How to Make Hair Shiny Naturally: 10 Easy DIY Treatments and Tips

A woman combing her hair
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If you want shiny hair but don't want to spend a lot of money on fancy products, or prefer natural treatments over chemicals and ingredients you can't pronounce, this list is for you.

Enhance your hair's shine and learn to nourish it with these easy, natural rinses, scrubs, and masks, as well as a few simple tips.

1
of 10

Nourish and Refresh Your Scalp

Small bottle with essential peppermint oil. Fresh mint leaves close up. Aromatherapy, spa and herbal medicine ingredients. Copy space
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Clogged scalp pores and product buildup can affect the rest of the hair. A scrubby scalp treatment can cleanse and physically remove dead skin and increase circulation, which can help hair look glossier.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 6 drops peppermint essential oil

Steps

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
  2. Using fingers, massage the exfoliating mix into your scalp. Take your time and make sure you cover your entire scalp. You should feel the peppermint oil creating a cooling, tingling feeling on your scalp, which stimulates blood flow to the area.
  3. Rinse the scalp treatment out using warm water, then shampoo and condition as usual.

Try this scrub up to a couple of times a month for shinier hair. The mixture will keep for 2-3 weeks unrefrigerated, or a couple of months in the fridge.

2
of 10

Add Coffee to Your Conditioner

Close-Up Of Coffee Cup

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Don't try this if you have bleached or naturally blonde hair since coffee can stain it, but if you have light brown or darker hair, coffee compounds can be hydrating to the hair shaft and the caffeine may help stimulate hair growth (it can also be a subtle way to color grey hair).

Simply brew a strong cup of coffee and keep it in your shower. When it comes time to condition your hair, mix your regular conditioner with a tablespoon or two of the coffee, and condition as usual. Rinse out and style.

3
of 10

Rinse Your Hair With Apple Cider Vinegar

Overhead shot of a bottle of apple cider vinegar on a wooden table
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If your hair is less shiny due to the buildup of styling products, an apple cider vinegar rinse can help get your hair de-gunked and balance its Ph.

Not only will it remove old product that's sticking to your hair, if applied to the scalp, apple cider vinegar can help unclog hair follicles, leading to healthier roots and stronger hair.

Up to a couple of times a week, shampoo and condition your hair as you usually would, then take a combination of 50/50 apple cider vinegar and water (so, for example, 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with 2 tablespoons of water) and drizzle it over your head. Let it run through your hair. Work it through and let it sit for a couple of minutes, then rinse out. The vinegar smell should dissipate after it's rinsed out.

4
of 10

Nourish Hair With a Coconut Oil Hair Mask

Coconut Oil
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A good deep conditioning hair mask can help smooth frizzies and shine hair up. Coconut oil is particularly good at this because it contains lauric acid (a fatty acid), which has a structure and molecular weight that allows it to penetrate the hair shaft. It also reduces protein loss from hair coloring and heat treatment.

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Essential oils

Steps

  1. Heat coconut oil up to a liquid state (either microwave it or warm it in a double boiler). Add olive oil and a few drops of any essential oils you like.
  2. Brush or comb hair, then spray or otherwise dampen with water (not so much that it's dripping wet, just damp).
  3. Apply coconut and olive oil mixture to your hair, thoroughly working it through. Put a shower cap over it when you are done.
  4. Let the mask rest for at least an hour. You can leave it on for two hours or longer, or even overnight.
  5. Rinse out with warm water, then shampoo (you may need some soap to get the superficial oils off your hair), and condition as usual.
5
of 10

Protect Your Hair While You Sleep

Young woman yawning, close up
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Depending on how much you move around at night, you might be doing more damage to your hair while you sleep than you realize. If you wake up with frizzy, matted, or knotted hair, consider protecting your hair while you sleep.

There are two ways to do this. First, an all-silk pillowcase creates a lower-friction surface and less pulling on hair. Another option is wrapping your hair in a scarf or turban sold for such a purpose, with the idea being to protect hair from directly rubbing with your pillow as you move at night.

6
of 10

Moisturize Hair With a Light Honey Conditioner

Small glass bowl with manuka honey, wooden hair brush and loofah sponges. Natural beauty treatment, homemade spa recipe.Top view, copy space.
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Honey contains vitamins and minerals, as well as proteins, amino acids, and enzymes that can benefit both hair and scalp. In addition, it is a humectant, helping retain moisture.

A honey-based conditioner can help keep moisture in your hair, giving it a shinier, glossier appearance.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons aloe vera gel
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon argan oil

Steps

  1. In a bowl, mix together aloe vera gel, honey, and argan oil.
  2. Make sure the ingredients are fully mixed, then apply to hair after you've shampooed it. Leave it on (as you would a regular conditioner) in the shower for at least five minutes.
  3. Rinse out with warm water and style as usual.
7
of 10

Brush Your Hair Nightly

Hair with hairbrush
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It can be surprising how much dust and dirt can accumulate in your hair. While regular brushing doesn't suit all hair types, if it's comfortable for you, it's a simple way to redistribute the natural hair oils your scalp exudes—which can give you naturally shinier hair—while also brushing out particulate pollution, pollen, and dust that can make it look dull.

Brushing also stimulates the scalp (and feels good, too). Aim for 100 strokes a night, which will ensure you get the benefits you want without overdoing it.

If it's not comfortable to brush your hair, using a wide-toothed comb can get you some of these benefits.

For people with curly hair, combing while hair is damp will lead to less damage, so spray it down before you comb or do it post-shower.

8
of 10

Give the Heat Tools a Rest

Modern stylish hair styling tools
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Since the long-term use of heat tools like blowdryers, curling irons, and flat irons stress hair, simply giving your hair a good break from them can help you regain some natural shine and gloss.

If you use several products along with your heat styling tools, consider taking a break from those as well, and doing the apple cider vinegar rinse above to get rid of any product buildup that may be coating your hair shaft and causing dullness.

9
of 10

Use Argan Oil to Moisturize and Shine Up Hair

Argan oil
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Argan oil is well-known as a skin conditioner, but it's great for hair as well. It is a wonderful hair moisturizer because it can penetrate the hair shaft and also seal the strands, which creates a glossy look.

For shinier hair, use argan oil as a finishing serum after you are done drying and styling your hair. Simply place 2-6 drops of argan oil in your palm (use less for shorter hair and more for longer or thicker hair), and rub your hands together to warm up the oil. Then, run your hands over your hair, including underneath, the sides, and the top. Finger-comb to distribute the oil throughout your hair or use a brush or comb. You should notice immediate shine.

10
of 10

Eat Healthy Foods

Fruit and vegetable background in rainbow colors
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All kinds of hair-quality issues can be linked to a poor diet—nutritional deficiencies can affect hair structure, strength, and texture. While there are plenty of supplements that promise thicker, shinier hair, your best bet is always a balanced, nutritious diet—which will benefit your overall well-being.

Eating a well-rounded diet including daily choices from all the colors of the rainbow of fruits and vegetables, good-quality proteins, healthy fats, and whole grains will help you grow hair that's shiny and nurtured from the inside out.

View Article Sources
  1. Barve, Kalyani and Apurva Dighe. "Hair Conditioner." The Chemistry and Applications of Sustainable Natural Hair Products, 2016, pp. 37-44., doi:10.1007/978-3-319-29419-3_4

  2. Dias, Maria Fernanda Reis Gavazzoni. "Hair Cosmetics: An Overview." International Journal of Trichology, vol. 7, no. 1, 2015, pp. 2-15., doi:10.4103/0974-7753.153450

  3. Burlando, Bruno and Laura Cornara. "Honey in Dermatology and Skin Care: A Review." Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, vol. 12, no. 4, 2013, pp. 306-313., doi:10.1111/jocd.12058

  4. O'Connor, Kelly and Lynne J. Goldberg. "Nutrition and Hair." Clinics in Dermatology, vol. 39, no. 5, 2021, pp. 809-818., doi:10.1016/j.clindermatol.2021.05.008