Nature is not only what is found on the ground, but also that which is above us. Lifting our eyes to the sky , there is a powerful and mysterious force that watches over the life of mankind and nature: THE MOON. The moon has an effect on plantings and harvest. It determines the ebb and flow of the tides. It even has an effect on births. It’s also known to enhance hair growth and beauty.
Just as the moon pulls the tides in the ocean, it pulls upon all bodies of water: This causes moisture to rise on earth, which encourages growth.
It is this upward movement of water, cued by the moon, that is at the root of lunar hair care. After all, humans are made up mostly of water—and it makes up approximately 10 to 13% of our hair.
Getting a scalp detox treatment, for example, in conjunction with the lunar phases increases their power and effectiveness. The moon completes a cycle of 28-29 days which can roughly be divided into 2 phases of around 2 weeks each.
During the Waxing Moon (from the new moon to the full moon) the roots absorb nourishment, sap in full swing, helping plants grow strong. It is a time to recharge the hair with moisturizing , antioxidant and fortifying ingredients, as they will be absorbed by the hair fiber to the maximum.
During the Waning Moon (from the full moon to the new moon) the pace slows down, as if resting, to prepare for the new moon. It is the perfect time to implement soothing, purifying and calming treatments to let the scalp rest.
How to practice lunar hair care:
Just as we plant seeds of intention with the new moon and release that which no longer serves us at the full moon, we can do the same with our physical bodies:
1. Set intentions during the new moon.
Understanding the specifics of syncing your hair care with the moon cycles takes the waxing and waning of the moon into consideration. New moons, at the very beginning of the lunar cycle, are barely visible in the sky. Esoterically, this is believed to be the ideal time for planting the seeds of intention; so, as the moon is on the brink of growing in the sky, this is when to make your hair goals explicit (i.e., full, thick, lengthy locks).
The new moons are a powerful moon phase to plant seeds of intention as it is a window in time to manifest -including longer hair and quicker growth. As you are manifesting your best possible mane, it is important to use positive self-talk for success. When we repeat the narrative of ‘my hair isn’t growing, my hair is falling out, my hair is dull, my hair is dry and brittle,’ we are creating that reality. Hair, just like our being, requires positive affirmations in order to transform into what we are trying to create.
2. Commit to a healthy hair care routine.
Just as personal growth comes through work, so does hair growth. Even if you follow the lunar charts for your trims, it will mean nothing if you spend the time in between not caring for your strands and scalp—or even worse, damaging it with excessive product buildup, regular heat styling, or physical wear and tear.
First, make sure to keep your ends hydrated and limit damage. While this won’t stimulate growth at the root, it will mean less length taken off at your next trim.
You must also practice regular scalp care by eliminating buildup and encouraging circulation. When you have too much buildup from oils, products, and debris, it can cause inflammation at the root. When this happens long term, chronic inflammation can even lead to hair loss. Make sure to clean the scalp regularly with a purifying shampoo—or use a scalp exfoliator.
Finally, consider your diet and supplements. Eating foods high in fatty acids and vitamins B6, B12, and folic acid may encourage hair growth and reduce hair loss. And supplements like iron, magnesium, zinc, collagen, and biotin may support hair health.*
3. Schedule haircuts seasonally around the solstice or equinox.
If you are trying for length, you’re recommended to get a trim every 10 to 12 weeks, which coincidentally is about the length of a season. In astrology, the summer and winter solstice and fall and spring equinox are very important. These four time periods signal a moment of transition. Use these as markers for your own style change—yes, even if that style change is just a trim. Our hair is an extension of ourselves. When we cut the actual strands of the hair, even the tiniest trim, we can feel an energetic shift.
4. Trim during a full moon.
The full moon—when the moon most visible and on the precipice of waning—is like the peak before the descent, a time symbolically affiliated with release. When we cut our hair, we are ‘releasing’ a part of ourselves that we no longer want to carry or serves our highest good. Letting go of that which doesn’t serve you at the full moon is ripe with symbolism for trimming away the dead, dull, split ends of your hair at this time.
This moon phase is a great time for thickening and strengthening, even if you’re not yet due for a trim, consider using this time for a strengthening or hydrating treatment. No better excuse for a night in during a full moon than a hair mask, no?
Manifestation is a personal practice that means different things to different people. We would never squash your dreams of a lunar hair care makeover, but this is not the type of practice that can be scientifically backed. That doesn’t mean it’s not worth trying.
I encourage ritual as a means of taking time out from our busy schedules and the daily noise around us to create a dedicated space to care for both our hair and our well-being. This means allowing the space for calling in what we are desiring.