It’s become a buzzword ingredient in natural hair products, an ancient oil made by traditional means from an island culture. Monoi oil is becoming known in the natural hair market for imparting shine, moisture and that heavenly fragrance. But what is it exactly, and where does it come from? Allow me to shine a light on the magic of monoi, so you can impress your friends at the next natural hair product swap!
Monoi oil is said to go back as far as 2,000 years within Polynesian culture. In those ancient days it was used for religious and medicinal reason. Monoi was first manufactured commercially in 1942.
Monoi’s decadent fragrance comes from Gardenia Tahitensis, otherwise known as the Tiare flower. This heady gardenia is the national flower of Tahiti.
Monoi is made by soaking the Tiare flower in highly refined coconut oil. The flowers are hand picked picked when still unopened and soaked for a minimum of 15 days.
For natural hair, monoi oil is amazing for a pre-shampoo warm oil treatment or post-wash styling for additional shine. Lately many brands have been adding monoi oil to their formulations for slip, shine and scent.