Last week we told you about coconut oil and how to use it for treating your frizzy hair. What would you say if I told you there’s a frizz-fighting hair oil better than coconut oil?
And no, I’m not talking about Argan oil - this is an entirely new certified organic oil that you’ve probably never heard of it before.
It’s called Monoi oil, an ancient Polynesian oil made out of pure coconut oil and Tahitian gardenia flowers. It’s been around for literally thousands of years. Some experts say its origins date as far back as 2000 years ago, in the indigenous Polynesian island of Aotearoa (now called New Zealand). James Cook, a famous 18th century explorer who circumnavigated New Zealand, noted that the natives often used Monoi oil cosmetically, often by applying it on their skin or hair.
So what is Monoi oil, and why is it so much better than coconut oil?
What is Monoi Oil?
Since it was first created thousands of years ago, Monoi oil is still produced the same way today, by combining pure coconut oil with fresh Tahitian gardenia flowers, adding additional properties to the oil.
To start, the oil is created by gathering coconuts from the Polynesian island tree, which flourishes in the South Pacific. The coconuts are gathered, split, and left to dry in the sun. This is when the kernel of the coconut is harvested and left to dry until it loses almost all of its moisture. The kernel, now dried, is perfect for oil extraction.
Combining the coconut oil with the Tahitian gardenias is no easy–or quick–task. First, the dried kernel is crushed, pressed, and filtered to extract the pure oil. Once the oil is filtered, the fresh coconut oil is then stabilized with vitamin E. The stabilized oil is left to mature until it is selected to be used by prospective buyers or consumers.
Once this occurs, the Monoi oil enters the final process. Tahitian gardenia flowers are placed into the coconut oil, where the natural properties of the flower are absorbed by the oil. It’s by no means a fast process–it can take two weeks for the absorption process to occur.
After the flower is properly absorbed, the oil is ready to be used, either as a hair conditioner or a hair restoration treatment.
The Benefits of Monoi Oil
As a hair conditioner, Monoi oil is multifaceted and complex; although it shares many properties of coconut oil, it also contains additional oils and fats that make it a far more effective in healing and nourishing your hair.
Some of Monoi oil’s benefits include:
- It can reverse hair frizz. Lauric acid, a special acid you’ll only find in coconut-derived oils, such as Monoi oil, is special because it actually penetrates the hair shaft, smoothing the hair follicle. In turn, it has also been shown to prevent protein loss, keeping the hair follicle strong–even when brittle or dry.
- It may prevent antioxidant damage. This is due to vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that helps prevent free radical damage, which damages healthy cells–and may increase the risk of cancer. Some experts also believe free radical damage can accelerate the aging process, causing weak, brittle hair. Using vitamin E regularly may strengthen hair and allow it to grow faster and longer.
Better yet, here’s the best benefit of all: Monoi oil is all-natural. There are no chemicals or synthetic ingredients used to create this oil–just nature and a healthy dose of vitamin E, making it safer than synthetic conditioners.
Be careful though–only certified organic Monoi oil is completely all-natural. Other companies may use synthetic versions of Monoi oil that are nothing
more than poor quality coconut oil; to see if yours is all-natural, always look for the label “certified organic,” which you’ll find on quality hair ointments such as Silktage Rejuvenating Styling Hair Oil.