Peppermint Oil for Hair: Benefits and How to Use It

Meet the Expert

  • Sunitha Posina, MD, is a board-certified internist who specializes in dermatological procedures/treatments, including assisting with acne, hair loss, hyperpigmentation, and vitiligo.
  • Sara Panton is cofounder of Vitruvi, which specializes in all-natural, 100 percent non-toxic, and pure essential oils.
  • Ginger King is a cosmetic chemist, owner of product development firm Grace Kingdom Beauty, and founder of lip care brand Fan Love Beauty.

Below, find out all the reasons we love peppermint oil (and why we haven't stopped massaging it into our scalps).

Peppermint Oil

Type of ingredient: Essential oil

Main benefits: Promotes hair growth, balances oil, can increase hair thickness, calms inflammation

Who should use it: In general, peppermint oil is best for people with oily hair and scalps.

How often can you use it: You can use peppermint oil up to three times a week.

Works well with: Peppermint oil should be mixed/diluted with a carrier oil. It works especially well with rosemary essential oil to promote hair growth.

Don’t use with: Peppermint oil should not be applied directly to the skin.

Benefits of Peppermint Oil for Hair

  • Peppermint oil has a range of benefits, most of them derived from its stimulating abilities. As cosmetic chemist Ginger King explains, peppermint oil "can help to stimulate scalp thus potentially help with a better hair growth cycle."
  • Hair Type Considerations

    "Peppermint oil helps to stimulate your scalp and hair follicles, but it should not be used for those with a dry scalp or brittle hair. It works best if you have oily hair and scalp," says Panton. However, Isfahan says that it's suitable for all hair types. Posina adds, "All hair types can use peppermint oil when used correctly and safely. People should avoid applying peppermint oil directly as it can be very irritating and those with allergies to essential oils or sensitive skin/scalp should avoid it or try a patch test prior to using it."

    Peppermint oil is incredible if your hair is on the greasier side—it clarifies, cleans, and invigorates the hair without stripping it of its natural (and necessary) oils. In doing so, peppermint oil balances your scalp's production of sebum, leaving your hair nourished and hydrated without weighing it down (while getting rid of any product buildup or residue in the process).

    How to Use Peppermint Oil for Hair

    Peppermint oil can be used on its own, in DIY treatments, and mixed with a carrier oil. It's a pretty popular ingredient for a lot of hair care products, including shampoos, conditioners, scalp treatments, and deep treatment masks.


    • Peppermint essential oil
    • Coconut oil


    • Mix a few drops of peppermint oil with coconut oil.
    • Warm until the coconut oil is liquid-y enough to coat your hair.
    • Apply to your hair, let sit for 10 to 15 minutes, then shampoo and condition as normal.
    The Best Products With Peppermint Oil

    Peppermint extract works in conjunction with cleansing agents, purifying and balancing the hair and scalp. It's also mildly foaming, so you get that "clean" feeling during and after use.

    Another fresh-feeling, clarifying shampoo, this Aveda products imparts shine to strands — making it ideal for daily use.

    "You can carry these in your bag—they're super tiny, and they will come in handy," says Grigore.

    This oil is meant as a pre-cleanse, gently breaking down buildup and sebum in the hair and scalp. Massage it in, then shampoo as usual.

    Safe on even color-treated hair, these drops conbine essential and vegetable oils to help revitalize and nourish the scalp.

    A range of skin and scalp types can benefit from peppermint oil, including sensitive types.

    Peppermint oil can help with both dryness and itching, making it a good choice for those with dandruff.

    Peppermint oil has not been shown to cause irritation though, as with any ingredient, those who experience irritation should discontinue use and speak with a professional.

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