I remember I was on the lookout for some good gels to give my curls hold. And as expected, most of the good ones were either not available easily in India or were pricey. That’s when I came across this wonder gel recipe on a curly hair forum – flaxseed gel is cheap, easy to make, and provides good hold to curly hair.

Flaxseeds are rich in fatty acids (Omega 3 and 6) that make hair healthier. Flaxseed gel (FSG) enhances curls for bounce and definition.  Though it is generally said to not have good hold, I find that my hair stays good for at least 8 hours without being weighed down. Flaxseed gel is not sticky like store bought gels. Instead of being drying, it moisturizes hair. And it smells really nutty and earthy. A total winner!

Ingredients for flaxseed gel

flaxseed gel curly hair (2)

(The below quantity produces enough gel for my hair type/length for 2 applications)

1/4 cup of flaxseeds (I use brown flaxseeds) –  You can buy organic flax seeds here.

2 cups of water

(Yes that’s pretty much it!)

Directions to make flaxseed gel for curly hair

 (You can soak the seeds overnight for more hold but that is totally optional. I never do it – I am lazy :P)

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  1. Place the water and flaxseeds in a pan on a stove at medium-high. Keep stirring once in a while to prevent the seeds from sticking to the pan.
  1. Once it starts boiling, you will notice white froth coming up to the top soon. The consistency will change from watery to jelly like and thick (almost like egg whites).
  1. Test the consistency with your ladle – As soon as it stops dripping like water and starts flowing like a gel (a thin string or thread of gel should flow), you can turn off the heat.

It might look a bit runnier than store bought gels, but as soon as it cools down it will thicken further. The whole process takes about 10 minutes. DO NOT boil the seeds for too long as the gel will become very thick and make it hard to apply on hair.

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  1. Strain this with a sturdy strainer (preferably a steel one) and keep stirring the seeds in the strainer to push out more gel.
  1. Optional: You can also mix your favourite oils or aloe vera gel into the flaxseed gel while it is still hot.

Without any preservatives, this flaxseed gel will stay in the fridge for two weeks. Some people also reuse the seeds for a second batch of gel. I’ve tried it and it gives poor hold so I ditch the seeds after 1 batch.

How to apply flaxseed gel on curly hair

Flaxseed gel has got a slimy i-will-escape-from-your hands texture and so you can whip it with an immersion blender. But I’ve noticed that with use, you get accustomed to this texture. Even then, it is advisable to apply the gel over an old cloth to prevent a mess.

After washing your hair, apply the gel to wet hair by raking it in (using fingers to run through hair) on. Use more flaxseed gel then you think you should. Your hair should feel completely saturated and slimy. If you use too little gel, the product will be not effective.

Flaxseed gel will make your hair really really wet. So your drying time may be longer than normal. Plopping after this is a good idea to speed up drying. After the hair has completely dried, scrunch out the crunch(hardness) to reveal soft curls. Read how to scrunch out the crunch here – Curly hair gels : Everything you need to know

Here are my results –