Review: Marc Anthony Oil of Morrocco Sulfate Free Conditioner

250 mL/8.4 fl oz

Ulta: $7.99

http://www.ulta.com/ulta/browse/productDetail.jsp?productId=xlsImpprod4180927

 

Found on MarcAnthony.com

This conditioner is formulated with Keratin, Grape Seed Oil and Argan Oil to “nourish, strengthen and infuse moisture into your hair” as well as “fortify, add high luster and improve manageability… [and] protect from damage and color fade”. It is a very thick consistency and has a strange, almost nutty smell. The smell does not stay in the hair after the conditioner is washed out.

Ingredients:

Water, Cetrimonium Chloride, Cetyl Alcohol, Cetyl Esters, Stearyl Alcohol, Amodimethicone, Trideceth-12, Dimethicone, Cyclopentasyloxane, Behentrimonium Chloride, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Propylene Glycol, Parfum (Fragrance), Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Helianthus Anuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Keratin, Sodium PCA, Sodium Lactate, Arigine, Aspartic Acid, PCA, Glycine, Alanine, Serine, Valine, Proline, Threonine, Isoleucine, Histidine, Pheynlalanine, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Disodium EDTA

This conditioner did make my hair soft and shiny while I was using it, but I think it wasn’t so much from the nourishing keratin and argan oil as the two silicones listed above the “key” ingredients in the ingredients list. After discontinuing the conditioner, my hair was not any less dry than it was than before using the conditioner. In essence, it had no long term reparative benefits.

If you’re ok with silicones I guess this is a good product for you, but honestly I’m looking for more than surface benefits: I did not find this conditioner to “nourish” or “strengthen” jack, and it most certainly didn’t “infuse” any kind of moisture into my hair.

Rating: C

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Review: Nature’s Gate Aloe Vera Moisturizing Conditioner

18 fl oz/500 mL

Nature’s Gate: $7.79

http://natures-gate.com/Shop/item?Product=42100053&category=233&WithLinks=1

Found on Natures-Gate.com

This conditioner is advertised as “effectively condition[ing] hair while helping to restore moisture”. The Nature’s Gate exclusive “Healthy Hair Blend” include panthenol, soy proteins, vegetable proteins, jojoba oil, borage flower seed oil, vitamin C and vitamin E; these ingredients supposedly provide “enhanced body and bounce”.

Ingredients

Water, Glycerin (Vegetable Derived), Stearyl Alcohol (Vegetable Derived), Cetyl Alcohol (Vegetable Derived), Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Vegetable Derived), Benzyl Alcohol, Stearalkonium Chloride (Vegetable Derived), Panthenol, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Borago Officinalis (Borage) Seed Oil, Tocopherol Vitamin E), Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Fruit Extract, Viola Tricolor (Pansy) Extract, Sesamum Indicum (Sesame) Seed Oil, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Hydroxyethylcellulose (Plant Derived), Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Fragrance*.

* Phthalate Free

 

This conditioner lived up to most of its claims, it was reasonably hydrating and did keep my hair detangled and shiny. Essentially, it performed like any other decent conditioner on the face of the planet. If you have seriously damaged hair this might not be enough for you, but if you have anything from moderately oily hair to somewhat dry hair, this should work nicely. It also doesn’t leave any sort of residue to weigh down my semi-fine hair.

The thing that really is memorable about this product, that might make or break it, is the smell. For some inexplicable reason, it smells like Skittles. What would drive someone to wake up one morning and say, “hey, I wish my hair smelled like Skittles” is beyond me. I don’t really like that feature, it is too sweet for me. But, I can see some people enjoying this, so it really is down to personal preference. The smell also did not last in my hair so it was manageable, if not pleasant.

Overall, it was a decent conditioner, but it really didn’t blow me away. I was not a fan of the scent so I will probably not be repurchasing this again, but will finish it up.

Rating: B

 

Review: Avalon Organics Awapuhi Mango Deep Moisturizing Conditioner

14 fl oz (400 ml)

AvalonOrganics.com: $10.99

http://www.avalonorganics.com/awapuhi-mango-therapy-deep-moisturizing-conditioner

Found on AvalonOrganics.com

According to Avalon Organics, this conditioner  is “fortified with awapuhi, mango, calendula, and wheat protein for soft, vibrantly rehydrated and manageable hair”. It supposedly “infuses dry, brittle hair with intense hydration” and “conditions without stripping moisture”, while it “restores a health moisture balance in the hair and scalp” and “strengthens to protect ends without weighing hair down”. It is pH balanced and contains 70% organic content, without the use of synthetic fragrances, phthalates, harsh sulfates, or parabens.

Ingredients: 

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (1), Aqua (Water), Glyceryl Stearate SE, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil (1), Cetyl Alcohol, Stearic Acid, Stearyl Alcohol, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil (1), Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) (1), Cananga Odorata Flower Oil, Cedrus Atlantica Bark Oil, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil (1), Myrocarpus Fastigiatus, Myroxylon Pereirae (Balsam Peru) Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil (1), Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract (1), Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract (1), Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract (1), Mangifera Indica (Mango) Fruit Extract (1), Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract (1), Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Extract (1)(2), Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Sorbitol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Vanillin, Alcohol (1), Benzyl Alcohol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Benzyl Benzoate, Limonene, Linalool

(1) Certified Organic Ingredient (2) Awapuhi Extract

The thing that most bothered me about this product was its claims about its “deep moisturizing” properties. This couldn’t be further from the truth. This product doesn’t even live up to the title of “conditioner”, let alone “deep conditioner”. This literally did nothing for my hair. The product was so thin, even with huge amounts it would almost dissolve away into nothing as soon as it got on my hair. When I would get out, my hair would be just as dry and brittle before I got in. I had to use more liberal amounts of serum to compensate, so that my hair maintained some level of moisture. I guess on the bright side, it didn’t do anything detrimental to my hair, like weigh it down or make it greasy.

It smells interesting, there are some traces of the mango and ginger (awapuhi is a kind of ginger, apparently- I didn’t know that!), but the smell is more herby. I personally didn’t love it, it made me feel slightly nauseous, but honestly it doesn’t stick in your hair so its manageable. It was also not as bad as other conditioner smells, like the Organix Macademia Oil one (read my review here) or the one I am currently using by Nature’s Gate (review coming).

Another thing I noticed was the number of different kinds of alcohols in the conditioner, there are 4 separate kinds. I honestly cannot say what effect this has on hair, but this may be one of the contributing factors to the product’s poor performance.

Overall I was pretty disappointed with this product, especially considering the price and the other cool ingredients.

Rating: F

Review: Organix Hydrating Macademia Oil Conditioner

Ulta: $7.99

Found on organixhair.com

This conditioner is meant to “drench your strands in a luxurious formula to instantly hydrate and smooth parched, dry hair while mending split ends for a luscious, vibrant mane with brilliant shine”. It is formulated with macademia oil, bamboo extract, and sugar cane extract.

Ingredients:

Aqua (DI Water), Behentrimonium Chloride, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycol Stearate, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Ceteareth-20, Parfum, Macadamia Ternifolia Seed Oil, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract, Bambusa Vulgaris (Bamboo) Extract, Theobroma Cacao Seed Butter (Cocoa Butter), Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Leaf) Extract, Panthenol, Tetrasodium EDTA, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Red 40, Yellow 5.

So I had two major complaints with this product: first and foremost the conditioning properties, and secondly the smell. This conditioner did pretty much nothing for my hair. I had reasonably high expectations for it because of my experiences with the argan oil conditioner and what I had heard about other macademia oil products, but it really failed to impress. I don’t think that my hair was any more softer or moisturized than it would have been had I not used a conditioner at all, and was only a bit more detangled. This was especially disappointing due to the price. Though it is by no means salon brand, it is still around double the price of other drugstore conditioners. There are so many other brands that are much cheaper and perform very well. My second gripe is the smell. It smelled strongly sugar, which I assume is due to the sugar cane extract in the product. In another product maybe it would be ok, but for haircare to my nose it was just too much. Now, this is a very subjective thing, my sister happens to love the smell so maybe you would too.

 

Overall, I would not recommend this product at all, even if you like the smell or not, as it doesn’t really do much. Don’t waste your money, if you would like something from Organix I would highly recommend the argan conditioner, it works well and smells wonderful. In short, it is what I wish this product was.

 

Rating: D

Product Smackdown: Color Enhancing Conditioners for Brunettes

In one of my LBTs (see post here), I mentioned a conditioner from John Frieda that was supposed to enhance the color of brown hair. I really did like it, hence having it in a favorites post, but since then I have tried a couple more and have a little more experience in the world of color enhancing conditioners. In this post, I will be evaluating my original favorite, John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Hydration Conditioner, Guhl Farbglanz Braun Balsam-Spülung (“Color Shine Brunette Hydration Conditioner”), and the Lee Stafford Blinding Brunette Condtioner. I love this kind of conditioner because they really make my hair color look nice. Without them, my color can be a little blah. I must also say that I actually like all of these conditioners, but I do have one favorite. One thing to take note of, though, if you do decide to use one: if a glob lands on the floor of the shower, wash it off right away or it might stain. It goes away eventually, but still isn’t that fabulous.

 

John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Hydration Conditioner: ~€7/250ml (dm, Rossman)

Guhl Farbglanz Braun Balsam-Spülung: ~€3-4 (dm, Rossman)

Lee Stafford Blinding Brunette Conditioner: ~₤5-8/25 ml (Boots)

http://www.johnfrieda.de/haarpflege-produkte/brilliant-brunette/bb-hydration-conditioner

http://www.guhl.de/kollektionen/farbglanz-braun/#reflect_p03

http://www.leestafford.com/en/products/blinding-brunette/blinding-brunette-conditioner#.UQJvGxzNpYB

Found on John Frieda website

Found on Guhl website

Found on Guhl web

 

Found on Lee Stafford website

 

John Frieda Guhl Lee Stafford
Features (as found on brand websites) Restores moisture and shine to dull, dry hair

Unlocks color nuances in hair without needing to get it colored

Made with crushed pearls and tea leaf extract

Gives hair strength and shine whilst intensifying color

Noticeable flexibility

Extra-easy combability

With walnut extract

Adds moisture and shine

Enhances brown tones

UV protection

Made with walnut and henna for color and moringa seed extract for shine

Price 2nd place 1st place 3rd place
Moisturizing, shine, and softening capabilities (as decided by me) Good, made my hair nicely soft and shiny. For all conditioners, I would put it at the higher end of average.

 

3rd place

Good, made my hair nicely soft and shiny. For all conditioners, I would put it at the higher end of average. Slightly better than other two.

1st place

Good, made my hair nicely soft and shiny. For all conditioners, I would put it at the higher end of average. Slightly better than John Frieda.

2nd place

Color renewal capabilities (as decided by me) Good, brought out the brown tones well.

 

2nd place (tie)

Really good, made my hair color fresh and bright, almost like I had just colored it.

1st place

Good, brought out the brown tones well.

 

2nd place (tie)

Scent Pleasant, traditional conditioner scent but a little more chocolaty.

 

3rd place

Pleasant, very similar to John Frieda.

 

 

2nd place

LOVE, traditional Lee Stafford scent. It was funny because I hated it in the heat defense spray, but loved it here.

1st place

Packaging

 

OK, easy(ish) to get water in after you can’t squeeze product out. Not clear, though, or as sturdy as the Guhl one. Also has sharp corners.

 

 

3rd place

OK, it’s sturdy (good for travel), but is a bit harder to get out especially when getting to the end. Also it’s smaller, so you have to buy it more often.

Relatively easy to get water in. Rounded corners

2nd place

Very good, first of all it’s pink. Next, it’s ombre. ‘K. Also, it is transparent so you can see how much you have left.

Not as sturdy as Guhl one, and has sharp corners.

 

1st place

OVERALL RANK 3rd place 1st place 2nd place

As I explained before, I actually like all these products, but I prefer the Guhl one over the others because it has the best color renewal and moisturizing capabilities. It is also a bit cheaper than the others. The Lee Stafford one is a close second, I LOVE the packaging and scent, but in addition to being not quite as good for color and moisture as the Guhl one, it is really hard to find. I bought mine in Hungary at Douglas on the Vaci Ut, if that helps anyone… But really if you see any one of these, I would really recommend picking them up, they are really fabulous.

 

Review: Aveda Be Curly Conditioner

6.7 oz/200 ml

Aveda US: $21

Aveda UK: ₤18.50

Aveda DE: €24

http://www.aveda.com/product/5293/16724/Hair-Care/Conditioner/Be-Curly-Conditioner/index.tmpl

http://www.aveda.co.uk/product/7415/16724/Hair-Care/Hair-Concern/enhance-curls-or-waves/Be-Curly-Conditioner/index.tmpl

http://www.aveda.de/product/5218/16724/Kollektionen/be-curlyTM/Be-Curly-Conditioner/index.tmpl

Found on Aveda.co.uk

This conditioner uses wheat protein and organic aloe to “enhance curls, combats frizz, and boosts shine”. Apparently the wheat protein/aloe mix “expands hair is wet and retracts when dry to enhance curl or wave”. The fragrance is described as a “citrus aroma”, and the conditioner contains certified organic lime, lemon, bergamot and orange among other scents.

Ingredients:

Aqueous Extract: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf, Glycerin, Steryl Alcohol, Castor Isostearate Succinate, Cetearyl Alchohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Palmamidopropyl Trimonium Methosulfate, Behenamidopropyltrimonium Methosulfate, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Babassuamidopropyltrimonium Methosulfate, Tapioca Starch, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Tocopherol, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimomium Chloride, Fragrance (Parfum)*, Limonene, Geraniol, Linalool, Citral, Eugenol, Cintronellol, Sodium Gluconate, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol

*Aveda’s Own Pure-Fume Aroma with Certafied Organic Lime, Bergamot and Mandarin

I was really disappointed with this conditioner. It didn’t really emphasize my curls any more than other conditioners. It did hardly anything to combat frizz. It made my hair reasonably soft, but really not more than any other conditioner. I guess it didn’t make my hair really brittle or anything so that is something, but I think my hair was not as soft as it was before simply because it wasn’t getting the moisture it needed. It was sad because I really wanted to love this conditioner, because it smelled so darn good. It really reminds me of Rivella, a Swiss soft drink which I LOVE. I think it’s the bergamot in it. Anyway, it left my hair smelling really good, but it wasn’t enough to make me like it. Coupled with the fact that it is so expensive for a conditioner, I was not happy with this product and will not purchase it again.

Rating: C-

Review: Organix Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Conditioner

385 ml/13 fl. oz.

Drugstore.com/Ulta.com: $7.99

Boots.com: ₤6.99

http://www.drugstore.com/organix-conditioner-renewing-moroccan-argan-oil/qxp336539

http://www.ulta.com/ulta/browse/productDetail.jsp?productId=xlsImpprod2690025

http://www.boots.com/en/Organix-Morocon-Oil-Conditioner-385ml_1222258/

Picture found on Drugstore.com

 

 

This conditioner is described as “unique precious blend of Moroccan argan oil” that “instantly penetrates the hair shaft” to strengthen the hair and “restore shine and softness”. It contains no parabens or sulfates, and is apparently safe for color-treated hair. It also claims to protect against styling heat and UV damage.

 

Ingredients:

Water Cetyl alcohol Behentrimonium chloride Cetearyl alcohol Ceteareth-20 Glycerin Dimethicone Glycol stearate Parfum PANTHENOL-DL Persea gratissima oil Theobroma cacao extract Cocos Nucifera Aloe Barbadensis Argania Spinosa Oil Tetrasodium EDTA Dmdm hydantoin Methylisothiazolinone and Methylchloroisothiazolinone, in combination

 

This conditioner did leave my hair sufficiently soft and shiny, and was no less strengthening than any other relatively good conditioner. It also smelled quite good. However, I didn’t notice any particular differences between this conditioner and any other conditioner without argan oil. And the fact that there is “argan oil” written on the label probably made this product more expensive by at least a couple of dollars.

This conditioner is my no means a bad product, it was a thoroughly acceptable, solid conditioner, I was just expecting something a little more from a product containing argan oil. I suspect that this product doesn’t actually contain that much argan oil, as it is only listed as 11th on the ingredients list. So basically what I am trying to say is that you shouldn’t get too excited about the argan element of this product, I don’t think there is much of one.

Honestly $8 is not too bad for a conditioner, and I might purchase this product again at some point, but I wasn’t overly stunned by its performance. I had quite high hopes for this, as argan oil is really great (as you have probably heard) and this product didn’t do anything exceptional.

 

Overall

A good, solid conditioner- works relatively well, smells nice, but fails to really wow. Being made from the holy fad oil that has hit the market (or containing it, I should say, there doesn’t seem to be that much of it in there) gave this product a standard it fell short of fulfilling.

 

Rating: A-

Review: The Body Shop Rainforest Balance Shampoo

60 ml/250 ml/400 ml

The Body Shop UK: £2/£4/£6

The Body Shop DE: 3€/6€/9€

http://www.thebodyshop.co.uk/hair/shampoo/rainforest-balance-shampoo.aspx

http://www.thebodyshop.de/haarpflege/shampoo/ausgleichendes-shampoo.aspx

Does not contain parabens, sulfates, silicones, or colorants

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Body Shop Rainforest Balance Shampoo is a sulfate-free shampoo for oily hair. It is formulated with pracaxi oil (whatever that is), white nettle, seaweed, Community Trade sugar (???), and aloe vera. It claims to “reduce excess oil for hair that looks clean and fresh all day”. It has a very thick consistency and a pleasant, herbal smell.

Ingredients

Aqua, Sucrose, Disodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Lauryl Betaine, Laureth-5 Carboxylic Acid, Propylene Glycol, PEG-55 Propylene Glycol Oleate, Sodium Chloride, Glycerin, Polyglyceryl-4 Caprate, Parfum, Sucrose Laurate, Sodium Benzoate, Isopropyl Alcohol, Salicylic Acid, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Fucus Vesiculosus Extract, Alcohol, Citric Acid, Pentaclethra Macroloba Seed Oil, Lamium Album Extract, Sodium Hydroxide, Tocopherol

The two main things that you should have gotten out of the description (no, I’m not talking about the weird ingredients…) are the fact that it is a sulfate-free shampoo, and that it is for oily hair. This brings up a major question… namely; does it clean your hair properly? The answer is yes, it does. And quite well, surprisingly. For people with normal or oily hair it seems that sulfates are useful sparingly, every other day to every three days ton once a week depending on how oily your hair gets and how frequently you wash it. This is because you don’t want to use sulfates on your hair too often, as that would dry it out, but if you don’t use sulfates you may not properly break down the oils in your hair, leaving residue that would make your hair look dull. With this shampoo I don’t feel the need to use a separate shampoo containing a sulfate because it really does what it claims to do, reducing the excess oils in my hair. This is great because I can have my hair clean without running the risk of drying it out too badly. I honestly have no clue how this would work for dryer hair, but it doesn’t have sulfates in so it may work. The Body Shop does have other formulations, which I assume are also sulfate free, so you may try those.

As for lathering, this shampoo is relatively good for a sulfate shampoo. It takes a little more effort and time to get it there, but it does lather up. Obviously not as well as a sulfate shampoo, but it does do the job without too much stress. I have found that you only need a small amount of the shampoo because it is so thick. My hair is of a normal thickness, and I only need like a nickel-sized amount of product. For the Europeans and the Brits, that would be roughly the size of a 10 euro cent coin or a penny. I have found that it helps to distribute the shampoo through the roots of your wet hair and work it in as per usual, but then duck under the shower stream again and then work the product some more. I think this really helps with the lather.

Because you only need a small amount of product means that it takes forever to use up the bottle. Coupled with the fact that you have the option to get it in bigger bottles, this means that if you intend to purchase the product regularly you don’t have to run to the store so often. This is particularly helpful because you can only find this product at a Body Shop store, not just at your local Rossman or Boots. It is also a little more expensive than something you may buy at a drugstore, but I think the long life of one bottle, plus the fact that you can get the more cost-effective bigger size makes this product not that much more expensive in the long run. Plus it is sulfate free, which is sometimes a struggle to find in cheaper shampoos!

Overall, I would really recommend this product. It smells great, does a great job despite not containing sulfate, and is a quite reasonable price for the amount of product you get and how much you have to use at one time.

Rating: A