Sara is a writer based in London, England with a BSc (Hons) in Biomedical Sciences. She loves researching various health topics.
Pumpkin seed oil, which as the name suggests, is extracted through cold pressing the seeds of the Cucurbita pepo pumpkin. The oil is commonly used in Slovenia, Romania, Croatia and Hungary, mainly for culinary purposes. However, this oil can work wonders for your hair and scalp, being rich in Omega 3, six fatty acids, vitamins A and E, zinc, tryptophan as well as an array of antioxidants.
Pumpkin oil has shown very promising results in clinical studies too. A study conducted in 2014 and published in the Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine journal discovered that men who took pumpkin seed oil on a daily basis over 24 weeks noticed a 40% increase in hair growth.
The oil works by blocking the action of 5 alpha-reductase enzyme and blocking the anti-androgenic effects which lead to hair loss. In other words, high levels of testosterone hormone in the body can result in the formation of DHT, a testosterone derivative in the presence of 5 alpha-reductase enzyme. This DHT molecule can block hair follicles on the scalp resulting in hair loss and baldness. By blocking the enzyme, pumpkin seed oil allows the hair follicles to grow and is just as effective for women.
In addition, this treatment is inexpensive and a viable alternative to many over the counter topical treatments such as Minodoxil and Finasteride, which are both expensive and come with their share of side effects.
On average, the human scalp will shed up to 100–150 hairs a day which is considered normal. But it can become a cause for concern when excessive hair loss occurs, which can be exacerbated by stress, poor nutrition or genetics.
Therefore, it is important to check whether there are any underlying medical issues contributing to the loss such as anemia, hypothyroidism or vitamin deficiencies and work on resolving these.
My Personal Experience
Due to a stressful work schedule with long hours and tight deadlines, I found my hair falling out like crazy. I would notice my hair in the shower, on my bedroom floor and even on my clothes. It was an extremely upsetting experience, and the hair on my scalp was getting thinner and thinner. I had such low self-confidence that I didn't want to get dressed up and go out to social events because I was so self-conscious that my scalp was balding.
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A friend, who went through a similar experience, strongly encouraged me to try a homemade ointment she was using which had heralded amazing results and curbed her hair loss. Looking at her thick, shiny locks, I was convinced to give it a try.
Within a few weeks of religiously using the ointment three times a week, I noted a significant reduction in my hair loss and my hair grew a few inches. Personally, I apply the ointment before going to sleep and leave it overnight. Now six months in, I have a head full of thick, shiny hair! As this has been such a success for me, I want to share the recipe that I was given so that it may help others who are suffering from a similar ailment. The recipe also calls for the use of peppermint oil which is known for its ability to enhance blood circulation to the scalp upon application and will, therefore, ensure that the scalp is adequately nourished.
Recipe and Method
- Pumpkin Oil (use enough to saturate your scalp and coat your hair- thicker hair will require more oil).
- A few drops of peppermint oil.
Mix both ingredients together and use the oil to massage your scalp for 10 minutes. Spending time to massage your scalp with the oil is very important as it will promote blood circulation to the scalp and ensure the ointment is evenly distributed across all hair follicles.
Leave the oil in for a few hours before washing your hair. For best results, leave it overnight and wash it out in the morning. Use this ointment 2-3 times a week, every week. The results will speak for themselves. My advice is to be patient and use this religiously for at least 3-6 months for maximum results.
The solution can be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place and lasts for months.
I highly recommend the oil I have linked below, as it is organic and cold pressed and therefore will provide the maximum benefits. The pipette will allow for more accurate measurement. For the peppermint oil, any good quality essential oil will suffice. Nonetheless, I have provided a link to the essential oil that I have been using.
Disclaimer: As with all skin care regimes, please carry out a patch test before commencing with the treatment to ensure there are no allergic reactions. All material in this article is provided for your information only, and should not be taken in the place of medical advice or instruction. Readers should consult appropriate health professionals on any matter relating to their health and well-being.
Recommended Pumpkin Seed Oil
Recommended Peppermint Essential Oil
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.