For the average hair care enthusiast, using hair oil is a must for hydration and frizz-defying power. But there are too many oils to choose from, and it can be tricky to narrow them down.
Some oils are easy to weed out—fine hair should stay away from heavy oils like coconut and olive, while thick, damaged hair needs something richer than thinner oils like grapeseed oil and sweet almond oil.
But how do you choose between the holy grail oils that are lightweight, nourishing, and have an amazing composition of vitamins and antioxidants, like jojoba and argan oil? Here’s a rundown of what makes the two different and which you should use for your hair depending on your need.
What is jojoba oil?
Jojoba oil is extracted from jojoba seeds, which fall from a shrub that’s native to Mexico and South America. It’s very popular in the hair care world for successfully mimicking the chemical structure of natural sebum our scalp and skin produce.
Because it’s so similar to the natural moisture our bodies produce, it does a great job efficiently moisturizing the scalp and hair when our oil glands aren’t producing much sebum. It’s an excellent way to moisturize the mid-lengths of your hair, which sebum from the scalp can’t easily reach.
Since the chemical make-up of jojoba oil is something the body is already familiar with, your hair drinks it up right away to be healthier.
In a way, using jojoba oil in your hair is kind of like enhancing what your skin and scalp already do to promote strong and healthy hair.
Jojoba oil contains vitamins C, E, and B—all pertinent to the development of soft yet fortified strands. It also has minerals like zinc and copper, known to strengthen your hair fibers to prevent split ends and breakage.
This oil also has antifungal properties that promote a healthy, fungus-free scalp, which means less dandruff and a more balanced pH level. Don’t worry about putting this oil on your scalp either—it hardly ever leaves a greasy residue.
While other oils penetrate deep into your hair shaft, jojoba oil merely sits on the outer layer of your hair to moisturize it. That’s why it’s perfect for sealing in the hydration and moisture from your products after your moisturizers and leave-ins.
It also helps repair heat and chemical damage because of its impressive hydration levels. It helps repair broken hair bonds that make your hair brittle after excessive styling, which is a must if you want healthy locks.
What is argan oil?
Argan oil, also known as “liquid gold” in the beauty world, is a rich yet lightweight oil extracted from the kernels of argan nuts, which can be found in trees that grow exclusively in Morocco. It’s extracted in a stringent process, making this oil more silky and luxurious than others.
This oil is rich in antioxidants that protect your hair from the elements, UV rays, and free radicals. It’s a fabulous source of vitamin E, which boosts elasticity, shine, and strength in your hair. It also contains squalene, a conditioning agent that leaves your hair smooth and soft to the touch.
You may have heard argan oil in magazines and TV commercials, or maybe as a star ingredient for a lush and opulent leave-in serum. It’s a cult-favorite in the hair community because its fatty acids provide the utmost level of moisture and shine in your hair, making it look salon-beautiful and in an instant.
Unlike jojoba oil, argan oil has small molecules that can penetrate deep into the hair strands, allowing it to moisturize your hair from the inside out. It seals your hair cuticles, beating frizz and keeping your mane smooth and touchable all day.
It’s a no-brainer styling oil if you want lustrous gloss, luminous shine, and frizz-free smoothness at once. It’s an excellent oil to reach for on days you want your hair to look extra perfect.
Which one is better?
Jojoba and argan oils are cult-fave oils for a reason—they’re both fabulous not just on the hair, but also for your skin. They have tons of similarities, from hydrating your locks to taming stubborn frizz. It’s also an oil loved by almost all hair types, making it super versatile.
But it’s tough to pinpoint exactly which oil is better for you. To be honest, it all boils down to how you plan on using these oils in your routine.
Jojoba oil is better for maintaining the health of your scalp and hair since it mimics your natural sebum. It’s a beautiful scalp refresher and moisturizer, so if your main concern is taking care of your scalp and hydration levels for better hair health, jojoba oil is your guy.
It also comes at a lower price point, so it’s better if you want something accessible and easy to find in your local drugstore.
On the other side of the spectrum, argan oil is better for styling and managing your hair’s appearance before you head out the door. It adds shine and luminosity, so it’s a great way to end your styling routine for the day as a finishing serum or leave-in.
The lightweight oil is excellent at keeping your hair silky smooth and looking sleek all day without making you look like a total greaseball. Plus, you can’t beat the antioxidants that help protect your hair from sun damage naturally.
Argan oil is also the more luxurious option, so if you’re looking for a treat to pamper your hair and have extra cash to splurge, going for this oil is a terrific idea.
Can you incorporate both into your hair care routine?
Absolutely! It doesn’t have to be one or the other, so you don’t have to sacrifice the luxurious glow and shine of argan oil to enjoy the moisture-boosting benefits of jojoba oil, and vice versa.
Both will give you amazing advantages, do it makes sense to use them both. You just have to know what role each one plays in your routine: while argan oil is your styling oil, jojoba is for maintaining your hair’s health.
You can use jojoba oil in your strengthening hair care regimen. You’ll probably use it as a hair mask at night before bed or to do a daily scalp massage to soothe and increase the moisture levels on your scalp. It would also make a fantastic pre-poo before hitting the shower on wash day.
Meanwhile, argan oil will probably come in handy when you’re working with styled, salon-beautiful hair and need more luster, shine, and sleekness.
You can use it as a finishing oil to lock in all the nourishing goodness of your styling lotions and creams, giving your hair a bit of extra shine in the process. It’s also perfect for going out under the sun because of its UV-protecting antioxidants.
So you see, you can incorporate both into your routine without one overshadowing the other. Using both of them in separate steps in your routine will give you amazing results both in your hair health and its beauty and shine.
Jojoba and argan oil are both beautiful, delicate hair oils that have plenty of hydrating and smoothing benefits to the hair. It’s no wonder that they’re crowd favorites in the beauty community!
It’s not exactly fair to pit them against one another and crown only one as the winner—only a fool would choose one over the other because both are fantastic for different reasons. They work fabulously together if you carefully think through and plan out your hair care routine.
Jojoba oil is excellent for maintaining your hair’s health and integrity, while argan oil gives your locks that beautiful, luscious glow before you go out. Together, they’ll give you strong, moisturized, and gorgeous hair that looks and feels glamorous day in and day out.