Reetha (Soap Nut) for Hair – Benefits, Uses & more

10 Effective Ways to Use Soap Nut (Reetha) for Cleaning

Soap Nut or Reetha is nature’s own cleaner. It has traditionally been used for washing purposes due to its cleaning properties. Reetha benefits for hair and skin have been acknowledged in Ayurveda and practised by many to treat skin and hair related issues.

What is Soap Nut (Reetha)?

Sapindus mukorossi or Soap Nut or Reetha is an Ayurvedic medicinal herb. Grown in tropical regions of India, China and Japan, soap nut is a small spherical nut which contains saponin, a chemical compound with cleaning properties that has the tendency to produce foam with water. It is a great natural product for many of our cleaning needs.

Is Soap Nut Safe for Hair?

Because of its soapy texture, soap nut makes for an ideal ingredient to wash hair with. Being rich in Vitamins A, D, E and K, soap nut provides the best nutrition to your hair and assists in hair growth.

Why Use Soap Nut for Hair?

Not only is reetha good for house cleaning, but it has properties that are highly beneficial for personal care as well. There are immense benefits of reetha for hair. Its nutrients constitution makes it one of the best natural treatment for your hair. And what more? It suits every hair type.

Let’s look at some of the benefits of reetha for hair-

1. For silky hair

Woman with silky hair

Soap nut can work as a natural shampoo and nourish your hair in a way that makes it glossy, voluptuous and silky.

The vitamins provided by soap nut provide nourishment to hair which helps it get rid of dryness and make your hair silky and smooth.

2. Prevent dandruff

Coconut oil for dandruff

Dandruff is a scalp infection caused by the growth of a fungus on your scalp. Soap nut’s cleaning and washing properties provide thorough natural cleansing of your scalp and regular usage rids you of dandruff.

3. Helps to improve hair growth

Woman with a long hair

Soap nut is rich in Vitamin A and D which foster hair growth. The nutrients present in soap nut provide strength to the roots of your hair which helps them to grow longer. Vitamins A and D help create new follicles, and Vitamin A assists in the production of appropriate amounts of sebum to nourish the hair.

Discover more about homemade oils for hair growth.

4. Treat Scalp Problem

Girl with itchy scalp


The lathering tendency of soap nut makes it an ideal treatment for scalp problems like dandruff, hair fall, split ends, etc. Scalp problems are treated by soap nut by the vitamins A, C and D present in it. These nourish the cleansed scalp and prevent scalp diseases from reiterating.

5. Prevent dry and frizzy hair

Girl with Frizzy Hair

Soap nut and henna make an excellent conditioner for your hair. When used together, they give moisturization to hair and thus, prevent dryness and frizz.

6. Prevent hair fall

Causes of hair fall

Soap nuts’ antifungal and antibacterial properties make them an excellent treatment for hair fall. They treat the scalp disease, revamp the brittleness of hair and stop it from falling off.

How to Use Soap Nut (Reetha) for Hair?

Reetha can be used for hair treatment in two different forms- liquid or powder. Other ingredients like amla, reetha and shikakai can be used together to curb hair fall. The ways in which these three ingredients can be used together for hair nourishment, treatment and growth are as easy to use as they are to create.

1. Using Reetha shampoo

Soap Nuts with outer shell broken on a white background

How to prepare?

  1. Remove the shell of 7-10 soap nuts.
  2. Obtain Shikakai and boil these both in water.
  3. Leave overnight to cool.
  4. Strain this mixture in the morning.

How to apply?

  1. Apply it on your scalp and massage like shampoo.
  2. Wash off with water.

2. Using Reetha powder with Shikakai powder

Sopa Nut Powder showcased in a bowl along with soap nuts

How to prepare?

  1. Grind a handful of reetha to make powder.
  2. Also, grind handful of shikakai to make powder.
  3. Mix these two together and add water to make a mixture of medium consistency.

How to apply?

  1. Apply this mixture to your scalp and massage in circular motion.
  2. Keep massaging for 7-10 minutes and rinse off with plenty of water.

3. Using Reetha Conditioner

Top-view of soap nuts on a piece of cloth

How to prepare?

  1. Remove the shell of 7-10 soap nuts.
  2. Put them in water and leave overnight to soak.
  3. Strain this mixture in the morning.

How to apply?

  1. Apply it on your scalp and massage like shampoo.
  2. Wash off with water.

4. Using Reetha Hair mask

Sopa Nut powder along with hibiscus and amla

How to prepare?

  1. Mix reetha powder, amla powder and shikakai powder.
  2. Add yogurt and multani mitti to this mix.
  3. Mix all the ingredients well.

How to apply?

  1. Apply this amla reetha shikakai powder hair pack from the roots to the tips of your hair.
  2. Leave it on for 40 minutes- 1 hour.
  3. Rinse off with plenty of water.

Also Read: How to use Reetha for Laundry.

Safety Tips for Using Soap Nut On Hair

  • While using soap nuts for hair, make sure the solution does not come in contact with your eyes as soap nuts’ insecticidal properties can cause allergies and swelling.
  • Use the soap nuts before completion of 72 hours. If not used until then, throw them away.
  • If you notice rashes or redness or any allergic symptoms after application of soap nuts, discontinue usage.

Various shampoo brands use soap nuts as their key ingredients suggesting the expertise of soap nuts in the hair treatment area. Reetha’s antifungal, antibacterial and insecticidal properties provide the most thorough cleaning, killing germs and giving nourishment. Making shampoo, conditioner and hair masks out of reetha and other ingredients like shikakai and amla are ways to give your hair a holistic nourishment and treatment.

Also read: Amazing Uses & Benefits of Lemongrass Essential Oil for Hair Growth.

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Vanshika Jain
A major prerequisite of an English Major degree is that one is erudite literati and a good writer. Writing comes as naturally as breathing to me. And, it is for my love of ruining parchments by inking that I got into writing about personal care, home care and wellness. Many people struggle with finding natural solutions for problems related to skin care, hair care, health and hygiene. And it is always good to find researched articles written on natural solutions to such problems on the internet. The plus side for the writers is that it gives them an opportunity to promote natural and organic ways of health and home care while simultaneously enhancing their own knowledge on the matter and honing their writing skills.


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