Product Review: Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect

product review, hair care, conditioner, beauty, birchbox

A few months ago, a sample-sized bottle of this leave-in conditioner arrived at my apartment courtesy of beauty addiction enabler Birchbox. Having already tried, and loved, two other leave-in conditioners I’d previously been sent, I happily whisked the sample off to my bathroom, sure it would be no exception. Sadly this time, BBox let me down.

Firstly, I’m not a huge fan of the scent. It manages to be both herbal and oddly cloying, a potent and almost medicinal combination that doesn’t appeal. What really put me off this leave-in conditioner, however, was its effect on my hair, or should I say lack thereof. As far as I can tell, this product didn’t accomplish much of anything, my hair was no softer, shinier, or at all easier to brush through. There were times I even suspected it made my tangles worse (I understand that makes zero sense). I’ll admit that my favorite leave-in, Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle, is a hard act to follow but this didn’t even come close.

What’s most puzzling to me is that the reviews online are generally incredibly positive. I can understand not everyone feels the same about the scent, that’s typically a personal preference, but I can’t account for the reviews that claim this sample bottle changed their life. As far as I can tell, the best thing about this product is that it sprays in fine, even mist and is 100% vegan. Overall, I’d say if you’re looking for a good leave-in conditioner, skip Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect and order either this number from 12 Benefits or the aforementioned gem from Beauty Protector, both of which are cheaper too.

Has anyone else given this product a try – am I the only person who wasn’t won over?

Image credit: Birchbox.com

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Product Review: LUSH BIG Shampoo

lush, shampoo, hair, hair care, volumizing, review, fine hair

This has got to be the weirdest shampoo I have ever tried. It has a gel-like consistency and is PACKED with sea salt. Not secretly packed either, there’s so many chunks of sea salt in this baby it looks more like a snow cone than a shampoo – sea salt apparently makes up more than half the formula! Given the lack of actual shampoo in comparison to salt, I was skeptical about how this product would lather up but it is hands down the best lather I’ve ever gotten out of a shampoo. I’m talking a super rich, decadent foam from half a tablespoon of product. For anyone worried about finding sneaky salt flakes lingering in their hair, rest assured, the salt totally dissolves as you work it into your scalp and rinses out cleanly.

When the sales lady at LUSH initially pitched BIG to me, I was worried that the salt would be overly harsh and drying but was assured that the salt is balanced by coconut oil and avocado butter, keeping it from stripping your hair. While the shampoo didn’t leave my scalp parched, it was super clarifying and gave a whole new meaning to the term “squeaky clean.” My hair was literally squeaking under my fingers as I rinsed it, conditioner is not optional after using this baby. Due to the intense clarifying nature of this shampoo, I definitely wouldn’t use it everyday, perhaps alternating it with a gentler shampoo or just a couple times a week.

So, did BIG deliver on its eponymous promise? Absolutely. I was shocked how voluminous, bouncy, and soft my hair was after only one use. I have a feeling this is going to become my special occasion shampoo or what I reach for when I need a pick me up. If, like I was, you’re a little leery of a salt-based formula or simply balk at a shampoo priced over $20, then ask your local LUSH store for a sample. For me, the sample pot was good for two showers, though I was converted after only one.

$26.95/11.4oz 

Image credit: lush.co.uk

Product Review: Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle

hair, hair care, heat protector, dyed hair, leave in conditioner, treatment, uv protection, birchbox, detangler

I will forever be grateful to Birchbox for introducing me to this little gem. I got a sample of the Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle leave in conditioner in my May Birchbox and it was love at first…spray? (Just let it go.) This product does everything your hair could hope for: detangles, protects from heat and UV rays, seals the cuticle, smoothes hair, locks in color, adds shine, AND conditions. All this from a light-weight, non-greasy formula that smells incredible! It has literally replaced every other hair product by my sink. I ordered the full size immediately and am still head over heels after two months of daily use.

Birchbox describes the Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle as such:

“This paraben and sulfate free detangler seals the cuticles (the microscopic scales that compose the outermost layer of each strand of hair). It also smooths and moisturizes, thereby minimizing frizz, while safeguarding color and adding shine. Lastly, it provides protection against UV rays and heat. Happily, it accomplishes all this through a weightless, non-greasy formula that leaves behind an airy floral scent.”

My biggest hair issues are volume and oil (I look slightly greasy by the end of the day) so I’m leery about using leave-in conditioners. Well this product proved me wrong – my hair doesn’t look any oilier or less voluminous as a result of using it – always a good thing! As silly as it sounds, using this is one of my favorite parts of getting ready in the morning. It smells delicious, sprays evenly in a fine mist, and makes combing your hair super easy! What really hooked me was how soft my hair felt after using it. I could not stop touching my head. I could not stop asking my friends to touch my head. My hair was noticeably softer, smoother, and shinier.

I have nothing bad to say about this product and would recommend it to anyone! Fun fact: it’s 100% vegan which just makes it that much cooler.

It’s priced at a very reasonable $21.95/8oz (free shipping!) and is available exclusively from Birchbox.

Image Credit: blog.birchbox.com