Just Charlie G

My bleached hair needs considerable more care and attention since I’ve gone blonder. I use a lot of serums and oils on my hair to smooth away the frizzies. I had frizzy hair before bleach, but it is worse now. It’s also dryer. Luckily, through having a great hairdresser and taking good care of my hair, it doesn’t seem to be terribly damaged.

I’m always looking for great products to help my hair stay as strong as possible and keep the frizzies at a minimum.

Step forward, Color Wow Kale Cocktail – Bionic Tonic.

Color Wow Kale CocktailOkay, so this is a sort of leave in conditioner/treatment. The Kale Cocktail is for strengthening weak hair, prone to breakage.  There are two others in the range, Coconut Cocktail for dry hair and Carb Cocktail for fine or limp hair. If you have more than one of these problems, you can use more than one of these, so long as you use Kale first as this is absorbed into the hair shaft.

To use, shake the bottle really well, and then apply a coin sized amount of product to damp hair and comb through. Then style your hair as normal. The results you will see are improved when you apply heat to your hair.

Kale is sulphur rich  and helps reinforce the hair, and the cocktail is full of Amino Acids and B vitamins.

This smooths and detangles my hair leaving it much smoother and feeling amazing. One thing I can’t stand is the feel of product in my hair and this doesn’t leave any trace of product in my hair, just the sense that it is “better”.

The bottle is £22 for 200ml, it’s a substantial amount of product considering how little you use each wash. This bottle is going to last for a long time. As it’s proven so effective on my hair I’m using it every wash and its barely gone down. That’s what I’d call value for money.

It’s not a total miracle for me, it doesn’t give me perfect silky locks. However, it has made such an impact on how my hair feels strength wise. It has also made a big impact on the frizz. With results like that it is now part of my routine and I will definitely get more in future, in fact, I might treat myself to a bottle of the Coconut Cocktail because I’m so confident in the product (and in fact the brand) that I think the two together could be miraculous for my hair!

I’ve tried several Color Wow products now and they are all great, if you are looking for a starting product to introduce you to the brand, definitely pick up one of these.

Head over to Color Wow to pick up one of these Bionic Tonics and while you are there check out the Root Cover Up powders too!

*Product received free of charge for review purposes

Bleach London Silver

Today I’ve got a Massive Rave for you. To begin at the beginning, a year ago my hair was like this:

10560961_1599460076947268_189398091_nIf you regularly read my blog you’ll notice that my hair has been getting lighter and lighter thanks to my fab hairdresser Laura. It was beautiful warm tones but I’ve been wanting to try taking my hair cooler for quite some time, I’m cool toned anyway so I just wanted to know what it’d be like and last week Laura came round and took me the lightest I’ve been with a gorgeous balayage colour but it was still pretty warm. Cooling the tone down was up to me so I hit up Boots and decided upon the Bleach London Silver Shampoo and Conditioner in order to take out some of the yellow and warm tones in my hair.

So here’s how my hair looked the morning after it was recently done. Sorry, it’s not styled!

Bleach London Silver

Silver shampoos and conditioners work by neutralising brassy tones, and so the products are violet. In the case of the Bleach London products the shampoo is incredibly vividly coloured, it’s hard to believe it won’t leave your hair purple, while the conditioner is a much more pastel shade.

Bleach London Silver Bleach London Silver

The recommendations are to use the shampoo every other wash, but I have been using it every single wash, and I’m using the conditioner once a week but using my normal conditioner at every other wash. The silver shampoo feels a bit odd to use, it doesn’t seem to distribute easily through my hair, its not terrible but its a bit of effort, but I would say that it leaves my hair very clean, but it also seems slightly drying. Not a concern, my hair feels like silk after I’ve conditioned. The conditioner is creamy and smooth and works as well as my usual conditioners.

After the first wash I didn’t notice any difference in my hair, but after two washes it was markedly cooler. I am amazed!

Bleach London Silver It’s now a couple of weeks on and my hair is amazing. Alright, the next photo has an instagram filter on it, but my hair is so blonde, so soft and I love it so much I want more blonde!
Bleach London Silver The Bleach London Shampoo and Conditioners are £6 each for 250ml bottles and I was worried that as I have such thick hair I’d get through the product really quickly but its lasting really well. The scent is light and inoffensive but the results are incredible and speak for themselves! My hair also feels amazing which is pretty important when you’re bleaching your hair!

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend. I purchased mine from Boots, but you can also purchase from BleachLondon online.

*products purchased by me with my own money!

I’ve never quite “got” dry shampoo…however, in recent years I’ve taken to having a can around, just in case. I’m not a huge fan of the smells of any that I’ve tried and I often find that despite brushing through, I can still feel product in my hair and it still feels dirty.

But. I adore every single thing I’ve tried by Aveda, many of which are staples for me now, so I was pretty pleased to give their newest product a try. Aveda Shampure Dry Shampoo.

Aveda Dry Shampoo The Aveda Shampure range hasn’t let me down yet and I love the shampoo and conditioner, they smell amazing, so this is a welcome new addition to the line up. It’s a 99.8% naturally derived powder formula, with ingredients such as Cassava and oat to absorb oils and 25 pure flower and plant essences for the beautiful signature scent. Rather cleverly, this is not an aerosol. In fact, what you have a little hole at the top, that is covered, but when you twist the lid and expose the hole, all you have to do is give the bottle a light squeeze and the product shoots out just like an aerosol.

Aveda Dry Shampoo Aveda Dry Shampoo I’d definitely recommend having a test before aiming at your hair, just to get a feel for how much product is being released.

It’s so easy to use, simply section your hair and apply to your roots, and then massage in, you can then brush through and style. It leaves my hair smelling freshly washed and the scent lingers for me, and it leaves my hair feeling clean too. Not freshly washed clean, but certainly much cleaner than before use. More importantly, my hair looks clean and I can dispense with the need to scrape my hair back into a ponytail. It also works well to revive a style, great if you have layers, just add to your roots, massage in and hey presto, volume and definition. I know its an expensive product, but it really is in a different league altogether from cheaper brands I’ve tried, the fresh scent alone is a huge selling point for me. Definitely recommend this one.

The Shampure Dry Shampoo is £22 for 60ml and a refill is £18 for the same amount minus the spray top available now from Aveda.

*Product received free of charge for review purposes

 

Osmo is a hair care brand I wasn’t familiar with at all, however, I had heard the name. It’s surprising really that I’m not more familiar with the brand as they have just celebrated their 15th Anniversary so they are not a small brand, in fact, as a professional brand, they are known and loved the world over but professionals and their clients.

To celebrate the anniversary, the 1st of June saw Osmo relaunch with new look packaging as well as having been busy creating new products to compliment their existing lines.

The range is huge, there is something there for everyone, whether you’re looking for shampoo, conditioner, treatment masks or styling products. Whatever your hair type, there’s something suitable.

I received the Osmo Colour Mission Silverising Shampoo, Silverising Violet Mask and the the Violet Protect and Tone Styler to try out. The range is designed for highlighted, bleached and blond shades, as well as silver and grey hair, and aims to tone your colour,  neutralising yellow, without stripping. Actually, the range isn’t ideal for my hair as I want to keep my warm tones and I was afraid to really try it out in case I lost the warmth, but I tried them out anyway, just a couple of times so I could see how my hair felt.

Osmo SilverisingJust to give you the low down on my hair, its very very fine but I have a lot of of it so my hair appears to be incredibly thick. It’s also quite dry thanks to the blonde, and very prone to frizz. I can tell usually on the first use whether a product is good for my hair or not by the way my hair feels while the products are in use, if they are not moisturising enough my wet hair feels like dreadlocks, and its awful when its dry. The Osmo products are sulphate free and this too can have an effect on my hair, making it feel dryer and creating more frizz.

I’m pleased to report all of the above products passed the test on my tricky hair. The Silverising Shampoo is not a new product, it’s just had a new design. Its a glorious purple colour and left my hair clean and soft, while producing a lovely lather. The Violet Mask is a beautiful product too. Apply it to your towel dried hair and leave on for 3-5 minutes, or, if your hair is particularly dehydrated, leave it on for 10-15 minutes, then rinse out.

These two products felt so gorgeous on my bleach damaged hair, and left my hair soft, clean and manageable. Perfect. The Silverising Violet Protect and Tone Styler is another new product, essentially it’s a leave-in conditioner, that tones your hair too. It protects against heat damage and unwanted brassiness. I have a love hate relationship with leave-in conditioners, they often make my hair feel unclean, or give me spots on my scalp, this however didn’t. It just left my hair soft and manageable again.

Although these weren’t the perfect products for my hair, and I won’t continue using them, there’s no denying the quality, or how gorgeous my hair felt after use. So much so I will now look into the other products and purchase something from Osmo that is perfect for my hair. I’m thinking perhaps the Colour Save line, or the Blinding Shine line or even the Deep Moisturising products.

Price Info:

OSMO Colour Mission Silverising Shampoo £7.90

OSMO Colour Mission Silverising Conditioner £7.90

OSMO Colour Mission Silverising Violet Mask 100 ml £3.00 300ml £7.95

OSMO Colour Mission Violet Protect and Tone Styler £8.80

The new look products haven’t launched yet on the Osmo website, however, you can use the Where To Buy section of the site to find your nearest stockist.

*Products received free of charge for review purposes.

If you’ve been a reader for a little while, you’ll be aware that my hair underwent something of a transformation in January. I went from incredibly dark brown hair to a lighter shade (you can read my post here). Since then, I’ve actually gone a little more blonde, and while we’ve sensibly been doing it gradually, bleach inevitably has an effect on your hair’s condition and for me its incredibly dry. It’s not, thankfully, terribly split, but I needed to take action to restore some moisture before it all started to break off.  As it was, when I washed it it was just turning into a huge tangle which was incredibly hard to brush out after washing, and once dry, there was no escaping the frizz, my hair could only be described as looking fluffy. And not in a cute way.

I’m a long term user of Aveda Shampure products but with my hair in this condition, my usual products were just not doing me any favours at all so I decided to try something new.  It wasn’t hard to work out what to try because when my I leave the hairdresser, my hair is soft, smooth and frizz free, so I opted to try out the brand my salon uses. Tigi.

I’ve actually used lots of Tigi products over the years, and liked them, but none have been as effective as my current selection of products, so I thought I’d share with you.

P1170063

 

The Tigi Urban Anti-dotes range comes in three “strengths”. 1 – Re-energise is for tired, weak, blah hair, 2 – Recovery is for dull moisture deprived hair, and 3- Resurrection is for hair in need of serious intervention.  I opted for the Resurrection Shampoo and Conditioner as well as the Treatment Mask. I bought the HUGE shampoo and conditioner bottles in my local B&M for £9.99 while the Treatment Mask came from Fragrance Direct and cost me £8.99 I think. From the first use of these I could feel a huge difference in my hair, mainly because as I was washing my hair wasn’t knotting up. My hair felt clean and soft and tangle free. The treatment mask is to be used once a week and I don’t honestly notice any great difference after using it but I’ll keep going with it because the improvement in my hair overall is fantastic. The products are very highly scented though so that’s something to be aware of if you prefer your products to not smell strongly.

I nearly always let my hair dry naturally, blow drying once a week, sometimes less often, but even with this fab products I was noticing that although my hair felt considerably less dry, and not at all tangly, I was definitely a bit more fluffy than I like, (although much less fluffy than before I got these products), so I opted to add a couple more products to my routine to style and finish.

P1170079

 

I bought the Ego Boost and Headrush products from Fragrance Direct as before. Ego Boost (£9.99) is a Split End Mender and Leave In Conditioner which I use in two ways, the first is to use a pump or two to cover all of my hair while it’s damp and comb through, the other is once my hair is dry to use a tiny amount to smooth over any split ends or remaining fluff. It works like a charm to get frizz free hair. Finally Headrush (£8.99) is shine in a bottle, and I just spritz it all over for shine and sleekness.

The end result is smooth, moisturised, frizz free hair, I couldn’t be happier. So if your hair is suffering from over processing, I’d recommend all of the above which I bought with my own money.

As a blogger, over the years I’ve become wary about announcing Holy Grail products because you never know what’s out there that you haven’t discovered yet, or hasn’t yet been invented, but this product here is as close to a Holy Grail product as I can recommend.

If you’re not used to the concept (I was aware of it but had never tried), it can take a bit of getting used to but here we have one product that promises to Cleanse, condition, detangle, enhance volume, eliminate frizz and reduce blow drying time.

This is the Macadamia Natural Oil Flawless Cleansing Conditioner.

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It dispenses as  gel, turns to mousse as you spread it between your hands and as you apply it to your hair it does not lather.

To quickly tell you about my existing routine, I usually shampoo which leaves my hair very tangled and at worst dreadlock-y, then apply a lot of conditioner and work it through the tangles. I then leave the conditioner in while I do all my other shower jobs, then rinse, and often it takes a lot of rinsing to get conditioner out.

With this, my shower time is cut dramatically. Now I get in the shower, wash, shave whatever needs shaving, dispense a couple of pumps of this to my hair, smooth it through and work it in quickly, then rinse out immediately. After I apply a hair oil or serum.

It takes a minute or two at most. Despite the lack of lather my hair is left clean, shiny, and tangle free. It’s incredible. The first time I used it, I expected my hair to still be dirty when it was dry, but it it wasn’t.

So simple and quick to use and so effective. I’m not sure about reducing drying time but every other claim seems to be correct. Its quite literally amazing.

There is a catch though, and this is purely a question of priorities and budget. I think it’s really expensive.  I had a 90ml can which retails at £8.75 but it lasted a fortnight which isn’t long. However, there’s a 250 ml can which costs £25.75 and would last longer… but it’s still expensive. That said, you’re buying the equivalent of three products in place of one, shampoo, conditioner and serum/oil, and if the brands you usually buy aren’t cheap then this is probably great value.

It’s certainly worth the money, my dry hair LOVES it, and I’m not a fan of showering so anything that makes the process quicker is well worth it in my book.

Absolutely brilliant, and I’m very very impressed.

At last, an idea so simple you wonder why it’s not been done before.

Concoction Professional Haircare

Okay so the deal is that you can have your own personal shampoo mixed, that will be geared exactly to your tastes/hair.

It’s simple, Pick your shampoo scent, the choices are Lemon Verbena, Bakhour (incense), Rosemary & Mint and Black Pepper Citrus). Each shampoo base is the same, enriched with essential oils, vitamin E, Pro Vitamin B5 and each is free of parabens and silicone and also contains an ionic system which means detangling, anti-static and frizz free hair.

Then you, the customer choose two out of the eight Superserums, (Back to your Roots (caring for your roots and scalp), Beautiful Brunette, Curl Me Up, Gimme More Moisture, High Definition Blonde, Ravishing Red, Thermo-Straight and Turn Up the Volume). They are then added to the base, shaken like a cocktail and sold to you for £14 each. It means you can tailor your hair care in many ways and it’s ingenious. Then there’s a Creme de Concoction Conditioner in Cashmere & White Lily (£16)

So I was sent Rosemary and Mint Shampoo, along with the High Definition Blonde and Turn Up the Volume Superserums. I mixed mine myself naturally and it was simple to do.
Concoction Professional Haircare

I wouldn’t have chosen the Rosemary and Mint Shampoo myself as I’m not keen on the smell, and I wouldn’t have chosen the Volumising Serum either as my hair has volume in abundance but the High Definition Blonde superserum I definitely would have chosen for my blonde highlights. Still undaunted I gave it ago. Not a massive fan of the Rosemary & Mint scent as I already mentioned but there’s no doubting this is a fantastic shampoo. On my hair it sort of enhances the volume rather than sending my hair crazy with volume thank goodness, but then that’s partly to do with how I style it. Other than that it leaves my hair completely tangle free (which isn’t often the case with silicone shampoos!) and very very soft. It’s very impressive. Plus it lathers beautifully too which I always like in a shampoo.

Then there’s the Cashmere &White Lily Conditioner which is again very beautiful and does lovely lovely things to my hair. I’ve recently gone a bit blonder and I find the blonde stays looking bright and shiny with this range and you can’t ask for more than that.

You can go to the main Beauty Hall in Selfridges to have your products mixed for you and you’ll be asked to leave your name and email address so you can go online and order your own blend easily. But this is only until the 8th August I believe and thereafter you can purchase from either Concoction.co.uk or Selfridges.com.

*Disclosure – PR Samples*

Well here’s a range  for coloured hair that boasts quite the pedigree. Colur Wow was developed by Gail Federici and John Frieda and formulated by Dr Joe Cincotta, the scientist behind many of the Federici and Frieda products.

The range is designed to help keep your hair looking exactly as it did the day it was coloured and it’s a small but perfectly formed range.

I’ve actually had the range here waiting to be tried for quite some time but my hair was already quite faded so I was hanging on until I had it coloured again to give the products I have a road test.

So to start with, the Color Security Shampoo and Conditioner.

Color Wow Color Security Shampoo and Conditioner

I received the 75ml bottles for review purposes which will set you back a hefty £9 each, which for what are essentially travel bottles I think is really extortionate. I have also found that they haven’t lasted long enough for me to really put the claims to the test (particularly the conditioner as I need so much on my thick tangly hair). So here’s my thoughts, firstly, these are sulfate free, and normally for me this is disastrous, but on this occasion I managed to get a rich lather which spread through my hair with ease. It has a variety of scientific sounding ingredients and technologies to help protect your colour, none of which I understand, but what I can tell you is that after colouring, in the few washes afterwards I usually lose some colour, before it settles down and stops… I’ve not noticed any colour fading or loss at all with these products. Granted, I’ve probably only got about two weeks worth of use from these bottles (or rather, just the conditioner, I’ve still got plenty of shampoo left), but I’m impressed. The products I’ve been using are for normal to thick hair but both products are available for fine to normal hair as well. My hair is soft and shiny and really quite lovely.  Oh and the conditioner rinses out with ease too. I still think that these are very expensive, (£9 for 75ml and £16.50 for 250ml per bottle), but if colour loss is something you struggle with, it’s well worth checking the range out.

The other item I’ve been trying out is the Pop & Lock Crystallite Shellac (£14)

Color Wow pop & lock crystallite Shellac

color wow pop & lock crystallite shellac
This gorgeous iridescent serum is designed to coat the hair with a protective layer to make colour pop. It seals cuticles to lock the colour in and keep dryness at bay. I’ve been using this religiously and in conjunction with the shampoo and condition and as I say, so far I’m not spotting any fading at all, in addition this adds shine and as an important bonus it has a UV filter to help prevent colour fade. This is a fabulous product. I also find this to be reasonably priced since you need so little. The only complaint I do have is that I’d appreciate a guide to how much I should use.  You can apply to wet or dry hair but I have no idea how much, so I’ve tended to just use a very small amount as I would with any serum. I’ve not seen or felt it’s presence in my hair, so no greasyness or added weight. Very nice!

The range is available from www.colorwowhair.com and is certainly worth a look if you colour your hair. I’d be especially interested to know how it fares on those shades that traditionally fade fast, like reds!

Other products in the range include Root Cover Up powders which I’d be very tempted to try if they weren’t £28.50 each, but they do sound ideal, especially as my grey roots come through so fast, there’s also a styling cream and mousses for banishing brassiness.

*PR Samples*

Really loving Mark Hill hair products at the moment! I’m using lots of them on rotation but I’d give you a quick run down of my three favourites today.

Starting with Only Takes a Minute – 60 Second Detox Gloss Treatment.

Mark Hill 60 Second Detox Gloss Treatment

A really fantastic budget product! Does exactly what it says on the tin (so to speak). Shampoo, then slap on this stuff. Shave your legs or something then rinse away and get lovely glossy hair. Really impressed. At £6.29 this is a great product to have in your arsenal. I’m using once a week as I’m alternating with other lovely products but I’d probably go for twice a week if I wasn’t.

Next, Colour Blast Hydration Bomb Intensive Treatment.

Mark Hill Colour Blast Hydration Bomb Intensive Treatment

Another product that does exactly what it says on the tin. A creamy cocktail of ingredients to intensively treat coloured hair. Apply all over, leave it on for at least three minutes, or as long as overnight if you wish, then rinse it out, thoroughly. Really effective and leaves my hair silky smooth after use. I’ve yet to try it for any great length of time, going for five minutes as a rule when I’m in the shower. I use in place of my usual conditioners, and again, I’m going for about once a week. £6.49. Again, great value.

Finally (for today!) Magic Drops Rescue & Repair Treatment.

Mark Hill Magic Drops Rescue & Repair Treatment

For a while I just thought this was a finishing serum. I don’t know why, I read the title of the product and totally disregarded it. I think just because of the style of packaging I just made an assumption. Anyway, it’s not, it’s a repair treatment that is full of vitamins and minerals. They recommend a drop is all you need (I use two drops worth (although it’s hard to gauge what a drop is when it’s a cream that comes out of a pump!)). I apply it  all over my damp hair before styling as usual, you don’t need to rinse it out and you can use it on dry  hair as well if you prefer. It suits me really well, I tend to use this on my hair when it’s damp, then dry my hair, or leave it to dry, and once dry use an oil or finishing serum. This product is also £6.49.

I really like this range which is broken down into catgories, for coloured hair, de-frizzing, straight hair, big hair, holiday hair, Big Night Out and so on and its effective and purse friendly. I’m using the above in conjunction with a shampoo and conditioner which isn’t quite right for my hair type but still leaves my hair silky soft and my hairs looking and feeling great at the moment.

You can buy all of the above from www.boots.com.

*PR Samples*

Yuko Phitenbella Shampoo & Conditioner

I have to confess I’d not heard of Yuko hair products before now but I’m well and truly sold, this shampoo and conditioner are absolutely wonderful.

Yuko are a Japanese brand, created in 1996 by Yuko Yamashita and I understand the brand’s speciality is Straightening. Yuko worked together with Phiten, a Japanese sports, health and beauty company to create a range of products. I’m not sure how long the range has been available in the UK, but I’m surprised not to have heard of them before now as the products are so great.

I’ve been using the Phitenbella Shampoo and Phitenbella Treatment which are the products designed for dry/chemically treated hair and they contain both collagen and keratin. I note both products contain silicones.  I must stress as always that I don’t mind one jot about silicones, and I think my hair really needs them, most of my adventures with silicone-less shampoos have resulted in fly away, frizzy and eventually dry hair. I only mention silicones for those who prefer to avoid them. Personally, I actively look for them in my hair products 😉

I’ve been using these regularly, and these alone, for several weeks and my (which is quite processed) is soft, shiny and silky smooth. I don’t feel any product build up and an essential thing for me, it rinses away with ease so I don’t ever feel I have product in my hair.

Yuko Phitenbella Shampoo & Conditioner

Highly recommended. You can purchase from http://yuko-london.com/ where the Treatment and shampoo both retail at £12.50.

*Disclosure – PR Samples*