The next stage of hair care?
February 9, 2012 6:55 PM   Subscribe

Can you recommend me some -AWESOME- hair products?

- I'm growing out my hair;
- dirty blonde though some claim to see "reddish / red tint";
- I don't use heat on my hair (no hair dryers, flat iron, etc) partially because I know it's bad for my hair, partially because I have to put my hair up in the morning every morning and I have absolutely no time;
- I massage my scalp every morning while shampooing and lightly skim with the conditioner;
- I've come to prefer wide and fine-toothed wooden combs.
(Just giving some info so people don't ask if I'm taking care of my hair "correctly". I really am looking for higher end products.)

Now, after reading this question with the recommendation of Pureology shampoo/conditioner, I was curious as to whether there were other "it just works" high end hair products. I get what I know are decent results with my current products's like I can sense there's a higher plane of hair existence out there for me.

Have you use Pureology shampoo/conditioner? Do you use something else that's on the same kind of salon level? What about a leave-in conditioner, or shine/straightening product? What hair product changed your life, to the point where you can never go back?

Basically, show off your non-Walmart / non-Target hair care regimen, pretty please!
posted by DisreputableDog to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (32 answers total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
What kind of hair do you have?
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 7:02 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

This is just a once in a while indulgence for when my hair is really in need of serious help, but oh man is it amazing. It restored my hair after a mineral bath in Iceland practically turned it to Brillo, and I'd pretty much given up. That said, it's pretty pricy, and I'm not sure you need it if you're not ever abusing your hair like that. But if you're interested in learning about more high-end beauty products in general, birchbox (which I learned about here) is a great way to discover products like this without having to spend $60/bottle to try them...
posted by dizziest at 7:08 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I'd prefer not to answer that actually. I have trouble determining if I have dry or oily hair, etc and don't want the answers here to be limited by a wrong answer (only to find, perhaps, that they don't work for me).

If someone has a shampoo/conditioner recommendation based on the experience -they- had, there are always products by such companies for several hair types. Otherwise, I figure I can judge accordingly what will or won't work for my hair.
posted by DisreputableDog at 7:11 PM on February 9, 2012

Well, forget the dry/oily, but you might find more answers if you can specify straight/curly and fine (strands) vs. thick (strands).
posted by deludingmyself at 7:15 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

There aren't really any products that "just work" for everyone - any product is designed to solve a problem so recommendations aren't going to be useful without information about what you'd like to change.
posted by moxiedoll at 7:20 PM on February 9, 2012

my hair salon uses Bumble and Bumble products, and my hair always looks great after a wash and style there. There's some kind of shine balm that they slick a few drops of through my hair before drying and it always looks great. I have found drugstore versions (Frizz Ease, etc) work just as well.
posted by elizeh at 7:21 PM on February 9, 2012

Response by poster: Oh, heh, yeah. Makes sense.

I have fine hair. It's straight with some wave. Er. Oh screw it. Here's a picture. *Awkwardly amused*
posted by DisreputableDog at 7:24 PM on February 9, 2012

I started using the Aveda Flax Seed Oil sculpting gel before drying my hair and it really controls the fizz. I recently dried my hair without it and the difference (in a bad way) was noticeable.

I also invested in this brush.
posted by Leezie at 7:24 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I said -picture-.
posted by DisreputableDog at 7:25 PM on February 9, 2012

I bought Surf Spray after reading about it here, and was not disappointed. It's great for putting some beachiness into straight-with-occasional-wave fine hair.
posted by gnomeloaf at 7:31 PM on February 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

I really like Bumble & Bumble's line of stuff for fine hair, but I have in no way done an exhaustive search through salon lines of stuff. I started with the surf spray, then added their thickening shampoo and conditioner, then started diluting down the shampoo a bit, then cut my hair really short so that I don't have to deal with its lack-of-volume shenanigans (or blow-dry it when it's cold and I have to walk to work).
posted by deludingmyself at 7:36 PM on February 9, 2012

I have hair that is fine and leans towards dry/frizzy, with the added "bonus" of a really oily scalp. I only have luck with very specific hair products and have to wash/condition daily. My current favorite is Kevin Murphy Angel Wash (shampoo) and Angel Rinse (conditioner). It's about the same price as Pureology but, in my opinion, smells and works a million times better.
posted by joan_holloway at 7:58 PM on February 9, 2012

To be honest, I've always been really disappointing by salon products. It seems to me that there's no difference in quality between drugstore + salon products. Having said that, I DO like bumble + bumble's colored hair powder [for absorbing grease] and Redken's matte paste. Pureology's volume shampoo turned my hair into a greasy mess AND stripped away color. I haven't tried any of their other products.
posted by oxfordcomma at 8:00 PM on February 9, 2012

I regularly fry my hair with bleach and dye, and someone gave me two products which I use fairly regularly: Bumble and Bumble Mending Masque for repairing things occasionally, and their Mending Complex to give things some strange oomph and protect it before blow drying. Both of those are pretty unnecessary if you don't repeatedly torture your hair. I also have their Surf Spray which would be more useful if my hair was more healthy, but I do like it. I wouldn't have tried that mending stuff if I wasn't given it for free, but I will pay to replace them because they actually work (for me at least.)
posted by thegreatfleecircus at 8:01 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

I've used the lumiere dhiver reconstructing-masque that dizziest mentioned and it really is something special. Above and beyond what I had thought a conditioning product could do for my hair. As for styling products, I think you're on the right track with pureology. It's a brand that has a wide range of products, but if you pick the one with claims that match your desired outcome, I think you'll be really happy. Also- they are some of the best smelling haircare products ever.

Drugstore products are mostly designed to make your hair LOOK better really fast but not actually do anything beneficial. Totally worth the extra money IMHO.
posted by sarahnicolesays at 8:21 PM on February 9, 2012

Mixed Chicks. It's probably not for you, given your hair type. But it is seriously for those of us with curl, frizz, brillo, or hair that needs a pick to get through it while it is still wet. The one problem: I could buy several pounds of gold for less than one bottle of this stuff, so I buy it rarely, and hoard it.
posted by instead of three wishes at 8:30 PM on February 9, 2012

Make the Surf Spray at home.
posted by a sourceless light at 8:32 PM on February 9, 2012 [6 favorites]

I have similar looking hair.

For extra volume I really like Living Proof Full Thickening Cream. You have to be careful to not use too much or else it weighs down your hair, but if you do it right then it's magical how thick and voluminous your hair looks and feels.

Nthing Bumble & Bumble's surf spray. I've used that every day for the last several weeks and I'm really loving the effects. Expensive but worth it, although I am going to try to make my own before my current bottle runs out (on preview, what a sourceless light said).
posted by gatorae at 8:38 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Thirding Bumble and Bumble surf spray!

Except you can make it yourself for 1/10 the cost: 1/2 cup water, 2 tsp Epsom salt, gulg of gel in a spray bottle, shake well.

I don't put much gel in because my hair is so fine. I like putting it in my wet hair and letting my hair air dry (without touching it) - it makes my hair all wavy but not crispy like you can get sometimes with gel and, like you, my hair has a slight wave but the spray makes it look like I did my hair on purpose not like I'm lazy (I'm really just lazy) and if I blow it dry it makes it have way more volume than I normally get.
posted by hydrobatidae at 8:39 PM on February 9, 2012

I use Eufora shampoo (the volumizing one). I am a pretty basic, not very girlie person, but a few years ago I tried a local salon and got the best haircut I'd ever had - so of course, I was hooked and I keep going back to that same stylist. I have thin, fine, very straight hair that looks limp and dull pretty easily, and I'm totally wash-and-go, no frills, low maintenance, but she somehow makes my hair awesome.

Anyway, that salon uses Eufora products, so because I loved how my hair looked and felt every time I went, I was interested enough to try the line. It is expensive. It all smells good and the sales pitch is that it's aloe-vera-gel based instead of water-based.

The shampoo is definitely worth it for me. I don't have to wash my hair every day when I use it, so it lasts. I was skeptical that a salon line was really any better than what I could get at the drugstore (especially for the difference in price), but I think the shampoo certainly is a few steps above. I also have the Pure Polish finisher and I like that as well - I don't usually blow-dry my hair but I use it when I do, and it's also good for just a bit of shine and smoothing.
posted by flex at 9:43 PM on February 9, 2012

Your hair is similar to mine, I think! I have very straight hair that appears thick at first glance, but is actually ultra fine but SUPER PLENTIFUL. I also don't heat style. Do you find it getting oily after 12 hours or so? I use a little dry shampoo when I'm leaving work if I'm going to do something in the evening.

Product-wise, because my hair is so fine (fiiiiiiiiiine) most products weight it down. A little Bumble & Bumble grooming creme is good for flyaways, though. A little goes a long way.
posted by troika at 9:52 PM on February 9, 2012

I haven't found that higher end products work better on my (curly, fine, thin) hair. Specific product recommendations aren't going to help you much, but for the benefit of people who find this thread later, TiGi Curls Rock Curl Amplifier is awesome (and I buy it at Target). Bumble & Bumble Curl Cream, Ouidad Heat & Humidity Gel, and devaCurl anGel - all high end products - all work, but TiGi gives me the best curls.
posted by insectosaurus at 10:04 PM on February 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

I have been using Bamboo from Alterna works great
posted by hortense at 10:41 PM on February 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Oyin Handmade is freaking amazing.

They make conditioners, hair pomade, leave in conditioners, and shampoo. I love everything they make -- and when I went to the Aveda salon by me, they actually gave me a lot of compliments on how soft my hair was.
posted by spunweb at 11:32 PM on February 9, 2012

Moroccan Hair Oil makes my (similar looking) hair soft and shiny and helps minimize frizz.
posted by Cocodrillo at 4:09 AM on February 10, 2012

Looks like we have kind of similar hair. No wave here, but lots and lots of very fine hair.

I use Kerastase and Phyto, two French brands. I buy Kerastase at my salon, but you can get Phyto at Sephora. I don't use product at all so no recommendations there.
posted by marmot at 7:16 AM on February 10, 2012

I've used Pureology, and I loved it. I used Hydrate. I would definitely use it again.

My salon uses Kevin Murphy products, so I switched to those. I'm really liking them (I use Hydrate Me shampoo), including the styling products --Easy Rider is hands down the best "product" I've ever used.

I also like the Lush shampoo bars. I have a couple of those in rotation.

I like to have a couple of good shampoos to alternate; my hair seems to like it. It's definitely worth it to splurge on fancy hair products, if you can swing it.
posted by hotelechozulu at 7:19 AM on February 10, 2012

If your hair is fine and gets weighed down easily - especially with a dry scalp - I cannot emphasize the importance of avoiding silicones in hair products. Most products have them, and they weigh down your hair and require harsh shampoos to remove, which dries out your hair, so you need more product.... viscous cycle. The folks at are WAY invested in their hair, so don't be intimidated, but their information on avoiding silicones is worth its weight in gold.
posted by 8dot3 at 7:21 AM on February 10, 2012

Short, curly-haired male here nth'ing LUSH products, especially Big. SO (long, very fine "Asian" hair) uses it daily and I am generally hypnotized by its resultant aromatic shininess and volume. I've also used their "Hair Doctor" (can't find on website, but just saw it recently in a b&m) once-weekly dry scalp treatment.
posted by obscurator at 8:30 AM on February 10, 2012

Dont wash your hair every day-that will destroy the scalp and weaken the roots. it is just a ploy hair product manufacturers use to get you to wash it daily so that their sales increase. Daily washing will also kill the natural oil you have.

i use a very very mild shampoo -before that i oil my hair with vitamin E oil ;)
posted by pakora1 at 9:10 AM on February 10, 2012

>I cannot emphasize the importance of avoiding silicones in hair products.

Total agreement here. I have lots of fine, thick, curly hair, and people are always pushing silicone serums on me, but I avoid them for the very reasons that 8dot3 cites. I go for anything with shea butter, honey, avocado, jojoba seed oil, coconut oil, and/or olive oil, such as Desert Essence Coconut Conditioner and Nature's Gate Aloe Vera Moisturizing Conditioner. Both of these are reasonably priced, at least by the standards at my local Whole Paycheck: $8.99/8 oz. for the Desert Essence, and $7.29/18 oz. for the Nature's Gate. As a treat (it's $28/4-oz., but you don't need a lot), I turn to John Masters Organics Honey & Hibiscus Hair Reconstructor as a once-a-month, post-shampoo rinse-out hair treatment.
posted by virago at 9:18 AM on February 10, 2012 [1 favorite]

I love Kerastase products, but they are way too expensive for me to use daily. I used Pureology for a while but wasn't impressed. However, my hair is very different from yours (wavy/curly).
posted by echo0720 at 9:45 AM on February 11, 2012

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