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Rosemary Oil Review »

Created by HairPlans staff writer. Last updated on Monday, May 13, 2024.
Quick Summary
Rosemary oil is well-regarded for its potential benefits in promoting hair growth and improving scalp health. Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) is a really useful plant that belongs to the mint family, called Lamiaceae. Originally from the Mediterranean area, rosemary has spread all over the world because people find it super useful for cooking, medicine, and even in making fragrances and foods. One of the coolest things about rosemary is that it has special ingredients called abietane-type phenolic diterpenes. These ingredients can protect cells from damage. Add rosemary oil to your haircare toolkit.
Score Information
Easy score:
Natural score:
Painless score:
View or Buy (Price: $9 - $50)

Rosemary oil is well-regarded for its potential benefits in promoting hair growth and improving scalp health. It's often used as a natural treatment for thinning hair and hair loss.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) is a significant plant within the mint family of plants known as the Lamiaceae family. It is native to the Mediterranean region and has become globally widespread due to its diverse applications in the culinary, medicinal, and commercial sectors, including uses in the fragrance and food industries.

One of the most noteworthy aspects of rosemary is its content of abietane-type phenolic diterpenes. These compounds are primarily responsible for the plant's potent antioxidant properties and contribute to many of its pharmacological benefits. Recent research has highlighted that these diterpenes can prevent neuronal cell death caused by various harmful agents, both in lab tests and live models, suggesting potential therapeutic uses.

The potential of these compounds in treating Alzheimer's disease (AD) has been increasingly explored. Studies focus on the chemical structure of these compounds and their ability to target different aspects of the disease. Beyond their general antioxidant capabilities, which help protect neuronal cells, these compounds are also studied for their roles in reducing brain inflammation and interfering with the formation, polymerization, and pathology of amyloid beta (Aß), a protein linked to Alzheimer's disease. This multifunctional nature of rosemary's compounds underscores their potential as a versatile tool in neuroprotective strategies against Alzheimer's disease.

Here’s how rosemary oil can be beneficial for your hair:

Benefits of Rosemary Oil for Hair
  1. Stimulates Hair Growth: Rosemary oil is thought to increase cellular metabolism that stimulates hair growth. Research suggests it can be as effective as minoxidil, a common hair growth treatment, but without some of the scalp itching that some users experience with minoxidil.

  2. Improves Circulation: Applying rosemary oil to the scalp can improve blood circulation, ensuring that hair follicles are sufficiently nourished and oxygenated, which can help hair grow thicker and stronger.

  3. Antioxidant Properties: Rosemary is rich in antioxidants, which can help protect hair follicles from damage by free radicals.

  4. Antimicrobial Properties: It also has antimicrobial properties, helping to manage issues like dandruff that can contribute to hair loss.

  5. Reduces Hair Loss: Regular use of rosemary oil can help in preventing the thinning of hair and can be used as a treatment for androgenetic alopecia.

How to Use Rosemary Oil for Hair Growth
  • Topical Application: Mix a few drops of rosemary essential oil with a carrier oil such as coconut, jojoba, or almond oil. Apply this mixture to the scalp and massage gently for a few minutes. For best results, leave it on for at least 30 minutes or overnight before washing it out with a mild shampoo.

  • Add to Shampoo or Conditioner: Adding a few drops of rosemary oil to your shampoo or conditioner can also promote hair growth. Apply as you normally would, making sure to massage into the scalp.

  • Hair Masks: Create a hair mask by mixing rosemary oil with other beneficial ingredients like olive oil or avocado. Apply to your hair and scalp, leave on for about 30 minutes, then wash out with a gentle shampoo.

  • Skin Sensitivity: Always dilute rosemary essential oil with a carrier oil to avoid irritation. Conduct a patch test before using it extensively, especially if you have sensitive skin.

  • Pregnancy: Pregnant women should consult a healthcare provider before using rosemary oil or any essential oils.

Rosemary oil can be a valuable addition to your hair care routine if you’re looking to promote hair growth and improve scalp health naturally. As with any remedy, results can vary, and patience is key when trying out new treatments. Always perform a patch test before regular use, consult with a healthcare provider if you have any underlying health conditions, and consider your personal health and allergy history.

Natural or Chemical Information

Natural score: 8

Rosemary oil, when pure, is a natural product extracted directly from the rosemary plant (Rosmarinus officinalis) through a process of steam distillation. It should not contain any synthetic chemicals if it's 100% pure.

However, it's important to be cautious when purchasing rosemary oil, as some products on the market may be blends or diluted with other oils, and occasionally, synthetic fragrances or additives might be included to reduce costs or alter the scent. To ensure you're getting a natural and pure product, look for rosemary essential oil that is labeled as "100% pure essential oil" and check for any reputable certifications like organic or therapeutic-grade, indicating it has been tested and meets certain purity standards.

Always purchase from reputable suppliers and brands that provide clear information about the oil's source, distillation process, and ingredients to avoid any synthetic additives.

How does it feel?

Painless score: 9

Rosemary oil is generally well-tolerated, but like all essential oils, it can cause discomfort or adverse reactions in some people, particularly if used improperly. Here are some potential issues and how to avoid them:

Skin Irritation
  • Cause: Undiluted rosemary oil can be very potent and may cause irritation if applied directly to the skin without a carrier oil.
  • Prevention: Always dilute rosemary oil with a carrier oil (like coconut, jojoba, or almond oil) before applying to the skin. Typical dilution rates are about 2-5 drops of essential oil per teaspoon of carrier oil.
Allergic Reactions
  • Symptoms: Allergic reactions can include redness, rash, itching, or swelling.
  • Prevention: Conduct a patch test by applying a small amount of the diluted oil to a patch of skin on the forearm. Wait 24-48 hours to see if any reaction occurs before using it more broadly.
Respiratory Irritation
  • Potential Issue: Inhaling rosemary oil directly from the bottle or in very high concentrations might irritate the mucous membranes and respiratory tract, especially in sensitive individuals or those with respiratory conditions.
  • Prevention: Use rosemary oil in a well-ventilated area and in moderation. If using it in a diffuser, make sure it is in a space that is not too confined.
Headaches or Nausea
  • Possible Cause: Overuse or excessive inhalation of rosemary oil can sometimes lead to headaches or nausea.
  • Prevention: Limit exposure times and ensure proper dilution or dispersion, particularly when diffusing the oil.
Special Considerations
  • Pregnancy and High Blood Pressure: Rosemary oil is generally advised to be used with caution or avoided by those who are pregnant or have high blood pressure. Consulting with a healthcare provider before use is recommended in these cases.

By using rosemary oil responsibly—diluting it appropriately, conducting patch tests, and using it in a well-ventilated area—most people can enjoy its benefits without discomfort or pain.


  1. Promotes Hair Growth: Studies suggest that rosemary oil can stimulate hair growth by enhancing blood circulation to the scalp, which allows more nutrients to reach the hair follicles.

  2. DHT Inhibition: Rosemary oil is believed to inhibit Dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone associated with hair loss, making it particularly useful for those experiencing pattern baldness or thinning hair.

  3. Antioxidant Properties: Rich in antioxidants, rosemary oil helps combat oxidative stress in hair follicles that is often a contributor to hair loss.

  4. Antimicrobial and Antifungal: It can help maintain scalp health by preventing and reducing dandruff and other scalp issues due to its antimicrobial and antifungal properties.

  5. Natural and Non-Toxic: Being a natural extract, it's a non-toxic alternative to many chemical hair growth products, potentially offering fewer side effects.

  6. Improves Hair Thickness and Shine: Regular use of rosemary oil can improve not only the health of the hair but also its appearance, making it look thicker and shinier.


  1. Allergic Reactions: As with any essential oil, there is a risk of allergic reactions, especially if applied undiluted. These reactions can include redness, itchiness, or a rash.

  2. Takes Time to Show Results: Unlike some chemical solutions that may offer quicker results, rosemary oil generally requires consistent, long-term application to see noticeable hair growth.

  3. Can Be Irritating: If not properly diluted, rosemary oil can be irritating to the skin, potentially causing discomfort or inflammation.

  4. Not FDA-Approved: Like many natural remedies, rosemary oil is not FDA-approved for hair loss treatment, meaning there's limited regulation and guarantee on its efficacy.

  5. Potentially Overwhelming Scent: The strong scent of rosemary oil may not be pleasant to everyone and could be overwhelming, especially when left on the scalp for extended periods.

  6. Special Precautions Needed: Pregnant women, those with epilepsy, and individuals with high blood pressure are often advised to avoid using rosemary oil due to its potent effects.

Cost Information

Price range: $9 - $50

Rosemary oil for hair growth can range in price from around $9 to $50, depending on the brand and quality.

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Article References  click to expand  click to close

  • Mysore V, Arghya A. Hair Oils: Indigenous Knowledge Revisited. International Journal of Trichology. 2022 May-Jun;14(3):84-90. doi: 10.4103/ijt.ijt_189_20. Epub 2022 May 24. PMID: 35755964; PMCID: PMC9231528.
  • Ghasemzadeh Rahbardar, M., & Hosseinzadeh, H. (2020). Therapeutic effects of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) and its active constituents on nervous system disorders. Iranian Journal of Basic Medical Sciences, 23(9), 1100-1112. https://doi.org/10.22038/ijbms.2020.45269.10541
  • de Oliveira, J. R., Camargo, S. E. A., & de Oliveira, L. D. (2019). Rosmarinus officinalis L. (rosemary) as therapeutic and prophylactic agent. Journal of Biomedical Science, 26(1), 5. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12929-019-0499-8
  • Habtemariam, S. (2016). The Therapeutic Potential of Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) Diterpenes for Alzheimer's Disease. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2016, 2680409. https://doi.org/10.1155/2016/2680409
  • Cleveland Clinic. (n.d.). Should You Oil Your Hair? Retrieved from https://health.clevelandclinic.org/oiling-hair/
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes, it does not constitute medical advice. The information contained in this article is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon as professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor or healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of any treatment.

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