I want to start a series on the blog where I compare hair care products which serves more or less the same function. As much as I love skincare and makeup, my slight obsession is with with hair products. Shampoo, conditioner, hair masks, styling products, styling equipment, you name it.
First off, I have to admit that I am quite the hair snob. I don’t usually buy anything from a retail store, my “collection” is 99% salon products. So yes, I understand that these reviews won’t tickle everyone’s fancy, but hopefully I can show you a few products that are worth it, and a few that you can give a skip.
Disclaimer for all the hair battle posts in this series in future: All products were bought by me. No affiliate links, no PR, nothing sponsored. As I am usually the girl with 30+ bottles in her shower, I can argue this one as part of a small obsession of mine.
As a background and for future reference to posts in this series, I’ll describe what type of hair I have, so that you can know if you can relate to the conditions and products that I’ll mention going forward. I’ll also try and say if a product will suit somebody else’s hair better than mine, and why.
❀ I have quite fine hair, but I’m lucky to have a lot of them so they don’t seem so fine from far away
❀ My hair lacks volume by itself
❀ My hair does NOT curl. I can try curling it with a straightener or curling iron and the wave will stay for 20 minutes with the best hairspray available to mankind
❀ I do have frizzy days, but my frizz is a 20% frizz to someone who struggles with 100% frizz
❀ I do, however, have a lot of fly-aways after a blow dry
❀ My hair almost never gets oily, but it gets dry very quickly
❀ At the moment my hair’s length is reaching my bra strap at the back. I do have split and dry ends and try and maintain my hair’s health by regularly going for a cut
❀ I wash my hair every 3rd/4th day, but I can go up to a week with a good dry shampoo
First off, I’m starting the series with two “after-styling” products: Shine spray
Redken Shine Flash 02
This comes in an aerosol can and is as light as air. The first time I picked up a can in store, I thought the sales people had quite the nerve to sell half empty products. Then I picked up the one from behind, and uhm, yes. Then one from the middle, and by this time I had a confused hairdresser behind me, asking if she could help.
It smells fantastic and is most definitely not hair spray. It will not hold any style, neither will it tame fly-aways, it is not designed for that. It creates a glossy shine without leaving any residue on your hair. I can use this every day and it doesn’t create any residue even after a few days. You can spray out half of the can and you won’t feel it on your hair, you will just be wasting product. Alcohol Denat is the second ingredient in the ingredients list, so I figure the actual spray evaporates very quickly and just leaves you with a shiny gloss.
How does it work? You spray it directly onto dry hair. It will be the very last step in your hair care routine. Even if you apply a dry oil after your blow-dry, this will come after that. It will leave you with a high gloss, shiny finish.
How much does it cost? Currently R276 from Everythinghair and R310 from Retailbox (I see Retailbox’s is a black canister, maybe it is new packaging? Dunno.) I’m not sure how much it retails for in salons, because sometimes it can be a teeny bit more expensive online than in store. I bought it for about R220 at one of those salons that you get inside selected Dischem pharmacies, but it’s already been a long while ago.
Does it do what it says it does? Sort of. My hair smells lovely after applying this and maybe I’m forcing it, but I think I can see a bit of a shine. It doesn’t glitter, just shines. I have to add that it doesn’t do much if I didn’t first blow-dry my hair. I therefore never apply it when I fasten my hair into a ponytail, I don’t think it adds anything “extra” then.
Kevin Murphy Shimmer Shine
First off, I have to admit another thing: I’m totally biased when it comes to Kevin Murphy. They are about the only brand that I’ve absolutely loved all the products from that I’ve tried thus far.
The Shimmer Shine is an absolute favourite in my hair care routine. It contains very, very fine pieces of glitter which creates a definite shine on your hair. The first thing you will notice, is the obvious golden glitter particles inside the shine spray liquid, and the first thing you will notice when you spray it is the very obvious, strong perfume smell. It smells divine. You can skip applying perfume when you have this in your hair. It’s so strong, that people will notice and ask you what new perfume you’re wearing. And whenever you flip your hair throughout the day, you will smell it again.
How does it work? Like the Redken Shine Flash above, you also apply this to dry hair after all other styling. Although it’s not oily by itself, this spray is definitely oilier than Redken Shine Flash. It also does not leave a residue on your hair, but unlike Redken Shine Flash, you can actually over-spray this on your hair. Three to four sprays on my long hair is more than enough. This spray also treats your hair because it is enriched with added vitamins, essential oils and bioflavonoids.
The bottle should not be shaked, but twirled before use. I can relate to this, as shaking will block the spray mechanism but twirling the bottle is less vigorous.
How much does it cost? I remember paying in the region of R395 for it, also almost a year ago. Sadly, neither Retailbox or Everythinghair stocks this online. I found it on this website for R410, but I’ve never heard of this site or used it before. I bought mine from The Test Box, which is unfortunately not up and running anymore. I know you can contact Kevin Murphy SA on Twitter or email them to find stockists in South Africa.
Does it do what it says it does? Most definitely yes. The small glitter creates an obvious shine to your hair, but be careful of over spraying. The perfume is enough to win anyone over and over again.
For both shine sprays
Is this necessary? No, definitely not. It’s very nice-to-haves, but it’s not such a crucial step to your routine like conditioner is, or hairspray when you need it.
Redken Shine Flash is about R300 for 150ml. Kevin Murphy Shimmer Shine is about R400 for 100ml. That is about double the price per ml liquid. However, you use less of the KM Shimmer Shine per use than you do for the Redken Shine Flash.
How long do they last? Both of these products last a reasonable time. I bought them both last year already, about a month apart. I’m guessing that I’m 2/3 down with the Redken, and I can see I’m exactly half way through the KM. So they will both last me more than a year, but for obvious reasons: If you alternate between two products, together they will last you double the time of just one product alone, duh 😉 And also, I don’t wash my hair everyday. For someone who washes their hair everyday and who will use this daily, I don’t think that either one of these will last them more than 6 months (but that is my unspecialised opinion though, don’t take me up on it).
Who won’t they work for? Not one of these products causes significant product build-up like hairspray or other styling products do, and I feel they will do great on everyone. From very coarse, dry hair to very thin, oily hair too.
Would I buy either one again? And if yes, which one? I am really on the fence about this one, because I don’t really miss it when I’m not using it. But because I like the smell so much, of both, I would repurchase just to have it. However, this is not something I’ll stand in a long que for when there’s a sale, and it’s also not the first thing that comes to mind when doing a beauty budget and I have to think about stuff that’s almost finished that I will have to replace anytime soon.
Depending on my budget for the month, I will first try and get my hands on the Kevin Murphy Shimmer Shine and if I can’t get a hold of it, I would look for the Redken Shine Flash. The only reason that KM is winning this beauty contest is the pretty glitter and the smell. I feel that the results on your hair are the same for both products.
Have you tried any shine shimmer kind of products, from these or other brands? Maybe something from a retail store that you could recommend, with a much lower price tag? Please share with me in the comments down below, I would love to try something else too xx