Hair Product History Lesson: How Awapuhi Got In Your Shampoo

image of the John Paul Mitchell Systems Awapuhi Farm signage

Paul Mitchell had a great love of the Hawaiian islands and as the story goes, it was during his time there that he learned about the tradition of washing hair with the flower bulbs and juice that was squeezed directly from ʻawapuhi plants. He went on to discover that Native Hawaiians had used the fragrant juice of the ʻawapuhi plant, also known as "shampoo ginger," to soften and condition their skin and hair for centuries.

Why does ʻawapuhi have an accent mark and how is it pronounced?

In the Hawaiian language, the okina (ʻ) is a glottal stop, which indicates a slight pause, and the "w" is pronounced like a "v" making the correct pronunciation "ah-vah-poo-hee."

image of the Paul Mitchell squeezing juice from an awapuhi plant

Captivated by ʻawapuhi's healing powers, Paul and co-founder John Paul DeJoria, established an ʻawapuhi farm in Paʻauilo, Hawaiʻi in 1983 to produce the plant for use in their line of hair care products. The facility is completely off the grid, powered by solar energy and uses captured rainwater as its water source.

All of the ʻawapuhi used in our products is grown there today. It is hand-harvested and placed in a passive-solar dehydration shed where heat from the sun slowly dries the roots. Once dry, the roots are ground into a fine powder and sent to our state-of-the-art Product Innovation Center (PIC) in Santa Clarita, California for production.

Paul Mitchell Originals

The original line of products formulated with Hawaiian ʻawapuhi in the '80s still exists today. Find the plant's supreme moisturizing benefits for all hair and skin types in Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Shampoo, Paul Mitchell The Conditioner and Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Moisture Mist.

image of the Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Shampoo and Conditioner

Best-selling Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Shampoo now has a conditioner to match! Awapuhi Conditioner is the perfect complement this longtime fan favorite.

Born in Hawaiʻi. Made in Luxury

Today, tradition meets technology with proven hair care systems that use innovative blends featuring Hawaiian ʻawapuhi extract to transform hair at the deepest levels in the luxurious Awapuhi Wild Ginger collections below.

image of the Awapuhi Wild Ginger Repair collection


Repair and replenish hair with the Repair Collection from Awapuhi Wild Ginger. This line of rich shampoos and intensive conditioners contains the exclusive KeraTriplex technology to repair and rebuild dry, fragile strands. ʻAwapuhi extract balances moisture for shiny, manageable and healthy-looking hair.

image of the Awapuhi Wild Ginger Hydrate collection


Discover the secret to silky-soft, shiny hair with the Hydrate Collection from Awapuhi Wild Ginger. Infused with HydraTriplex Complex, this line of hydrating hair care products instantly transform hair with deep hydration, supreme softness and glass-like shine without the weight.

image of the Awapuhi Wild Ginger Style collection


The modern, high-performance hair styling products in the Awapuhi Wild Ginger Style Collection feature exclusive KeraTriplex technology to protect hair while locking in style with the hydrating and restorative benefits of ʻawapuhi extract.

Indulge in Aloha at Home or at the Salon

You'll also find Hawaiian ʻawapuhi in our two treatments. Visit a salon for a transformative Awapuhi Wild Ginger KeraTriplex Treatment or HydraTriplex Treatment (now available for at-home use).

Learn more about our farm here. Discover our Paul Mitchell Original Collection here. Explore our Awapuhi Wild Ginger Collection here.