Drugstore Argan Oil That's In The Same League As The Expensive Stuff

The formula seems a bit thinner, but it performs just as well, making my hair silky without it going greasy.
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Trista
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The formula seems a bit thinner, but it performs just as well, making my hair silky without it going greasy.

A few months ago, I was given a tiny, musky, precious gift: a 3.5-ounce bottle of Moroccanoil Hair Treatment. 

I had sworn off using industrial chemicals on my head, but the swish of a perfect blowout compelled me, and I used it. I used so much of it. After a few days of not washing, I’d do a lazy blowout, trying to limit my silicone usage to just the ends, but with pretty brilliant results. Old habits die hard.

So sleek.

So sleek.

I loved it so much, I used it all up. Quickly. I knew it was expensive, but I didn’t realize even that wee portion was the equivalent of my monthly cell phone bill. 

It works out to about $1280 a gallon. That’s a little cheaper than a gallon of human blood. (Facts for those who are interested in such matters.) 

So what’s in it? Mainly, silicone. Argan oil is the third ingredient, right above fragrance and yellow dye.

Silicones aren’t good for hair. They build up, and can be tough to avoid because they’re found in every styling product from shampoo to hair spray. Cyclopentasiloxane is basically a silicone that doesn’t penetrate the hair, but makes the hair slippery by adding a layer of lubricant to the surface of the hair. Dimethicone is another silicone lubricant, with an even larger molecular weight, that doesn’t penetrate the hair shaft, but works to seal in moisture--or out, in some cases.

Argan oil is a different story; it’s harvested from the kernels of a tree endemic to southern Morocco and Algeria. In the same family as the shea tree, it’s the new hotness on the suddenly huge hair-oil scene. It’s highly emollient, and unlike shea butter, it’s liquid at room temperature, making it perfect for hair oil.

If  hair oil that combined the restorative value of argan oil, with the insta-shine and manageability of evil silicone? Glorious. It hydrates your hair, as the oil absorbs, the silicone keeps it in, and it’s not overly greasy or heavy. I hate formulas that take all the texture out of your hair, leaving it lank and stringy.

Not pee.

Not pee.

Got2B came out with their Oil-licious Calm and Shine Styling Oil. They just keep delivering good formulas--their pomades and Powder’ful made me a fan--and for under $5, I had to give their Moroccanoil lookalike a try.

A worthy competitor

A worthy competitor

Oil-licious actually has higher-quality ingredients, swapping marula, grape and sunflower seed oils for linseed, and adding beta carotene for colouring instead of Yellow 10. 

Got2B’s formula seems a bit thinner, but it performs just as well. BOOYAH! It made my hair silky without it going greasy, and more importantly, it came out with some sulfate-free shampoo. 

I’d like to note, however, that the yellow (and totally unnecessary) dye in both products can and WILL stain blonde hair, processed or not, so use with caution!

Now I can dabble with silicones and neither wreck my hair nor break the bank. 

What kind of hair oil are you using right now?