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Why Moroccan Oil is not just Moroccan Oil

June 20, 2010

This has to be one of the best marketing stories of the year. Moroccan oil has taken the world by storm with its funky old-style packaging housing a ‘revolutionary’ styling, finishing and conditioning product (their words).  I had been receiving a steady stream of ‘what is it’ questions for a month or so now and was just about to buy some when the Hair Expo saved me with a free sample. Happy Days! 

So, what is it? 

Well, the term ‘Moroccan oil’ usually means Argan oil and that is a lovely 100% natural oil that is produced mainly in Morocco  – surprise, surprise! I reviewed the oil in October but to save you looking it up I can tell you that it has a high content of oleic and linoleic acid which make it very nourishing and moisturising.  The only point of concern here is that this oil is in short supply due to the plantations being protected making it very expensive and not particularly ‘sustainable’ once demand picks up a bit. 


This product is mostly silicone based which doesn’t necessarily make it ‘bad’ but it definitely doesn’t make it ‘natural’ in the usual sense of the word. Silicones are derived from sand that is processed into silica metal before it is turned into the silicone oils that we use for applications as varied as solar panel manufacture to fake boobs and hair shine formulas.  One key silicone in this product is cyclopentasiloxane which just happens to be one of the most common silicones in hair care. It is used as it is light on the hair, dries quickly for easy processing and gives a degree of shine to the tresses BUT is not water-soluble and it is not readily biodegradable. 

So is the product any good? 

As always, that decision is left to the individual but as far as the chemistry goes it should do exactly what is says it will. Here are some more thoughts. 

  • The silicones will help the hair to shine but there are some non-silicones available that work just as well such as the new natural ingredient from Inolex: heptyl undecylenate which does sound ‘chemical’ but comes from castor oil and can do the same job.  These may have been a better choice considering the ‘natural’ connotations.
  • It does contain Argan Oil but this is NOT the main ingredient therefore calling it Moroccan Oil is clever in a possibly misleading kind of way.
  • The product does contain synthetic colour and fragrance which again is OK for most people but sensitive souls may end up with itchy heads.

Ingredients list: Cyclopentasiloxane (silicone for shine and quick dry), Dimethicone (silicone for thickness of product and hair conditioning), Butylphenyl Methyl Propional (floral fragrance), Argania Spinoza Kernal Oil (Aragan Oil), Linseed (Linum Usitatissimum) Extract (another natural oil), Fragrance Supplement, D&C Yellow-11, D&C Red-17, Coumarin, Benzyl Benzoate, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone

So In a Nutshell. 

People do seem to like it and there was a MASSIVE buzz at the stand at the Hair Expo on Monday so they must be doing something right. If you can afford it and don’t mind it not being natural, try it as it probably will make your hair shiny and beautiful BUT it is not a hair revolution, just good marketing and I am sure that that’s no crime. Have fun and play friendly guys. 

The Moroccan Oil Team and Channel 10

So that’s the story!

Oh, and if that doesn’t rock your boat you could always try this product – same but with Macadamia Natural Oil.

Macadamia Natural Oil

7 Comments leave one →
  1. October 31, 2011 9:17 pm

    Sadly, macadamia natural oil is NOT natural because it contains amodimethicone, dimethicone, cyclomethicone and trimethylsiloxyamodimethicone.

  2. April 3, 2013 4:39 pm

    I like the helpful info you provide in your articles.
    I’ll bookmark your blog and check again here regularly. I am quite sure I’ll learn many new stuff right here!
    Good luck for the next!


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