be useful for controlling the typical manifestations of this disorder, such as redness and itching. In addition to this, neem oil can help normalize sebum production.
Similarly, neem oil can be used in case of burns caused by excessive sun exposure . In fact, thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties the application of a small amount of product at the scalded areas can help reduce pain and redness.
Being very moisturizing, the oil of neem is rich in emollient fatty acids and vitamin E (a very powerful antioxidant) and therefore very effective for dry, stressed or damaged skin, helping it to recover, restoring its natural elasticity. In this sense it can also be used to make soap with neem oil. Unlike what does not happen with other oils, it is not used only as an additive, but as a real basis for soap. In this way it will be possible to have a soap with all the properties that neem oil is able to offer us. In addition to neem oil, soaps can also be added with neem leaf extract: these extracts have other positive anti-bacterial, anti-fungal properties as well as strengthening of the immune system. Can also be used as aftershave, especially in cases of sensitive skin. Used after depilation, it has a disinfectant, soothing, moisturizing and softening action. But we discover specifically the various uses of neem oil on the skin.
How to use Neem oil to combat acne
Neem oil holds considerable potential as a natural agent for skin care, thanks to its intrinsic antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. This is especially true if the person is suffering from acne. Essential fatty acids, including oleic acid, stearic acid, palmitic acid and linoleic acid, contained in neem oil, have an action that counteracts acne. At the same time, salicylic acid helps relieve redness and inflammation and skin associated with this condition. It has been shown that Neem oil attenuates acne scars and also serves to rebalance sebum production. Neem oil should be applied directly to the areas to be treated, both in the presence of pimples or on scars.
Furthermore, it is worth noting that Neem oil against psoriasis and dermatitis is a true cure-all. La recipe simple and useful for those with acne problems.
Quick recipe against acne
Mix 6 drops of neem oil with 1 teaspoon of seed oil sunflower, and apply to the skin. Leave to rest until completely absorbed. Then, gently rinse your face and dry it.
Neem oil natural remedy against foot mycosis and nails
Neem oil is known as a natural remedy for mycosis of the foot and nails (onychomycosis). On the market it can be found in pure form or in more complex formulations, enriched with other vegetable oils or essential oils with bactericidal, parasiticidal, healing and insect repellent properties (for example Tea Tree oil, essential oil of Cajeput, essential oil of Lavender, Mint, Oregano, Citronella, Timo, Niaouli, etc.) Applying a few drops of neem oil on the nails protects and softens the cuticles. These products based on neem oil are intended for topical application, so they are applied directly to the skin and should not be ingested.
Neem oil to fight stretch marks
Among the many benefits that neem oil brings to our skin, there is the interesting one against stretch marks . In fact, thanks to its emollient, moisturizing action, it makes the skin very elastic, favoring the absorption of scars and stretch marks in its initial stages. Neem oil also helps prevent stretch marks. If they are already present, the constant use of neem oil will help improve their appearance. It must be applied pure through a massage with circular movements on the affected area. The oil can be added to other products: for example, added to liquid soap makes it antibacterial and moisturizing. Thanks to its healing, moisturizing and nourishing properties for the skin, Neem Oil can slow down and block stretch marks in the bud, helping the skin to heal without scarring.
Neem oil soap: the recipe for anti-bacterial and moisturizing soap
Neem oil can be added to others products: example, added to liquid soap makes it antibacterial and moisturizing. Unlike what does not happen with other oils, it is not used only as an additive, but as a real basis for soap. In this way it will be possible to have a soap with all the properties that neem oil is able to offer us. In addition to neem oil, soaps can also be added with neem leaf extract: these extracts have other positive anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and immune-boosting properties. The recipe that we present here is for a soap not too strong, which helps you to dry your skin, to soften it, to prevent infections and to calm possible irritations .
- 170gr. of olive oil
- 170gr. of sunflower oil
- 50gr. of coconut oil
- 40gr. of palm oil
- 15gr. of castor oil
- 40gr. of neem oil
- 60gr. of caustic soda
- 200gr. of water
- 15gr. of essential oils
Essential oils are particularly useful for covering the not so pleasant smell of neem oil
Below we provide a detailed description on how to obtain the final product: remember that some of the ingredients used can be dangerous, specifically caustic soda, and must be handled with extreme care. If you are not sure or convinced of what you are doing, then it is preferable to leave it alone and maybe buy a ready-to-use product.
First of all, make sure you have good rubber gloves and use suitable tools.  What you will need:
- A borosilicate glass container
- A large stainless steel container
- Another small container
- A precise scale
- A thermometer
- A spoonful of stainless steel
- A pitted spoon
- Of the soap pans
- Rubber gloves, eye protection goggles, and clothing that is as protective as possible
Once tools and ingredients are prepared we can begin.
- Take the glass container and fill it with the desired amount of water. Use cold water. Measure the amount of caustic soda in the small container
- Add the caustic soda to the water very slowly; don’t do the opposite. Meanwhile mix with the steel spoon. This solution should never touch your skin. If it should happen, rinse it off immediately very abundantly. In case of need, seek the care of a hospital.
- The freshly prepared solution will be very hot and will release vapors that it is preferable not to inhale. Put it aside and let it cool for a while.
- Now take the larger container and put all the oils in it, then heat them at about 45 ° C (check the temperature with the thermometer)
- Wait for the oils and the caustic soda solution are at about the same temperature. Take the solution and pour it very slowly into the oils, stirring constantly. Continue mixing.
- The color of the solution will vary as the chemical saponification reaction takes place.
- Once the mixture begins to become creamy, the so-called ribbon will be reached. Check the density of the mixture with the spoon you used to mix it: line up the surface of the compound and if it takes a while to get back in place, the process went well.
- Now, once the tape is formed, it is possible to add essential oils. Then stir again.
- Now pour the dough into the molds for the soap you got yourself. Cover them and isolate them in an old towel.
- After 24 hours you can remove the soap from the mold, but it is NOT yet usable.
- The soap must mature in the open air for at least another four weeks, in order to eliminate all the traces of caustic soda.
Warnings in the use of Neem oil: side effects
It is preferable to avoid ingesting the product, especially if it is pure. Neem oil can have negative effects on pregnancy and can also act as a contraceptive, and is therefore to be avoided for couples trying to conceive. However, it is still possible to use neem-based soaps or shampoos, or even skin lotions: in the quantities and methods used in these circumstances the product does not present any danger, unless you drink it directly. Finally, a small note on products containing neem oil or other parts of the neem plant: not all products of this type are safe and effective. It is always important to check which other ingredients are contained in it and make sure that they are also natural and well studied and not of more or less obscure origin.
In principle, neem oil is well tolerated by the skin. However, in sensitive individuals it could give rise to some side effects, such as burning and redness of the treated area. For this reason, it is often recommended – before application – to mix neem oil with other more delicate oils, such as, for example, coconut oil, almond oil or olive oil.
In any case, if after using the neem oil the aforementioned secondary effects appear, it is advisable to stop the treatment immediately, wash the area where the product has been applied and contact your doctor.
Where to buy Neem oil
Due to the growing interest of many towards Neem oil, so much confusion is made: there are many variants of products similar to pure Neem oil which are marketed as such also if in reality they are not. For this reason it is important to have a thorough knowledge of the subject to avoid the risk of buying a poor product.
A good Neem product will have only and only natural ingredients, also a responsible producer and reliable understands that giving a transparent view of what is used in its products is a sign of fairness and seriousness for the informed consumer. For this reason, on quality products, the list of substances used is always reported in a clear and understandable manner, and is a source of pride for the producer himself. Neem is a natural product, and the quality of each individual lot can vary. A responsible producer wants to ensure that only oil from controlled and tested lots is used, which maintains the strength of the active ingredient .
If you want to buy a pure quality product, the first step to take is to carefully check the label. The label contains all the substances contained within the package. Obviously if what you want to buy is a pure Neem oil, the list of ingredients contents will be very short: only one! If the label is written in English only, in this case you should only read: “MELIA AZADIRACHTA SEED OIL (100%)” .
A second step is to understand, how it is made Neem oil, then its color and its fragrance. Neem oil is not necessarily yellow like olive oil, but rather a darker shade, between brown and green . As for its smell, pure neem has a very strong scent . For this reason it is often sold in different fragrances, with the addition of other substances that cover the original odor. However, when you buy a 100% pure neem oil expect to smell a strong smell similar to the mixed hazelnut garlic as soon as you open the package. Its consistency may vary depending on the temperature. Therefore it is always better to avoid exposing it to too high temperatures so as not to damage it. Until the 16th it appears as semi-solid . The ideal temperature to use it is between 20 ° and 30 ° when it summarizes a liquid form .
We can find it in pharmacies, cosmetics stores, herbalists. But also online, even if, to better evaluate the originality of the product, this last step is best avoided. Pure Neem oil is sold in glass bottles of a few milliliters, the easiest package to find is the 100ml one. A bottle of good quality oil, obtained from the cold pressing of the seeds of the plant, containing 100ml of product costs very little and often does not exceed ten euro. If organic and certified the price can be higher. Pure Neem oil is always found only in small bottles: this is because the amount of use is minimal.