Even the newest kid on the natural hair block has been told about how bad Mineral Oil is for our hair. I have been asked in the past why Manufacturers still put it in products. The simple answers are:

1. It is cheap.
2. It is non-greasy.
3. It is predictable.

I bet you understand the first 2 reasons so let me spend sometime explaining the last reason.

Mineral Oil all over the world can be made to a certain specification. However, natural oils aren’t. They simply cannot be. The quality of soil, geography, cultivation method means that the very same Oil (say Castor Oil) may vary in property from one country to another. In fact, it may vary from one area to another within the same country.

A good example is our local Udala fruit (Igbo). It is also known as Agbalumo (Yoruba). If you eat the one from nearby Republique Du Benin it is almost always sweet. However, the same fruit grown in Nigeria may either be slightly sweet or remarkably sour.

From a manufacturing point of view, this means that a product made with natural products may not always turn out exactly the same. To reduce some of that variability which consumers do not like, manufacturers will stick to something like Mineral Oil which gives exactly the same result every time.


J. Serb. Chem. Soc. 75 (3) 343–348 (2010) 



i still add pears baby oil to my shea butter body (not hair) mix to make it um more shiny?…ok not sure why i add it in…

I know it has mineral oil

Any bad effect with doing this??



I guess in this day and age where Sketchers has to “settle” people who sued/ will sue for the sketchers shape-ups that don’t really shape anything up, manufacturers and marketers have to be careful and ready to prove that their products do what they are designed to do, and not just in one test/ trial, but in several tests to prove their claims. So perhaps, they prefer the predictable mineral oil that will never fail them. Natural product advocates are by no means saying you must never use synthetic or semi synthetic products, but I believe the aim is putting the info out there so that we can all make informed decisions.

Sorry Aloted, I’m not really answering your question …

Natural Nigerian

I don’t think this question can be answered with a yes or no. Mineral oil has its benefits. There are some people (e.g those that suffer from Psoriasis) who can use mineral oil safely but not most natural oils. There are some who find mineral oil clogging ( some natural oils and butters are comedegonic as well). It is also a better sealant than some natural oils, however there are some natural oils that are better.

So really, it can’t be answered with a Yes or No. You need to take your needs into account and then decide if this is a good oil for you or not.

I personally do not use it – I have found natural oils better suited to my needs.


This has been most informative. I’m thrilled at the quality of the information.


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