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Beer for Shiny Soft Hair

Updated on June 5, 2015

*Shine* your hair

We've always longed that lustrous shine in our hair. The one we see on our television sets -- with models swaying endless locks of shiny hair in our face. The one we look at, roll our eyes and say, "That's so fake". Well the 'endless locks' are definitely not real, but the shine.. can be!

Yes you heard me. The shine we long can be achieved easily. We've tried so many masks and packs and God knows how many conditioners - not knowing that the best solution sits our fridge. Beer!

What is Beer?

Firstly, to understand why beer is good for hair we need to understand what it actually is.

Beer is an alcoholic drink made from yeast-fermented malt. It is brewed mainly from malted barley, hops and yeast. Beer is one of the world's most widely consumed beverage and is also one of the oldest fermented beverages.

Barley: Barley grains are low in fat but high in starch and protein. Starch is made up of sugar molecules. Malting releases the sugar which helps the brewing process.

Hops: Hops is a climbing plant that contain a lot of resins and essential oils. Flavoring beer is the major use of hops. It is these oils that give beer its distinctive taste. Typically a barrel of beer is made from 20 kg of malt and 150 gm of hops.

Yeast: Yeast is a member of the fungus family. The Latin name for brewing yeast is Saccharomyces cerevisiae - which literally means "beer sugar yeast". It is this microorganism that is responsible for the fermentation in beer. The sugar in the barley grains activates the yeast, which produces carbon dioxide and alcohol, turning it into beer.

Benefits of using beer on hair

Many party 'accidents' have led people to discover lustrous shiny hair. So how exactly does beer do it?

  1. Protein: Beer's most basic ingredients - malt and hops - are full of protein that can strengthen hair cuticles. The cuticle is a layer of dead cells around the outermost part of the hair shaft. When the cuticle is damaged, these cells become rough. The protein present in beer gives hair the much needed strength.
  2. Shiny hair: The protein, Vitamin-B and oils in a beer bring the shine and softness to the hair. Additionally, the malt and sugars in beer tighten the hair's cuticles for enhanced shine. When you soak or rinse your hair with beer, its ingredients coat each strand and nourishes it. In addition to it gives strength to damaged hair and boosts its overall body.
  3. Fights split ends: A solution to fight split ends - Hair wash with beer! This effect is said to come from the proteins left on the hair fiber.
  4. Conditions: The effect of beer leaves the hair softer than any shelf product could ever give you.
  5. Treats hair fall: Beer has biotin which treats hair fall by strengthening the roots.
  6. Volume: Get thick and voluminous hair with a beer wash. Although this works only till the beer is coated on the cuticles and hair, it still gives a voluminous look.
  7. Treats dry hair: Vitamin B, essential oils and proteins give you soft lustrous hair. Washing your hair with beer helps treat dry hair.
  8. De-tangles hair: Because beer gives you smooth and soft hair, in process it de-tangles your hair. Beer is a conditioner which can make de-tangling easier for you - which in process means lesser hair fall!

How to use beer in a hair wash

The most staple way to use beer in a hair wash is:

  • Bring a bottle/can of beer to room temperature. Make sure you use traditional brewed beer made from hops to maximize nutrients and avoid chemicals.
  • Set the beer aside in a container (if you wish to)
  • Wash your hair with a shampoo.
  • Rinse your hair and then massage your hair with the beer.
  • Rinse the beer from your hair properly.
  • Dry with a soft towel.

Although your hair will be soft and shiny after this wash, there is a chance of you smelling of beer for a couple of hours. There is a fix to this too. There are certain variations to the uses of beer that you can try.

Variations to the uses of beer

  • Beer with honey and lemon: Beer with a squeeze of lemon and honey give you softer and shinier hair naturally. Plus the lemon cuts out the beer smell. So you don't smell like last night's party!
  • Beer with apple cider vinegar: Massage a solution of 2 tsp cider vinegar, 1 oz flat beer, 1 oz water and few drops of any oil (optional) through your scalp and hair after shampooing. This removes the dead cells in the scalp, removes dandruff and eliminates the damage done from various hair products. Plus, the vinegar cuts out the beer smell.
  • Boil with water: Boil a flat, room temperature beer with equal parts water, add honey and lemon juice and apply on the hair ends. Leave for 20 minutes and wash off with warm water. Reduces split ends a whole lot better than any expensive product.
  • Jojoba Oil: Mix warm beer with warm jojoba oil and massage it on the hair roots and scalp. Leave it on for some time and rinse with cold water for naturally soft hair.

Not for regular use!

Although beer gives you a whole lot of answers to your hair problems, unfortunately, the effect is not permanent! The volume boost beer gives will only last as long as the beer remains bound to hair cuticles. The volume, shine etc. wash out with the next hair wash.

Beer benefits depend on hair type and condition. Beer treatments are better suited for greasy, oily hair, since they tend to leave a dry but healthy feeling. So a daily usage is not recommended by experts. Once in a month is a good way to go.

While beer is *not* a substitute for shampoos and conditioners, it still does work best as an occasional booster! So calculate your days on the calendar and use the beer before a big day for a whole lot of compliments!


Have you tried washing hair with beer?

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