Flax seed gels are a godsend for many curly girls, creating defined curls with siginificant hold. Flax seed has unique benefits.
This recipe will leave your curls fluffy, soft and flake-free. Not to mention, it smells amazing.
Okay, okay. I’m sure you’re thinking, 'not another DIY hair gel tutorial…' but I promise you, I’ve got one to show you how to make one of the best flaxseed gels at home.
Here's just just a sampling of community reviews for this recipe:
- I made a batch and tried it today and it by far beats all the overpriced products I have invested $$$ in thus far. I have very dry and frizzy 3c hair and this product gives me definition with good hold. Once your hair is dry, you scrunch a few times and the slight crunch is gone.
- I've used this gel recipe for years. I like to add glycerin (a humectant) and macadamia nut oil because these ingredients give my curls shine and body.
- My hair is never gooky no matter how much gel I use.
- I live in Miami and love using this in my hair. I use it once or twice a week, depending on my workouts.
What you'll need:
- A pot
- Pantyhose or a stocking
- A jar with a lid
- Essential oils like rosemary, tea tree, or lavender
- Scented oil such as jasmine
1. Mix together the quarter cup of flax seeds with two cups of water and heat in a small pot until it comes to a boil. Remember to stir often to ensure that the seeds don’t stick to the bottom.
2. After a few minutes, you will notice the water beginning to form a slick gel cast — just barely, though. Keep an eye on the mix while it’s on the stove because the higher the heat, the faster it will thicken. We want the consistency to be just right — not too thin and liquidy, not too thick and pasty.
3. When the water comes to a boil, the foamy froth will rise to the top along with what looks like mucus from the flax seed. You can then lower the heat and prepare a strainer. The easiest trick and common way to get the most gel from the flax seed without burning yourself while still saving the seeds — yes, they are reusable — is with a stocking. I took a clean mason jar and covered the opening with pantyhose or stocking. Just make sure it is new or clean. I poured the contents from the pot into the mason jar and the stocking captured all of the flax seed.
4. Once most of the liquid or gel is in the jar, take some tongs to gently squeeze out whatever else you can get from the flax seeds. It might be a little tricky to get the gel to ooze out of the stocking depending on how thick your gel is (again, that all depends on how long you left it on the stove) but try your best to get as much gel as possible. After squeezing out the gel, flip your stocking inside out and collect the flax seeds to store for the next use.
5. At this point, you have two options: You can either cover the jar and store it in the fridge until you are ready to use it OR you can add a few extra things to really give your gel some kick and maybe even have it last a little longer. I added about a teaspoon of vitamin E oil, which helps to preserve the gel and have it last about 3 weeks as opposed to one or two.
Vitamin E oil is also beneficial because it helps to repair and build tissue due to its antioxidant properties. My vitamin E oil came straight from a few capsules that I punctured and squeezed. I added a few drops of rosemary, tea tree, and lavender oils, which are all great for hair health because they can stimulate hair growth. Hair gel that makes your hair healthier? Yes, please! And finally, because I prefer a softer scent, I added a few extra drops of my favorite-smelling oil, jasmine. You can add drops of any scented oil you care to.
6. After mixing thoroughly, store your gel in the fridge. Cooling the gel will allow for your mix to thicken a bit and form more of goo or gel-like consistency.
My results after using DIY flax seed gel for defintion.
Why is this DIY gel better than all others?
Here are my thoughts on hair gels in general compared to this particular gel:
I’m not really a fan of other gels because most of them contain alcohol, some of which can dry out my curls. I don’t like that most gels harden my hair to the point where my hair looks ashy and begins to flake as soon as I start to scrunch and release the cast. Even after scrunching, my curls still don’t feel as soft and fluffy as I like. However, with this gel, I get all of the opposite effects.
My hair feels incredibly soft and there is absolutely no flaking. One thing I will say is that while this gel feels slimy and slippery to the touch, it doesn’t actually have a lot of slip in the hair (then again, what gel does?) so I would recommend using a leave-in conditioner first to help detangle the curls and make applying the gel a lot easier.
It's not sticky
After scrunching, you will notice that your hands don’t feel sticky after using this gel, and guess what? Since this hair gel doesn’t contain any alcohol, it won’t dry out your curls either. Now, this gel doesn’t really give me the definition that I usually love but throughout the day, my hair looks fuller and more voluminous but without the frizz.
Watch my step-by-step tutorial here:
If you haven’t tried making your own hair gel before and are curious, definitely give this one a try. I feel confident that you’re going to like it. Have you ever tried a DIY flaxseed gel before? If so, what was your experience like? Share in the comments section below, and let us know if you included any oils!
This article was originally published in 2016, and has been edited and updated to reflect feedback from our community.