Does Mayonnaise Make Your Hair Shinier & Softer?

Take the mayo out of the kitchen for a smart hair treatment.

Photo: Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images

If you'd like to skip the pricey salon hair masks, you may have an alternative already in your refrigerator. Put that tuna salad classic, mayonnaise, to a new use as a hair conditioner. Mayo contains three hair-healthy ingredients: eggs, vinegar and oil. Plan a spa night on your next free evening, and treat yourself to a healthy hair treatment that fits any budget.

Hair Types

Mayonnaise can benefit almost any hair type, but it's especially helpful if you have dry or damaged hair. Vegetable oils, such as those in mayonnaise, can penetrate the hair shaft, according to a 2005 study published in the "Journal of Cosmetic Science." Egg yolks provide both fat and protein, recommends Janice Cox, author of "Natural Beauty at Home." Girls with curls may also find that mayo treatments keep their curls soft, glossy and frizz-free. If you have oilier hair, especially if it's quite fine, you won't need deep conditioning treatments as often, and too much mayonnaise can leave your hair feeling heavy.

How To

Applying mayo as a deep conditioning treatment is easy, but not the most attractive process. Lock yourself in the bathroom, or save this for a girls night in, to avoid being spotted with your head smelling like salad dressing. Work 1/2 cup to 1 1/2 cups of mayonnaise into your hair, applying it from the ends to the roots. Bundle your locks on top of your head, then cover with a plastic bag or shower cap. Leave the mayo on your hair for 15 minutes to one hour. You can even sleep in your mayo treatment, but be sure to use a securely fitting shower cap and cover your pillowcase with an old towel.

Get It Out

When you're ready to rinse, use cool water at the sink or over the tub. Don't rinse in the tub or shower to avoid slipping and falling on your newly conditioned hair. Shampoo and condition with your daily conditioner and cool water. Cool water increases shine and reduces the risk of cooking the eggs in the mayonnaise, especially if you've opted for a homemade mayo instead of store bought.


You can add other pantry and refrigerator staples to your mayonnaise mixture. Yogurt, avocado and honey are all hair-healthy additions to your homemade hair mask, recommends Cox. You can also enrich your mayonnaise with coconut oil, found to be the most beneficial for your locks in a 2003 study in the "Journal of Cosmetic Science." These ingredients are packed with essential fats, protein and nutrients to make your scalp and locks healthier.

Related Videos




Daily Glow: Tips to Repair Dry, Damaged Hair
"Cosmopolitan"; Shiny Hair Recipe
Naturally Curly: Mayonnaise Hair Treatment
"Natural Beauty at Home: More than 250 Easy-To-Use Recipes for Body, Bath and Hair"; Janice Cox; 2002 "Investigation of Penetration Abilities of Various Oils into Human Hair Fibers"; Journal of Cosmetic Science; K. Keis, D. Persaud, Y.K. Kamath; A.S. Rele; 2005 Effect of Mineral Oil, Coconut Oil and Sunflower Oil on the Prevention of Hair Damage; Journal of Cosmetic Science; A.S. Rele, R.B. Mohile; 2003

Add to this Article



Just for you

What type are you?

Choose your Body Type
or Register
Daily Look


How would you like to register?

Register with Facebook
  • It's fast, easy and hassle-free
  • One-click log-in and commenting
Register with
  • Use your email to create your account