Photo Courtesy of Live Superfoods

What is ashwagandha powder?

Ashwagandha is one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurvedic healing and has been utilized since ancient times. Also known as Indian ginseng, ashwagandha belongs to the Solanacea family and its scientific name is Withania somnifera. A shrub, ashwagandha originated from India and grows ideally in dry environments. It actually belongs in the same family as the tomato and had oval leaves with yellow flowers that bear red fruit around the size of a raisin. The dried root are cut and sifted for tea or powdered so it can be found in multiple forms: fresh, dried, powder, or tablets. 

Native Americans and Africans have used ashwagandha for its medicinal properties and in Ayurveda for rejuvenating, physiological, and psychological reasons. The name ashwagandha translates into “smell of a horse” and a reference to its unique smell and the virility of a horse in inference to the traditional use of Ashwagandha to support male reproductive systems.

The benefits of ashwagandha powder for hair

Ashwagandha possesses powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which both aid in scalp health. It is a rich source of flavonoids that also possesses fatty acids, glucose, potassium, tannins, and nitrate. Ashwagandha actually contains tyrosine, an amino acid that stimulates the production of melanin, inhibiting the loss of melanin in hair. It combats free radicals, which aids in sun protection and slows down the aging process for skin and hair.

It has been reported to stop postpartum hair loss and often used in shampoos to help improve scalp circulation while strengthening the hair. The stimulation of the production of collagen and sebum helps to encourage healthy hair growth through its stimulation of DHEA. DHEA is naturally occurring hormone in the body, which slows down or reverses aging. Its anti-inflammatory properties are great for dandruff and other scalp ailments like eczema and scalp psoriasis.

4 ways to harness the benefits of ashwagandha for your hair

  • Drink it – This can be found and taken orally through supplements or as a refreshing tea.
  • Apply it – Another way to use it is to directly apply to the scalp and hair.
  • Cocktail it – Just adding some powder or drops of oil to your shampoo you will relieve an irritated or inflamed scalp while increasing the blood circulation to the scalp aiding in healthier hair growth.
  • Create a paste – Creating a paste with the powder and warm distilled water is yet another way to apply directly to your scalp and hair. Simply apply the paste to sectioned hair and massage into the hair and scalp with your fingertips. Cover with plastic cap and a towel for 30-45 minutes before rinsing well and styling as usual.

Sabrina Perkins


Sabrina, founder of and contributor to several online publications, is a freelance writer who engages her audiences on the relevance of natural hair, beauty, and style.

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