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Hair care is tricky: you shampoo to get rid of grease, but that can sometimes strip your tresses of the natural oils that are keeping them healthy and strong. When it comes to getting damaged hair back to tip-top shape, vitamin D3 oil is just one among the sea of remedies to try. Before you waste time, understand how this oil works as a supplement and whether it will give you the conditioning results you're looking for.
What is Vitamin D3?
Vitamin D takes two forms: Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3. Humans have no use for Vitamin D2, but Vitamin D3 (also called cholecalciferol) is essential. It's found naturally in foods and supplements, and your body makes it on its own when you're getting enough sun. With proper intake of Vitamin D3, your body creates calcitriol, which is an antimicrobial that prevents skin diseases, protects from UV damage and protects your hair follicles.
Vitamin D3 Oil
Ready for the bad news? Despite the hype about hair oils and even some products on the market, there's no evidence that Vitamin D3 can help your hair if you use them topically. One of the key factors is that Vitamin D3 works from the inside out -- but that's also the good news. You won't have to slather it onto your hair to get the shiny, smooth results. Instead, you can find Vitamin D3 in pill or oil supplements at any health store.
How Much to Take?
Dr. Melanie Bone, in an interview for "Truth in Aging," claims that vitamin D is the single most important supplement to take. But how much is enough? The FDA suggests that you consume 200 to 400 IU per day of Vitamin D, but Bone suggests much more. Downing a tablespoon of cod liver oil will give you a whopping 1,300 IU. Ten minutes of sunlight with a UV index above three will make your body produce the same amount, but in areas such as New York, there's generally not enough sunlight in the winter months to reach that amount naturally.
Oils to Use Topically
If you're looking for a beauty treatment that involves applying nourishing oils to your hair, there are several options. Argan oil penetrates the hair shaft and also contains antioxidants that repair damaged hair cell membranes. It can be expensive, though. If you're on a budget, 100 percent natural extra-virgin olive oil makes an inexpensive hair mask with the same deep conditioning. For dry hair, apply the oil to your entire head and massage it into your scalp. If you have oily roots, only apply it to the bottom half. Leave the mask on for at least an hour before washing as usual.