Thursday, 27 November 2014

Dry Shampoo: Battle of the Brands

Thank God for dry shampoo. Am I right? On days of unexpected greasiness slash laziness, it's an absolute lifesaver. 

I say this, but before now I didn't use it a lot at all. My hair doesn't get too greasy too quickly and when it does, it's also crying out for a good conditioning, so dry shampoo wasn't really my go-to in those situations. 

However since dyeing my hair a colour that fades rapidly with each wash, dry shampoo is helping me prolong my colour's vibrancy, and is a product that I would recommend to anyone struggling with fast-fading hair. 

Whenever I go to a fashion event, dry shampoo is a product that without fail makes its way into the goodie bags.  I've accumulated quite a few now, so I thought I'd  put the three biggest brands (Batiste, Tresemme and label,m) to the test on my new barnett in a battle of the brands, testing them on grease-elimination and volume. 

Obviously the most well-known, with Pixie Lott fronting their latest ad campaign and a variety of different scents and patterned cans on the shelves. The variety that Batiste has to offer is vast, and I will admit that it smells amazing. It does the job perfectly well in terms of eliminating the greasy bed-head look, however when it comes to styling and adding more volume, if you've got a gargantuan head of hair like mine, it just won't cut it. With my hair being so heavy, I need as much help as I can get when it comes to creating volume. I was also left with quite a powdery texture in my hair which really dried it out. 

For me, Tresemme is a brand I really trust. I've had a lot of success with their conditioners in the past, and I wasn't let down by this product either. I found that I needed less than I did with Batiste, and the actual feel of the product on  my hair was, as it says, refreshing. It didn't feel powdery or dry and doesn't leave any white residue at all. Didn't even need to rub it in really. Again my hair was too heavy for this to have any voluminous effect, but for a fresh, shampooed effect, this one is my favourite. A bit more expensive than Batiste, but you'll use less and it will last you longer. 

Obviously I don't use this at the moment, but when my hair was ombre I did. I know the can is tiny, and it's just a sample size. This is my favourite for texture and volume. It's the one product that can actually take on my hair and give it some lift, so if you've got a thick head of hair, or just want something a bit more heavy duty, then this is what you need. For dry shampooing, it's got a brown tint to it so that it doesn't leave any powdery marks, and it actually works well on reddy / auburn hair too. I've also tried and reviewed the larger Texturising and Volume spray which is actually quite similar, just more aimed at styling.  They're both brilliant for spraying on your hair before curling or backcombing for some extra hold and lift, whilst leaving the hair soft and pliable. 


Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Luscious Locks with Leonor Greyl

I think I speak for every girl when I say I spend an awful amount of time trying to find the ultimate hair care products. We all put our hair through an awful lot, whether it's blow-drying, straightening, dyeing/bleaching, exposure to the sun or even sea water. 

For those of you who have been reading my previous posts, you'll know that I have recently bleached the ends of my hair to create a fiery ombre look. I'm absolutely in love with it, but the amount of TLC my hair now needs has increase massively. 

There's no way of bleaching your hair without doing it damage, so the sooner you can restore your hair with the moisture and nutrients it needs, the better. 

These samples from Leonor Greyl came at the best possible time, when other products I'd tried weren't making my hair any healthier, and my ends were starting to look a bit like hay. 

Hair products are one of my favourites to review, mainly because when I discover a product that works for me, I feel like I've found hidden treasure, and I am extremely happy to say that this was the case with Leonor Greyl. 

I informed them that my hair was thick, dyed and damaged, and in response they sent me Eclat Naturel; a styling cream for dry hair (top right in reference to picture above), Shampooing Reviviscence; a deep repairing shampoo for coloured, dehydrated, damaged and brittle hair (top left), and Huile de Leonor Greyl;  a pre-shampoo treatment (bottom). 

I'm going to talk about the shampoo first because as far as I'm concerned, it's pure magic. This shampoo uses amaranth extracts which is rich in vitamins B &C to moisturize and condition, and Sea Lavender which is full of amino acids to hydrate and also prevent static electricity, so this is perfect if you're prone to frizz like me. 

I'm going to get a bit sciencey now - this shampoo works to repair your hair's lipid barrier. Basically, lipids are fats that coat your hair with an emulsion to keep it hydrated and in optimum condition. The outer surface of the hair is naturally replenished of lipids as well as keratin, which forms to create a barrier. All this contributes to the hair's elasticity. This barrier can begin to degrade as a result of common grooming practices. These are of course the bare basics of lipids and the barrier, but I feel part of finding your perfect hair treatment is to understand what it actually does. So...this shampoo basically restores the integrity of the surface of the hair. 

After using this shampoo, my hair was softer, shinier, and more manageable than I thought it was possible for bleached hair to be. The only negative I could find, if I was pushed to find one, would be that the floral smell of the shampoo is very strong, but that's only straight from the bottle. It's nowhere near as strong once your hair is dry, and  I am biased, as I'm not a big fan of floral scents. But if any of you out there are struggling with your dry or damaged hair, the shampoo alone I cannot recommend enough. 

The Huile de Leonor Greyl is a de-tangling, softening and protective pre-shampoo treatment for length and ends. Packed full of botanical oils, this product helps to protects your hair from the damaging effects of the sun, seawater, and chlorinated pool water, so this is a holiday must-have. 
I was very confused at first when attempting to use this product as to how I was supposed to get the waxy product out of the glass bottle, but the more I pondered, the warmer the bottle got in my hands, and the wax slowly started to melt into an oil. 

Confusion over, first time round I left the oil on for the recommended ten minutes, washed off and followed it with the shampoo. I think my hair was too dry at this point for ten minutes to be enough, because I didn't notice much difference, but second time round I left it on over night. I woke up with mega crispy hair, but once I washed it off, I think I may have made a noise similar to that on the Herbal Essences advert. The combination of this and the shampoo is perfect. It's literally as if they glued my split ends back together. 

The phrase less is more really applies to this product. Full of shea butter, jojoba oil and vitamins, this also protects your hair from the sun, as well as nourishing and reconditioning your dry hair. It's the kind of product you carry around in your bag for whenever you need a moisture top up; like hand cream for the hair. 

My first try of this resulted in mega greasy ends. In my desperation to rid myself of dry ends went in quite heavy handed. This is a treatment where just like shine serums, an amount the size of a pea, run through the ends of your hair with the tips of your fingers is enough. Any more and you will end up with thick greasy strands, and that's a look no one can pull off. 

So, for a brand I'd never tried or heard of before, I was more than pleasantly surprised. I am now a huge fan of Leonor Greyl, and I guarantee, within one try of their shampoo, you will be too. 

Steph x x x