Monday, 16 November 2009

Review - Surya Amazonia Preciosa hair mask

This was a product that was sent to us free of charge to review.

On the deck today is the Amazonia Preciosa Cupuacu Revitalizing Hair Mask by Surya. (What is it with me and really long product names lately?)

This is a seriously eco-focused product. It's ECOCERT accredited. It's made of sustainably sourced Brazilian rainforest native plants and housed in recyclable PET packaging. The company are heavily invested in sustainable production policies and employ local people to harvest their ingredients. I'm not kidding. This mask? It positively gleams with virtue.

The question is - did my hair gleam, virtuously or otherwise, after using it?

Well, it's definitely a luxurious experience using this cream conditioner, which applies to the hair and is worn for 20 minutes under a hot towel before rinsing. With my hair wrapped up and a facemask on at the same time I felt quite decadent.

However, and this is a wholly personal thing, this product smells quite powerfully of almonds. I guess that the Cupuacu nut is a relative of the almond, going by the marizipan-like smell. The trouble is that I don't like almonds, and this marred the experience for me.

It took quite a lot of product for my hair to feel "covered" - there's not much "slip" to it, probably due to its being silicone free - it's almost like moisturiser or body lotion in texture. I guess I used up about 1/4 of the 120g tube.

After 20 minutes I had no trouble rinsing it out and my hair felt quite nice, tangle-free and generally happy. After drying though, I didn't feel that there was much difference to my hair. Usually when I use a leave-in conditioner I notice a marked improvement in the look and feel of my hair afterwards.

It's a shame, because the way the company seem to approach their business really does appeal to me (although I'm a little confused as to how shipping or air-freighting products all the way from Brazil can be carbon-friendly - nitpicking maybe). It's often (though not always!) sadly true that products with low impact on the environment also have low impact in terms of what they were designed to do.

I will say that I maybe should have used the mask designed for curly hair, since although I often wear my hair straight it is naturally curly and therefore probably more dry by nature. I could have chosen, in fact, from 5 masks in the range - Buriti, for dyed and damaged hair, Murumuru for oily hair, Brazil Nut for dry and fragile hair, or Ucuuba for curly hair. The one I had is for normal hair. Each mask also has a shampoo and conditioner in the same "flavour".

Amazonia Preciosa products are available at Liberty. The mask I tried retails at £10. Learn more at the Surya website.

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