using ghee butter for hair conditioner

Years ago, while spending a Saturday afternoon with two of my besties from Ethiopia, I sensed a sweet yet strange smell permeating from their hair which had ben wrapped up in a plastic shower cap. Apparently the strange smell was a result of a natural butter they use as a hair conditioner known as ghee butter. I was intrigued and wanted to find out more. My friends like many other Ethiopian women were blessed with long, full and incredibly beautiful lustrous locks and I was all ears to learn every hair secret they had.

Normally this butter used this is cooking but they also use ghee butter as a hair treatment. They explained to me that niter kibbeh, or ghee butter, is used widely in Ethiopia to deep condition and strengthen their hair strands.

Fast forward years later, long after I had gone natural but dealing with issues of severe hair dryness that comes with rocking natural hair, the memory of the strange smell and the ghee butter crossed my mind and I was desparate to try anything that could possibly work to alleviate the dryness. I decided to revisit te idea of ghee butter and possibly give it a shot.

What is ghee butter?

Ghee butter is basically a form of clarified butter that originated in South Asia. It is prepared by melting butter from milk fat until the solids and water separate. The water portion which is the ghee is drained and stored for future use. Normally, ghee butter is used in cooking and baking but some cultures might use for other purposes as Ethiopians use in hair treatments.

Using ghee butter for hair conditioner

I purchased Purity Organic Ghee Butter from a local grocer and for my first use, I simply mixed it with a little bit of my traditional conditioner and applied all over hair and scalp. Since I was using it for a deep conditioning treatment, I left it in for a couple of hours and then washed off.

Some things I liked about ghee

  • It left my hair incredibly soft and moisturized more so than when I just used my traditional conditioner and the softness lasted a few days which is not a norm for my extremely coarse hair.
  • It is super cheap
  • The initial scent of the Purity Organic Ghee was actually pleasant. It reminded me of freshly baked almond cookies.

Some things I could have done without:

  • It is super oily and left a greasy feeling on my skin, towels and shower stall.
  • The scent after several hours was not pleasant at all and even after a couple days the putrid scent still followed me everywhere.

Overall I think it did a good job as a conditioner, next I’ll probably mix it with a natural oil for a deeper conditioning treatment and perhaps some essential oils to tone down the scent. I’m curious to hear your experience with ghee butter if you’ve tried it, let me know what you think.

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15 thoughts on “Using Ghee Butter for Hair Conditioner

  1. habesha says:

    purchase the Ethiopian hair butter, Habesha Kibe! Directly imported from Ethiopia, it’s the ultimate pre-shampoo treatment that truly strengthens and nourishes your hair and scalp. Ethiopian women have been using it for Centuries! A completely natural approach to hair care!

  2. Koils Of A Libra says:

    I had a pretty bad experience with this because I tried it as a final deep conditioner, which I usually rinse with cold water. It made my hair waxy and left a white residue so I had to re wash my hair. It did define my coils beautifully though I think this is something I’ll use as a pre poo in the future.

    • Elisha Barney says:

      Ghee butter in the natural state is a solid, so when you tried to rinse it out with cold water it just reverted back to its natural state. So next time try rinsing with hot or warm water.

  3. Stephanie says:

    I have extremely dry kinky coily hair.and I have try different products they only work for a little while. Read articles and watched a few video decided try it and it works wonders on my hair.This will be a part of my natural hair regiment .

    • says:

      Hi Stephanie glad to hear that you have had great experience with the ghee butter. It is an excellent natural product to induce moisture to dry hair. Thank you for your comment and keep us updated on your progress 🙂

      • Genet Bogart says:

        An Ethiopian all natural product is going to be on the market soon. No funky smell, it conditions and moisturizes your hair and its made from organic milk. the result is amazing. its called SHURUBA Ethiopian hair butter.

  4. Deborah says:

    I did make my hair soft but my strands got thinner. Don’t know if it’s because it left for days in my hair

    • Belle
      Belle says:

      Hi Deborah it sounds like leaving the ghee on for days drenched your hair in so much moisture similar to how thin the hair gets after you leave the shower. Generally you want to leave it on for a few hours max and not days. Your hair should return to normal soon assuming there’s nothing else going on. Let us know how it goes

  5. michele says:

    Hi,can we mix Ghee with Shea butter to use it between wash day?ihave low porosity hair and the coconut makes my hair dry.Ghee butter and coconut have fat acids to moisturize the hair ,may be adding Ghee in a cream can replace coconut oil?

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Using Ghee Butter for Hair Conditioner

by Belle time to read: 2 min
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