From coconut oil, monoi oil: properties and how to use it. All you need to know about this multi-purpose exotic oil. Find out here.


The coconut, known as the coconut palm fruit (Cocos nucifera), originates in the tropical countries of the Pacific Ocean such as the Philippines and in the countries of Oceania and from it you get milk and coconut oil. Coconut oil is a food-medicine whose use has been known for millennia, especially in Asian countries, and is composed almost entirely of fatty substances: 99.9% (especially saturated fatty acids, as lauric acid); also contains some vitamin E (0.9 mg per 100 grams of oil).

Quality coconut oil is obtained from the cold pressing of the dried pulp (or endosperm) of the coconut and which is not subjected to hydrogenation, refining, bleaching, deodorization. On the contrary, poor quality oils could generate effects that are anything but healthy. A “wise” test, which immediately catches the eye, to understand the coconut oil quality is the consistency of the oil: below 24°-26°C coconut oil is practically butter. Above this temperature it must be as liquid as that of sesame, otherwise it has been refined. It must also possess the well-known and characteristic aroma and taste of coconut.

Monoi oil: what it is

The coconut in the Pacific islands and in Polynesia is used for cooking, to taste its juice and also as a cosmetic. Local habit is macerating petals of Tiarè flowers (Tahitian Gardenia) with an enveloping and inebriating perfume in coconut oil cold-pressed from coconut to obtain monoi oil, an oil rich in cosmetic and therapeutic virtues, used daily. still today to moisturize, soothe and perfume the skin and hair and to infuse harmony and well-being. In ancient times it was used in propitiatory rites to purify places and objects and newborns were sprinkled and massaged to protect their delicate skin from the sun and wind.

To make monoi oil: four Tahitian Gardenia flowers are cut from the stem, washed and waited for to be perfectly dry, then placed in a container with a screw cap and poured the warm coconut oil until when the flowers are completely immersed. Wait for the full maceration of the container flowers in a dry and dark place for about a month.

Tahiti Gardenia flowers

The monoi butter, on the other hand, is obtained by macerating the fresh tiare flowers in the dried coconut pulp.

Monoi oil: properties

The moisturizing power of this perfumed oil is due to the content of vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that slows the oxidation of epidermal cells and fights the formation of free radicals which are one of the major causes of skin aging. Among other things, compared to coconut oil the moisturizing properties would seem more pronounced and lasting.

It also has smoothing and emollient properties on the skin, giving a soft and silky veil that protects from the external environment and improves skin elasticity. It is a real regenerating treatment for dry, stressed hair or simply exposed to the sun and sea water.

Monoi oil: what is it for?

With an oily consistency and an intoxicating fragrance of flowers, a few drops of monoi oil are enough to make the moment of cleansing a real regenerating and pure relaxation treatment. The monoi oil is perfect for the treatment of hands and feet and for massages, but also for the treatment of dry, treated, damaged hair and to regenerate the skin after sun exposure. The monoi oil has in fact a protective action against the sun’s rays and salt air when applied before sun exposure, while applied after sun exposure, the monoi oil gently refreshes the skin, promotes regeneration and relieves any irritation and redness.

How to use Monoi oil

  • Monoi oil for hair: the elective use of monoi oil is trichological, as coconut oil has a high content of lauric acid particularly similar to the hair fiber. The monoi oil accumulates in the hair, reinforcing it and thus avoiding mechanical damage due for example to brushing; protects from dehydration from detergent, salt or chlorinated water and prevents damage from intense heat induced by plates or hair dryer. For dry hair, for example, it would be useful to massage dry ends with a few drops of oil or, in the case of treated hair heavily weakened by dyes and bleaching, make a total compress from roots to ends. Once the monoi oil has been applied to the entire hair, dab it with a towel with which to wrap the head for about forty minutes. Once the laying time is over, rinse with warm water, remembering to make the last step with cold water to increase the shine of the hair. If it is not possible to wait for the shutter speed, you can distribute the oil on your hair and clean with the usual shampoo after only a few minutes.
  • Monoi oil for the face and body: monoi oil is to be applied to the skin and massaged until completely absorbed. It can also be used as a make-up remover and for stretch marks or after showering on still-moist skin and massaging while enjoying the intense scent of tropical white flowers.
  • Monoi oil as after-sun and not only: monoi oil can be applied every morning before the sun-protected cream, in this way the skin will remain intensely hydrated throughout the day or after sun exposure as a soothing, making it absorb after a light massage. To take anywhere.

Monoi oil: what Erboristeria Como recommend you

Where to find Monoi oil? This product which you can find here, there is pure Tiaré monoi oil, handcrafted from the maceration of Tiaré flowers in cold-pressed virgin coconut oil. The Microcosmo company from Como  has provided for the addition of pure almond oil in the amount needed to allow the monoi oil to remain liquid naturally even at temperatures below 24-26 ° C (due to the high quality standard of the ‘virgin coconut oil). This product is free of preservatives, GMOs, siles and parabens. Made in Italy. The Tiarè flowers used come from wild Tiaré plants that experienced herbalists collect considering planetary, lunar and solar aspects.

The packaging above does not deceive: both products are the same and in an airtight container in NON-transparent plastic; the company only wanted to distinguish the product with different colors to remember the two types of use that can be made of it: by sea or mountain or for every day.

Dr. Laura Comollo

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