is salt water good for your hair

So, you're wondering, "is salt water good for your hair?" It's a common question, especially with ocean water's reputation for giving beachy waves. Salt water does contain beneficial vitamins and minerals, but overexposure can lead to dryness. 

In this article, we'll dive into the pros and cons of using salt water for hair care, share some handy tips, and help you make the most of its potential benefits. Ready to ride the wave of hair care knowledge? Let's go!

Is Salt Water Good for Your Hair?

So, is ocean water good for your hair? It certainly can be! Salt water is teeming with vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that benefit both hair and skin. Some key ingredients you'll find in ocean water are:

  • Potassium.
  • Sulfur.
  • Magnesium.

These are all minerals known for their therapeutic properties. Plus, sea salt acts as a natural exfoliant, helping to maintain a healthy scalp and clear away buildup. This makes it particularly useful for those battling oily or greasy hair.

In moderation, salt water can indeed be good for your hair, even promoting stronger and healthier growth.

Benefits of Salt Water for Your Hair

Benefits of Salt Water for Hair

Wondering what does salt water do to your hair? Well, it has a host of benefits for your locks! Let's explore how salt water can work its magic on your mane:

Natural Clarifying Shampoo

If you're seeking clean, lightweight, and silky hair, salt water is your new best friend. Acting as a natural clarifying shampoo, it helps eliminate heavy oils, extra sebum, and stubborn product buildup that regular shampoo might leave behind. You'll notice your hair feels refreshed and rejuvenated after a salt water treatment.

Scalp Exfoliator

Bet you didn't know that salt crystals can be an effective scalp exfoliator! They gently remove dead skin cells and unclog pores, promoting hair growth and volume in the process. This natural method gives your scalp the TLC it deserves, resulting in healthier hair overall.

Control Excessive Sweating On The Scalp

Struggling with excessive scalp sweat? Saltwater spray to the rescue! When spritzed onto your hair's roots and allowed to air dry, it absorbs extra oil and moisture produced by your scalp throughout the day, leaving your roots feeling fresh and clean.

Benefits of Salt Water for Hair

Add Volume To Hair

Who doesn't love voluminous hair? If you're looking for a quick and easy way to add some volume to your thin or fine hair, create a simple mixture of a tablespoon of sea salt and 200ml of water, then use it as a hair spray or a final rinse after conditioning. This easy trick will lift your hair, giving it the enviable volume you've always desired.

Promote Hair Growth

Is salt water good for hair growth? The answer is yes! A weekly scalp massage using a mixture of salt water and your favorite oil (like coconut or almond oil) can reduce hair loss(1) by opening up the scalp's pores, allowing for faster hair growth. 

This nourishing treatment also soothes itchy and flaky scalps, increases blood flow, and delivers essential nutrients for healthy hair.

Add Nutrients And Minerals To Your Hair

Salt water is brimming with vitamins and nutrients such as selenium, potassium, and magnesium, all of which promote hair growth when absorbed into your scalp. Additionally, it helps detoxify your hair by eliminating harmful substances like mercury.

Fight Dandruff And Itchy Scalp

Got an itchy scalp or have a dandruff problem? Salt water has got you covered! Its antibacterial and antifungal properties(2) help combat pesky scalp conditions like eczema, itchy scalp, and dandruff caused by fungus. Regular use of salt water treatments will leave your scalp feeling soothed and rejuvenated, paving the way for healthier, happier hair.

Is Salt Water Bad for Your Hair?

Is Salt Water Bad for Your Hair

Salt water, especially ocean water, has its perks, but overexposure can lead to some not-so-great consequences for your lovely locks.

You know that feeling when your hair goes from bouncy waves to dry, brittle strands? That's salt working its moisture-wicking magic, which isn't always a good thing. It pulls the moisture from your hair, leaving it thirsty and weak.

And if you've recently dyed or bleached your hair, you might want to think twice before diving into salty waters. Chemical treatments already strip away nutrients, so adding saltwater to the mix can just worsen the situation.

Ever notice how dyed hair can fade faster after a few swims in the sea? Here's how you can keep your hair safe from salt water damage:

  • Barrier up! Apply nourishing hair oil to your scalp and strands before your ocean swim. It'll help your scalp soak up the good stuff while shielding your hair.
  • Keep it soft and moisturized with a deep-conditioning hair mask. Your hair will thank you!
  • Don't forget to wash your hair after swimming to get rid of the salt. It's sneaky and can dry out your hair if it overstays its welcome. Choose a gentle shampoo without harsh chemicals, sulfates, or parabens.

How to Use Salt Water for Healthier Hair

How to Use Salt Water for Healthier Hair

Want to harness the power of salt water for your hair without making a trip to the beach? No worries, here are some DIY salt water treatments you can whip up in the comfort of your home:

Make a Shampoo

  1. Blend two portions of castile soap with three portions of sea salt in a suitable container.
  2. Work up a good lather and massage into your hair for approximately 15 minutes.
  3. Wash away any lingering residue with a cold water rinse.

Make a Pre-Conditioner Solution

  1. Mix half a cup of salt with a cup of water until it dissolves completely.
  2. Following your regular shampoo, pour the salty mixture onto damp hair, massaging your scalp for about a minute.
  3. Use cold water to wash the mixture off entirely.
  4. To enhance the conditioning effect, apply a rich conditioner afterward.

Make a Leave-in Treatment

  1. In a spray bottle, blend one tablespoon each of warm water and sea salt until the salt has dissolved.
  2. Integrate one tablespoon of coconut oil(3) and one tablespoon of leave-in conditioner to the mixture.
  3. Shake it up and spritz it onto your scalp to target various hair concerns.

Make a Simple Rinsing Solution

  1. Combine three tablespoons of salt with a suitable amount of warm water.
  2. Rinse your hair and scalp with the now salty water.
  3. To prevent frizz and split ends, follow up with a chilly water rinse.
  4. For added indulgence, massage the solution into your scalp before rinsing it off.

The Bottom Line

We hope by now we’ve helped you learn the answer to the question, "Is salt water good for your hair?" The truth is that when used in moderation, salt water offers a myriad of benefits. It can enhance volume, combat dandruff, foster healthy hair growth, soothe an itchy and flaky scalp, and supply vital nutrients and vitamins. With these advantages in mind, it's no wonder many people are keen to incorporate salt water into their hair care routines.

On the flip side, overusing salt water can wreak havoc on your hair, causing it to become excessively dry, brittle, and lackluster. So, as with most things in life, balance is crucial when it comes to reaping the rewards of salt water for your hair.


1. Choi, Y. H., Cho, Y. J., Kim, B. L., Han, M. H., Lee, H. S., Jeong, Y. G., Choi, Y. H., Cho, Y. J., Kim, B. L., Han, M. H. and Lee, H. S. (2021). Functional cosmetic effects of Dendropanax, sea salt, and other extracts to alleviate hair loss symptoms. Asian Journal of Beauty and Cosmetology, {online} 19(1), pp.1-11. doi:

2. Shee, A. K., Raja, R. B., Sethi, D., Kunhambu, A., and Arunachalam, K. D. (2010). Studies on the antibacterial activity potential of commonly used food preservatives. International journal of engineering science and technology, {online} 2(3), 264-269. Available at:

3. Withana‐Gamage, T.S., Perera, S.P. and Wanasundara, U.N. (2020). Coconut Oil. Bailey’s Industrial Oil and Fat Products, {online} pp.1–37. doi: