I get hair envy on a daily basis, so when I was sent this sheen spray by Be Box (the subscription box for women of colour), I had to try it out. To make this review fair and uniform with my other reviews, I have laid out 5 criteria to test this product by: Smell, Effectiveness, Convenience, Ingredients and the ‘R Factor’, the meaning of which will be revealed later…
When I unwrapped this product, the first thing I did was smell it. So many hair products have such strong smells that they really put me off using them; there is nothing worse than meeting someone for the first time and getting knocked out by an overpowering cloud of hair product. This product smells amazing, the best way I can describe it is a gentle smell of the forest with a sugary topnote, sound strange, smells amazing.
The second criteria, effectiveness was put to the test when I wore the product for the first time the next day, I tried it on my natural curly hair and it definitely added a shine to the hair but was not too greasy, which was my initial concern. Then later on that week I tried it on my straightened hair, this is when the product really came into its own and made my hair look sleek and shiny, although you will need a stronger product to hold down flyaway hair and baby hairs. A great way to use this product is to spray it liberally on the hair and then wrap it before bedtime, by the morning your hair will have absorbed all the moisture and will look and feel fresher. (Get ready for jealous glances on the tube.)
The product wins the convenience award hands down because the bottle is so small and the application is so simple. I could fit it in my make up bag no problem but I really only needed to apply it in the morning and the shine lasted almost all day. The downside is that it is in an aerosol spray can which can in some cases be bad for the environment as they may contain hydrocarbons and/or compressed gases notorious for their contribution to global warming. “Even modern day aerosols could emit volatile organic compounds which contribute to ground-level ozone levels, which is a key component of asthma-inducing smog” according to the American Scientist website.
The ingredients are a mixture of baddies and goodies; goodies include Argan Oil, Camomile and Aloe Vera, baddies include: paraffinium liquidium – this is another way of saying mineral oil. Lots of natural hair and skin care companies will tell you that mineral oil is harmful and full of carcinogens, this simply is not true, the oil used in these products is refined and regulated. However what is true is that mineral oil is not the best thing to put on your hair as it can coat the strands and acts as a non absorbent oily film, blocking the way for anything else you want to use to make your hair healthier.
Another potential baddie is Tocopherol Acetate which is a natural part of vitamin E which becomes an acetate when mixed with acetic acid and is potentially an irritant and is on some organic ingredients watch lists, so watch out for that one if you have a sensitive scalp.
Now onto the mysterious ‘R Factor’, when you use a product for the first time you want to be so blown away that your recommend it the product immediately, whether it is a tweet saying “OMG! I just discovered an amazing new product!” or picking up the phone to tell your best friend about it, that is the reaction companies die for. This product did not make me send a tweet or pick up the phone, (although I did Instagram it) but if someone came to me asking for a product to add shine to their hair, I would definitely recommend this one.
All in all this is a good product for adding shine to your hair, but that’s really all it does. If you want a product which does anything else, *remove from basket* now.
Sources and further reading:
Information on aerosol cans: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=are-aerosols-still-bad
Guide to ‘harmful’ oils: http://www.innocentoils.com/index8tox.html
Tocopheral Acetate information: http://www.annmariegianni.com/ingredient-watch-list-tocopheryl-acetate-the-potentially-irritating-form-of-vitamin-e
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