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Onion juice and you – does it work in terms of hair loss?

Onion juice has raised quite a hype lately, especially on social media. But if you want past the typical hype of different websites suggesting onion juice for hair loss and establish the facts, then read further. Nutrafol did the research for you, trying to find out if it really works or if it is only a trick to sell more onions.

The scientific study that investigated if onion juice works for hair loss

There has been one study published, named Onion juice (Allium cepa L.), a new topical treatment for alopecia areata that researched the effects of using onion juice.
In this study, patients with alopecia areata were divided into two groups where Group 1 was advised to apply onion juice to the scalp twice a day for two months.
Group 2 was advised to apply tap water to the scalp twice a day for two months.

After two weeks of treatment, effects could be noticed – regrowth of coarse hairs was observed in Group 1. And after four weeks, researchers observed regrowth in 86,9% of the group.
The researchers came to the conclusion that onion juice can be an effective therapy for patchy alopecia areata and hair regrowth.

Why is onion juice effective against hair loss?

Onions are rich in sulfur. And sulfur has antibacterial and antifungal properties, killing germs, parasites and putting an end to fungal infections. Hair loss is often trigged by an unhealthy scalp, so it does make sense that sulfur-rich onion juice may act as a good cure. Another benefit when applying onion juice to the scalp is that it gets rid of dandruff, which is usually fungal in nature. Onions do also contain quercetin, an antioxidant that studies have shown may be useful in treating alopecia areata.

onion juice hair loss
Red onions are a richer source of quercetin than white, but ALL onions contain some.

How to use onion juice on your hair

If the information given above has made you brave enough to try the onion juice treatment, here is how you do it.

  • Grate an onion and strain the pulp. You can strain it with a sieve, by squeezing it between two spoons, or squeezing it through cheesecloth. Throw away the pulp and use only the juice.

or you could just use a…

  • juicer, if you have one. By far the easiest method.

Some people after using onion juice have noticed a red itchy scalp. So test it on a very small area before applying it all over your scalp. Onion juice is very strong so avoid any sore areas. If you are still concerned about getting a reaction like this, try boiling chopped onions and use the water once it cooled down. It is much milder than pure onion juice.

How about the smell?

Onions do have a very strong smell, there is no denying that. But the smell is only overpowering during application. When washed out, it is barely noticeable. But if you think that the smell still lingers, there are a few things you can try to remove it:

How to get the most out of your onion juice treatment

  • Massage it into the scalp and leave it overnight if possible. If not, 30 minutes will do.
  • Apply it as often as you can, whenever you wash your hair if possible. But remember that it can take a few weeks before you see any results. You can also try to complement the treatment with some natural supplements. Combining the two treatments will ensure your hair is supported and healthy.

Photos: Mitch Huang via Flickr.

Aurelien Guichard via Flickr.