Next to my skin, taking care of my hair tops my list of beauty priorities, and to that end I am exceptionally selective in what products I choose to use. Having colour treated hair also means a few extra steps to ensure that my hair not only remains in the best of health, but to preserve and maintain my colour for as long as I can, and while there are several items in the hair care market aimed at achieving these goals, I’ve learned through trial & error that not all products follow through on their claims; it’s always a nice and welcome surprise when I do come across something that actually delivers.
L’Occitane en Provence products have definitely earned my loyalty and trust for the simple reason that they work. The company aims to create products that are not only beneficial for our consumption, but that serve a purpose – all the while protecting the environment and by employing renewable sources where available, generating income in many communities, and sourcing as many healthful & organic ingredients as possible.
L’Occitane’s new ‘Radiance and Colour Care Shampoo’, enriched with 5 essential botanical oils (geranium, palmarosa, bergamot, rosemary and cedar), is also created free of sulfates, to gently clean your hair without stripping the colour and includes UV filters in the formula as well, to further protect your hair. According to the company:
- 5 essential oils : – Geranium – Palmarosa – Bergamot – Rosemary – Cedar – Regenerates – Reactivates the microcirculation and helps to carry nutrients to the hair that are essential for its vitality – Tonifies – Stimulates the scalp – Stimulates the scalp
- Grapeseed extract Prevents colour from fading thanks to its antioxidant properties
- Sulfate-free Gently washes the hair
- UV filter Protects colour from harmful sun rays that cause colour to fade
My findings: Other that a dispenser pump, my next favourite product dispersal method is a flip-top cap – easy to use one handed while in the shower, as well as staying securely closed when not in use. Since this is a sulfate-free product, don’t expect intense lather upon first applying, although I noted that when my hair was thoroughly saturated with water, there was significant enough lather created to satisfy that luxurious sudsy feeling. The scent is somewhere between herbal and pine resiny, very green-smelling and fresh with just a hint of “cleaner” that quickly fades. The look of the shampoo is a pearly off-white and very light-feeling between my fingers, with an almost gel-like consistency when spread throughout the hair – easily rinsing out without any slippery silicone-ish feel left behind.
love the convenient flip-top cap on both the shampoo and conditioner
shampoo – info
shampoo – ingredients
L’Occitane new ‘Radiance and Colour Care Conditioner’, is infused with the same 5 essential botanical oils and offers the same benefits as the shampoo. In addition, it should also be noted that these products are free from formol and formaldehydes, parabens, animal ingredients (vegan), pthalates, gluten, BHA, BHT, EDTA, phenoxyethanol, triclosan and synthetic colourants. I don’t know about you, but anything I can’t pronounce, I’d rather not be including in my beauty routine!
My findings: the texture of the ‘Radiance and Colour Care Conditioner’ differs from that of the shampoo, in that it feels a lot creamier and denser in consistency. The colour is a purer white without any pearly gleam at all, while the scent seems to be a lighter version of the shampoo. It felt completely weightless as I applied it throughout my hair, starting at the ends and working up to the roots; I left the conditioner on while I completed my shower and rinsed it all out as the last & final step – loved the soft and clean feeling left behind.
conditioner – info
conditioner – ingredients
Final thoughts: I have used many products this past year, aimed specifically towards colour treated hair like mine, and while there have been some excellent results with a few, there have also been some equally dismal failures. One thing that’s usually prevalent with many sulfate-free shampoos, is not only the lack of a generous lather, but what happens once your hair is dry; for someone who has oil-prone hair like I do (a contradiction of sorts, seeing as how the colour process dries out my hair from mid-shaft on, but closer to the scalp it remains oily … go figure), these types of products somehow increase the speed of oil-production, necessitating even more frequent shampooing. I can honestly say that I experienced nothing of the sort using this ‘Radiance and Colour Care’ duo, and in fact, I was not only able to easily comb out my hair post-showering WITHOUT the use of any additional products, but my hair stayed oil-free longer than usual — a huge bonus! I cannot really state how well my colour was preserved – I’d probably need more specialized equipment and/or testing for that, but I did notice an extra shiny boost overall.
Both the shampoo and conditioner come in 2 sizes: CDN $22.00 for the 250 ml size, and a larger economical version at CDN $32.00/500 ml for the Shampoo and CDN $36.00/500 ml for the Conditioner, available at all L’Occitane boutiques as well as through their website. Feel free to follow on facebook/twitter for all their latest news and product launches.
*Disclaimer: Product samples provided by the company/PR for my unbiased consideration