Saturday, March 15th, 2008

Terax’s Crema ($20.00), Hydrate Botanica ($20.00), and Gloss ($16.00)

Crema is a daily conditioner suitable for all hair types that has a very light, more herbal-natural scent (though not the “bad” natural scent, ha!). It is an intense moisturizer that helps to heal and restore split ends and breakage. It is supposed to alter the pH level of your hair, open the cuticle to increase moisture, and reduce frizziness. To apply, add to damp hair after shampooing and leave on for 1-2 minutes. For deeper conditioning, leave on for up to fifteen minutes.

What I really liked about this was that it told me how long to leave it in my hair for, because I always wonder how long is the right amount for many hair care products (especially since I am hair care-stupid). I also loved that a small amount was enough for all of my long, thick hair, and I didn’t feel like it got stuck or used up halfway through application. I felt like it let me “spread” it all over my hair with a single dollop-always a huge plus in my book! And can I just say that deeper conditioning and regular conditioning in the same product is phenomenal?

Hydrate Botanica is a leave-in moisturizer that is supposed to help refresh normal and stressed hair. It is lightly scented with cucumber and green tea, culminating in a nice, herbal-esque aroma. It advertises its “Naturina Complex,” which is exclusive to Terax products. This particular complex includes Vitamins A-D, chamomile, yarrow, nettle, fennel, sage, and hops. It sure does sound natural to me! All of these extracts are meant to infuse hair with antioxidants to help against environmental damage to hair/scalp.

I’m not really a leave-in conditioner kind of gal, mostly because I am low-maintenance when it comes to hair. Less is totally more for me! It does leave my hair feeling soft, but I just always feel like I should be washing my hair after putting product in it, especially a conditioner. The scent is lightly floral and reminds me spring. Unlike traditional rinse-out conditioners, this product is much thinner and more liquid. I found that I had to be careful or else I would spill way more than I needed onto my palm. Overall, I felt like this would better serve someone who preferred or required a leave-in versus a rinse-out conditioner.

Gloss is a finishing serum to help tame flyaways with a concentrated silicone serum that also adds shine without weight (and there is no oil in it). They use Vitamin E to also protect against free radical damage (can I show my hair care ignorance-I didn’t know free radicals damaged the hair!). I really liked this for when I left my hair down, because I could easily smooth it over the crown of my head to minimize strays, frizzies, and flyaways, which I hate to see. The bottle is small in size (though I think you’ll get plenty of uses out of it), so it’s totally convenient to stash in your purse for on-the-run fixes.

Have you tried Terax products? If so, what did you think? Favorite products?

Monday, March 10th, 2008

T3 Bespoke Labs Featherweight ($200.00)

T3′s Featherweight Dryer revolutionized styling for professionals and women everywhere with T3′s pioneering use of Tourmaline and innovative design. With its sleek, lightweight design, this dryer boasts up to 60% faster drying time than conventional dryers and controls the frizz, improves the shine and delivers healthy-looking, well-conditioned hair. Perfect for everyday use and a real time-saver in the morning.

The secret is T3′s patented Flawless process for infusing high-quality tourmaline deep into the ceramic componentry of the tools to create the maximum negative ions and far infrared heat, eliminating static electricity, decreasing drying times and creating sleeker, shinier, healthy-looking hair. As well as first-class patented technology, the range of T3 tools include premium features such as pro-length, swivel cords which ensure ease of use for top notch results.

Before I get the dryer’s effectiveness, let me tell you more about my hair and routine, so you can understand my own expectations in a dryer. I have normal hair in terms of dryness or oiliness, but I have a lot of hair, and it is very thick. Whenever I go to my hairdresser, I am bound to hear, “You have enough hair for two heads!” Generally, when I get my hair trimmed (layers), I also get it thinned a bit. However, it has been quite awhile since I’ve had a trim, so I’m sporting fairly long hair (past my breasts), and it has thickened since my last thinning.

Normally, I never blow dry my hair dry from start to finish. Usually, I throw my hair up in a towel for twenty minutes or so and vigorously use towel-drying to get rid of a lot of the water. I’ll blow dry my hair in five minute intervals (I hate blow drying, it feels like such a waste of my time!), and it will take approximately 15-20 minutes of high-heat blow drying to dry completely.

I have been toying around with the idea of purchasing a more high-tech, high-end blow dryer, like the T3 Featherweight, which I have heard raves about. The idea of paying $200 for a dryer is something that makes me cringe, because I simply could not believe that it would be worth it. I mean, I’ve been using a Conair that I probably paid $20 for that’s travel-size with a retractable cord, so it was a big leap.

It is worth the price. As soon as I received my T3 in the mail, I went to take a shower and wash my hair, because I could not wait to see whether it would live up to the hype. I asked my boyfriend to time me from start to finish–I was going to stand there until it was done, no matter how much time went by–and guess what the time was? Five minutes. Five full minutes and my long, thick hair was entirely dry from root to tip. For me, that’s about a 60 to 75% decrease in the amount of time I need to get my hair dry. The way the air blows out is in a conical shape, sort of a precise shape, and it doesn’t come out too hot, despite being an 1800 watt dryer (whew!). It is incredibly light, weighing in at 13 oz (honestly, it felt even lighter than that to me!), which is always a plus. My hair also dried with good volume and few fly-aways, which is always a concern.

The only drawbacks about this product is that on the Featherweight model, you have two speed settings (high and low), plus a cool shot, but the speed settings is right on the handle and it is pretty easy to flip it on/off while amidst drying. I’d probably want more of a button than a flip switch, but I imagine you get used to it once you are conscious of it. Also, I very much loved the retractable cord feature on my previous blow dryer, because it makes it a breeze to pack and put it away. Nonetheless, these are small negatives, and the positives completely makeup for them.

I do wish I had tried out the Evolution model instead, after realizing how easy to use it would have been (I was totally intimidated by the eight speed/heat settings and whatnot–I thought it would be more dryer than I needed). But when T3′s dryers come with a four year warranty, I don’t see the Evolution in my future any time soon!

Have you tried one of T3′s dryers? Loved it? Hated it? Share your review!

– Get more information on T3 and its range at www.t3tourmaline.com.

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

SamyPure All Natural Smooth & Shine Shampoo/Conditioner ($5.99 each)

Sometimes I am skeptical about natural products, because I haven’t had the best experienes in the past with this genre of products. I am happy to say that SamyPure’s Shampoo and Conditioner system works as well as my last reviewed shampoo set by Herbal Essences. I actually found the shampoo lathered quite nicely! The scent is a pleasing spring-floral blend with just a touch of fruity sweetness underlying it (very, very subtle–not at all overwhelming).

I liked the way it felt in my hair, and it left my hair silky and smooth, which is always desirable (duh). I didn’t notice any change in my normal hair texture (I don’t have any hair problems, so I judge hair products’ effectiveness more on whether they give me hair problems), so I give this set a thumbs up.

I was thinking that it was a salon product, but in fact, it’s a drugstore product. Why did I think it was a salon product? Because it is a 100% Vegan product, which means no animal testing, no animal by-products, etc. I know several readers absolutely abhor animal testing, and some make sure that their products are Vegan-approved.

What’s great about drugstore products is you can often find a detailed list of ingredients and information about them online, like Walgreen’s has everything you need to know about this conditioner.

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship Shampoo & Conditioner (each $2.99 for 12 oz.) is part of Herbal Essences line of new products devoted to protecting and caring for long hair. Me? Yes, totally long hair, and I have always been a fan of the Herbal Essences line (really, I think from the beginning nearly!). I switch shampoo/conditioner often, but it was good to try their newest release.

I love the scent, which is red raspberries, because I am a raspberry addict. You know what’s great? I use these products, and I find myself compelled to match with philosophy’s raspberry sorbet shower gel! I digress… the scent is subtle, not overwhelming, and I found my hair was soft smelling throughout the day. It isn’t an overly sweet or cloying scent, so I think most people will enjoy it.

While my hair is far from fussy, I did notice that I could go longer between washes before my hair would seem oily (3 days versus usual 2). And these products do not do anything for drying time, I swear my hair dried faster since starting to use these (10 minutes versus 15, with a regular, aging blow dryer). I even asked the PR rep about the drying time, and she said it doesn’t–but it did for me!

Saturday, December 8th, 2007

von Natur’s Complete Hair & Body Conditioner / Wash($17.00)

Paraben free & sulfate free, Complete Hair & Body Wash and Complete Hair & Body Conditioner. Organic, toxin free, and non-comedogenic are just few of the many features of von Natur’s hair products. These hair products revitalize your scalp, hair, and skin with an all natural creation that has been specially formulated to promote growth. This unisex formula is good for all hair types and maintains a low pH balance which is highly recommended for the wellness of your hair and skin.

What makes it worth it: As I am always on the prowl for the latest in beauty trends, going organic and natural is definitely pulling in a lot of fans these days. I thought to try von Natur’s latest line of Exquisite Bath products, which included a Complete Hair & Body Conditioner and Wash. The Hair & Body Wash is similar to that of most shampoo, a bit thinner in consistency, but I adored the lemony citrus scent. It lathered great on the body, as well. The conditioner uses Charcoal in it, as one of its unique ingredients, which is meant to pull out impurities for truly healthy hair. It creates a protective coating to help keep moisture locked in while reducing static electricity. Normally I use typical shampoos found at drugstores, but I really loved how shiny my hair looked using this combination of products. I also found the scent to be more pleasant than other shampoo/conditioner combinations I’ve used in the past (I love that they match). Also, who doesn’t love that you can use these on your hair and body?

Why you might pass on it: If you’re a fan of ulta thick, luxe shampoos, you won’t love von Natur’s, which is thinner with a higher liquidity. If you need something specific to your type of hair, colored hair, etc., you may prefer something that is targeted rather than general (it is recommended for all hair types, though!).

Find this product at www.vonnatur.com.

Wednesday, September 26th, 2007

Hamadi Beauty is a haircare line that promotes a healthy and modern view on the approach to hair products by never compromising quality by using artificial ingredients. Jamal Hammadi is the founder and creator of Hamadi Beauty, and he was born and raised in California. He says that his creative vision and passion is the result of, “growing up in a creative household and was greatly influenced by his mother’s Parisian style, and also by his father, a gifted chef who worked with the Hollywood elite.” He has a solid reputation for creating amazingly glamorous hairstyles, and he has had his work featured on covers like Vanity Fair, Marie Claire, Jane, and InStyle. He’s worked with stars such as Drew Barrymore, Linda Evangelista, Sharon Stone, Naomi Watts, just to name a few. Hamadi Beauty is Jamal’s answer to the absence of organic hair products. All products are “tested on actresses, never animals.”

Now, onto some product reviews!

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