What is Karkar oil?
Karkar oil is a combination of sesame seed oil, honey and animal fat that is heated to blend well to make the oil and a perfume is then added so that it smells nice, well decent because if you know karkar oil, it does not smell anything close to nice. It is used by women in Chad and also Sudan to grow hair healthy and retain length.
Karkar oil benefits on hair
Karkar oil is actually a hair oil. So far, it has not been seen to be used anywhere else except on the hair. The benefits of using karkar oil the hair are a lot and some are below.
- Packed with healthy fatty acids like palmatic acid, linoleic acid, oleic acid and stearic acid which moisturises the scalp and the hair, karkar oil is a good moisturising oil that easily penetrates the skin and hair shaft.
- Karkar oi has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties therefore it helps with managing a flaky scalp due to dandruff and other fungal or bacterial infections on the scalp.
- Sesame seed oil which is the main ingredient in karkar oil, has Vitamin E which is a natural antioxidant. It also has nutrients like zinc, copper, magnesium, calcium, iron and Vitamin B6 which detoxify, nourish and protect the hair and scalp for stronger hair that does not break easily.
- Karkar oil also helps to slow down premature greying of the hair to keep it looking darker for longer.
- Promotes hair growth as it improves blood circulation when massaged on the scalp.
- Protects the hair against UV rays as it has sun blocking properties to act as a natural sun block.
- Improves the health of the hair to give it a healthy sheen.
- Seals the hair very well to prevent split ends and strengthen the hair against breakage.
- On the other hand, honey which is an ingredient in making karkar oil, is a natural humectant, which means, it attracts moisture from the air to your hair to keep it well moisturised and conditioned.
- Honey also has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help with scalp psoriasis and eczema for healthier hair growth.
Now you understand why karkar oil is such a powerhouse when it comes to healthier hair? But how can one use Karkar oil in a hair care routine to harness all these benefits and grow healthy hair that is strong and retains length.
How to use Karkar oil for hair growth
They are many ways to use Karkar oil for hair growth. The most common is with Chebe powder.
Karkar oil and Chebe powder Routine
It can also be used concurrently with chebe powder like the women in Chad do it, applying water, then the karkar oil and lastly chebe powder and that is repeated until the section is saturated with the oil and chebe powder before putting it into a tight braid. This process is quite messy and may leave the chebe powder showing so much on the hair. You can either wear a wig or a wrap/doek to cover the hair. The process can then be repeated after every 5 days without washing the hair.
Karkar and Chebe Powder mix
Karkar oil can be mixed with chebe powder in equal parts and then applied on the hair. When mixed with chebe powder, karkar oil cannot be put on the scalp because that can cause it to itch big time. This however reduces the process of the chebe routine application time because both the karkar oil and the chebe powder are mixed together. After applying water or a water based leave in conditioner, the mixture of karkar oil and chebe powder is then applied to the hair, concentrating on the hair shaft and avoiding the roots or close to the scalp.
Karkar and Chebe Butter
Karkar oil can also be added to a butter together with chebe powder. You can also buy an already made chebe and karkar butter from BlckShp Organics if you are not too keen on DIY stuff. It is much cheaper because you will not need to buy the chebe powder, karkar oil, Shea butter and the leave in conditioner to make the butter. However, if you already have the other ingredients you can try the DIY route and it is not too difficult as well. Using Karkar and Chebe butter is better for the hair as it does not show too much after the hair has the butter in it. You can wear the hair in braids, amaphondo or twists thereafter which is more practical for most people.
Karkar oil for massage
Karkar oil can also be massaged on the hairline to grow hair since it is packed with nutrients that improve the health of the scalp and improves blood circulation on the scalp.
Karkar oil for hot oil treatment
Karkar oil can be used as a hot oil conditioning treatment to deeply condition the hair for maximum moisture retention and making it stronger. The oil can be slightly heated, making sure it does not get to boil and then applied on the hair when it’s slighlty above body temperature and also massaged onto the scalp. Leave it on the hair for 30 minutes to an hour before rinsing off and washing the hair as usual.
Karkar oil to seal moisture
Karkar oil can be used as the final step in the LCO method when sealing moisture in your hair. The LCO method is basically applying a water based leave in conditioner, which is the liquid part, a cream of choice and then an oil. Karkar oil, with its sun blocking properties, will protect the hair while it seals in moisture for maximum moisture retention.