Olive oil in hair

Reading another post got me thinking about the scene in The English Patient where Hana tells Kip to use olive oil to wash his hair. Ooookay. I like olive oil on bread, veggies and certain body parts but I cannot imagine the mess it would make if I tried to wash my hair with it. Is this something people actually do or was it a poorly researched line in the movie?

I’ve known people to use it as kind of a “conditioning” treatment in spas in SE Asia, India and Europe.

No answer for the OP, but related questions:

Scenes from Biblical movies of someone getting their feet washed in oil by a pretty girl who uses her hair to rub the stuff in. Are there Bible verses to back this up? How would a person get the oil out again, or would they bother? Primative VO5?

I’ve heard that the way to get dredlocks if you don’t have kinky hair is to slather your locks in Vasaline or a similar substance. True? If so, is it possible to wash that out, or do you just have to wait until it grows out?

Also, (haven’t seen the movie) was the olive oil supposed to kill lice or something? Or just to smell like salad dressing?

The olive oil isn’t to wash his hair - it’s to put in afterwards. A little bit as a conditioner. If I recall, Hana says, “Olive oil - for your hair.” Not “Olive oil, to wash your hair with.”

Olive oil also works pretty well to make your hair “day-old.” Lots of people have hair that becomes much easier to style when it’s one-day dirty. Most wedding hairdressers will tell people getting an upswept hairdo not to wash their hair that morning. But if you did, or it’s still “clean,” you can put a tiny bit of olive oil in and it gets enough body to be much easier to put up.

The Romans used oil in their bath houses to clean the skin; the oil is spread on, where it binds to the dirt - it’s then scraped off, taking the dirt with it. any excess can be wiped off with a towel.

<sigh> I wish I had known this before drenching my hair with oil. I probably shouldn’t have used pesto either.

I remember a character in a Ngaio Marsh novel putting some on to his hair before going to a cocktail party.

I used to have a roommate with very curly long thick hair, and she regularly used olive oil as a post-shampoo conditioner. Apparently nothing else would get it even remotely manageable. (And certainly her hair never looked or smelled “oily” or rancid as far as I could tell.)

Now I can’t get the image of Shelly Duvall naked singing “Good Morning Starshine”… shudder

…out of my head. Sorry.

If I remember my readings, the old Romans used olive oil to clean themselves. They would lave it on then scrape it off. The oil would then be sold as an aphrodisiac.


'splain, please jayjay

Mangetout beat you to the punch, ouryL


Read as: Olive Oyl in Hair.

Reference is to Olive Oyl, played by Shelley Duvall in the Popeye movie.

If you have angel hair, I’ll be right over.

Haven’t you ever heard of a hot oil treatment?


That’s what I get for not hanging out in Cafe Society more often.


No one is interested in my dreadlock question :frowning:

I’m interested in your Bible questions, though!

Here are two stories that deal with people rubbing perfume into other people’s feet with their hair, not oil: one and two.

I suppose it could be a perfumed oil, but the first story does seem to make a distinction between oil and perfume:

I’m not quite sure why people rubbed it in with their hair, but it does seem to have been well-known enough not to be commented upon as unusual.

That second story always gave us the most trouble in theology class, too. “You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me”? Ouch!