Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Sh*t List

Until now, I have mostly just posted about products that I love. This post right here is my living breathing product sh*t list. I will frequently be editing and adding to this post as I encounter (or remember past encounters with) products that are more than disappointing: they're AWFUL. If a product makes it to this list, it's safe to say that it should be avoided at all costs.

 I really cannot think of a more perfect inaugural member of the ASBB Sh*t List. Really, if you value the hair on your head, read what I have to say before you consider slathering your tresses in this horrible hair death trap of a product.

First off, it's important to mention that this product aims to mimic a true salon Keratin treatment. That means that it is NOT a simple application process. You need to follow the instructions to a T. You need to wash your hair with a specific product that they include, and allow time for the stuff to sit in your hair, etc...and you MUST have a decent HOT flat iron to complete the treatment. Furthermore, your hair should be heavy, volume-less and stick straight once you have finished the process. You have failed if if you do not get your entire head of hair bone straight (so you had better be good with that flat iron of yours). Oh, and you have to leave your hair looking like that for two whole days. You can't apply any other product during that period and you can't really touch your hair. You can't put it up in a hair tie. You can't tuck in behind your ear. If you mess with it, you might end up ruining the result or even ending up with weird creases and bumps in your hair. Oh...and, like with any other keratin treatment, if you want the treatment to last at all, you need to make sure that all the products you use in your hair are sulfate free or you will prematurely strip the keratin from your hair.

For those of us who have gotten a professional keratin treatment before, the above paragraph should come as no surprise. In fact, it might even sound like a good reason to try your hand at doing this yourself at home....DON'T DO IT. I have gotten a professional Coppola Keratin treatment by a seasoned professional at a fancy salon. It involved a ridiculously hefty price tag, hours at the salon, and 3 days of tolerating bone straight hair and being unable to wash it or touch it. But the result was (roughly) six months of soft, healthy hair. So I would say it was somewhat worth it.

The Organix Brazilian Keratin Therapy 30-day Smoothing treatment is NOT worth it.  I was looking for something to touch-up the professional Coppola treatment that I had gotten done a few months earlier. I did my research before I bought this stuff. I even contacted Organix to make sure that this product would be safe to use on top of my already keratin treated hair. When I finally did decide to take the plunge and try it, I was a good girl and I followed the instructions to a T. Despite being totally careful, I LOST A TON OF HAIR. The product made my hair super brittle during the process and, at the step when you're supposed to gently comb through your hair, my hair ripped out in chunks. Need I say more? Despite my horror, I knew I had to continue with the process if I wanted to salvage my remaining hair. It took forever. And after two days of ugly greasy hair (a much greasier look than you get from professional treatments), my hair was a tad bit smoother for just a few washes. It was absolutely not worth the time it took and the huge hunk of hair I lost.

In the salon, professionals are specially trained to use these proteins. It makes sense that dealing with this stuff at home might be a huge risk...any hair product containing protein should always be used in moderation because it can cause major breakage. Oh, and in the salon, the stylists use special super hot flat irons for these treatments. They are way more intense than even the most high end flat irons we use at home (I have a GHD). All in all, I would steer clear of in-home keratin treatments in general. And DEFINITELY DO NOT PUT THIS ORGANIX BRAZILIAN KERATIN THERAPY 30-DAY SMOOTHING TREATMENT CRAP ANYWHERE NEAR YOUR HAIR.
I touched on my disdain for this product in my Cure for the Common Eye Pencil post, but it's worth mentioning again. I was drawn to this automatic eye pencil because it is SOOOO skinny. It's the perfect size for sculpting a perfect fine line or building on a larger, heavier line with the utmost precision. So why do I hate it so? I seriously bought this thing like ten times before I realized that each pencil was not a just a fluke and that there was no operator error going on--the pencil just sucks. I wanted it to work well so badly. But IT BREAKS. The formula of this pencil is just too damned brittle. It breaks just about every time you try to use it. So it won't last you very long at all. And, of course, it's too dry to provide a smooth application. It's just not worth your money. I did, however, find a perfectly heavenly alternative product. Check it out in my Cure for the Common Eye Pencil post.
The packaging is cute. The product is natural and eco-friendly. It smells good. But...that's about as far as the redeeming qualities go here. Simply put, this shampoo does not do an adequate job of cleansing hair. And that's kind of the point of shampoo. If your hair ever gets greasy, you definitely should not go anywhere near this crap. If you ever get an itchy dry scalp or dandruff in any form, regularly using a shampoo as weak as this would be disastrous for you. The bottle says, "new & improved!" I shudder to think how horrible the previous formula must have been.
AGAIN, The packaging is cute. The product is natural and eco-friendly. It smells good. But...that's about as far as the redeeming qualities go here. I'm beginning to think that Alba just doesn't know how to make hair products. There is nothing hydrating or repairing about this product. It does nothing to strengthen, soften, or smooth hair in any way shape or form. The thin, runny formula seems to be incapable of being absorbed by my hair. It does nothing. This bottle also says, "new & improved!" Again, I shudder to think how horrible the previous formula must have been.
I have oily hair and I like to use dry shampoo to refresh my hair and add some volume. I have tried so many dry shampoos. Believe me when I say that there are tons of affordable dry shampoos that actually work. This is NOT one of them. I don't understand how it's possible to get a product so wrong. Seriously this stuff somehow magically combines with the oil in your hair (instead of absorbing it) to make a nasty matted gunk around your hairline that doesn't go away no matter how much you try to brush it out.  And it's not just me...everyone I know who has tried this crap has had the same gross experience. Don't waste your money.
There really isn't that much to say about this one except that it just plain doesn't work. It does NOTHING. It doesn't absorb grease. It doesn't do anything. It just watery foam.
I have read some glowing reviews of this product and I just don't understand how that's possible. I got this topcoat at Sally Beauty and hoped for the best. It's supposed to be a quick-drying, super glossy topcoat (kind of similar to Seche Vite). After just one use, I knew this topcoat was a major fail. It does dry pretty quickly (although I still think Seche Vite dries faster), but it does not look smooth or glossy at all. Instead it bubbles like crazy!!! It bubbles and gets this gross frosty look. To try and remedy the goopy, globby, bubbly disaster that is this topcoat, I added some polish thinner. It helped temporarily, but by the time I was done painting one hand the nasty bubbles had returned. Avoid this disaster of a topcoat. If you want a high gloss, quick-drying alternative, you can typically find Seche Vite online at some very reasonable prices.
A few months back, my friend from France was staying on my couch. Out of the corner of my eye, I witnessed him wildly clipping away at his toe nails with no apparent regard for where the clippings my living room! I immediately panicked and yelled at him to stop and go get a trash can otr something and he looked so confused. He then explained to me that he was using a toe nail clipper that actually caught the clippings in its handle--no mess! I was astonished since I had never seen such a thing. I asked him where he got it and he simply replied that they are everywhere in France. He demonstrated the use of his magical clippers at closer range to assure me that he was not making a mess. It really worked! I knew I had to find one for myself.

I scaled the internet in search of similar clippers. I settled on this Earth Therapeutics model. I've had Earth Therapeutics products in the past and they have always been decent, so it seemed like a fine choice.

IT WAS NOT. The catcher does not work. About 80% of the clippings just fly everywhere as they would with a normal set of clippers, missing the catcher alltogether. The clippings that actually make it into the catcher fall right out pretty much no matter which angle you choose to maneuver the damn thing at.

Grrr. Annoying.

Much, much more to come.

 Until then,
<3 Bee