Testing Chili for Hair Growth

If you follow me on Instagram, you already know I've gone a little kind of seriously chili crazy as of late. There have been all sorts of infusions and brews ongoing with different oils and different chili strengths on the scoville scale in my lab, and it's all for a reason.

Well, several reasons.

My interest in capsaicin (that's the active component in capsicum plants) is multi-faceted. I want to see what it has to offer with different kinds of topical use.

Birds Beak Chili  

Pictured above: my current pre-shampoo, scalp-massaging and perhaps-hair-growth-boosting oil.

This is a very simple infusion of dried birds beak chili (also called Arbol) in Fractionated Coconut oil. I let it sun-infuse for about 5 weeks and didn't hold back on the amount of chilis I added to the oil.

Arbol has a heat index of between 15,000 and 30,000 scoville units, so it's not the strongest chili around, but it does have enough of a zing to where it makes an impression on lips and is not something you want near your eyes.

I chose fractionated coconut oil because it has a long shelf life, neutral scent, is almost as runny as water and therefore lends itself to being sprayed out of a bottle (which I find allows for easier control and no dripping when held very close to scalp with application)

Chili Head

I have only been testing this a few weeks so far, so there are no measurable results (yet).

I have, however, learned a few things about applying this oil to ones head prior to shampooing that I thought I'd share with you.

  1. Fractionated coconut oil is perfect as a base for an oily scalp spray
  2. This oil gives a bit of a pleasantly tingly zing to the scalp as it is lightly massaged in
  3. It is quite easy to shampoo out and leaves my scalp feeling 'alive' and my hair very smooth
  4. It is highly recommended to keep ones eyes closed while rinsing out the 'chili-shampoo'

More to come as results (or lack thereof) ensue.

Also to come: tester feedback on a chili balm featuring piri piri chilis, infusing oil with the hottest chilis on the planet, and a look at what in the world they might have to offer skincare.

Do Tell

Have you ever tried a chili oil scalp massage? Which chili was used?

More About Chili for Topical Use

Chili in Cosmetics, how does that work? (this blog - with links to more info at bottom)


suki-san said…
Hi Lise, i fuzzily semi-recall some other experiments of yours RE: caffeine, have you considered,once you've established a base-line level of efficacy for this material, making an emulsion or sort of a 'pre-poo hair lotion' employing both actives? Maybe even adding some more water-soluble extracts of, for example, horsechestnut or butchers' broom (if you're intrigued, as i am,by stimulating/repairing the vascular system of the scalp,which i think you are)..& if that's the case, consider adding pure niacin,(not niacinamide,being flush-free); i know, from my own puttering, that,when combined with pharma-grade DMSO (would probably also work with dimethyl isosorbide),there is a considerable topical 'flush',which is a dilation of the surface capillary network..something to ponder..
I actually made one some time ago but my lazy self always forgets to use it.
LisaLise said…
@suki-san - Wow I am so impressed at your memory! I did do a caffeine hair and scalp boosting product a few years ago! Your input about the niacin has me intrigued and I feel a new research session and some testing coming on. Thanks for the inspiration!
LisaLise said…
@eli - Teehee -- maybe not laziness but maybe you've been too busy? :)
Breathe said…
@suki-sand is DMSO hydrosoluble or liposoluble, I want to try it in a hair growth oil or serum .
suki-san said…
Hey Breathe, sorry it took me so long to respond..DMSO is generally water soluble..or miscible..also, it dissolves well in/with ethanol, propylene glycol (& propanediol, one would assume), vinegar, & probably vegetal glycerine..i've not yet tried to see if it might combine with isopropyl myristate, or something similar..
Good luck with your serum!
Muchlove, suki
Laurie said…
I have just been gifted some birds eye chilis and have been wondering on how to infuse them in oil. How do you go about infusing the chilies - chop up and leave for a few weeks? What sort of proportions would you use if I was intending to use in a balm?
LisaLise said…
HI Laurie - Use dried chilis to infuse in oil. I crush/chop and leave in oil for a period of time (this can range from2-6 weeks if at room temperature). You can play with proportions depending on how strong you want the end product. I've used from 1:5 to 1:10 parts chili pr parts oil. If you go by weight then you will be able to reproduce the same results every time. have fun!