Our Story

"Now you can escape to Tahiti right in your own home, with Moana Beauty."

- Diana O'Donnell, Owner & Founder

About Moana Beauty & Diana O'Donnell

Diana O'Donnell, Owner & Founder, Moana BeautyAs someone who battled a variety of skin conditions since childhood, I began crafting homemade beauty products during my college years at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. When I wasn't working on my art or cocktail waitressing at iconic rock n' roll club CBGB, I could be found in my tiny NYC apartment mixing up flower waters, clays, oils and herbs into natural potions for the face and body. It was then that I became a total product junkie. Combine that with my passion for the exotic, and you had someone continually seeking out bath, body and skin care products imported from other countries, out of the ordinary, or with just plain incredible package design.

One day, I was looking for a body moisturizer that wouldn’t irritate my hands when I came across the most unique, little bottle of golden oil. It was colorful, exotic and tropical with the words, MONOI DE TAHITI – TIARE splashed across it. Curiosity piqued, I opened the cap, took one whiff and that was it – I was hooked. Once I found out what it actually was, I took it home and began using it as my body moisturizer and bath oil. After I finished that first bottle of Monoi de Tahiti Oil, I discovered that it was really hard to come by. And expensive! But so effective, natural and smelled fantastic. Although I had a hard time finding it again (pre-internet!) I never forgot about it and from then on dreamed of someday visiting Tahiti.

Years later, that dream came true when my husband and I honeymooned on the idyllic islands of French Polynesia. Rediscovering Monoi Oil in its native land, I gained further knowledge about this now cult beauty oil through local women. When we returned home, I had a suitcase full of Monoi and a new dream – of creating a line of Monoi Oil bath + body products. After coming home from Tahiti that first time, I missed it. Using Monoi Oil brought me back to Tahiti and made me feel wonderful. I wanted all of my beauty products to make me feel that way and I wanted to share that feeling with others. After a great deal of research, two more trips to Tahiti and one child later, Moana Beauty was finally born.

Moana Beauty Monoi Oil was featured in Marie Claire magazineToday, Moana Beauty's Monoi Oil and other products have been featured in magazines such as Marie Claire and Everyday with Rachael Ray, beauty blogs that include Amber Katz's Rouge 18, Cult of Pretty and more. It is exclusively sold in select boutiques throughout the United States, French Polynesia and online, with more to come.

What is Monoi Oil?

Monoi de Tahiti is a natural coconut oil based on two  ingredients, Tiare Tahiti (Gardenia Tahitensis) and refined Polynesian Coconut oil (Cocos Nucifera). Monoi Oil is stabilized with Vitamin E and fragrance is often added to make a variety of different types of Monoi. 

The Meaning Behind 'Moana Beauty'

Ocean view in TahitiMoana means ‘ocean’ in the Tahitian language.

For the Tahitian people, the ocean is an integral part of their daily life. From the freshly-caught fish that is eaten each day, to the pearls that are farmed and sold at market, to the waves that are sailed and surfed upon by adults and children alike, moana is like a window into the natural world of the Tahitian people…