Hei Poa: a little bit of Tahitian beauty heaven!

By Tina A. - August 24, 2010

Hello guys!
Hope this week is treating you well (me not so much, but hopefully getting there)!

This post is going to be about two little gems made by a brand that I find is not widely talked about: Hei Poa. Hei Poa specialises in bodycare, haircare and suncare products, all of them containing a natural ingredient: monoi oil.

Now, I don't know how much you know about monoi oil (and if it wasn't for @SukaAndSpice, one of the loveliest bloggers out there, I wouldn't have known about it in the first place), but it's actually a traditional beauty secret amongst the women of Polynesia, used to condition their skin and hair.
Monoi oil is considered to be a fairly rich - but not heavy - oil and it's essentially coconut oil soaked with tiare flowers (Tahitian gardenias), which add to its moisturising and soothing properties. It's mostly suited for drier hair and skin, but with its variety of uses I personally think it would be appropriate for all skin- and hair-types.




So, seeing as I suffer from dry skin and very very dry hair, I naturally had to give it a try. And I went straight to the source: the actual, pure monoi oil in the glass bottle.
When it first arrived, it didn't look like an oil, more like a wax and that's because pure monoi oil (and in this Hei Poa bottle there's 95,81% pure monoi oil in it) is known to solidify at 24 degrees C. That's easily solved by putting the bottle in a glass of warm water for a few minutes, you will see it starts melting right away.

What I first used it for was my hair.
If you know me, you know that I 'm always on the lookout for products that will help my coarse, wavy, bleached and overprocessed hair (aka straw-like and fried), however there's not many products out there that can help with that.
To my surprise, monoi oil can, it's a great product that will nourish and deep condition your hair, not sth that will just coat it.
I usually pour a tiny amount in my palm, rub it against my hands and run them through my hair before I blow dry them - if you have the option to let your hair air dry that's the best, otherwise be careful of your blow dryer's temperatures; I use the cooler scale for my ends, just to be safe. That will do the trick and it will leave me with shiny, conditioned hair.
If I want to go out, I may add a smaller second round after the blow drying, to eliminate any possible frizz.
I also use it ocassionally as an overnight leave-in type of treatment, without having to wash it off in the morning, provided of course I 've only used a little amount of product, as I find that my hair benefits from that the most.

The only hair type that I wouldn't recommend use monoi oil in this way would be very fine, stick straight hair that goes oily quickly, since it would probably weigh your hair down.


But that's not all you can use monoi oil for:
1. It makes an excellent pre-shampoo treatment. If you leave it for a few hours, with a warm towel around your hair for maximum results, the oil will penetrate and moisturise your hair, and don't worry, it washes off really easily.
2. It's great as a scalp treatment. I 've only tried this once (I don't really suffer from dandruff, but sometimes my scalp gets sensitive during the winter) and it works beautifully (used like above).
3. You can use it as a skin moisturiser. Now, I 'm not one that really enjoys moisturising with an oil after the shower, but I did try it and it is great for that too: my skin was silky smooth afterwards and it didn't feel greasy at all.
4. You can add a few drops to your bath (that would smell amazing)!
5. Lastly, it would make a great after-sun treatment, as it is soothing and prevents dryness and peeling (well, provided of course you 've been sensible with your spf), not to mention it would prolong your tan.

Overwhelmed much? I know I am!
The only problem would be which scent to choose, I got the coconut one, but I want to try the tiare next (or maybe vanilla?)!


And, seeing as I loved the pure oil, I decided to try another product as well:




The Hei Poa Body Scrub (or Gommage Moussant if you prefer), which is another winner.

This scrub is yet another product that contains monoi oil, but not just that: it also contains papaya leaf extract, something which helps remove dead or damaged skin. Add Tahitian black sand, crushed coconut shell and tamanu seed particles (tamanu oil derived from the seeds is used for its wide skin healing properties and is found that accelerates the formation of new skin) and you 've got one of the most luxurious body scrubs you 've ever tried!

You 'll notice that it's a thick gel consistency and has a high concentration of rather large granules, more than enough to do the job. It's also slightly foaming when you massage it with a bit of water and that makes your skin feel extra squeaky clean afterwards. The scent it leaves is that of tiare, and in the case you 've never smelled tiare in reality, I 'd say that you 'd enjoy it if you like the scent of gardenias or jasmine or lilacs (btw they only make this tiare scented one atm).
My ultimate test for this product however was trying it on my peeling shoulders (serves me for wearing a tank top at noon) and even though I didn't think it would do much, I was proven wrong: it got rid of my peeling bits after only one use! My skin felt smooth, not tight at all (sth I 've yet to find in a scrub that actually scrubs well) and suprisingly moisturised! I dare even say I think I found my HG scrub in this Hei Poa one!


Hei Poa can be found on a variety of websites (I know asos, zuneta and lookfantastic carry Hei Poa, but I 'm guessing there's more).
If you are in Greece, you can also find Hei Poa in Attica mall, Beautyworks and some Hondos Center stores (τώρα δεν ξέρω εάν όλα τα Hondos σε όλη την Ελλάδα φέρνουν τα Hei Poa, συγχωρέστε με).


So, have you tried monoi oil and what do you think of it?
What is your experience with other oils and what are your uses for them?
Oh, and do share if you 've found an HG body scrub, I 'd love to know! :)

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24 comments

  1. Do you think I can get it somewhere in Canada? Sounds great. I have been looking for a great hair treatment product. I too have thick hair and it is extremely frizzy.
    Thanks for the review.
    If you get a chance, please check out my blog. I have a 'dare to wear challenge' going on where I dare my subscribers to recreate a look posted on my blog. I also have monthly giveaways and will be posting my September giveaway in a couple of weeks. Finally, I will be having a giveaway for an Urban Decay Naked Palette when I hit 300 subscribers.

    Thanks
    Alicia

    http://funnyfacebeauty.blogspot.com

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  2. Great post - thanks for sharing with us Hun! I remember you had mentioned using monoi oil in your hair for shine/manageability/moisturizing. I haven't tried monoi oil but I have used coconut oil. Monoi oil sounds very appealing to me now since you said it's coconut oil with tiare flower properties :) I will give it a try once I've finished my coconut oil, which is also solid at room temperature at first.
    Wow, the Hei Poa scrub sounds great too. I like how you pointed out that it suds/lathers a bit when you use it. My current Warm Amber Body Scrub from The Body Shop also lathers up a bit and I like that because I have used scrubs with oil in them and it leaves my skin feeling really oily (which is okay once in a while, but not to mention my bathtub has oil slicked all over!). I agree that it's very effective to exfoliate off dead/peeling skin. This one sounds like an HG scrub to me!

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  3. Thanks for the post I had been wondering whether it came as a hard thing that you had to melt as I much prefer that, I have elemis' version of the monoi body melt but when I finish that I think I will buy this instead xx

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  4. This was an interesting read as ever!! I've never heard of this brand before and now I am totally eager to try this! I love all things natural lately and Hei Poa sounds like it has a long beauty tradition and organic ingredients. Plus, it seems to work, awesome :)

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  5. Oh my goodness, you've pretty much sold me on this stuff! I have really fine, stick straight hair, but using this as a treatment sounds amazing! The scrub sounds gorgeous too! I've been looking for a good scrub for ages so I'm def gonna check this out! Great review as always lovely! xoxox p.s. I love the palm trees on the side of your blog, it's newer, isn't it?

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  6. I love this brand and I love that body scrub! I reviewed it on my blog a few weeks ago. It smells amazing and it's a such pleasure to use!

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  7. there's a great hype about that brand in Greek fashion and beauty magazines. I think you can only find them in some selected stores, I've tried in a big drugstore but they don't sell it. I'm using also oils as moisturizers, currently I use Les Petites Marseilles Body Oil, it's great, cheap, smells nice, very moisturizing for my dry skin. Really, where did you get Hei Poa? Beautyworks maybe? I thing it's probably the only store selling it right now in Athens

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  8. Oh my holy sake!! I love them all! I wish I could get them here but it seems really difficult!
    BTW, love the way your blog looks at the moment, really exotic!!
    X
    Catanya

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  9. This sounds amazing! I will have to try it! I love hair treatments but as my hair is SO fine, they sometimes weigh them down, so I will probably wrap my hair in a towel with it for a while some day :)

    Great review!! xx

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  10. ooh thanks for the tips! The scrub sounds really great!

    Come enter my DKNY giveaway if you fancy it sweetie! xxx

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  11. great post. def will try this scrub.
    I really have dry skin and hair too. I recently used aussie 3 minute miracle and it works great on dry hair so you should def try it!!

    great blog,
    feel free to visit mine
    individualbeauty.blogspot.com

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  12. Great post and review as always hun!!!I have to try it!!
    Thanks for the blog recommendation!!
    Hugs!:)

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  13. This sounds so interesting. I haven't tried it before and it's the first time I've heard of it. Thanks so much for sharing.

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  14. i'm so happy you like it! it is my mum's favorite..everything..because that's exactly what she uses it for--everything! (but who am i kidding..it's my favorite too). i love the idea of that scrub--may have to put in an order for it. it's nice that it's available there in greece--here, we have to wait for someone to ship it to us, or go get it ourselves..but you can't find it in the stores unless you're in hawai'i. xx

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  15. @FunnyFaceBeauty: Well, I 'm pretty sure that all of those websites I mentioned in my post do ship internationally! Or perhaps a canadian website does, I spose that would be easier for you! Hope u find this product works for u as much as it works for me! :) x


    @Karen: Yep, I 'm pretty sure that u'd enjoy monoi oil too! What I love about this is that it's pretty much pure monoi oil - I just hate those hair products that are marketed as "pure", when they 're actually anything but!!!
    Good point about the scrubs, some of them do tend to leave an oily film afterwards, definitely not good if you 're planning on applying some fake tan! However, I can see this one working fine! TBS is great for scrubs and body butters, however these two products feel so much more luxurious on... And they 're very affordable too! You should definitely give them a try if u get the chance! xxxx


    @Sarah: Yes, I believe it's a sign that it's a really pure oil! It may take a few more minutes to melt, but once its a liquid you know u can use sth that your hair/body will actually benefit from, instead of sth with additives or preservatives!
    I don't think we get any Elemis products here, I 'll have to check online, although I must say I 'm pretty pleased for the time being!
    Thx for stopping by! :) xx


    @Mairyliscious: Kai ta dyo proionta ta phra ap to zuneta.com, omws mporeis na ta vreis k se alla sites, ta grafw sto post. Gia to mono pou den eimai sigourh an mporeis na vreis sta katasthmata pou anaferw sthn Ellada einai to scrub, sto Hondo sto Pagkrati gia paradeigma nomizw oti eixan ferei mono to ladi k to antihliako, an k logika einai thema xronou na feroun megalyterh poikilia!!! xx

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  16. @Sam: Thank you dear! I 'm just like u, gravitating towards more natural products lately, organic even, if that's an option! And yes, you just can't go wrong with following a beauty tradition that stood the test of time, lol! :)) xxx


    @ellamarie84: Lol thank you babe, who would 've thought that I 'm an enabler, hehe! :) But all jokes aside, you gotta try that scrub, it feels heavenly when u put it on!!!
    Thx for the feedback on the layout, it seems to have gone under the radar! Yeah, it's fairly new, prob about 2 mths old and here to stay too, I think I finally found one that I 'm happy with! :) xxxxx


    @Annabella: I just had a look at your review and my thoughts are exactly the same abt this product: it doesn't feel as harsh, but it still does an excellent job! :) Definitely an HG body scrub in my eyes!


    @Pink_Fish: I got both of these products on zuneta.com, as I 'm usually not in Athens for the most part! But all the info on where to find Hei Poa are in my post, at least for the oil! :)

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  17. @Catanya: Glad u liked this post my dear! Sorry to hear that they 're hard to find there, I guess online is the way to go?
    And thx for your comment on the layout, it does have an exotic and calming effect, doesn't it? :) xxx


    @Nikki: Yep, I could definitely see that working for your hair! That's the beauty of it, I mostly use it as leave in product for my coarse hair, and someone could still use it as an excellent overnight conditioning treatment for theirs! I 'm happy u found this helpful!
    And thank u for commenting! xx


    @Sarah: You 're most welcome, I love talking abt products that actually work!


    @Shirls: Well, if you are a fellow dry hair/dry skin sufferer like myself you 'd love these! I 've tried the 3 min miracle in the past and I loved it, especially that gorgeous scent, felt like I had left the salon!
    Unfortunately I can't find these here and the shipping I have to pay is usually more that the product itself, so I have to explore other options! xx

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  18. @Blushingloves: Thank you koukla! Eyxomai mono na ta dw se pio pollous Hondous panelladika! Lol! Mwah! xoxo


    @Kristie: No problem, I 'm glad you found this helpful! x


    @fantastic: I 'm officially a monoi oil convert now, lol! Love this stuff and I 'm gonna be repurchasing many times for sure! And it's been amazing learning and trying all of its different uses, I hoped I passed the knowledge on as best as I could! ;)
    If only I had known abt the sunscreens at the beginning of summer too... eh, nevermind, next summer! Hold that order on the scrub juuuuust yet there missy, *cough cough*! Lol!
    But yeah, I know that there's at least 3 stores selling it in the capital, so now they just have to start stocking it in stores across the country (and make my life easier too, or, I could have my mother ship it to me, hmmm)!
    Kinda weird that its not largely available in the us, we get it here and u don't??? We must be a marketing exec's dreamland, despite the austerity, I mean, wow, lol! xoxo

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  19. @tina_mbc: Definitely! I will be putting the Hei Poa products on my list of skincare items to try next ;) Thanks you so much for sharing Hun!
    Oh gosh darnnit...I knew it was too good to be true about the apple flavour sheesha not being bad for you :) I haven't experimented with any flavours so I don't know what flavours would give a bitter after taste (yuck). My friends always order the same apple, coconut and mint mix and that's pretty good :)
    Wow, cool! I wish they would serve sheesha with traditional coal...or maybe I just have to get myself a waterpipe and do this myself hehe
    Thank you for sharing Hun! Ugh, if we get together we have to smoke sheesha for sure. I might visit my friends in Serbia in October so if I go, I hope to meet you in Greece since you are so closeby and Greece is a beautiful country!

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  20. Oooh, thanks for sharing sweets. I love new product and the hair treatment sounds pretty good! Will check it out soon!

    Thanks for your sweet comment hun, have missed you. Have a fabulous September!

    x.o.x.o

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  21. Thanks for sharing girl..I never knew something like this even existed. Monoi oil....hmm..
    Good, I really need something amazing for my hair soon....Thank you again!!

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  22. hey tina, I use Plain Coconut oil for my hair, as a pre-shampoo treatment. I apply slightly warm oil to my hair at night and then in the morning I gve it a mild steam with HOT towel...like soaking it in hot water and tying around the hair.
    Then wash as usual. Also mixing coconut, olive, Almond oil with some Aroma oils makes a lovely hair blend...

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  23. @Karen: That apple/mint/coconut mix sounds amazing, I may need to look into that, hehe!
    And yessss, it would be amazing to meet u in person, sheesha would be one of the first things on the list! Lol! Do let know if u 'd be able to visit!!! xxxx


    @A BRIT GREEK: No need to thank me, that's what the beauty blogging as all about (to me anyways): sharing my...discoveries, lol!
    Hope you 're doing better already and glad to see u actively blogging again! ;)
    Have a very very nice fall! :)
    xoxo


    @resham: Yes, monoi oil would work just like coconut oil as a pre-shampoo treatment! Olive oil is very nourishing for the hair as well, in fact it's widely used as an overnight hair treatment here in Greece, but I just can't put it on my hair without washing it off (unlike the rest of the oils), I 'd smell like a freakin salad! Haha! I just think that anything coconut/vanilla/flower scented is not that offensive! xxxx

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