I have been fortunate for most of my life to have super-shiny hair without much effort. I use few chemicals; most of them are gentle. I condition regularly. As a teenager I went through a phase of real eggs, from chickens; now I try to use sulfate- and alcohol-free hair products that won’t strip the natural oils from my hair. Notwithstanding my record of success, as I approached — gasp! — middle age, I’ve noticed that if I want persistent shine, I have to apply a little more effort. In frustration, I asked my hairdresser what to do. He said (bless him), “I don’t know. It looks pretty shiny to me [well, yeah . . . you just finished with it!]. ‘Moroccan oil’?” I rushed to the Internets; what exactly was this “Moroccan oil” and where could I get some? And, more importantly, would it work?
First, the facts: what people call “Moroccan oil” actually refers to a particular brand, Moroccanoil — more on that in a bit — whose key ingredient is argan oil. Argan oil is a plant oil from the kernels of the argan tree, which is endemic to Morocco (you see where I’m going with that). Argan oil is renowned for its cosmetic properties, among other things, and is specifically believed to add brilliance to hair.
So what you’re actually looking for is argan oil, not necessarily Moroccanoil, and if you want to try it, you can really start with simple argan oil, which you can buy online for about $15.00 per two ounces. If you search for it, you’ll quickly find several product brands whose key ingredient is argan oil; Moroccanoil is just one of them — and the most expensive one, with the prettiest packaging. Most of these brands carry an argan oil shampoo, conditioner, and hair treatment.
Does it work? Why yes, yes it does. After using argan oil in shampoo and conditioner, or even just in conditioner, I received the best compliments I’ve ever received about my hair, and all of them were focused on its incredible shine. I noticed it, too, and I also found my hair to be noticeably silkier and more manageable than EVER before; “lustrous” is the best description.
I read some reviewers’ complaints that argan oil products had had the opposite effect on their hair — made it sticky or “gunky” instead of silky — but I was not the only person in my universe who experienced hair success; I recommended it to a colleague with an entirely different hair type who swims frequently and has experienced increasingly dry hair as a result. She loved it, too.
Moroccanoil is available from Amazon (and lots of other places)