Which Is Better Rosemary Oil or Rosemary Water for Hair Growth?

WrittenbyLuat Duong
Last updated

In the pursuit of achieving healthy, luscious locks, individuals often explore natural remedies and ingredients that have been touted for their hair growth-promoting properties. Among the popular options are rosemary oil and rosemary water, both derived from the fragrant herb Rosmarinus officinalis. While both are believed to have potential benefits for hair growth, understanding their differences and effectiveness is crucial in determining the best choice for your hair care regimen.

Which is Better: Rosemary Oil or Rosemary Water for Hair Growth?

Rosemary oil is generally considered more effective than rosemary water for promoting hair growth. The concentrated nature of the oil allows for a higher potency of active compounds and better absorption into the scalp and hair follicles.

Understanding Rosemary Oil

Rosemary oil is a potent essential oil extracted from the leaves and flowering tops of the rosemary plant through a process of steam distillation or solvent extraction. It contains a rich blend of active compounds, including ursolic acid, carnosic acid, and various antioxidants, which are believed to contribute to its potential hair growth-promoting properties.

How rosemary oil may promote hair growth:

  • Increased Blood Circulation: Rosemary oil is thought to improve blood circulation to the scalp, providing hair follicles with more nutrients and oxygen, which can stimulate hair growth.
  • Anti-Inflammatory Properties: The anti-inflammatory properties of rosemary oil may help soothe scalp irritation and create a healthy environment for hair growth.
  • DHT Inhibition: Ursolic acid, a compound found in rosemary oil, may help inhibit the production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone linked to hair loss.

Understanding Rosemary Water

Rosemary water, on the other hand, is a diluted form of rosemary extract. It is typically prepared by infusing rosemary leaves or stems in water, allowing the beneficial compounds to be extracted and dissolved in the liquid.

While rosemary water may offer some benefits for hair growth, its effectiveness is generally considered lower than that of the concentrated rosemary oil. This is because the active compounds are diluted in the water, resulting in a lower potency and potentially reduced absorption into the scalp and hair follicles.

Comparing Efficacy and Application

Several studies have suggested that rosemary oil may be effective in promoting hair growth and reducing hair loss when applied topically or taken orally. However, the scientific evidence supporting its efficacy is still limited, and larger, more robust clinical trials are needed to fully understand its potential.

In contrast, there is less scientific research specifically examining the efficacy of rosemary water for hair growth. While some anecdotal reports suggest that it may provide some benefits, its diluted nature may limit its effectiveness compared to the concentrated rosemary oil.

When it comes to application, rosemary oil is typically used in diluted form, as undiluted essential oils can be too potent and potentially irritating for the scalp. It is often mixed with a carrier oil, such as coconut or olive oil, before being applied to the scalp and hair. Rosemary water, on the other hand, can be used directly as a hair rinse or added to other hair care products.

Considerations and Potential Risks

While rosemary oil and rosemary water are generally considered safe for topical use, it's important to exercise caution and follow proper precautions. Essential oils, including rosemary oil, should always be diluted before application to avoid potential irritation or adverse reactions.

Additionally, individuals with certain medical conditions, such as pregnancy, epilepsy, or high blood pressure, should consult with a healthcare professional before using rosemary oil or any other essential oil, as they may interact with medications or exacerbate underlying conditions.

Incorporating Rosemary into a Comprehensive Hair Care Routine

Regardless of whether you choose to use rosemary oil or rosemary water, it's essential to incorporate it into a comprehensive hair care routine that addresses other factors contributing to hair health and growth. This may include maintaining a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients, managing stress levels, and using other hair-nourishing products or treatments as recommended by a dermatologist or trichologist.

It's also important to note that hair growth is a gradual process, and significant results may take several months to become visible. Consistency and patience are key when using any hair growth treatment, whether natural or clinical.


In the realm of natural hair growth remedies, rosemary oil is generally considered more effective than rosemary water due to its concentrated nature and higher potency of active compounds. While scientific evidence supporting its efficacy is still limited, rosemary oil shows promise in promoting hair growth and reducing hair loss through its potential to increase blood circulation, exhibit anti-inflammatory properties, and inhibit DHT production.

However, individual results may vary, and it's essential to approach any hair growth treatment with realistic expectations and a comprehensive approach that addresses overall hair health. Consulting with a dermatologist or trichologist can provide personalized guidance and ensure that any natural remedies, like rosemary oil or water, are incorporated safely and effectively into your hair care routine.

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Luat Duong

Luat Duong is a Copenhagen-based writer and content strategist specializing in hair loss and health. His work has been featured in MyHealthGuide, The Right Hairstyles, and Woman's Era. He is a graduate of Vaasa University. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.