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Herbatint natural hair colour

To follow on my hair update, last week I changed my colour a bit and went darker using Herbatint, a natural, cruelty-free, vegan-friendly range of hair colour containing herbal extracts like aloe vera, witch hazel and meadowfoam. I chose shade 6N which is labelled as dark blonde because my previous tint had washed out so much and I quite liked the darker shade for winter.

I actually hadn’t heard of Herbatint before until Freebees sent me one to try. It’s an Italian herbal hair dye brand with 30 shades to choose from.Interestingly, you can mix shades in the amount you require and keep the rest of the unmixed formula for another application, so if you’re doing your roots or have short hair a box will last two applications. Mixing it yourself also means you can easily combine shades to customise the perfect one for you. Once mixed it forms a gel which you need to apply with a brush (not supplied). I just used my fingers because I didn’t have a brush on hand. I found the gel a little runny to work with, but a brush would have solved the problem of dripping it all over the place.

 

My only gripe is the shade naming or accuracy of the colour on the box picture. The colour does come out darker than the picture on the box and can’t really be described as dark blonde. And I know it isn’t just my hair, because I’ve since read a few reviews online stating the same. They do say if in doubt you should opt for a lighter colour, so perhaps that’s my bad. The colour was also quite one-dimensional. You might get a more natural range of tones with traditional or more sophisticated products, but I feel that the gentleness and mild scent of this product make up for it.

That being said, I was seriously impressed with how gentle this hair colour is. I could barely feel it on my scalp at all, besides a mild tingling in the very beginning. There was none of the burning sensation I am used to. In addition, that horrible eye-watering smell you normally get is totally absent as it does not contain ammonia. It has a very mild scent, and it smells nothing like traditional hair dye. Anyone who has a sensitive scalp or just plain hates that small that lingers in your hair, then you have to try this.

The box also comes with a shampoo and conditioner, which smell really good and actually work really well. I decided based on the almost black colour my hair was during processing (which scared me a bit) to leave it on for 30 minutes instead of the 45 recommended. My ‘after’ photo was taken after a rough blow dry, but after I had flat ironed my hair it was really shiny, soft and most importantly felt healthy. There was none of that stiffness or dryness which often comes along with box hair colour.

They retail for R180 a box and are available from www.naturescolours.com

Below is a list of shades available. I notice they have a platinum blonde which I may or may not be sneakily eyeing from the corner of my eye…

Herbatint shades

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A hair update | What I’ve done and what I’ve been using

For as long as I can remember having platinum hair was part of my identity. I have written quite a few posts where I mention that I don’t feel like myself unless my hair is as blonde as inhumanly possible. A while ago I decided to go back to my natural hair colour, and for the first time since finishing school I a) realised what my natural colour actually is and b) have been enjoying the freedom of not having to deal with bleach. I used a dark blonde tint which faded to my natural colour, and I don’t even see the regrowth.

I also got bored one weekend and chopped myself a fringe. I actually love having a fringe as it covers my enormous forehead and it’s a nice change. However, my DIY fringe cut with a pair of nail scissors might have been best left to the pro’s. Speaking of which…

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…Recently I went to the launch of the NAK Aromas range at Stylebar in Tygervalley. NAK is a natural Australian brand and the Aromas shampoo and conditioner contain argan oil, lavender, patchouli and geranium which make them smell like… I’m not quite sure how else to describe it, other than using the products makes me feel like I have stepped into A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The brand has an outdoorsy, beachy, carefree vibe. I think the lavender flavoured mocktails, the NAK floral motifs and my sparkly, blonde-curled stylist at the event itself all conspired to make me forever associate NAK with fairy magic.

I have been using the NAK Aromas colour shampoo and conditioner. These are sulfate free and vegan friendly and smell amazing in a less artificial and somehow prettier way than some other shampoo scents. Even though the shampoo is sulfate free it foams really well (it has natural foaming agents) and leaves your hair really clean. Despite having quite dry hair prone to frizz the conditioner also works well, but is light and doesn’t weigh hair down. I still use a smoothing spray before blow drying. There is a blonde, a smooth and a curl range as well, so something for everyone including a men’s and styling range.

At the NAK event they used the blonde shampoo, smooth conditioner and ultimate potion on my hair, and you can see from the picture above how sleek my hair looks. People with boisterous hair might want to try the NAK Smooth range instead, but for me the colour range is great for home use. I love that this range is more gentle and natural than regular products but still delivers that salon-worthy result.

The highlight for me was the NAK Ultimate Potion which  restores moisture and protects from heat styling and UV. The actual product is glittery… could this secretly be fairy dust? I’ve recently used up my Schwarzkopf BC Moisture Kick Beauty Balm and I’m very keen to get some of the Ultimate Potion to use after rinsing my hair at the beach during summer when the salt really dries out my hair. I can tell this will definitely be on my summer must-have list.

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The shampoos, conditioners and the Ultimate Potion (part of the signature range) retail for R320 each. You can visit Retailbox to see and shop the products.

I’ve also tried a natural, vegan-friendly and cruelty-free hair dye lately, so I will spill the beans on that later this week.

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If your eyes need perking up, there’s Clinique Pep Start

I bought Clinique’s newish Pep Start eye cream quite a while ago and now that I’ve given it a proper road test (it’s nearing the end of the tube) I can confidently say if you’re looking for an eye cream that will make tired eyes look brighter, then this one is worth a try. It contains peptides to boost collagen and caffeine to reduce puffiness. It’s easily absorbed and really hydrating, and kicks that under eye crepe effect in the butt. It’s like a morning cup of coffee for your eyes.

I love and loathe the packaging. It comes in a tube (brilliant, it isn’t in a silly jar) with a plastic ball applicator which is unfortunately not the easiest to use. It also claims the ball applicator is for rolling around the eye area for a cooling effect, but since it is made of plastic it isn’t cooling in the least. If it had been made of metal the whole claim and packaging would have made sense and been lovely to use.

When I apply it I can really see a brightening effect and my eyes do look more awake. It isn’t going to erase dark circles, but it does help to hydrate, brighten up and make you look a bit perkier. If you have very dry, flaky undereyes or eczema then this might not be hydrating or soothing enough (try Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado) but if you’ve got the regular issues like fine lines, shadows etc. then this is a really peppy little product.

It costs R330, so not the cheapest eye cream but not the priciest either. I still cringe when I think about the Bobbi Brown eye cream I bought once without checking the price first… scarred for life.

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Babor turns cleansing into an experience

I’ve always been curious and fascinated about Babor and I was literally over the moon to win this Babor cleansing due from Lipgloss Kisses a while ago. When Germans create anything they do it right (my car is German and that thing is Sheer Driving Pleasure). Oils are also my favourite cleansing method, so this was a match made in heaven right off the bat. What a beautiful brand, inside and out. They only use renewable energy (wind power), encourage their staff to drive electric cars, are carbon neutral and never have or will test on animals.

This bi-phase cleansing due consists of HY-ÖL (R456), with hydrophilic plant oils like natural soybean, sesame and peanut oils, as well as quillaja extract (also known as soapbark) to assist with cleansing. The second product, the Phytoactive Base (R368), a detoxifying and refreshing herbal complex containing agrimonia eupatoria, an astringent, as well as mint, birch and rosemary. The Phytoactive Base is for dry skin, but also comes in versions for combination, sensitive etc. Fun fact: Agrimonioa Eupatoria is a plant said to have medical and magical powers since back in the time of the Romans.

You need to use the two in combination. First massage a pump or two of the HY-ÖL into your skin, then add a pump or two of the Phytoactive Base, wet your fingertips and massage in the milky emulsion it forms. Then just rinse off. It smells and feels like you’re having a very expensive facial in a spa. That is the best way that I can describe this cleanser. It feels like the ultimate luxury taking my makeup off at night and my skin doesn’t only feel great afterwards, it literally looks better than it did when I woke up that morning. They call it the ‘art of cleansing’ and it certainly is a sensory experience.

This is the best cleansing oil I’ve tried to date. It is the only cleansing oil which I can really rub into my eyes which doesn’t cause any cloudy vision, and it really removes all my makeup, even waterproof mascara. It is pricey for the combination, but it will last a long time and it just leaves my skin feeling so clean, soft and supple and it is so enjoyable to use that I will definitely repurchase it one product at a time.

Below is a video from Babor on their cleansing duo. If this doesn’t make you want to go wash your face nothing will! It really captures the how serene and relaxing the experience is and gives the background of the product. You can buy these Babor products online from their website.