Tag Archives: Haircare

Been Hair Before

I’ve started swimming again. I use to swim an awful lot but as it’s not like there’s a swimming pool around every corner, it can be hard to get to a pool what with work and play getting in the way! But, things have come full circle and it’s now dead handy for me to swim again a couple of times a week. The problem? That same old problem when it comes to a coiffed look and chlorine? Pool hair. Oh it’s a nightmare. A nightmare! How do I keep my shiny, well conditioned shoulder length coloured hair in tip top form when it’s up against the dreaded chlorine?

Sun & SwimWell, one simple, easy to find product is the Boots own brand ‘Sun, Swim & Gym Hydra Spray’. Shake up the 2 layered liquid and spray! I tip my head over to get all the underneath hair as well – lash it on! The UV filter will protect your hair against environmental, salt and chlorine damage. And it’s on offer at the moment, as are all products in this range, 2 for €6 which isn’t bad at all. Good for when you’re on holiers. Note to self, I’ve used the shampoo and conditioner from this range but I felt my hair wasn’t hydrated afterwards and still a bit crunchy or coarse when dry.

‘I’ll get a leave in conditioner!’, I thought. I’ve spent a lot of time and effort getting my naturally dry, tending to frizzy, thick and now coloured hair into shape. A leave in conditioner will be great for that added bit of help afterwards. Now, I don’t wash my hair at the pool, ever, a quick sprint home, a blast of the hairdryer and then lots of TLC the next day before work in my own shower suits me better, thank you very much! So, not knowing exactly where to start as I can’t remember buying a specific leave in conditioner before, I went on to MakeUp Alley to peruse the product reviews. Part of me loves this site for the simply never ending list of products reviewed and part of me hates that every product tends to get quite mixed reviews, so I can be back to where I started and just having to plump for something after a bit of consideration and see how I get on.

I jumped from brand to brand, some got good but still very mixed reviews, some I realised weren’t easily available and some that I knew simply wouldn’t be for my type of hair etc. I then selected reviews for ‘Aveda, leave in conditioner’. Yep, back to the old reliable! There was a product called ‘Elixir’, it sounded great, really good reviews – until I found out that it was discontinued. Aveda Style Prep Smoother*Sigh* Then as I was scrolling back up the page I noticed that there was a review that included some info about ‘The New Elixir’ from Aveda themselves! ‘We are happy to inform you that we will be launching a new product called Smooth Infusion Style-Prep Smoother. Compared to Elixir, Smooth Infusion Style-Prep Smoother is a more superior performing product than Elixir – a much more technologically advanced plant-based formula with very strong performance benefits, such as 12 hour humidity defense and heat protection. It also better prepares for smooth styling by creating a smooth new surface.’

And then I realised that I have indeed got this very product! And I love it! Placed as a pre blow dry styling aid that will help your hair when styling, it straightens while nourishing, leaving hair that is more manageable and less frizzy. It is expensive, it’s Aveda after all – €27 for a small looking bottle but I swear, I must’ve used it over 50 times since before Christmas last year and there’s still approx 3/4 of it left! [And you know you’ll get it cheaper online] I don’t use this all the time, most of the time though, as it can be quite heavy, even on my thick locks. You only need a tiny, peanut sized amount and then distribute it well. However, for this time of year, I find this is a better product to put into dry hair as it really cuts down on the dreaded ‘humidity factor’ whereby hair can multiple in size tenfold on a warm, heavy day! I find that a little blob of this on dry hair works wonders and so the morning after my swim, or indeed just generally when the weather is a bit hot and sticky, this has been my product of choice all along anyway so I’m not going to bother getting a new leave in conditioner! My little purse that’s straining at the seams is so glad I was doing the right thing all along!

Glitter in Non-Aveda Hair Product Shocker!

anti-break-rx_largeI know. The headline says it all. My hair has been a little bit ‘meh’ of late and I felt something had to be done about it. Now! I haven’t completely abandoned my beloved Aveda.. we’re just on a little break. My hair tends to be even more dry once the weather heats up [although it’s never anywhere near tropical in temperate old Ireland, as we’re all aware] but it’s a combination of warmth, humidity and the never ending battle against over processing that had my locks in a bit of a tizzy.

I must admit oh the shame, that I haven’t used an intensive hair treatment for quite some time now and I knew it was time to fix that! Something inside me whispered that maybe, just maybe it was time to explore a new brand. I was going to ‘Be Brave’ and walk past the Aveda concession in BT – and sure I’ve been eyeing up the poor little, unmanned Frederic Fekkai ‘stand’ in the same department store for ages now. So up I trotted and lo and behold, the FF stand had a very friendly guy doing his best to entice shoppers towards his fantastic range of hair transforming products!

We chatted for quite some time. He wasn’t pushy and knew his stuff. I’d an idea which product I’d be going for anyway, because of earlier sleuthing and rightly so he recommended the FF Protein Rx Breakage Treatment Mask. This tub of fabulousness is designed to restore hair that is dry, weak and broken through heat damage and or over processed into the bargain. This milk and soy protein based mask also prevent future damage to leave hair soft and silky and in much better condition. Word of warning! I had the Shea Butter Hair Mask in my hand for purchasing but I was told that most likely I would find it too much for my hair, that it is really only for very coarse, almost afro hair that really needs some TLC.

So, what’s the verdict on the Protein Mask? Well first impressions are that it smells just divine! All marshmallow-y and sweet. It has a soft but firm texture, so as you scoop out a small blob [you use the same amount as normal conditioner, approx €1 coin in size], it doesn’t run all over your hands as you move towards actually getting it in your hair. It felt lovely and light and certainly as I waited the 10-15 minutes for it to work it’s magic, I didn’t feel I had a product in my hair. On washing it out, I could already tell that my hair was much softer, much much softer and there were no tangles whatsoever. As I let my hair dry naturally for a bit,  I could tell that my hair knew it’d just had a lovely treat! And then after I’d blow dried it, I couldn’t stop touching it! My hair was so soft, shiny and far less frizzy than after a normal DIY blow dry.

I’ve used this product a couple of times now and I’m definitely in love! It’s not cheap though, as you’d expect. €32 in BT but I will say that for my just below shoulder length hair I’d think I’ll get about 15 goes out of it, which IMO makes it a very good buy. This particular FF product isn’t available on Strawberry sadly but it is on HQHair for a couple of Euro less [watch out for Customs payments!]. It also got a very high 4.2/5 rating on MakeUpAlley, which I think is impressive as the mainly American reviewers can be unbelievably picky and the 3.6/5 for packaging def took down the average score [I agree tubes are better than tubs but I’m a firm believer in the product not what’s prettiest on the outside].

*Swish Swish* I shall return!

Haircut NOT 100!

female-hair-2Bad hair days are the pits. Worse than that! They are just awful and nothing will so instantly put anyone [ok, ok, your average, style conscious girl!] in a bad mood as quickly as looking in the mirror first thing and realising that It’s A Bad Hair Day. I’d been having a bad fortnight and it really wasn’t pretty.

You know when you realise that you haven’t had your hair cut for a while? Even if you religiously get it cut on the dot of 8 weeks, there comes a time when it just becomes ‘meh’. And so you ignore this for a bit, say to your self that you’ll make time for an appointment maybe next week, sure the week after would do at a push. Then you can’t get an appointment that suits and then you realise that you’ll be totally broke cos you dont’ get paid til the following week. So you just say to yourself that that’ll have to do and resign yourself to having to make a bit more of an effort each day until then while ensuring you have a hat stuffed into your bag at all times.

And then you need to get your hair cut but if you get it cut today or tomorrow, it’ll be too long before the big evint that you’re going to and because you don’t want it to be even near straggly by then you decide to hold out for another week or two.

And then there’s the situation I found myself in – a dreaded combination of both. With the added bonus of not really living where my hairdresser is anymore.Complete disaster. And, and I think a lot of you know how hard it is to find a good hairdresser…

I rang my hairdresser. No answer. No answer the third time either. Bet they don’t work Mondays. 9.05am Tues – ‘Hi, can I speak to GK? This is your hairdresser, you rang yesterday but we’re not open on Mondays.. how can I help you?’ And so on the conversation went, me getting more annoyed that not only could I not get an appointment for this weekend, but that my hairdresser was on holiday until mid next week. I ended up making an appointment that really didn’t suit.. for like 9 days time.

‘Would ye not just get a hairdresser here or where your parents live, Glitter?’ It’d be much handier for you. Jeez, I hate giving up my Saturday morning to go to the bloody hairdresser’.

‘Yeah, I really should. Sure I’m in McSmile’s at weekends at this stage. And I don’t want to have to schlep back to mine just to schlep around the corner to the hairdresser as well. But I don’t know any hairdressers here or whe… hang on! The place you go to. What’s it like?

‘It’s grand, No, it’s good. It’s been there years and they’ve very good’.

‘Sure fuckit. I might just book an appointment for tomorrow lunchtime or Friday even’.

‘Why don’t you go now? It’s only around the corner. It’s just the two of us in the office. And sure ye don’t need an appointment! Just walk in!’

‘Right. Fuckit. I’ll go now so. How do I get there?’

After the inevitable phone calls that delayed me leaving the office for half an hour, I seized the opportunity to leg it out the door with the distinct probability of coming back with fabulous hair. And after a short walk around the corner, I found my potential new hairdresser.

I was waiting all of 5 minutes, whereby my coat was hung up and there was an apology that I had to wait at all. While my hair was being washed I asked the girl’s name. We had a chat about what I wanted – which was essentially a trim, but I’m a bit particular about my hair and anyone nearby wielding scissors needs to be told of kinks and how my hair generally behaves out of the salon. My hair was cut, there was chat of the haircutting type during, and there was pleasant and not at all annoying smalltalk about non haircutting type things. When my hair was dry I was asked how it looked. I was asked if I wanted a bit more of a graduation at the sides. There was slight tidying up. And that was it! I was done! My hair looked fabulous and I was really pleased! And I was only there for maybe 45 minutes but there was no scrimping, the girl knew what she was doing and well, it only took that long!

I swished my way back to work. I swished my way home and I admired my own now lovely locks in the mirror.

‘Oh! Your hair is gorgeous!’ exclaimed my Mom. ‘It’s really lovely.. oh, that’s a lovely cut! Who did you go to?’

And after I regaled the ins and outs of my determined decision to get my hair cut that day….

‘€40? €40? That’s for nothing! And you normally pay €70 in that other place?!’

Yep. I’m very happy with my new swishy locks.

On Top of the World; the Opposite of a Bad Hair Day

Bad hair days are the pits! The PITS I tells ye! One look at any photo taken circa 1985 and you’d be forgiven for asking if people went around sticking their fingers in sockets just for fun. All the time. To millions of people around the world, was the invention of the GHD not like, the BEST thing that ever happened to them?

And its not just fear of the frizz, oh no, you’ve also got those ‘fashionable’ hairstyles. The mullet, the permed bob, the ‘Heidi’ plaits, the two tones skunk look, CORN ROWS for fecks sake!

Nowadays though, my hair is all about looking forward – and looking a lot better than it has on certain occasions.

I take great pleasure in allowing my rich and hardworking products work their magic on my locks; shimmy through my hair as I stand in the shower performing various other ablutions knowing that in 3-5minutes every strand will have been tenderly cared to, just waiting for the glossiness to shine through.

My products of choice? Aveda, Darling. Oh Smooth Infusions you keep me on the straight and narrow.. Pure Abundance, you’re there when I need a lift and Shampure, well, I know I can rely on you.