Shea Moisture Review

Everything you need to know about Shea Moisture and their hair products

natural afro hair shea moisture review

Photo credit: Gift Habeshaw

Shea Moisture is personal care brand that makes products primarily for black hair types. It was founded in 1991 by mother and Son, Mary and Richelieu Dennis in Harlem, USA. Along with Nyema Tubman. This made Shea Moisture one of the black owned companies with products aimed at black people. Remember to check out our list of over 100 black owned hair products.

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Before it’s modern conception, ancestor to the company’s founders, Sofi Tucker was laying the foundations. Sofi was selling Shea butter along with other homemade hair and skin products in Sierra Leone. It’s easy to think that the use of Jamaican black castor oil and Coconut oil is new in the world of natural hair care but Sofi had the vision to experiment with these ingredients way back then.

The company experienced great popularity and growth. It still remains popular and just like many companies, isn’t without it’s controversy. In more recent years, an attempt to reach out to a larger audience made a lot of their loyal customers upset. This was because their promotional material saw a lack of people that looked like the core audience that brought them success. It felt like neglect.

They succeeded in reaching a more diverse audience. It remains one of the most popular brands in the black community. People of difference ethnicities, especially those with some type of curl pattern, have added Shea moisture products to part of their regular routine.

Shea Moisture is very popular and one of the few brands that has worldwide reach for people with natural hair. The product range includes Shampoo, leave-in conditioner and others aimed at skincare.

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Who is Shea Moisture for?

Shea Moisture is for anyone with textured hair. If your hair is curly, coily or kinky and your main priority is moisture control then Shea Moisture products are aimed at you. Their products are designed to help hydrate your hair so it doesn’t dry out during the day. This stops it from all the negatives that come with dry hair like frizziness, breakage and damaged or split ends. The outcome should be that after using Shea Moisture products for a while, your hair should look visibly more healthy and actually be more healthy.

The Shea Moisture Product Range

Right now, Shea Moisture has over 50 products on their website. The categories are; hair care, bath & body, shampoo & conditioner, masques and styling. It comes as no surprise that their most popular products are in the strength and restore line. The leave-in conditioner, shampoo and treatment masque. Each one doing a different essential job in a hair care routine.

The Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Conditioner is another of their most popular products and one we haven’t covered before. We’ll quickly describe each one of these products below and let you know if Shea Moisture products are worth buying.


The good news is that Shea Moisture products are free from those ingredients that people in the natural hair community try to stay away from. Parabens, Mineral Oil and Petroleum. As a side note, their products also use sustainable, cruelty-free and cruelty free ingredients. We actually wrote a whole article on the leave in conditioner that covers all of this and more.

As you will have noticed, the products we mentioned make use of Jamaican black castor oil. To produce this, the castor seeds are roasted to release more of the nutrients, this is makes them easier to absorb by us and also gives it its distinctive brown colour and smell.

Jamaican Black Castor oil has been around for a very long time and has been praised for the benefits of using it in caring for our hair. It’s no wonder Shea Moisture decided to include it in their products.

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Shea Moisture Hair Products

Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen and Restore Leave-in Conditioner

A leave in conditioner aimed at repairing damaged and brittle hair. It helps retain hydration in more thick and curly hair types so avoid if you have thin and straight hair because it could be a bit too heavy. If it agrees with you, the leave-in conditioner will have your hair soft, moisturised and with a visible shine.

Shop Shea Moisture Leave in conditioner

After you have washed and towel dried your hair, rub a small amount into your hands then begin to cover sections of your hair. Finger comb through to make sure all your hair is coated lightly. Because it is a leave-in conditioner, you can use it to top up on moisture on days between wash days.

Just like with most hair products, some people love it and some don’t. The ones that don’t like it mainly say it is too greasy and that they have wavy hair so if you are on the lower numbers of the hair type like any of the 2s or below then use a very small amount or try something more suited to your hair.

Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen and Restore Shampoo

The shampoo breaks down build-up in the hair and scalp while adding moisture at the same time. It is designed specifically for our hair so it won’t strip away all the natural oil that helps protect your hair.

Shop Shea Moisture Shampoo

Wet your hair and rub a small amount into your hands to start. Then apply to your hair ensuring your massage into your scalp, throughout your hair and all the way to the ends. Adding more if you need it. Some people wash in 2 rounds to get a better feel. So wash your hair, rinse out the shampoo then add some more in and repeat.

Unlike the leave-in conditioner, the shampoo works on a wider range of hair types. If you struggle with retaining hydration and you don’t like the way some shampoos take away all the moisture in your hair then try this. It has a pleasant smell and the results can be noticed for days.

Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen and Restore Treatment Masque

The treatment masque is for dry and damaged hair. Not everyone needs to use it but those who want extra hydration that any conditioner could provide the masque is for you.

Shop Shea Moisture Treatment Masque

You apply it sparingly to your hair after you have washed it and removed the excess water. You really don’t need to use that much because the coverage is quite good. Then sit for 15 minutes with a heat cap on to retain the moisture and let the nutrients sink in. If you have the time you could try leaving it in for an hour with no heat while you do something else. After the wait, rinse out the masque completely and carry on with your routine. You should feel a difference immediately.

Treatment masques are getting more popular for repairing the hair and for good reason. If you haven’t used one yet then have a try and see how it goes.

Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Conditioner

The conditioner acts as a hydrator and detangler than can be used daily and is faster acting but serves a different purpose to the masque. The conditioner is meant as a short term hydration solution and not something that repairs your hair. It is preventative meaning it will protect your hair from damage that it would get without using it.

Shop Shea Moisture Conditioner

Apply to your hair after you’ve washed it and leave it in for 3 minutes. Then rinse it out and carry on as usual. I just do it all in the shower at the same time.

The product has a pleasant smell, it has lots of slip so it gets good coverage for a small amount. This is helped by your hair being wet when you use it. Just like the other products, it will affect the way your hair feels immediately.

Should you use Shea Moisture Products?

These products are aimed at multiple different hair types and I’m sure they will work if you use them right. It’s worth testing them if you want to try something new because there are so many good testimonials.

Just like with any product, there are also some people who don’t like the products and can’t get them to work for whatever reason. I would recommend the Shea Moisture products if you have drier & thicker hair and you need help retaining moisture.

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