Showing posts with label coloured hair. Show all posts
Showing posts with label coloured hair. Show all posts

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Color Wow Pop & Lock Crystallite Shellac

I'm genuinely a little bit confused by Color Wow's Pop & Lock Crystallite Shellac.  It's described as a new breed of styling product, and the instructions simply advise you to apply to wet or dry hair and style as usual.  Supposedly, the shellac-like formula seals in colour and moisture and locks out dryness.

My first experiment with it saw me apply it to damp hair and then use my Babyliss Big Hair for a smooth blow dry.  My hair, which is bleached and extremely colour processed, turned out smooth and shiny, but felt a little dry and lacking in moisture in the ends, particularly compared to when I use a blowdry cream like Bumble & Bumble's Blow Dry Straight.

My second experiment involved using a couple of pumps along the mid-lengths and ends of my dry, styled hair as a finishing product.  The results were better - I got great definition, my ends were smooth without a trace of fuzz, and my hair was amazingly shiny.  Crystallite Shellac contains mica for sparkle, which you can see in the bottle and on your hands, but unfortunately (thankfully?) doesn't come across on the hair at all.

Overall, then, I suspect this product may be a better match for someone whose hair is less frazzled from colour than mine is, particularly if you want to use it as a dual purpose wet and dry styler.  If you're looking for a super shiny, definition giving finishing product, it's definitely worth a try, regardless of the condition of your hair - an added bonus is that it feels a lot lighter than an oil or a serum.  Find it at Feel Unique where it costs £14 - not a bad price at all given that a couple of pumps is all I needed on my mid-length, thick hair.

Disclosure:  PR sample

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Friday, 22 May 2015

How to live with brightly coloured hair

I've had bright hair for years now, but recently started bleaching it to get it ultra, ultra bright.  It's been neon pink, it's been red, and it's now a slightly blue toned cerise which I haven't yet photographed... but it's fairly likely it'll continue to be somewhere between red and pink, and very bright.  I'm often asked questions about it, so I thought I'd write about what it's like to have bright hair: the maintenance cost, and the affect it has on your life.

Topping up the colour is essential.  Everyone loves that just-coloured look you get when you walk out of the salon, and unlike more natural colours, bright colours fade very, very fast.  I make colour masks out of Directions hair colour and a squirt of conditioner and leave on for an hour every single week.  That's why my hair always looks freshly coloured.

Sulphate-free shampoo is your friend.  Nothing strips colour more quickly than shampoos with lots of SLS in them (apart from anti-dandruff shampoo).  Wash with sulphate free shampoo, such as L'Oreal's Hair Expertise range - their EverSleek is one of my favourite ranges, and it doesn't strip colour as fast as normal high street shampoo.

Dry shampoo is also your friend.  Washing infrequently helps prevent fading.  I wash my hair three times a week at an absolute maximum, normally more like two.  I keep plenty of Batiste handy to make sure my hair doesn't look like it hasn't been washed in days.

Avoid pale clothes.  Bright colour often transfers a bit onto your clothes as you wear them.  Anything white, or with a pale collar, is guaranteed to be slightly pink after I've worn it.  

Beware of light nail polishes.  Washing bright hair whilst wearing pale nail polish will lead to stained nails, which look very weird.  I usually wear darker red/pink/purple shades as a result, or if I have to wear something stainable, I wash my hair whilst wearing latex gloves.

Embrace black bed linen and dark towels.  Bright hair will turn stain pretty pale bed linen.  Wet bright hair will trash white or pale towels.  My bed linen is black, and my towels are dark jewel tones.  Which leads me to...

Be prepared when you travel.  When travelling to stay at a friend's house, take a black pillowcase - no-one likes a guest whose hair destroys their linen.  Also, take plenty of dry shampoo to avoid having to wash your hair in someone else's bathroom.  When I travel for work, I sometimes pay for a wash and blow dry rather than washing my hair in a posh hotel bathroom, particularly if my hair is freshly coloured or the bathroom has obviously porous surfaces.

Abandon all hope of maintaining your hair on holiday.  Swimming, bright sunlight, chlorine, salt water - all of these will pull colour from your hair.  When I go on holiday, I resign myself to coming back with a weird reverse ombre, with blonde ends and pinky roots.  I make sure I have enough time to dye it back to normality before I go back to work.

Stock up on colour-removal products for your hair and for your house.  I have a couple of bottles of salon-strength colour removers for colour transfer onto my skin, and plenty of bleach at home for those times when the shower ends up with a distinctly rosy hue.  Oh, and a big drum of Vanish for my clothes.

Avoid sweating at all costs.   Sweat+bright hair = pink sweat running down my face in summer.  BAD.  I carry baby wipes to clean up on the go, and in summer let my hair get a little more faded to avoid being damp and pink.

So there it is:  bright hair actually affects much more than your hair itself, particularly if you choose the kind of hue with bleeds, transfers or stains a lot.  I think it's totally worth it though!  Do you have any bright hair life tips?  Share them in the comments below!

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Friday, 15 May 2015

BUY THIS NOW: Bleach London Reincarnation Mask

As you've probably noticed, I have brightly coloured hair.  It's been red, flourescent pink, deeper pink, and is now a wonderful shade which looks like a raspberry red until the sun hits it, whereupon it glows fuschia.  My hair has been bleached quite a bit, and I regularly have my roots bleached to keep up the brightness - which results in dull, tired hair, and worst still, has left me with incredibly porous hair where it's been bleached over a couple of times.

I tried Reincarnation Mask because Kellie, a fellow lover of bleach, recommended it, and I'm very very glad I did.  It's a rich, thick mask best left on for a long old while, and it leaves my hair feeling remarkably soft and supple.  It's also a bloody good base for a colour conditioner - I often mix up some of this with some Directions pink hair colour and leave it on for an hour to inject both moisture and colour into my hair.

If your hair is super dry, or you're a bit of a slave to the bleach, I'd highly recommend trying this.  Try to look past the very shower unfriendly packaging, though, as screwing that little cap back on is a bitch when your hands are slippery with conditioner.  Find it now at Boots, where it costs a very reasonable £6.

Disclosure:  Purchased by me.  Twice, actually.  That's how good it is.

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Quick Pick: Ojon Colour Sustain PRO Shampoo & Conditioner

Ojon's Colour Sustain PRO range is everything colour-treated hair needs:  sulphate free, gentle, and moisturising without being heavy.  I've been using them for the last couple of weeks and I'm seriously impressed - to the extent that I've unconsciously reached for them every time I wash my hair.  The shampoo lathers up pretty well for something without sulphates, leaving even my bleached hair tangle free and soft rather than a bit Velcro like.  The conditioner is surprisingly moisturising for something with a light, fluid texture - I apply it to the mid-lengths and ends of my hair only, and it leaves my hair feeling supple and silky without any added weight or heaviness.

The only slight downside is that these products are pretty pricey - £18.50 for 250ml of shampoo, and £20.50 for 250ml of conditioner.  A cheaper alternative is L'Oreal Hair Expertise range, which costs under £5 per product, although the Ojon versions are more luxurious and leave the hair feeling slightly lighter.

Disclosure: PR sample

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

BUY THIS NOW: Ojon Rare Blend Cleansing Conditioner

I really love a cleansing conditioner, and this one from Ojon is absolutely fantastic.  As with most cleansing conditioners, it promises to clean the hair whilst nourishing it, leaving it 'silky smooth [and] perfectly refreshed'.

Applied to the roots and mid-lengths and emulsified with plenty of water, it cleanses the hair effectively - don't expect any lather, though, as it has absolutely none.  Massaging it in for a few minutes helps to remove dirt, oils and impurities, and once rinsed away the hair feels hydrated and clean.  This isn't a product to remove a ton of product buildup, or one for finer hair types - you'll need a proper shampoo for that - but if your hair is dry or coloured and wants refreshing rather than a deep cleanse, it's perfect.

My bleached, dry and coloured hair loves it - after use my hair is soft and shiny, and is definitely easier to blowdry smooth than it is with regular shampoo.  One caveat to Ojon's instructions, though - they say to apply it root to tip, which is uneconomical if you have thick or porous hair thanks to the fluid texture.  You'll need to use a slightly scary amount to cover all of the hair - instead, use it on the roots and midlengths to wash, and use a separate conditioner on the ends.

At £18.50, it's not cheap - but it's a godsend for dry hair, reduces blow dry time, and leaves the hair wonderfully smooth without a ton of extra product afterwards.  And if your hair is coloured like mine, using this every other wash will help preserve your colour for longer - so actually, it saves you money on colour.  I love it, and will definitely be repurchasing.

Disclosure: PR sample

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Neon Pink Hair (and a new job)

So!  It's been a bit of a quiet week on LBR.  The reason for this is that I've just started a new job, which means soaking up tons of new information and being absolutely exhausted every night.  As part of my induction, I'll be in San Francisco for 3 weeks very soon, so please bear with me if posting is somewhat sporadic!

Anyway, the day before I started my new job I had an appointment at the wonderful Rockalily for my usual colour.  Since I was just back from holiday, and my hair was a rather incongruous blonde at the ends and peach at the roots, I asked if we could bleach it down and go for the brightest possible pink.  The lovely Emma obliged, and my hair is now almost neon.

It's so bright the camera struggles to pick up much else!  So much so that my DSLR doesn't capture it particularly well at all - luckily my phone does.  I absolutely love it.  I keep forgetting how bright it is, and wondering why people on the street are staring at me.  If you're ever in the mood for a major hair change, or a super-bright colour, don't hesitate to visit the lovely ladies at Rockalily - they perform brightly coloured miracles every single day.

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Revolutionary: Using Lipliner for Coloured, Defined Brows

A little while ago, I went to an event.  As I sat down on a makeup artist's chair, she said:

"Oh, let me just touch up your brows a little"

I panicked.

"You're not going to fill them in with brown eyebrow pencil are you?"

said I, quaking in my pink hair, terrified of weird non-matching brown eyebrows.

"Of course not, I'm going to use pink lip liner.  You'll get a good shade match and it'll hold better than eyeshadow."

said she.  And thus, my eyebrow routine was changed forever and I embarked upon a quest to find the perfect pink lip liner to use on my brows.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Quick Pick: Color Wow Shampoo, Conditioner and Styling Cream

I've been trialling a few of Color Wow's products for the past few weeks, and you can colour me impressed (tee hee).  The Color Security Shampoo lathers up well for something free from sulphates, has a lovely fresh scent and cleans the hair effectively.  I've noticed less colour fading since I started using it, and the amount of foam I rinse away after shampooing has been a paler pink than usual.  The Color Security Conditioner for Normal to Thick Hair is surprisingly light for such a rich, thirsty-hair-quenching conditioner, and you need only a small squirt to distribute throughout the hair - a little goes a long way.  At £16.50 for 250ml tubes, the shampoo and conditioner are undoubtedly expensive - particularly compared to L'Oreal's rather excellent Ever Strong/Smooth/Pure/etc range, which performs just as well, and costs a much more wallet-friendly £6.20 for 250ml.

The product I've been most impressed by is the One Minute Transformation Styling Cream.  It costs £16.50 for 120ml, but the product inside the tube does amazing things to my hair which makes it more than worth the money.  Most styling creams are applied pre-blow dry, to wet hair, but this one is applied to dry hair.  It instantly smooths and hydrates the ends, making the hair look less frizzy and more polished, and if you want to reshape the hair, you can use a quick blast of heat to restyle.  I've tried many products which claim to revitalise hair when it's dry, but few have made such a lasting difference as this one - a dab smoothed through the ends in the morning gives me smoothness that lasts all day.  Brilliant.

Disclosure: PR samples

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Bleach London Super Cool Colour in I Saw Red

Hey, did you know that I'm not a natural redhead?  Surprising eh?  As I've often posted before, red is a very difficult colour to maintain - it fades, it loses its intensity fast, and it's sensitive to water exposure and product exposure.  My regular hair colour maintenance includes monthly permanent colours, and weekly top-ups with semi-permanent cream colourants.  So, when I heard that Bleach London (apparently a hip salon for those with interestingly coloured hair) was releasing a range of brightly coloured dyes into Boots, I thought I'd try it out.

Interestingly, Bleach London describes this as a non-permanent hair colour, which I think is a bit misleading.  Granted, it won't permanently change the colour of your hair, but if you bleach your hair, apply this, and wait a while, it won't ever wash out fully (well, unless you subject your hair to pretty harsh cleansers or re-bleach).  This sort of vegetable based colour works by staining the hair, and if you think you can go from blonde to red and then get back to blonde without further bleaching, you're wrong.

Left to right:  before and after

I Saw Red is a bright, true red with no obvious orange or pink tones.  I applied it to freshly washed, towel dried hair and left it on for an hour before rinsing.  The bottle says to leave it on for fifteen minutes - since this is a dye without the usual harmful chemicals, there's no harm in leaving it on longer, and indeed, you'll get a better staining result if you leave it on for longer.  I put a shower cap over my colour-bedecked hair to keep the colour moist and warm and to increase the uptake.

I was surprised by the scent of the dye - this kind of colour is generally inoffensive, smell wise, but this one had an interesting spicy whiff to it.  The texture is thick, although easily spreadable through wet hair, and it didn't drip or run at all.

Left to right:  before and after
An hour after application, my hair was back to full intensity - the difference is subtle, but post-colour my hair has the depth and glow which fades so quickly with red dye.  It's also noticeably shinier, too - Super Cool Colour has plenty of moisturising ingredients, and whilst I did need a touch of conditioner after use, I needed it more for detangling than anything.

All in all, I'm rather impressed - having bright colours available at your local Boots is a definite draw, and Super Cool Colour is thoroughly decent.  The range has twelve shades from blue to pink to peach, and at just £5, they're a great accessible high street colour product.  You'll find I Saw Red, and all the other shades, at Boots.

Disclosure: PR sample

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating my copyright.

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Undecided: TRESemme Oil Elixir for Coloured Hair

TRESemme have just launched their own hair oil - it's called Oil Elixir, it comes in a surprisingly heavy glass bottle, and it smells absolutely lovely.  It can be used either as a pre-wash moisturising treatment, a styling aid, or as a finishing product for extra shine.

I've been using it for the past two weeks as a styling aid - if you can call leaving-your-hair-to-dry-naturally-in-the-hope-of-nice-curls-and-no-frizz styling.  I've applied three or four pumps to the mid lengths and ends of my hair and initially I was really, really impressed by the results.  My hair was smooth, shiny, silky, and my curls were more defined and less frizzy.  Even my ends looked healthy!  Instant love.

A couple of days later though, my hair seemed to look weighed down and a little lank after use.  I consulted the ingredients...

Whilst the oil claims to make use of "salon grade" oils, it's actually based on silicones and mineral oil, with a bit of seed/nut oil thrown in too.  This explains the build up in my hair - whilst the combination of cyclopentasiloxane and dimethiconol is apparently somewhat water soluable, I try to avoid shampoos with SLS in as they wreck my colour.  And obviously my SLS free shampoo wasn't doing a good enough job of removing the Oil Elixir.

So, my overall feelings on this product are a bit confused.  I love the smoothness, the shine, the curl definition - but I don't love the buildup.  Potentially this is a better product for those with colours which fade less than my bright red, who can therefore use a slightly more deep cleansing shampoo.  If you're interested, it will cost a mere £9.99 (much cheaper than some other hair oils I could mention).

Disclosure: PR sample

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating our copyright.

Saturday, 1 June 2013

LBR giveaway! 10 sets of Sheer Blonde John Frieda shampoo and conditioner

We've been given 10 sets of John Frieda's Sheer Blonde shampoo and conditioner to share with our readers. Hooray for blondes!

10 readers will each be sent a 250ml Everlasting Blonde Colour Preserving Shampoo and a 250ml Everlasting Blonde Colour Preserving conditioner.

The products are designed to preserve the look and feel of newly coloured blonde hair - so they're best for bottle blondes. Hand on heart, I can't vouch for them myself, being a brunette, but I have 2 bottles of my own here and they both smell delightful and look very nice. They retail for around £6 each.

How to enter:

  • Please leave a comment before 00.00 GMT on 15 June 2013
  • In the comment, tell us how many bottles of shampoo and conditioner you currently have on the go. (Mine is about 5 sets, which makes cleaning the bath a hassle.)
  • Include a way for us to get in touch with you (this is so we can find out your address to send the products. They'll be sent direct from John Frieda's PR company. It can be your email, blog link, Twitter handle, whatever you will be checking regularly.)
  • We'll choose 10 responses at random after the giveaway closes. (NB your answer is just for fun. This is not a competition for how many products you use in parallel. If it was we'd probably win it ourselves.)

Good luck!

This post originated at If you're reading it elsewhere, it's been stolen, violating our copyright.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Quick Pick: Naked Colour Protecting Shampoo and Conditioner

We've long been fans of Naked here at LBR - their SLS, silicone, paraben and other nasty things free products are reasonably priced, easy to find in Boots stores, and work just as well as their chemical laden cousins.

I received their Colour Protecting shampoo and conditioner ages ago, and they've worked their way into my regular routine.  The shampoo is SLS free and manages to clean the hair brilliantly without leaving it feeling squeaky clean or stripped, and the silicone free conditioner is moisturising without being heavy.  After use, my hair is left light and fresh, soft and shiny.

Whilst I'm not convinced that this combo particularly reduces colour fading, I do notice less colour bleeding off my hair when I use it compared to a shampoo containing SLS.  I also really love the scent of the shampoo - where the conditioner is reasonably mild smelling, the shampoo has a rich cinnamon edge to it which is both unusual and very warming.

Find them online and in store at Boots (shampoo £4.19 and conditioner £4.19) or slightly cheaper at Naked's website (shampoo £3.98 and conditioner £3.98).

Disclosure: PR samples

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Review: John Frieda Radiant Red Shampoo and Conditioner

These redhead friendly hair products landed in my bathroom a couple of weeks ago, and I've given them a whirl a couple of times since.  I'm genuinely a little unsure of what to think of them - they promise to magnify colour and prevent fading, a reasonably common claim of many shampoos and conditioners built to preserve colour.  The shampoo is perfectly good at cleansing the hair and lifting residue, but contains SLS - a cleansing ingredient which is quite harsh, and one which I've found causes fading in my red hair far more than an SLS free shampoo.  The conditioner has a medium thick texture and leaves the hair feeling soft and smooth, but despite being described as "enhancing", it's completely non colour depositing.

I think it comes down to this:  if these products were billed for generally coloured hair, I'd probably think they were pretty decent.  Targeting them specifically at red hair, which fades much more quickly than other colours and requires careful cleansing and an injection of colour between permanent treatments to preserve intensity, and then not really doing much to address those specific concerns, they're a bit of a dud for me.

 Personally, I'll be sticking to an SLS free gentle shampoo and my home made colour conditioner to keep my red as bright and glowing as possible.

Disclosure: PR sample

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Review: Schwarzkopf Live XXL Ultra Brights Hair Colour in Pillarbox Red

Being a bottle redhead, I love any product which promises to inject plenty of bright, bold red into the hair.  Schwarzkopf's latest addition to the excellent Live range is this semi-permanent offering, called Ultra Brights.  High claims indeed.  The important thing to note is that it's designed to be used on pre-lightened hair for ultimate brightness, and will only add depth and warmth to darker hair.  

In the box, you get a tube of colour creme, two sachets of aftercare conditioner, and an instruction leaflet with those terrible plastic gloves attached to it.  Throw them away, seriously.  Buy a box of Boots first aid gloves; they fit the hands much more snugly, and reduce the chances of colour getting inside them and staining your skin bright red.

Anyway, gloves aside, the kit contains everything you need to give your hair a good injection of colour.  I decided to try it out after a trip to the local swimming pool, which always leaves my hair looking a bit faded and a little bit too orange (my hair always fades to orange, and I absolutely hate it).  It took two tubes of colour to saturate my shoulder blade length, thick hair - the texture of the colour creme is quite thick and waxy, and it's not the easiest thing to distribute through the hair.  Thirty minutes later, I spent the usual ages rinsing it through.

This before-and-after isn't the best illustration as the light was completely different (thanks, British winters), but you can see that the orangey tones have been eliminated and my hair is back to full redness,  It also looks in pretty good nick, thanks to the excellent (but predictably silicone-ful) conditioner included.

Finally, a gratuitous bright-sunlight shot.  Look at that glow!

A week later, and I've found that my hair is rinsing pink when I wash it, but is still richly coloured and very shiny.  The pack says that the effect lasts 6 - 8 washes, but obviously if your hair is red or bleached to start with, it's going to last longer thanks to the staining effect.  One thing I really like about the product is that it contains plenty of suggestions of interesting ways to use it, from ombre/dip-dye, to streaks and smudging.  It also suggests you retain a bit of colour to add to a conditioner to make your own colour enhancing mask - a technique I'm a big fan of, as it really helps bright colours stay fresh.

Overall, I'm impressed with XXL Ultra Brights in Pillarbox Red - it was relatively easy to use, and gave me a great bright result which has lasted reasonably well so far.  It is, effectively, a similar product to the La Riche Directions dyes I'm so fond of, but in a more high-street accessible form, and in a complete kit rather than as a single pot of colour.  Find it now at Boots, where a pack will cost you £4.

Disclosure: One pack received as PR sample, two additional packs bought by myself thanks to my thick hair.  That means I have one pack left to make colour conditioner with.  Yay!

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Quick Pick: Schwarzkopf Igora Color Remover

This product is one of those things I've been using for years, on a regular basis, but have somehow never posted about: Schwarzkopf's Igora Color Remover is a light fluid which lifts colour stains from the skin, without drying the skin out. I used to use it to tidy up my hairline after applying at home permanent dye, and I now use it to tidy up my hairline (and my wrists, fingers, etc) after applying highly staining vegetable colour to perk my red hair up in between permanent applications.  Before I picked it up for the first time on the offchance from eBay, I would scrub at my skin with water and exfoliator to try to shift colour stains - now I just use a little squirt of this on a cotton pad.  

You'll find it on eBay, and from Salons Direct, where it'll cost around £4.  Bargain, really!

Sunday, 16 September 2012

How To: Smudging with Extreme n'Easy

The video above shows you how to get a trendy smudged look using Clairol's latest colour product, Extreme n'Easy.  Extreme n'Easy is a line of hair colours which are as easy to use as Nice n'Easy, but with a little bit more oomph and excitement in the colour lineup.  

Smudging is apparently something that's come from the ombre trend that's been so popular this year.  It's a lot more subtle looking and adds dimension and a flash of colour rather than making a big ombre-style statement.  I really like the violet-on-blonde look above - it's not too out there, but it definitely adds interest to the model's shoulder length blonde locks.  If I were blonde, I'd be tempted.  And as a redhead, I'm wondering if I could do it with black.

Extreme n'Easy is available at Boots and costs £5.99 a box.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Quick Pick: Fudge Redhead Colour Conditioning Treatment

I regularly cover my hair with a home made colour treatment to keep my red hair as bright and non-orange as possible.  So, when I heard that Fudge make a ready made colour boosting treatment, I had to give it a shot.  And I'm actually incredibly impressed - unlike some colour conditioners, which barely add any colour at all, this one is highly pigmented - so much so that I stained my hands in applying it!  Left on for fifteen minutes, it left my hair looking shiny and with a glowing red tint.  It's not the most conditioning thing I've ever tried, and those with super dry hair might find that they need a bit more in the moisture department, but for a colour boost, this is the best treatment I've yet to find.

The colour conditioning treatment is available in brunette, blonde, copper and mahogany as well as the red shade I tried.  Find it at Feel Unique, where two 25ml sachets costs £4.30.

Disclosure: PR sample

Monday, 13 February 2012

Quick Pick: Davines NOUNOU Conditioner for Colour Treated Hair

First off - I can't read the label of this conditioner without giggling.  Nounou just sounds a little too much like a word you'd use to describe your ladybits than I'd like.  Smuttiness aside, this conditioner is damn amazing.  It comes in a large 250ml deli-style tub, and I was rather surprised to find that this rich, nourishing conditioner isn't actually the richest, most nourishing in the range (there's also a treatment mask you leave in the hair for longer).

The texture is thick and unctuous, with plenty of slip, meaning that it's easy to work a small scoop into the mid lengths and ends, even if your hair is insanely frizzy, dry or coarse.  Left in for five to ten minutes, it rinses out cleanly and leaves the hair feeling well moisturised, smooth and shiny - and very effectively detangled - without weighing it down.  Having tried conditioners recently that have felt a little underpowered, I'm really pleased to have found one which really performs.  Particularly at the very reasonable price of £13.70 for a large tub.  I'll definitely be repurchasing when the tub runs dry.  If you're keen to try it, you'll find it at Cult Beauty, alongside a matching shampoo and treatment mask.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

What a difference a good blow dry makes...

... even if it's ten o'clock at night, and you've just had your colour done at the end of a long, tiring working day, and you're not wearing any makeup.  Smooth (well, as smooth as my hair gets), beautifully curled at the ends, this is the blow dry my hairdresser Silvie gave me last night.  And despite the long day, lack of makeup, and general tiredness, I felt incredibly glamourous.

How does a good blow dry make you feel?  What's your favourite blow dry look?  Let us know in the comments!

Friday, 3 December 2010

Review: Kiehl's Sunflower Colour Preserving Conditioner

A short while after starting my new job about six months ago, I wandered down the Kings Road one lunch time, only to find a Kiehl's shop.  The lady in there took me round, showing me gorgeous products, and finished off by giving me a hand massage (free of charge).  So, you know, I felt compelled to buy something - and given my never ending obsession with silicone free conditioners, I ended up walking out with a tube of the Sunflower Colour Preserving Conditioner.

Not only is it free from silicone, it's also free from sulfates and parabens.  This virtuous conditioner contains apricot kernel oil and sunflower oil, and claims to "protect colour-treated hair from becoming dry and dull".  If you go back and read that sentence again, maybe you'll agree that the name of the conditioner - which puts the emphasis on preservation - doesn't really match up with the description, which talks about dryness and dullness.  Still, this doesn't really bother me, as I don't really believe that conditioners can help preserve colour all that much - in my mind, it's the shampoo that contributes to fading.

Anyway - the absolute best thing about this product is the scent.  Despite being named for the sunflower oil, it smells gloriously, intensely, freshly of apricots, in a way that takes me back to being a teenager, purchasing Aapri cleanser (which I thought was so expensive at around £4) and using it oh-so-slowly, whilst luxuriating in the scent.  It's a good thing that the instructions for this state that it should be left on the hair for a few minutes, as I very much enjoy relaxing for a short while, just inhaling the scent.  It lasts for around an hour after rinsing, and while it's a shame that it doesn't last longer, I suspect it would interfere with fragrance if it did.

The texture is thick, rich and creamy, and despite the lack of silicone, it does have a decent amount of slip, distributing through the hair easily.  After rinsing, my hair always feels soft, and thanks to the thickness of the product it clings to the hair well enough to help with stubborn tangles.

I've also found that a teeny tiny dab of this conditioner is effective as a leave in conditioner; despite the richness, it's pretty light in texture, and a drop or two doesn't overload the hair so long as it's kept close to the ends.  Added bonus is that the sumptuous fragrance sticks around a little longer, too.

Overall - I love this conditioner.  However, at a whopping £18 for 200ml, this isn't the kind of conditioner most people can afford to use on a regular basis.  For a special treat, though, it's gorgeous - mostly because of the scent.

If you'd like to try Kiehl's Sunflower Colour Preserving Conditioner for yourself, you'll find it in Kiehl's stores, department store counters, or online, where it will cost £18 for 200ml.

What do you think?  Would you buy a conditioner (or any product bar perfume!) purely for the scent?
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