The Body Shop — Banana Conditioner Review

I should have known better than to buy The Body Shop’s Banana Conditioner strictly for the scent: of course it would end up smelling like banana candies rather than actual bananas!

Everything banana-scented basically uses isoamyl acetate, a chemical that is naturally found in bananas and which gives them their distinctive smell. However, in different concentrations, it smells different (the BBC article I linked mentions that in dilute concentrations, it actually smells like pears!). In addition, this artificial banana scent may actually resemble the real thing more than we thought. Today’s bananas are pretty much all the Cavendish cultivar, but prior to the 1960s, the Gros Michel cultivar was the most common. It was wiped out by a fungus, which is why we use the Cavendish today, but some who still grow the Gros Michel say that it does have a sweeter, more “artificial” scent.

Well, truth be told, I prefer the subtler scent of the Cavendish banana! I’ve never been one for banana-flavored candies or the like, so I’m not sure what possessed me to buy this conditioner. I suspect it was The Body Shop saying that the conditioner contained actual banana purée (as the second ingredient listed, no less!), and somehow I thought maybe it wouldn’t smell like banana Runts.

A beauty classic returns. This thick and creamy conditioner leaves hair beautifully soft and tangle-free. It contains real banana puree.

Luckily, the scent isn’t actually that strong nor that sweet, so I don’t really mind it—though I’d obviously prefer a different scent.

One thing I do want to mention is that the conditioner looks somewhat different on the website than it does in real life—or at least the bottle I received in the mail. Above, you see my photo of my bottle of conditioner. Bright, mango yellow, right?

Here’s the website version:

The Body Shop Banana Conditioner (on website)

Hmmm, not so yellow! Is the product actually that color, or is it just in an opaque bottle? This pale color probably contributed to my thinking the scent would be less artificial, as well.

Onto the packaging: it comes in a rigid plastic bottle with a flip-top cap. It would actually do much better to come in a squeeze tube, because this stuff is kind of thick. The bottle does squeeze enough, but it’s unpleasant and more difficult than a softer tube would be. Also, it’s difficult to store upside-down (I keep it upside-down in a basket, propped up by my other bath and body products, heh); if you store it rightside-up, you have to shake it to get the product to plop into the cap so you can start squeezing it out.

The conditioner is remarkably lightweight on the hair, however, and I must say that I quite like it for my thick, straight hair. I’m currently suffering through round two of postpartum hair loss (a lot of my nice thick hair from being pregnant has, over the course of two months, fallen out in the shower!) so my hair is lacking a lot of body. This conditioner doesn’t help with that, but it also doesn’t weigh down my hair. It keeps my hair smooth, kind of shiny, and pretty static-free. I really like that it rinses quite clean, yet still tames my hair.

I’m curious to see how it works in the winter, when the air is dry and my hair becomes staticky, but for now, I like this conditioner and would consider repurchasing it. I don’t really have a “holy grail” conditioner so I’m more tempted to try out something new, but I wouldn’t be unhappy with another bottle of this to use up. I’m probably more likely to try out its companion Banana Shampoo.

The Body Shop Banana Conditioner

The ingredients are:

Aqua/Water/Eau (Solvent/Diluent), Musa Paradisica Fruit/Musa Paradisica (Banana) Fruit (Emollient/Lubricant), Cetearyl Alcohol (Emulsifier), Cetrimonium Chloride (Hair Conditioning Agent), Phenoxyethanol (Preservative), Hydroxyethylcellulose (Stabiliser/Thickener), Lecithin (Stabiliser/Emulsifier), Mel/Honey/Miel (Natural Additive), Panthenol (Hair Conditioning Agent), Propylene Glycol (Humectant), Parfum/Fragrance (Fragrance), Benzyl Alcohol (Preservative), Ascorbic Acid (Antioxidant), Citric Acid (pH Adjuster), Sodium Chloride (Viscosity Modifier), Sodium Hydroxide (pH Adjuster), CI 15985/Yellow 6 (Colorant), CI 19140/Yellow 5 (Colour).


The Body Shop Banana Conditioner is 8.4 fl oz / 250 mL and retails for US$8 / CA$10 / £5. The formula is vegetarian and contains community fair trade and non-GMO ingredients. The Body Shop is a cruelty-free company.

The Body Shop was founded in 1976 by Dame Anita Roddick. It is headquartered in Littlehampton, England. In 2006, the company was acquired by L’Oréal.


21 thoughts on “The Body Shop — Banana Conditioner Review

  1. This sounds like my worst nightmare, anything Banana scented or Banana flavoured makes me feel sick immediately! I can imagine the smell lingering in my hair for days between washes.
    Wonder why the colour is so different, Googling it it’s always as bright as what yours is, maybe people weren’t buying it when it was too bright on the website!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m with Rachael, it sounds like it wouldn’t be for me! I had one from lush a long time ago that actually looked like mashed bananas that wasn’t too bad scentwise. I can’t remember what it was called though unfortunately.

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL I forgot you tried it. And yes, the bottle I have is bright yellow (the product itself) but the website shows a pic of a pale yellow bottle/product! So weird.

      I think I’d definitely keep this conditioner around if only the scent was something more pleasant.


  3. I feel very educated on bananas now! Haha! Oddly enough I’m not a huge fan of bananas and I hate the smell of them – but I love banana-scented products! And I freaking love Runts! I haven’t had those in ages!
    I’m intrigued by this – I have fine hair so I’m always looking for a good lightweight conditioner. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL! I aim to inform! That is very funny that you’re the opposite of the way I feel about banana scents/flavors. 🙂 And yeah I think this would be a really nice option for fine hair.


  4. I’m with those who can’t stand bananas. But it’s all my husband’s fault. He likes very ripe bananas, and I hate the look and the smell of them. I haven’t eaten bananas in years because of what happens to them when they’re left in the kitchen for a few days…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah we’re a bigtime banana household (toddler eats them like there’s no tomorrow) but I definitely prefer them just before they get ripe. Brown spots are…ehhhhh. I mean, I can eat them, but I don’t love it. Bananas are frozen, too. OK enough about bananas. 😀 ITA they get so gross when they start to turn bad, though. Fruit flies, eeeeeuuuch.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I love that there are so many commenters who don’t like banana, because I don’t like them either! XD I can deal with the artificial candy banana stuff though.
    And gosh those Body Shop bottles! I hate them! You squeeze and squeeze it’s like they want to give your hands a workout! I hope they change the design one day.


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