I've told you before about being a Bzz agent for UK brands but I am also a Trndeur for French brands, which is basically the same thing. The lastest campaign that I am involved in for them is for the L'Oréal Paris Hair Expertise range, which has recently been released in the UK too, so they sent me through some products to try out, as well as some samples to give out to my friends.
The Hair Expertise range comprises three different product families :
EverPure Colour Care System: Non-sulphate cleansing for over-processed, coloured hair. Infused with botanical rosemary and juniper oils
EverSleek Smoothing Care System: Non-sulphate cleansing for over-processed, frizzy hair. Infused with botanical sunflower extract.
EverStrong Reinforcing & Vitality : Non-sulphate cleansing and conditioning care for over-processed, frizzy hair. Infused with botanical rosemary and juniper oils
Following a quick haircare questionnaire, I was sent the EverStrong range to try out on my natural, rather dry hair. I received three tubes of shampoo and a tub of hair mask to put through their paces.
You'll probably have noticed that the big selling point of the new range is the sulphate-free formula. I wasn't sure why this was important so I went to investigate in the Trnd project guide. It turns out that sulphates are chemical agents that have a strong cleansing and foaming power that are absolutely fine for normal, healthy hair and that are used in most shampoos currently on the supermarket shelves. Fragile or damaged hair needs a gentler formula though, which is why L'Oréal have come up with this new sulphate-free ingredients list, promising sleek, shiny and protected hair.
OK, enough reading - off to the shower for some hands-on testing. The problem with sulphate-free shampoo, when you're used to using less natural products, is that you don't get the usual vast amounts of foam so you have the impression that your hair isn't as clean as normal. The foam only ends up down the plughole though so there's no reason why a bit less lather means your hair isn't clean - it's purely psychological. The shampoo lather feels creamy - in fact I had to check the label mid-wash because I wondered if I'd picked up conditioner instead of shampoo ! - so I had the impression my hair was a bit lank and greasy after I'd finished shampooing. Reading the instructions more carefully, you should only use a small walnut-sized blob of shampoo because it's so concentrated, and massage it into your hair, then add a bit of water, massage it in a bit more, add a bit more water, and so on, so that the active agents can deeply penetrate your hair and do their magic.
Fragrance-wise, the shampoo smells pleasant enough but it's a bit non-descript. If you gave me a blind sniff-test, I'd tell you it smells of shampoo but I can't defiine it any more than that. Think of the smell that greets you when you walk into a hair salon - that's what it reminds me of.
OK, on to the mask. Now, I have very thick, long hair so I always use quite a lot of conditioner or hair mask, making sure there is plenty to cover each and every hair shaft generously. I therefore used more than the recommended amount of product for the EverStrong mask. It's pretty non-descript again - a run-of-the-mill hair mask which has a typical hair mask fragrance and texture. The instructions recommend you massage it into your hair from the roots to the tip, massaging your scalp to improve blood circulation and finishing off with a blast of cold water to make you hair extra shiny. (I admit, I missed out the cold water part!)
When I got out of the shower, my hair didn't feel particularly well cleaned or nourished, compared to usual. I left it to dry naturally and it was only the next day, when I brushed my hair, that I was impressed with how thick it looked and how tangle-free it was. It didn't feel at all greasy any more and did look healthier and less dry than before.
So there you have it - the jury is still out on this one to be honest ! I was a bit underwhelmed by the fragrance and look of the product - there's nothing wrong with them but nothing that leapt out and really wowed me either. The texture of the shampoo felt strange when using it but my hair did feel lovely the day after using the shampoo and mask. After giving out the samples to friends and work mates, I've had a real mixed bag of reactions too so it seems to be a bit of a Marmite-product that you either love or hate. If you try it, I'd love to know what you thought !
If you head over to the L'Oréal Paris Facebook page here you can claim a free sample.
star rating : 3.5/5
RRP :shampoo £5.99 for 250ml, mask £6.99 for 200ml
for more information : http://www.boots.com/en/LOreal/Haircare/LOreal-Hair-Expertise/
Disclaimer : I received three shampoos and a hair mask to try out as well as samples, money-off vouchers and brochures to give out to friends in return for their opinions.
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