“Slugging” mightn’t be an outwardly attractive concept, but it’s certainly managed to enrapture the masses on TikTok. First it became a viral sensation as a skincare trick — even though it’s been common in K-beauty circles for years — that involves putting an occlusive product, such as Vaseline, over the top of your skincare to lock it in.
Now we’re seeing the same idea but for the hair — which has again been common in South Asian cultures for centuries, but recently took off on TikTok. So for those who haven’t heard, what exactly is “hair slugging?” “This new form of slugging involves applying a heavy application of oil or conditioner all over your hair and letting it soak in overnight to leave you with glossy, hydrated hair,” says Alex Wilson, founder of Heartwood.
“Hair slugging works by replenishing moisture to your scalp and hair by covering the hair from roots to ends in a generous amount of hair oil,” she continues. “This is followed by wrapping your hair with a silk cap or something similar overnight to lock in the moisture. In the morning, wash out the oil and continue with your normal hair routine.”
It sounds simple enough but if you’ve got oily hair, you’ll understandably be a little hesitant to load up your locks with heavy products. However Wilson says the benefits are definitely worth it. “Hair slugging locks in deeper hydration than other measures — such as a rinse-out hair mask — to unveil shiny, smooth and healthy-looking hair,” she says.
It works for most hair types, but it’s particular beneficial to those who have curly or thick, coarse strands. “People with curlier hair will feel the benefits of the treatment with greater immediacy, as curlier hair is drier and deep hydration methods provide more benefits,” says Wilson. “Those with thick, brittle or dry hair will also benefit most from hair slugging.”
Keen to try it out for yourself? Wilson says hair slugging will only work as good as the products that are in your hair arsenal. “Look for products with ingredients like argan, shea, avocado, or jojoba oils and active botanicals that are rich in vitamin E and antioxidants, such as Heartwood’s Royal Oil Body + Hair,” she says.
“The Royal Oil Body + Hair is made with a modified blend of complex botanicals, resins, and nut oils specially designed to provide a deeply hydrating condition for the hair. The oil features Indian Sandalwood as its hero ingredient, known best for its benefits in scalp health, treating split ends and ability to enhance the hair lustre and growth.”
With a little time, dedication and patience, you can expect to have shinier, more moisturized locks with less frizz. “As a result, the hair will be well hydrated, restore hair texture and improve the overall look and feel of your hair,” says Wilson.
One to try next self-care Sunday!