One of the things I started doing on a regular basis – in a desperate bid to grow back my edges – was scalp stimulation. Scalp stimulation involves massaging the head to alleviate stress, improve blood circulation and encourage hair growth. There are other great benefits of scalp stimulation that I’ll discuss in this post.
Benefits of scalp stimulation
Simple scalp stimulation Involves you rubbing your head and neck using your fingers. If need be, you can also seek the services of a professional. There are several benefits of scalp stimulation which include the five listed below.
Increased blood flow for hair growth
You may have heard of how beneficial scalp stimulation is to the growth and health of your hair.
Gently massaging your scalp can increase blood flow to the hair follicles (the root of the hair) which is the only part of the hair that is alive.
Available research suggests that there is a connection between blood flow and hair growth.
Good scalp stimulation can help improve the flow of blood throughout your head and neck.
Simply massage your scalp and neck using your fingers or a handheld massager for some time and you’ll see the difference after a while.
I’ve personally been massaging my scalp, with a lot of focus on my edges, since mid-2019. I’m glad to report I’m seeing some great improvement after a couple of months. My edges have been growing back.
I’ve been massaging the edges using a combination of Jamaican black castor oil and peppermint oil.
The inversion method is another method that has been hailed as being pretty effective in increasing blood flow to your head. This requires you to hang your head upside down for a few minutes.
I don’t know how well this particular method works since I’ve never tried it. Apparently, the safest way to do this is while lying on your bed then hanging your head on the side such that the top of your head is facing down.
After hanging for some time, massage the head for a few minutes ensuring blood is being evenly distributed.
Eating a healthy diet and drinking water daily is one of the best ways to increase blood flow in your body. Without enough blood, scalp stimulation will not be 100% successful.
Eating healthy foods also improves the quality of your hair. There are certain nutrients and minerals available in healthy foods that are vital for promoting blood circulation and hair growth. They include fatty acids (omega-3), baron and iron
Even distribution of your hair’s natural oils
Naturally, your scalp releases some natural oils through the sebaceous glands. One of these oils is sebum.
Production of sebum is known to be affected by hormonal changes at puberty which either increases its production or decreases it.
Sebum and other scalp natural oils play a vital role in the general health of your scalp and hair. They help to moisturize your hair strands and your scalp, keeping it from getting dry.
These natural oils also protect your hair and scalp by acting as a shield against harmful elements and bacterial infection, thus keeping microbes that cause diseases at bay.
Sebum coats the whole scalp and the full length of each strand of hair on your head.
To increase the distribution of sebum, simply massage your scalp using your fingers for a few minutes. This leaves your hair well-moisturized and with a lasting luster.
After a long day at work or school, you can feel the tension building up especially at the back of your head and neck.
Getting scalp stimulation will help your head relax relieving the stress that has built up during the day.
You can also opt for professionally-done scalp stimulation which involves using warm oil that soothes your skin and relaxes all the tightness. It’s important to note that you can do scalp stimulation without the use of oils. It’s not a must.
Scalp stimulation can help your entire body to relax. Yes, your entire body benefits too when scalp stimulation is done properly and you can even drift off to a calming sleep.
This is especially beneficial if you suffer from insomnia. When your body is too tensed, a common side effect is altered sleeping patterns.
One option to deal with this is to seek the services of a professional and get regular scalp stimulation. This will help you not only fall asleep but stay asleep for increased periods as well.
Good scalp stimulation also helps reduce fatigue leaving your entire body feeling energized.
Strengthens your hair
Hair can be easily damaged due to constant brushing, styling, and use of heat styling appliances.
All these can lead to hair being weak leading to breakage. Good scalp stimulation, on a regular basis, is the solution. It will help your hair build resilience over time.
Therefore, apart from encouraging hair growth through increased blood flow, scalp massaging also helps to thicken hair in non-balding men.
In 2016, researchers conducted a study on nine healthy Japanese males and concluded that daily scalp massages helped to thicken the men’s hair. The research ran for a period of 24 weeks.
Relieves tension headaches
After a long day of being productive, it is normal to get a tension headache. Tension headaches are known to affect your thoughts and focus.
You may be tempted to take pain-relieving medication, but it’s better to find a natural remedy if you experience such headaches regularly. Scalp stimulation, either manual or by use of an electric device, is the answer.
Good scalp stimulation is known to release the pressure build-up in your head by helping your muscles relax.
This pressure is what causes muscles to tense resulting in a pounding headache. You can start by placing a hot towel on the side of your head and forehead.
The warmth from the towel is instantly soothing. Follow this by tenderly massaging your whole head for some time.
How often should I massage my scalp for hair growth?
When I started massaging my scalp on a regular basis I’d do it for about five minutes every evening. Five minutes seemed like such a long time! A whole 300 seconds!
After I caught the drift, I became so comfortable doing my own scalp massage and started increasing the duration. I went from five to seven minutes. And then for eight minutes. I’m now doing a 10-minute massage every evening.
I massage the whole scalp for about five minutes and then focus on the edges for another five minutes.
When I began the massages I hadn’t bought the peppermint oil and the Jamaican black castor oil. This is still fine.
I massaged the scalp without oils for about ten days before I incorporated them in my evening routine.
If you are going to a professional, proper scalp stimulation requires you to set aside 30-45 minutes of uninterrupted head massage.
You can only reap the benefits when you take your time and not rush through the process.
Control your breathing and thoughts as well by doing some breathing exercises and simple meditation. This is to relax your mind and body before you can get started.
With a busy lifestyle, it can be hard to go to a professional for scalp stimulation every day. But you schedule a weekly session.
You can do it yourself at home or seek a professional. If you do it yourself every week, see a professional once a month as well.
I personally believe setting aside five minutes to massage scalp everyday will be much more beneficial. I’m speaking from first-hand experience after witnessing the regrowth of my edges.
How to do oil massage for hair at home
You may not have the time or finances to seek out a professional for scalp stimulation regularly. No need to worry, you can give yourself a simple head massage at home.
Front to back motion
Good scalp stimulation requires you to be comfortable. Sit on a comfortable chair to ease tension in your body.
Using the tips of your fingers, from front to back, run your fingers through your hair slowly. Ensure to apply pressure as you move along the surface of your scalp.
You can use both hands to cover your whole head. To ensure your fingers run through unhindered, start by brushing it. Do this for five minutes.
Once more, from front to back, run your fingers through your scalp in circular motions. Keep applying light pressure as you massage your head for five minutes.
Back to front
Reverse the two motions and start now from the back of your head to the front still applying gentle pressure.
Take your time and do not rush through the process. Each motion should last a complete five minutes. You can set a timer to help you.
Side to side
After completing the two motions, front-back and back-front, now run your fingers from one side of your head to the other side.
Start from the left side to right for five minutes. Then move from the right side to the left for an added five minutes too.
Massage your neck
Tension also builds up at the back of your neck, shoulders, and back. Take another five minutes to gently run your fingers at the back of your neck and on your shoulders.
Remember to apply gentle pressure. This will add to the relief you are already experiencing.
Add essential oils
Essential oils are known to aid in relaxation. This is because their natural odor is soothing. These oils are also known to have immense benefits to both the skin and hair.
Some of the essential oils that you can use include tea tree oil, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, rosemary among others.
Remember to always mix essential oils with a carrier oil like coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil, or castor oil. It is not advisable to apply essential oils directly onto your skin.
A common mixture is 10 drops of essential oils mixed with 2-3 tablespoons of a carrier oil. Pour half the mixture on your head ensuring it reaches your scalp.
Immediately rub the scalp using your fingers, tilting from side to side, to prevent the oil from dripping off.
Distribute it evenly on your head and apply pressure as you gently massage it in. Use the two motions – straight and circular – in both back and front motions.
Keep at it for five minutes ensuring to rub also from the root of your hair to the tip.
Wrap your hair
To reap the full benefits of the oils, wrap your hair with a silk scarf for 20-30 minutes.
You can decide to do the scalp stimulation at night to leave the oils overnight then wash your hair in the morning.
In case you feel uncomfortable or your head starts to itch and wash your hair immediately.
Wash your hair
After your hair and scalp have reaped the benefits of the oil treatment, wash your hair thoroughly using a mild shampoo and conditioner.
Massage your head a bit as you shampoo and condition for a minute or two.
Benefits of using a scalp massager
A scalp massager is a hand-held manual or electric device used to massage the head. It stimulates and exfoliates the scalp.
Today, scalp massagers are found in all beauty stores both physical and online. They are fairly cheap, easy to use and do not require any special training.
Scalp massagers have grown in popularity because they require less energy than massaging your head using your fingers.
A good massage takes time which can lead to fatigued fingers. Using a scalp massager is simpler because all you have to do is sit back, relax and run it throughout your head for the required duration of each motion.
Scalp massagers can help you reach areas on your shoulders and back which may not be easy to reach using your fingers.
Your scalp is evenly massaged too. Take caution though to avoid using scalp massagers in case you have dandruff or abrasions on your head.
They may cause the flakes and wounds to worsen. If you suffer from migraines and other medical conditions involving your head, consult a health physician first before you start using it.
Manual scalp massager
A manual scalp massager requires you to apply pressure on your scalp. There are different brands available in the marketplace.
Some highly recommended brands include:
Electric scalp massager
An electric massager requires to be powered on. It either comes with a rechargeable battery or you have to plug it in.
It is easier to use because to add or reduce the pressure applied, all you have to do is press a button.
Scalp stimulation not only promotes hair growth, but it also helps you alleviate stress and tension from your body. These are some of the benefits of scalp stimulation.
You can get regular head massages in the comfort of your home. You do not have to spend a fortune to do so.
Scalp stimulation can greatly benefit your health and general well-being leading to improved sleeping patterns and increased energy levels.
There are devices such as the manual and electric scalp massagers that you can use to stimulate your scalp regularly. Applying oils as you massage your head has added benefits.