I’ve tried lots of treatments for hair loss over 23 patch-filled years. Some of them worked; but plenty didn’t. And the more chemical-heavy ones only led to bad side effects, like headaches and dizziness. So I started looking for natural remedies – which led me to ginger for hair growth!
Fresh ginger is one of my favourite hair care ingredients. Because it’s got plenty of other health benefits, too! Plus, it smells great, it isn’t messy AND it’s super cheap. Whether you chop up the raw stuff or take it as a supplement, ginger is good news for your body.
Emma’s ‘not a doctor’ disclaimer
Hi there, I’m an alopecian, I’m not a doctor! Any advice I give is based on my own research and personal experiences. This site is however reader-supported. When you buy through external links, I may earn a tiny affiliate commission. Learn more here.
Ginger, or to call it by its epically cool plant name Zingiber officinale, hails from China. Alongside tasty spices like turmeric, cardamom and galangal, ginger is part of the Zingiberaceae family – and one more natural remedy that’s been used for centuries.
The ginger “root”, which we all know and many of us love, is the underpart of the stem (called the “rhizome”). This root can be enjoyed fresh, dried, powdered, as an oil, or even as a juice for a long list of ailments.
Suffer from digestive issues? Feeling nauseous? Got a cold or flu? Ginger is one of the best ways to overcome them. These medicinal properties come from its natural oils – the most important of which is called “gingerol”. More on its many health benefits soon but let’s start with one we ALL wanna know… can ginger help your hair grow back?
Although different elements can cause alopecia – genetics, hormone imbalance, diet and stress – there’s usually one common trigger: inflammation. An autoimmune condition, after all, involves the body being in a state of chronic inflammation – which is why its cells attack each other by mistake.
In the case of chronic hair loss, the gingerol compound of ginger reduces this inflammation, bigtime. Like many natural remedies, it also has antioxidant and circulation-boosting properties that benefit your noggin in many ways.
Those antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties soothe scalp conditions like seborrheic dermatitis or dandruff. And since a healthy scalp is the foundation for healthy hair, the more you can do to clear it up, the better.
So if you’ve noticed any scalp irritation or itchiness, reach for ginger before hitting the Head & Shoulders! Whether you give your scalp a massage with the fresh root, switch up your shampoo, or add a few drops of pure ginger oil to your favorite styling product, it’s one of the best ways to calm an inflamed or aggravated scalp. (Hint: Fresh aloe vera is another!)
Finally, ginger has powerful circulatory agents to boost blood flow (and therefore, essential nutrients) to the scalp. You may notice that your scalp gets a little red when you rub ginger on it – that’s ok, it shows it’s working!
A study published in January 2020 revealed the composition of a sample of ginger. It contained a pretty high number of essential fatty acids. Here they are, in order of abundance, and how they help hair loss:
Even though ginger has high quantities of all these things, when you apply something and rinse it off soon after, there’s only so much good you can get out of it. That’s why a daily ginger supplement could be the best way forward.
I know this one isn’t specifically concerned with hair loss but as someone who’s compromised her own immune system with too many corticosteroid injections and antibiotics over the years – which has impacted my alopecia in a big way – I love things that promote better immunity!
If you’ve ever used hot lemon and ginger to ward off a cold, you’ll know how effective it is. But even more than that, ginger can help with far more serious conditions, as reported in this NCBI article: “its functional ingredients like gingerols, shogaol, and paradols are the valuable ingredients which can prevent various cancers.”
So how does ginger help the immune system…and, as a result, hair growth? Well, it combats the damage caused by free radicals (known as “oxidative stress”) in the body, known as a major factor in hair loss. As a natural antioxidant, ginger balances this stress to reduce the risk of chronic disease – including alopecia.
As we’ve just seen, ginger’s benefits don’t just revolve around the belief: “a healthy immune system = healthy skin, hair and nails”. That’s a factor too but the REALLY exciting thing about taking a daily dose of ginger is it primes your immune system to prevent conditions like chronic hair loss in the first place.
Tip: When combined with turmeric and taken regularly, you can double up on anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting functions, reducing stress in the body on a long-term basis.
I’ll be honest – I started using ginger on my bald patches without researching it whatsoever. I was at an ayurvedic hospital in Sri Lanka, and the doctor advised me to rub fresh ginger on my bald spots, every night, for a minimum of 2 weeks. (Actually, she also recommended red onion – so I tried both!)
LA Says: Still, I didn’t do it every night like the doctor advised. It was too much hassle while travelling, taking my oddly shaped ginger root into shared bathrooms! And because I saw quicker results with red onion juice, I used that when I got home again instead.
I continued using fresh ginger for its other health benefits – usually when I felt a cold coming on. But it was only when I went to see a Functional Medicine doctor in 2019, who diagnosed me with gut dysbiosis and chronic inflammation, I used it to “heal my gut”, too.
In addition to going on an elimination diet I upped my intake of ginger and turmeric and now drink both in hot water and lime every morning (with a little black pepper to better absorb its nutritional compounds).
I quite like the ritual. Still, it can be a pain chopping the roots every morning, not to mention the stained fingers – so these ginger pills, which contain ginger, turmeric AND BioPerine (black pepper extract, for absorption) might be a more convenient choice for many.
There are lots of ways to enjoy ginger: it comes in many forms. But I’ll include my personal favorites here
The simplest approach, which is super cheap and really easy – if you’ve got easy access to a supply of ginger root, that is! It’s a method you can try every night.
What to do:
This one takes more effort (and is a bit messier) but it’s an AMAZING way to nourish your scalp and revitalize those follicles! Make your own ginger juice for hair growth in 5 minutes – try it once or twice a week.
What to do:
I try to have fresh ginger (and turmeric) in hot water every morning. But there are also delicious ginger tea blends out there – just make sure you get one that’s sugar-free. 😉
Cook with spices like ginger, turmeric and cumin whenever you can. I like to change up the usual avocado smoothie bowl I make with this turmeric and ginger alternative!
What to do:
If you don’t have access to fresh ginger, or don’t like the taste of it, you can still benefit from this immune-boosting powerhouse. The first product I’ll recommend does it all in terms of supporting your gut, warding off infections and promoting hair growth – it focuses on the root cause – while the next two are topical hair products.
These have turmeric AND ginger in them so you get even more health benefits! Use these supplements for joint pain, digestive issues, to boost your mood – and, on a long-term basis, for immune support.
As with most supplements, it takes time for their effects to kick in – my FM doctor reviews my progress after 1-3 months of starting a new supplement. (Which is why it’s recommended to get a 3-month supply).
Still, it’s a good idea to record how you’re feeling after each week…and maybe how your hair improves, too!
VitaPost supplements are vegan and made in a US, FDA-registered facility, which follows GMP (Good Manufacturing Processes) guidelines. But what I REALLY like about this double superfood offering is how one reviewer says ordinary turmeric pills gave him stomach cramps – but the ginger in this brand stopped that happening. Go, team!
Psst: Like a bargain? Then get 5% off your online order when you use the code FIVE$39532113 at checkout. Whoop!
This nourishing ginger shampoo for men and women helps to reduce shedding, slow down the rate of thinning and volumize the hair you’ve got. It also locks in moisture to reduce damage or breakage and boosts circulation to the scalp in the way that only zingy ginger can achieve!
Customer reviews mention how their hair became fuller, softer and shinier, many report reduced hair loss and pretty much all of them compliment the smell – a winning combo of ginger and ginseng!
So if supplements and essential oils aren’t your thing, a ginger shampoo for hair growth could be a nice alternative.
This 100% pure essential oil is free from parabens, petroleum, and any other nasty additives – just the benefits of pure ginger. It means a higher price tag, perhaps, than other ginger oils for hair growth – but Aura Cacia are a well-respected brand so you can rest assured, this is the real deal!
You can use it on your face and body as well as your hair, even diffuse it for concentration and an energy boost.
LA Says: Make sure to dilute it in a carrier oil using this dilution guide:
Drops per 1 oz (2 Tbsp) carrier
In general, ginger is regarded as completely safe to use. It’s been used in medicine for centuries, after all!
Still, use your best judgement. If you’re using the supplements, read the label carefully to see your recommended dose or any allergens that might apply. If trying the oil, make sure to dilute it properly and stay clear of your eyes/nostrils. Plus if you’re pregnant, breastfeeding or taking medication for another condition, it’s a good idea to check with your doctor first.
As Lady Alopecia is dedicated to…well, alopecia, I won’t go into too much detail about the other health benefits of ginger. But trust me, there are plenty. That’s why, even more so than turmeric, I always have a large amount of ginger in my kitchen – the root itself, ginger teabags, powdered ginger and, of course, ginger supplements!
As a long-term alopecian, I don’t have the strongest immune system in the world. But having ginger every day keeps me strong and fighting fit, most of the time anyway! 🙂
You can buy fresh ginger root, powder or dried ginger from your local grocery store. Or try it as a daily supplement.
No – it should only be used topically and make sure you dilute it with a good carrier oil!
You betcha! Just blend up some ginger root and get massaging it into your scalp!
Natural remedies may take a little longer – but they’re a lot better for you than chemical-heavy formulas! And actually, when I rubbed fresh ginger on my head I got white fuzz in my patches after 2 weeks.
Sometimes superfoods are all hype, no substance. But ginger really does live up to its glowing reputation. We’ve seen just how many benefits ginger has for your gut, your brain, your heart and your health in general. A lot of which you’ve probably heard already. 😉
But we’ve also seen how it can actually help hair growth too. And I can vouch for it: ginger really does help hair grow back! So whether you want to lather and rinse, massage in the oil or pop a daily pill, make sure to bring ginger into your daily life.
Your health – and your hair – will thank you!
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Alopecian. Yoga Teacher. Copywriter. Here to share information, offer support and show people the adventures that can lie in hair loss. I’m proud to have alopecia and I want to help others embrace their baldness, too!
I’m NOT a doctor, not even close. I’m just a normal bald girl. That said, I do as much research as possible. If you want to check up on any of the claims I make above, here are my sources.
Characterization of Essential Oils and Fatty Acids Composition of Stored Ginger
Anti-Oxidative and Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Ginger in Health and Physical Activity
The efficacy of ginger for the prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting
Zingiber officinale Improves Cognitive Function of the Middle-Aged Healthy Women
The Effects of Ginger on Fasting Blood Sugar
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