In the Still Room: Argan Oil (from Morocco with love)

06/04/2012

Argan oil is the miracle your hair has been waiting for. At least that’s what hair care manufacturers would like for you to believe. This rare oil from Morocco has been on the beauty scene for  a minute, cropping up as the mane (pun intended) attraction in quite a few products. So what’s the deal?

Argan oil is produced from the kernels of the argan tree, which is native to the drought-lands of Morocco. Because of it’s high content of vitamin E and antioxidants, argan oil has been touted as a miracle oil for both skin and hair.  Even though the extraction of argan oil has become more mechanized compared to the traditional methods of grinding and pressing by hand, the process is still labor-intensive. Translation—you’re going to pay relatively more for argan oil than you would for say, your average bottle of jojoba oil.

But before you head to the beauty supply store, first have a look-see at some of the more popular argan oil products.

argan oil

One ‘n Only Argan Oil Treatment

Cost: $9.49 for 3.4 oz at Sally’s Beauty

Ingredients: Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethiconol, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Fragrance (Parfum), Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Yellow 11 (CI 47000), Red 17 (CI 26100)

The scoop: The argan oil is waaay down on the ingredients list. Looks to me like a bottle of cones with a dash of agan oil thrown in for good measure.

 

Cost: $7.99 for 4oz at most drug stores

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane , Dimethicone , Cyclomethicone , C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate , Butylphenyl Methylpropional , Argania Spinoza Oil (Argan) , Linum Usitatissimum Extract (Linseed) , Parfum , Yellow 11 , Red 17

The scoop: Again, lots of cones, a little argan oil.

 

Agadir Argan Oil Treatment

Cost: $19 – 30 for 4 oz at select beauty supply stores

Ingredients: 100% pure Argan Oil with Vitamin E, enriched with linoleic acid, oleic acid

The scoop: You’re getting the real deal here, hence the big price tag.

Watts Beauty ArganGoldTM 100% Certified Organic Cold Pressed Argan Nut Oil

Cost: $20 – 25 for 2 oz at select beauty supply stores and online suppliers

Ingredients: 100% pure concentrate of argan oil

The scoop: Straight argan oil, no chaser.

 

MOROCCANOIL The Original Oil Treatment 

Cost: $39.95 for 3.4oz at select salons

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, dimethicone, cyclomethicone, argania spinosa, kernel oil (argan oil), linseed (linum uitatissimum) extract, fragrance, D&C yellow-11, D&C Red-17

The scoop: Cones are def the primary ingredients, but the argan oil looks to have more volume than some of the products above.

 

Josie Maran Organic Argan Oil 

Cost: $48 for 1.7 oz at Sephora

Ingredients: 100% pure argan oil

The scoop: Although it’s pure argan oil, seems a bit pricey for so little product.

 

Kiehl’s Superbly Restorative Argan Dry Oil

Cost: $20 for 4.2 oz at your local Kiehl’s store or Kiehls.com

Ingredients: Argan oil, sesame seed oil, coconut seed butter, thistle seed oil

The scoop: Mostly argan oil plus some other great oils.

 

AAA Argan Oil

Cost: $28 for 3.38 oz at select Whole Foods and online.

Ingredients: 100% unrefined natural raw argan oil, organic

The scoop: This is the brand that I use. Occasionally I’ll add a cap-ful to my deep condish, or treat my ends when I’m rocking a blow-out. A little goes a long way—a bottle lasts me about 9 months.

 

The verdict: If styling is a priority (say for a stretched or straight style) and you’re looking for a nice serum with a little nourishment, the products that are cone-heavy should serve you well. However, if you want to treat your strands to this Moroccan gold on a consistent basis, you may want to consider buying a bottle of pure argan oil and add a little to your current sealing oil, deep conditioner, daily moisturizer, etc.

Do you use argan oil? How do you use it? Do you think it’s worth the hype and the price?