Premature graying of hair is often a great concern for younger adults in their 20s or 30s as gray hair make them look much older than they are.
The problem can be caused by factors like a genetic predisposition, poor nutrition, hormonal fluctuations, smoking, pollution, stress, use of unsuitable hair products, and certain diseases such as chronic colds, sinusitis, and thyroid disorders.
Basically, strands of hair turn white or gray due to low amounts of melanin, the pigment that gives your hair its natural color. The melanocyte activity slows down with age and the body gradually stops producing melanin.
Instead of covering those gray strands with commercial and chemical-laden hair colors, try some natural home remedies. In addition, eat a healthy and nutritious diet. Deficiency of certain vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B, iron, copper, and iodine can contribute to this problem.
Here are the top 10 home remedies for premature graying of hair.
1. Indian Gooseberry
Indian gooseberry, or amla, is excellent for a variety of hair problems including premature graying, dull hair, and hair loss. Being rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, it has anti-aging benefits. In addition to consuming this fruit, you can also apply amla oil or amla pulp on your hair.
- Put some coconut oil in a pan. Boil a few dried Indian gooseberry pieces (if you do not have dried amla then use amla powder) in the oil until they become charred. Let the oil cool. Apply the oil on your hair and scalp. Leave it on overnight, or at least for an hour, before rinsing it out. Do this at least once or twice a week.
- Alternatively, you can mix together one tablespoon each of Indian gooseberry pulp and lemon juice. Massage your scalp with it at night before going to bed and wash it out the next morning.
- You can also apply a combination of equal amounts of amla juice and almond oil. You can add a little lime juice, too. Apart from reducing grey hair, this also facilitates healthy hair growth.
2. Curry Leaves
Curry leaves help increase darker pigmentation in your hair. When combined with coconut oil, it works as a great hair tonic.
- Boil a handful of fresh curry leaves in a tablespoon of coconut oil until they become charred. Strain the oil.
- Massage it into your hair. Leave it on for 30 to 45 minutes before rinsing it out.
- Follow this treatment at least once or twice a week.
In addition, you can consume curry juice daily.
Henna works as a wonderful natural hair colorant. Besides making your hair darker, it will strengthen and condition your lustrous locks.
- Grind a handful of henna leaves into a paste. Add three teaspoons of Indian gooseberry powder, one teaspoon of coffee powder, and a little plain yogurt. Spread it evenly on your hair. After it dries, rinse it out and then shampoo your hair as usual. Repeat the process once every two to four weeks.
- Another alternative is to boil some henna leaves in coconut oil or mustard oil until the leaves become charred, and use this oil on your hair.
- You can also prepare a henna hair mask by mixing hot black coffee and henna powder until you get a yogurt-consistency. Cover the bowl and let it sit for a few hours. Apply it to your hair, leave it on for one to three hours, and then shampoo your hair.
4. Coconut Oil and Lemon Juice
Coconut oil works wonders for your hair. It moisturizes your hair, stimulates hair growth, fights infections, and adds luster to your hair. When used for a prolonged time, it also helps reverse gray hair because it is packed with antioxidants.
- Mix three teaspoons of lemon juice in some coconut oil, enough for the length of your hair.
- Apply it to your hair and massage it into your scalp. Leave it on for at least an hour before shampooing your hair.
- Repeat on a weekly basis.
5. Rosemary and Sage
Both these herbs help cover the gray by darkening your hair color naturally.
- Boil one-half cup each of dried rosemary and sage in two cups of water. Let it sit for a couple of hours. Strain the solution.
- Use it as a hair rinse after shampooing. Leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes before rinsing it out.
- Repeat on a weekly basis.
6. Blackstrap Molasses
Blackstrap molasses is a common and effective home remedy to prevent and reduce the problem of gray hair. It is rich in copper, which helps with the production of hair pigment.
Blackstrap molasses provides approximately 14% of the daily recommended dose of copper. It also contains other trace minerals such as iron, selenium, and magnesium. Eat a tablespoon of it every morning for at least a few months to see positive results.
7. Onion Juice
Onion juice is believed to be a brilliant home remedy for thinning hair and premature graying. Recently, researchers found that gray hair is chiefly caused by a buildup of hydrogen peroxide at the base of the hair follicles and a decrease in a natural antioxidant compound, called catalase. Onion juice promotes the production of this compound.
- Apply onion juice onto your scalp, massage, and leave it on for about 30 minutes to an hour.
- Repeat the process daily for a few weeks.
8. Black Tea
Black tea helps darken your hair, as well as soften it and add shine.
- Boil two teaspoons of black tea in a cup of water. Add a teaspoon of salt. Allow it to cool.
- Rinse your hair with this a few times. The last time, let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Wash your hair with cold water but do not use shampoo.
- Repeat the process once or twice a week.
Another easy way to darken your hair is to mix ground coffee in your hair conditioner while applying it.
Amaranth combats hair loss and helps stop premature graying by retaining the natural color of your hair.
- Shampoo your hair.
- Apply fresh juice extracted from amaranth leaves on your hair and scalp.
- Rinse it out.
10. Black Sesame Seeds
According to traditional Chinese medicine, black sesame seeds are highly effective in getting rid of the problem of premature graying of hair. It is believed that they promote melanocyte activity to produce melanin.
They are also rich in protein, iron, calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, and copper. Simply eat a teaspoon of black sesame seeds daily for at least three months. Regularly applying sesame oil on your hair is also useful.
Do not expect instant results. You will have to follow these home remedies regularly for a few weeks or even months to see noticeable results. After all, patience is a virtue.