Lesser-Known Oils That Work Wonders For Your Skin And Hair

Different Oils

While argan, coconut, and jojoba are among the oils that have become staples on our shelves, let’s take a look at some other lesser-known ones. We bet you probably don’t know much about these but they are excellent for skin and hair and believe it or not, they’ve been around for ages. We should warn you right off the bat though, these oils have the cutest names ever and can elicit bouts of giggling!


Kukui nut oil is native to Hawaii and has been used for centuries across its islands. It is derived from the nuts of the kukui tree, aka the candlenut tree, which is incidentally the state tree of Hawaii! While the rest of the world is slowly discovering its many benefits, kukui oil is commonly found in Hawaiian beauty and skincare products. It is a lightweight oil that absorbs quickly and is often used as a massage oil. It contains vitamins A, C, and E, which are antioxidants known to protect the skin and prevent free-radical damage to the skin cells. The fatty acids present in kukui nut make it a high-grade moisturising product for dry skin and hair. Kukui oil is used to treat skin and hair that’s been exposed to the elements such as sun, salt water, wind, etc. It works well as an under-eye and fine lines treatment and also for skin irritations, wounds, minor burns, eczema, and acne scars. When it comes to hair, this oil works excellently as a treatment for an itchy scalp, frizz and dandruff as it hydrates, conditions and restores moisture to the hair and scalp.

Products with Kukui Oil

OGX Hydrate & Defrizz Kukui Oil Shampoo & Conditioner

Earth Rhythm Kukui Nut Facial Oil


A clear, pale-yellow oil derived from the seeds of the babassu palm, babassu oil is often considered a lighter replacement for coconut oil as they have very similar chemical compositions. Much like coconut oil, babassu oil too solidifies in cooler temperatures but softens to a liquid when in warmer environments or when it comes in contact with your skin. Native to the Amazonian rainforest and found in Brazil, Bolivia, Suriname, and Guyana, the babassu palm’s derivative is a superior emollient and is packed with fatty acids and vitamins. Rich in vitamin E and other antioxidants, the oil is great for the skin, scalp and damaged hair. Thanks to its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties from the lauric acid present in it, the oil can be used on the face to reduce rosacea, acne and improve the overall skin texture. While babassu is like coconut oil in many ways, it is lighter, non-comedogenic and doesn’t clog your pores. It also adds volume to flat hair and can help reduce frizz from dry, damaged strands.

Products with Babassu Oil

Kiehl’s Smoothing Oil-Infused Leave-in Concentrate

Re’equil Babassu Anti-Frizz And Smoothening Hair Conditioner


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Native to Polynesia, tamanu oil is a fatty nut oil that is pressed from the seeds of the tamanu tree. This tropical tree and its nut oil is also found in Asia and Australia. Tamanu oil has a number of health and beauty benefits from wound healing to healthy, shiny hair. The oleic acid (omega-9) and linoleic acid (omega-6) present in the oil promote moisture retention in the skin and hair. Being an anti-inflammatory, it also helps in soothing inflamed acne. It works well on acne scars, wrinkles, dark spots, dry skin, stretch marks, ingrown hair that has become irritated or inflamed, sunburns and more. Tamanu oil is also used to lessen the appearance of puffy eyes and dark under-eye circles. Thanks to the stearic acid in the oil, it has cleansing properties that help pull out dirt, sweat, and excess sebum from the skin without drying it. 

Products with Tamanu Oil

Sioris Deep In A Barrier Tamanu & Macadamia Oil

Discover Pilgrim 100% Pure & Natural Tamanu Oil


This oil – pronounced ‘mah-noy’, which is Tahitian for scented oil – is not derived from any nut or seed and is in fact, an infused perfume oil. It is made from steeping the petals of Tahitian gardenias, or tiaré flowers, in coconut oil. How luxurious! There’s also a very specific way in which it must be prepared, where the petals must be used within 24 hours of picking and should be steeped in refined coconut oil for at least 15 days to infuse properly. A beauty staple across the islands of the South Pacific, this oil has been used over the centuries as a softener for skin and hair. Tiaré flowers contain methyl salicylate and lauric acid, which are known for their soothing and restorative properties, and monoi oil thus comes to the aid in case of sunburns, eczema, dry, flaky skin, rashes. It also helps restore dull, lifeless hair, dry scalp, prevents split ends and hair loss, and can reduce dandruff as well.

Products with Monoi Oil

Palmer’s Natural Fusions Ceramide Monoi Hair Food Oil


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The Body Shop Spa Of The World Polynesian Monoï Radiance Oil


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