Coffee has a long list of purported benefits for the body, such as the ability to make hair healthier. While some people have no problem pouring cold brew over their hair (and getting excellent results), you might wonder: Is it good to use coffee on my hair?

Here’s a look at possible benefits of using coffee on your hair, potential side effects, and how to apply.

There isn’t a lot of research supporting the use of coffee on hair. But according to the research available, coffee — more specifically the caffeine in coffee — may improve the appearance and texture of hair in a few ways.

1. Restores hair growth

Hair loss can occur with age, affecting both males and females. Applying coffee topically to hair and the scalp might stop hair loss and promote regrowth.

In the case of male baldness, hair loss typically occurs when the sex hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) damages hair follicles. Women with too much DHT can also experience hair loss.

Hair follicle damage occurs gradually, eventually leading to baldness. But according to research, the caffeine in coffee can help stimulate hair growth and stop hair loss.

One 2007 laboratory study found that caffeine helped block the effects of DHT in male hair follicles. It stimulated hair shaft elongation, resulting in longer, wider hair roots. It also prolonged anagen duration, which is the hair growth stage.

The study also tested the effects of caffeine on female hair follicles and found that it had a growth promoting effect on hair follicles in females, too.

Since caffeine is a stimulant, it also increases blood circulation to hair follicles. This too can help hair grow faster and become stronger, giving the appearance of fuller, thicker hair

2. Promotes softer and shinier hair

If your hair appears dull, brittle, and dry, adding moisturizer can revive its appearance. Surprisingly, though, rinsing your hair with coffee may also improve dullness because it contains flavonoids, which are antioxidants that promote hair regeneration.

Your hair shaft can become smoother. This can relieve frizziness, resulting in hair that’s softer and easier to detangle.

Because caffeine has a diuretic effect on the body, you might think it’ll have a drying effect when applied on your hair.

However, caffeine doesn’t strip the hair of oils. Rather, it can help your locks retain moisture and create a natural sheen. Increased blood circulation helps move nutrients to the hair roots, resulting in healthier, shinier hair.

3. Naturally gets rid of gray hairs

A coffee rinse also comes in handy if you’re looking to dye gray hair or darken your hair color naturally. Coffee is dark in color, so it acts as a stain on the hair. This is a quick fix for hiding gray strands if you have brown or black hair. For the best results, use strong coffee such as espresso.

Whether you’re looking to stop hair loss, dye your hair, or improve the texture of your locks, making a coffee rinse is simple.

What you’ll need:

  • 2–4 cups of brewed, completely cooled coffee
  • spray or applicator bottle
  • plastic shower cap
  1. You’ll need 2 to 4 cups of brewed coffee, depending on the length of your hair. Let the coffee cool completely, and then pour the brew into a spray bottle or an applicator bottle.
  2. Wash and condition your hair as normal. While your hair is still wet, spray or apply the brewed coffee to your hair, making sure to saturate your strands.
  3. After applying, massage the coffee into your hair and scalp for a few minutes. Apply a shower cap and allow the rinse to sit on your hair and scalp for about 20 minutes.
  4. For an extra layer of moisture, mix your favorite leave-in conditioner with the brewed coffee before applying to your hair.
  5. After 20 minutes, rinse the coffee from your hair with cold or lukewarm water and then pat dry.

If using a coffee rinse to dye your hair, you may need to repeat the rinse to achieve the desired color.

Always wait until the coffee completely cools before transferring to a spray bottle and your hair. To avoid a burned scalp, never apply hot coffee to your hair.

Keep in mind that if you have light-colored hair, coffee can stain or tint your hair.

To enjoy the benefits of a coffee rinse with light-colored hair, use a shampoo and conditioner that has caffeine as an ingredient, instead.

For a coffee rinse to help with hair loss and regrow hair, it must be applied topically.

If you drink coffee each day, you might assume that your daily cup will be enough to stimulate hair growth or improve the texture and appearance of your hair. But, to get the same stimulating effects by drinking coffee, you would need to consume around 50 to 60 cups of coffee a day!

The average 8-ounce cup of coffee contains between 80 and 100 milligrams of caffeine. The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) recommends only consuming four to five cups of regular coffee a day — a total of about 400 mg.

Consuming 1,200 mg of caffeine is enough to cause seizures — so 50 cups is definitely off the table. The safest way to use coffee to stimulate hair growth and improve hair health is to apply topically and massage into your hair and scalp.

Coffee can do more than keep you awake. So if you’re dealing with hair loss or you’re looking to dye your hair naturally, a coffee rinse may provide desirable results. Just make sure you allow the coffee to completely cool before applying to your hair and don’t use a coffee rinse if you have light color hair.