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Haircare

Hair Care Hydration, Oils and Treatment Testing Roundup

November 6, 2018

Hair Care Testing Ouai, Gisou, Aquis, IGK | The Beauty Look Book

My hair care routine has changed a little over the past few weeks as I colored my hair for the first time ever with highlights! Some of the hair care items I had been testing and wanted to review had to be re-tested with colored hair as I’ve found it a bit drier in texture and in need of more moisture. The good news is most of my styling staples fortunately have still worked for me! What has changed though is the need for different shampoo, conditioner and more hair masks.

I’ve really loved trying hair oils and my staples still continue to be the ones below:

All of these worked for my normal thick hair, now that it’s colored I feel the Sisley and Moroccanoil work best to add shine. A couple that don’t work quite the same for me include the Shu Uemura Essence Absolue and the Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Oil. They still add softness but now my hair just soaks it up and no shine is added. Brush I currently use is the T3 Dry Vent Brush. I like it enough to keep using it, but I’m still in search for my holy grail.

Best Hair Oils Ouai, Sisley Paris Hair Rituel, Moroccanoil and Oribe Gold Lust | The Beauty Look Book

The Gisou Honey-Infused Hair Oil is one of the best smelling oils I’ve tried. It smells of honey, almond and a hint of coconut. It’s infused with honey from Negin Mirsalehi’s family bee garden. I was sent the Travel Size Oil (50 ml, exclusive to her website) and love it for it’s lightweight finish and soft shine. No greasy look or residue and it makes hair very soft. She just launched the Hair Perfume (100 ml) which has a more floral perfume like scent to it. It has a more powdery scent compared to the oil, I think it’s beautiful but prefer the oil if I had to pick one. I have ordered from her website before (they ship to the US), but you can also find her products at Urban Outfitters and Revolve.

Gisou Honey-Infused Hair Oil and Hair Perfume | The Beauty Look Book

The Rahua Legendary Amazon Oil is something I was really interested in trying out. It’s a plant-based silicone-free hair oil. It’s described as lightweight but I found it to be on the rich side and would recommend it for dry or damaged hair, and particularly if you have thicker strands. A little goes a very long way to coat the hair, I prefer using it on damp hair with just one pump. On my virgin hair pre-coloring it added incredible softness with a soft sheen. On my color-treated hair it adds softness but I find it challenging to find the right amount to use. Too little doesn’t add enough shine and one coat too much results in something that looks too heavy for my hair type. The oil has a very natural smell to it which fades after a few minutes. Based on the texture I tried I do think it would be too thick and heavy for fine hair, but if you’re looking for a silicone-free option this is a nice one to consider for very dry or coarse hair.

Rahua Legendary Amazon Hair Oil Review

Shu Uemura Art of Hair Satin Design is something I discovered and reviewed years ago. It’s a blow dry lotion used to heat protect hair, remove frizz and add softness. I used up a bottle and repurchased but it sat in storage most of last year when we moved around a lot. I rediscovered it recently and my color treated hair LOVES this. It has the right texture, emollient and finish to make my hair soft and remove any signs of dryness. After using and blow drying my hair it is incredibly soft, tangle-free and without any greasy residue. Ends still need a little bit of finishing with a shine product or oil, but overall this is a solid win. It gives hair a soft satiny glow.

Shu Uemura Art of Hair Satin Design Milk | The Beauty Look Book

I love IGK for the packaging. Their products are also great too. I hauled two products from Sephora earlier this year. The Thirsty Girl Coconut Milk Leave-In Conditioner got me because of the name coconut. It’s a milk-infused leave-in conditioner that has a spray. The packaging and spray dispenser are excellent – these days I am always amazed when brands don’t package their products with well designed spritzers. I really appreciate that IGK packaging is all on point, not just in the fun design but function as well. As the product name implies it’s a leave-in conditioner. I found that it was very easy to overdo the first few uses. The spritzer is so even and dispenses a fine mist I wasn’t sure I applied enough. It does work like a traditional leave-in conditioner, I think I like it mainly for the scent and novelty of packaging. Performance is good and I have no regrets buying. I’m not sure I would repurchase. If you found it too rich or oily, I think simply sprayed too much on, although I can see how it could be too rich for fine hair.

The IGK Good Behavior Spirulina Protein Smoothing Spray also suckered me in with the name “smoothing.” I think their packaging and naming is genius. It gets me every time! This is a heat-protective blow out spray that is supposed to have similar effects of keratin treatments. I have not tried one so I cannot compare, but based on photos I’ve seen after the treatments I do think the IGK Good Behavior spray gives very similar looking results but in the shorter-term (as in it will last a day until you re-wash your hair). As a pre-heat treatment I see similar results with other types of products. I do like that the Good Behavior spray smooths hair, reduces frizz and does make my hair look smooth and fresh all day. As with the Thirsty Girl, I do think Good Behavior is easy to over apply. The IGK applicator spritzers are so good compared to other brands. They spray product very efficiently so you might be used to spraying more product. I’d recommend coating hair lightly and add one spritz at a time as you blow dry in sections if you feel you need more. It gets a thumbs up for me but I do think you can get similar frizz-free soft shine results with other products.

IGK Thirsty Girl and Good Behavior | The Beauty Look Book

This Briogeo Hair-O-Scopes Brightest Stars Bestsellers Kit came at the perfect time for me. It has a full-size Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask which is now my holy grail hair mask. I had to wait 72 hours to wash my hair after color treatment. The first two days I found my hair just wasn’t the same, it needed a lot more moisture. This mask rescued it and I never want to be without it now. Prior to my highlights I had been experiencing a lot of breakage in the hair. I do think using this mask (along with the Aquis hair towels) has reduced breakage drastically. I’m still sampling the other items in the kit but the hair mask makes it 100% worth trying. I’ve already ordered another mask.

Briogeo Hair O Scopes Kit with full size Don't Despair Repair Hair Mask Sephora

Last but not least are the Aquis Hair Towels. I’ve now tried multiple sizes and products in the line. I really liked the Prime Starter Kit before I had my hair colored to strengthen and reduce breakage. Post hair highlights, the leave-in conditioner just doesn’t really perform the same. It works to smooth and detangle, but I’m not seeing a lot of added moisture or shine. I’m going to put the entire kit to more testing before I give a comprehensive review.

For the hair towels I don’t think you can go wrong with any of them. With new hair coloring towels are prone to staining, but the dye washed out and didn’t leave any marks on the white ones. I just made sure I threw them in the washer right away.

I thought I’d always be a towel kind of person but their Rapid Dry Turban has a really clever design with a loop on one end and closure on the other. It’s super easy to use and holds hair in place better than wrapping a towel.

For the towels, I prefer the longer lengths for my hair. The first one I tried was the Lisse Luxe Long Hair Towel. I then ordered the regular sizes to try and found the longer ones easier to wrap around the head. Andrew has liked and borrowed all of mine and prefers the Waffle Luxe version. I think both textures work the same for me.

I’ve bought mine from Sephora, but I just noticed this Ouai Ouai x Aquis Set available at Bloomingdale’s at a really good price. With the holiday sets out definitely look around online for different options.

Aquis Hair Turban and Waffle Towel

For those who didn’t see on Instagram stories, my before and after hair color:

Caramel Hair Highlights before and after

After using the same stylist for nearly 10 years in San Diego, making a change was scary when I moved, but one of the best things about South Florida is that the people here are so nice. I found a salon on Yelp and decided to try based on the reviews. They made me feel completely at ease as a new client, I loved them and went back. I decided to have my hair colored for the first time there and loved the results. I was so nervous that I nearly cancelled but my husband and mother in-law came with me and assured me it would all be ok. The day of appointment the salon asked if they could film the process for their social media feed and I said sure. They put together a fun clip if you want to check them out I linked it below. Quick FYI this is all still my natural hair except for the coloring, no extensions. Just highlights – they also curled my hair for fun afterwards.

 

 

I was truly blown away by everyone’s kind words about the new hair. You made me feel so loved with the sweet comments and suggestions about hair care, shampoos and everything else in between. I’ve been testing different shampoos and conditioners which I’ll be reviewing soon, for now I wanted round up the oils and other products I have been testing for hydration and smoothness.

Overall, my favorites are still my favorites. I do love the Gisou Hair Oil for the soft finish, shine and scent. The Aquis Hair towels and Briogeo hair mask are life savers for me. I’m thrilled that I rediscovered the Shu Uemura Art of Hair Satin Design and am amazed it didn’t go bad (it was in storage for months, granted it was an climate controlled one).

What are your favorite hair products for hydration, added shine and smoothing? Let me know what hair type you have in the comments too!

 

Press samples featured include the Sisley Hair Oil, Aquis Hair Turban, Moroccanoil Hair Treatment, Briogeo Hair-O-Scopes Set, Rahua Oil.

Haircare Sisley-Paris

Hair Rituel by Sisley Review

September 5, 2018

Hair Rituel by Sisley review

Earlier this year Sisley-Paris launched a luxurious hair care line called Hair Rituel by Sisley designed to nourish the hair and scalp. I fell in love with every single item and have a review of everything launched to date. At this time they have seven pieces in their four step treatment routine:

Since moving to Florida I’ve found it challenging to maintain healthy and hydrated hair. Many of my Florida readers experience the same issues with heat, humidity and hard water. Even with a water filter many shampoos don’t lather or rinse quite the same. The Hair Rituel by Sisley has been among the few that I’ve kept using and like so much I’ve repurchased after using up press samples.

Hair Rituel by Sisley Smoothing Shampoo, Conditioner and Hair Mask

To cleanse the hair I really like the Revitalizing Smoothing Shampoo. I’ve gone through multiple bottles and think it is 100% worth the high price tag. It does help smooth the hair without making it feel heavy. It contains macadamia oil which has helped strengthen, nourish and add shine. It has a beautiful gentle scent to it and lathers/foams well. I shampoo daily.

The Restructuring Conditioner is a great gentle daily use kind of rinse out conditioner, although this is a step I don’t use daily. It’s like an instant shot of hydration for the hair and truly helps with detangling. I’ve never had issues with tangling until I moved to Florida. It helps smooth out the ends with a lightweight finish so your hair is not weighed down.

The Regenerating Hair Mask is something I use 1-2x per week. This is one of the best hair masks I’ve tried to add shine but not weight. So many hydrating hair masks won’t rinse out properly or are simply too heavy/rich for humid weather. This one has just the right combination to nourish ends of hair and scalp. It has four main oils Shea, Macadamia, Camellia and Hazelnut.

Hair Rituel by Sisley-Paris, Scalp Serum, Hair Oil and Volume Spray

For the scalp they have a really nice Revitalizing Fortifying Serum for the scalp. This is the first time I’ve used a scalp treatment at home and it does help soothe it. It has an earthy kind of scent, something I’d associate with Aesop’s skincare line. A little can go a long way and I use this 1x per week only at night or as needed. Since I’ve started using the other items I’ve had less scalp issues, but during the dry season here in Florida this helps immensely.

Hair Rituel Revitalizing Fortifying Serum for the Scalp

Last but not least are two styling products. The Precious Hair Care Oil is one of the most beautiful elegant hair oils I’ve tried. I think it is my favorite item in the collection and suitable for any hair type. This one is lightly hydrating to add shine and softness to the ends without being heavy. It’s great for me because it’s lightweight and in Florida humidity it won’t weigh it down.

Hair Rituel by Sisley Precious Hair Care Oil Glossiness and Nutrition

Sisley Hair Rituel Precious Hair Care Oil Glossiness and Nutrition

The latest launch is the Volumizing Spray which adds a nice texture throughout the hair. I use it on damp hair, spray at roots and brush it through. I follow with a blow dryer. By the time hair is dried you will notice it has more volume but also some texture. Hair is noticeably thicker with a more piecey look.

Sisley Hair Rituel Volume Spray

In addition to the full size products they’ve also launched a travel set in two variations called the Hair Rituel Smoothing Discovery Set and Volumizing Set. Both of which are a great way to try the items out before splurging on the full sizes. They each contain shampoo (one has the smoothing, one has the volume option), conditioner and hair mask in 1.6 fl oz/50 ml sizes and a hair oil in .33 fl oz/10 ml.

Sisley Hair Rituel Discovery Set Smoothing

If you are able to visit the store in NYC or their counter at Saks they have the Hair Rituel line along with Yves Durif brushes:

Sisley Paris Boutique in NYC Soho

Final thoughts are this line comes at a hefty price tag but everything performs really well. I’ve already repurchased the Smoothing Shampoo a few times over along with the Regenerating Hair Care Mask. I’ve found over the years many of my readers don’t necessarily want to splurge on makeup, but are definitely more willing to splurge on hair care or skin care. If you’re new to the line I think the Discovery Sets are the best way to start. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. The shampoos work well to tame frizz and smooth my hair. I really love the mask to help with my ends.

Although I do think every piece is exquisite, my top two absolute favorites are the Regenerating Hair Mask and Precious Hair Oil.

Sisley has been kind enough to do another giveaway with me! One is here on the blog and there’s another one on my Instagram @beautylookbook so there are multiple ways to enter to win! They are giving away Discovery Sets here on the blog for 2 US readers, 18 years or older. Each winner will be able to receive 1 Discovery Set of their choice. To enter for a chance to win simply enter through the widget below. Giveaway will run through September 9, 11:59 PM EST, winners will be selected within 48 hours and contacted by e-mail. Prizes will be shipped directly from Sisley. Note the first two entry options are mandatory, there are also a few bonus entries.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you tried this line before? If not what are your go-to hair products? Do you have a favorite line or brand? For those curious, full ingredient list below:

Revitalizing Volumizing Shampoo: WATER/EAU (AQUA), SODIUM LAUROYL SARCOSINTATE, COCO-GLUCOSIDE, COCAMIDOPROPYL BETAINE, PEG-120 METHYL CLUCOSE TRIOLEATE, GLYCERIN, SODIUM COCOYL GLUTAMATE, PANTHENOL, PENTLENE GLYCOL, FRAGRANCE (PARFUM), ARGINNE, BISABOOL, CAMELLIA OLEIFERA SEED OIL, CORYLUS AVELLANA (HAZELNUT) SEED OIL, PYRIDOXINE HCL, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, MANESIUM ASPARATE, ZINC GLUCONATE, HYDROLYZED COTTONSEED PROTEIN, PALMITOYL MYRISTYL SERINATE, COPPER GLUCONATE, BIOTIN, PEG-18 GLYCERYL OLEATE/COCOATE, CITRIC ACID, SODIUM CHLORIDE, POLYQUATERNIUM-47, PEG-8, PROPANEDIOL, STYRENE/ACRYLATES COPOLYMER, DISODIUM EDTA, TETRASODIUM EDTA, TETRASODIUM EDTA, TRISODIUM PHOSPHATE, PEG-8/SMDI COPOLYMER, SODIUM POLYACRYLATE, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, PHENOXYETHANOL, SODIUM BENZOATE, BENZOIC ACID, POTASSIUM SORBATE, LIMONENE, CITRAL.

Revitalizing Smoothing Shampoo: WATER/EAU (AQUA), SODIUM LAUROYL SARCOSINATE,COCO-GLUCOSIDE, COCAMIDOPROPYL BETAINE, PEG-120 METHYL GLUCOSE TRIOLEATE, GLYCERIN, SODIUM COCOYL GLUTAMATE, PANTHENOL, PENTYLENE GLYCOL, FRAGRANCE (PARFUM) ARGININE, BISABOLOL, MACADAMIA INTEGRIFOLIA SEED OIL, MORINGA OLEIFERA SEED OIL, PYRIDOXINE HCL, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, MAGNESIUM ASPARTATE, ZINC GLUCONATE, HYDROLYZED COTTONSEED PROTEIN, PALMITOYL MYEISTYL SERINATE, COPPER GLUCONATE, BIOTIN, PEG-18 GLYCERYL OLEATE/COCOATE, CITRIC ACID, SODIUM CHLORIDE, POLYQUARWENIUM-22, PEG-8, PROPANEDIOL, STYRENE/ACRYLATES COPOLYMER, POLYQUATERNIUM-47, DISODIUM EDTA, PEG-8/SMDI COPOLYMER, TETRASODIUM EDTA, TRISODIUM PHOSPHATE, SODIUM POLYACRYLATE, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, PHENOXYETHANOL, SODIUM BENZOATE, BENZOIC ACID, POTASSIUM SORBATE, LIMONENE, CITRAL.

Restructuring Conditioner: WATER/EAU (AQUA), HYDROXYPROPYL STARCH PHOSPHATE, BEGENTRIMONIUM CHLORIDE, GLYCERIN, C9-12 ALKANE, CETYL ALCOHOL, PENTYLENE GLYCOL, GRAGRANCE (PARFUM), AMINOPROPYL DIMETHICONE, CORYLUS AVELLANA (HAZELNUT) SEED OIL, PANTHENOL, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, HYDROLYZED COTTONSEED PROTEIN, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, PALMITOYL MYRISTYL SERINATE, BIOTIN, DIMETHICONE, POLYQUATERNIUM-22, ISOPROPYL ALCOHOL, POLYQUATERNIUM-47, HYDROXYETHYLCELLULOSE, PEG-8, DISODIUM EDTA, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, DIMETHICONOL, CITRIC ACID, PEG-8/SMDI COPOLYMER, SODIUM POLACRYLATE, SORBIC ACID, PHENOXYETHANOL, SODIUM BENZOATE, POTASSIUM SORBATE, LIMONENE, CITRAL.

Hair Care Mask: WATER/EAU (AQUA), CETYL ALCOHOL, GLYCERIN, C9-12 ALKANE, HYDROXYPROPYL STARCH PHOSPHATE, BEHENTRIMONIUM CHLORIDE, PENTYLENE GLYCOL, FRAGRANCE (PARFUM), PANTHENOL, ARGINNE, BISABOLOL, PYRIDOXINE HCL, HYDROLYZED COTTONSEED PROTEIN, HYDROLYZED RICE PROTEIN, CAMELLIA OLEIFERA SEED OIL, CORYLUS AVELLANA (HAZELNUT) SEED OIL, MACADAMIA INTEGRIFOLIA SEED OIL, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) BUTTER, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, PALMITOYL MYRISTYL SERINATE, HYDROLYZED VEGETABLE PROTEIN, HYDROLYZED LINSEED EXTRACT, BIOTIN, MAGNESIUM ASPARTATE, ZINC GLUCONATE, COPPER GLUCONATE, COPPER GLUCONATE, AMINOPRPYL DIMETHICONE, ISOPROPYL ALCOHOL, POLYQUATERNIUM-47, PEG-8, DISODIUM EDTA, CITRIC ACID, BUTYLENE GLYCOL, STEARAMIDOPROPYL DIMETHYLAMINE, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, PEG-8/SMDI COPOLYMER, SODIUM POLYACRYLATE, SORBIC ACID, PHENOXYETHANOL, SODIUM BENZOATE, POTASSIUM SORBATE, LIMONENE, CITRAL.

Revitalizing Fortifying Serum for the Scalp: AQUA/EAU (AQUA), ALCOHOL DENAT, GLYCERIN. PEG-40 HYDROGENATED CASTOR OIL, PENTYLENE GLYCOL, PANTHENOL, ARGINNE, BISABOLOL, PYRIDOXINE HCL, TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, MAGNESIUM ASPARTATE, ZINC GLUCONATE, SALVIA OFFICINALIS (SAGE) LEAF EXTRACT, COPPER GLUCONATE, HYDROLYZED RICE PROTEIN, HYDROLYZED VEGETABLE PROTEIN, HYDROLYZED LINSEED EXTRACT, BIOTINOYL TRIPETIDE -1, THYMUS MASTICHINA FLOWER OIL, THYMUS VULGARUS (THYME) OIL, CETRIMONIUM CHLORIDE, PPG-26-BUTETH-26, YDROXYETHYLCELLULOSE, CITRIC ACID, BUTYLENE GLYCOL, DISODIUM EDTA,SODIUM HYSROXIDE, FRAGRANCE (PARFUM), PHENOXYETHANOL, SODIUM BENZOATE, POTASSIUM SORBATE, LINALOOL, LIMONENE, CITRAL.

Hair Care Oil: DIMETHICONE, C-9-12 ALKANE, DIMETHICONOL, BUTYROSPERMUM PARKII (SHEA) OIL, FRAGRANCE (PARFUM), GOSSYPIUM HERBACEUM (COTTON) SEED OIL, MORINGA OLEFERA SEED OIL, PASSIFLORA INCARNATA SEED OIL, TOCOPHEROL, HYDROGENATED SOYBEAN OIL, LIMONENE, CITRAL, EUGENOL, LINALOOL.

Many thanks to the Sisley team for providing the Hair Rituel items for review and also for hosting the giveaway.

Empties Haircare Men's Grooming Skincare

Beauty Empties

May 2, 2018

Beauty Empties - What I Used Up | The Beauty Look Book

As promised I have another round of beauty empties of things Andrew and I have used up in the last couple months! (Round 1 here.) As usual most of our empties are skincare-related but I have a mix of everything from makeup, hair care, skincare and men’s grooming. If you have any recent empties let me know in the comments!

Skincare

Beauty Empties Skincare Makeup Wipes, Cleansers, Masks

I’ve been experimenting more with makeup wipes but at the end of the day my favorites are still the Koh Gen Do and MAC Gently Off. Skincare I used up in March and April:

Andrew’s Empties

Men's Grooming Empties

Andrew’s empties from the last couple months include:

  • Aesop Mouthwash – This is his second bottle and he put it on his list to repurchase a third one this week.
  • Baxter Grooming Cream – A gentle and not overly greasy grooming cream for the hair.
  • Jack Black Turbo Wash (not shown) – This is his favorite body wash + shampoo in one with a good lather and cleanses the skin well. (I often borrow it.) We buy the largest size with a pump. I think I might have purchased this over 50 times since we discovered this.
  • Kiehl’s Ultimate Strength Hand Salve – This is his favorite hand cream because it’s the most moisturizing one he’s used and he likes that it’s not really scented.
  • L’Occitane L’Occitan Roll-On Deodorant – He just went through 2 of these and we just stopped by L’Occitane today and bought him two more, he likes that it doesn’t irritate his sensitive under arms and lasts all day. He loves the natural way the L’Occitan line for men smells (they also have shower gels, cologne etc.).
  • Le Labo Shower Gel Mandarin – He discovered the Le Labo shower gels that I ordered and is obsessed with the scent, it’s really strong in the shower or bath, he thinks Hinoki and Mandarin are the best ones. Note these are the newer ones which I think smell a lot stronger and better than the ones that coincide with the perfumes.
  • Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen – Our favorite, but if you read this blog you already know that!

Home

Diptyque Empties, Maison Francis Kurkdjian Detergent, Boy Smells

Home candles I burned up and a fancy detergent I’ve become obsessed with:

  • Boy Smells Candle in Gardener – Most of these come in the black jar, I found the white jar as a limited-edition release sometime last year, this smells like a fresh garden that isn’t too floral or too green, it’s the perfect in between of sweet and fresh.
  • Diptyque Baies Candle – Always a favorite! Burned up another full size and small size.
  • Diptyque Tomas Maier Palm Beach – Smells of a tropical vacation with iris, jasmine, lemon, salt and grass (Diptyque boutique exclusive). Aside from Baies this is probably the one I’ve burned the second most. I stocked up the last time I was at boutique!
  • Diptyque Holiday 2017 Incense Tears Phoenix – Limited-edition release, previously reviewed here, I have plenty of other candles to explore but wish I had bought a backup of this one!
  • Diptyque Miami Candle – Another great fresh tropical scent that smells of lime, magnolia, citrus and a hint of vanilla (available only in Miami boutiques).
  • Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Laundry Detergent – This comes in three forms that are currently exclusive to Neiman Marcus, there is one for light clothes, dark clothes and a fabric softener, the detergent smells like a more fresh grown up version of the perfume, it has enough strength to be noticeable on the clothes and sheets, we can smell it on our sheets for several days before it fades, I used up the Light version first and immediately bought it again along with the other two. I highly recommend these.

A Little Bit of Everything Else

Empties Oribe, L'Occitane, Sisley Rituel, Maybelline Mascara, HUM Hair Sweet Hair

Other items:

  • Drybar On The Rocks Shampoo and Conditioner – I really loved both of these for a clarifying shampoo and gentle conditioner, I’m considering buying again but currently experimenting with other formulas and brands.
  • Oribe Cleansing Crème for Moisture and Control – One of my favorite cleansing creams to re-hydrate dry hair, I’ve gone through so many bottles I’ve lost count!
  • Sisley Hair Rituel Regenerating Hair Care Mask – Full review on Sisley Hair Rituel soon, but this is the best hair mask I’ve ever tried, it’s designed to nourish both the scalp and hair, it leaves hair soft and tangle free and shiny!
  • Laura Mercier Caviar Eye Stick in Rosegold (mini) – My most-used cream shadow base for an all over wash or base for powder shadows.
  • L’Occitane Lavande Lavender Foaming Bath – Creates the best bath bubbles EVER! Also love the relaxing scent.
  • Maybelline Total Temptation Mascara Regular and the Total Temptation Mascara Waterproof – I was really underwhelmed by both of these, I had really high hopes they would work but they fell short of my expectations. The waterproof version is decent and makes for a great layering mascara, but I feel there are much better ones out there on the market for me.
  • Beautyblender Liquid Beautycleanser – I need to find this in a supersize version or cheaper alternative because I go through this way too fast. I know so many of you like baby shampoo, I don’t like using it because it always leaves a film on the brushes no matter how much I rinse.
  • HUM Hair Sweet Hair Gummies – When I bought these in March they were a Sephora exclusive, but now they’re available elsewhere like Nordstrom, I found they tasted AMAZING but results were just ok. My hair did grow a little over 2 inches within 1 month and I noticed it was stronger with less breakage. However I don’t typically measure my hair growth so I don’t know if this was more than usual. I didn’t see any added shine or bounce so I’ve now switched to trying Nature’s Bounty (will report once those are finished).

Beauty Empties Used Up Products | The Beauty Look Book

That wraps it up for the last couple months of empties! As usual let me know what you’ve used up recently, would love to know what you’re using! Do you use any biotin supplements that you love or have any favorite hair masks/face wipes?

The only press sample featured is the Sisley Hair Rituel mask. All other items purchased by me.

Haircare Sephora Skincare

Sephora Spring Bonus Event Details + Recommendations Part 1

April 11, 2018

Sephora Beauty Insider Recommendations Skincare, Fragrance, Haircare via The Beauty Look Book

The Sephora Spring Bonus Event starts this Friday for Beauty Insider Members that have Rouge Status! It will also be open to VIB and BI Members starting next week. The dates, details and codes:

  • Rouge Members: receive 15% off 4/13 through 4/16 and 4/20 through 4/23, use code YAYROUGE
  • VIB Members: receive 15% off 4/20 through 4/23, use code YAYVIB
  • BI Members: receive 10% off 4/20 through 4/23, use code YAYINSIDER

More information about the Beauty Insider program and tiers here. You can shop in store and online. This year only Rouge clients can extend the offer to a friend – you should have received a mailer card by now. By popular request I have a recommendations list! It will be split into two parts. Up first are some of my most-loved in skin, hair and body. This is quite an extensive list but I wanted to cover a little from each category since I know not everyone is a makeup fan. Others prefer haircare vs skincare or vice versa. My recs listed by shelf.

Shelf 1:

Shelf 2:

  • Jo Malone Wild Blue Bell and Wood Sage and Sea Salt Colognes ($65 to $135) are my two go-to’s from Jo Malone. One of the reps I shopped with in San Diego said this was her favorite layering combo and I’ve been hooked for years!
  • Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Glow Moisturizer ($65 for 1.7 fl oz/50 ml) is a great everyday moisturizer for me. It was inspired by her classic ExfoliKate Intensive Scrub (which I also love) and has AHAs of glycolic and lactic acids with fruit enzymes to help with uneven skin texture.
  • Kate Somerville Cold Cream * ($48 for 3 oz/95 g) is a whipped cleansing cream you apply on dry skin and remove with a warm wash cloth. It’s a hydrating cleanser and makeup remover in one. More details in this post.
  • Kate Somerville EradiKate Cleanser ($38 for 4 oz/120 ml) is the best for rebalancing oily acne prone skin. I actually adore all her cleansers detailed in this post. EradiKate is my husband’s favorite of the moment and also one I reach for frequently.
  • Tatcha Cleansing Oil ($48 for 5.1 fl oz/150 ml) is the best cleansing oil for dry sensitive skin.
  • Tatcha The Essence * ($95 for 5.1 oz/150 ml) is a skin softener that makes a huge difference in how your serums and moisturizers absorb into the skin.
  • Supergoop! Sun-Defying Sunscreen Oil ($12 to $34) is my favorite sunscreen oil for the body. It has broad spectrum SPF 50 and absorbs nicely into the skin and is lightweight.
  • Supergoop! City Serum Sunscreen with SPF 30 ($42 for 2 oz/60 ml) is one of my favorite face sunscreens that’s a serum. It’s Andrew’s current favorite for it’s lightweight non-greasy feel. For him it has enough moisture to hydrate his skin but feels weightless when it dries.
  • Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen with SPF 50 ($19 to $48) is my absolute favorite body sunscreen. For hot humid Florida weather this is our favorite because it is really effective. It helps prevent burning. We can reapply easily without it feeling greasy or heavy. It also doesn’t leave a white cast and doesn’t have that typical sunscreen smell.

Shelf 3:

  • Tom Ford Soleil Blanc Eau de Parfum ($145 to $595) or the new Eau de Soleil Blanc ($122 to $171) are both beautiful options for spring to summer, Soleil Blanc was my go-to last year and this year I’ve opted for the new version.
  • Tatcha Polished Classic Rice Enzyme Powder ($65 for 2.1 oz/60 g) is a must-have for me. I don’t use it everyday but I do use it regularly as a gentle exfoliating cleanser. I’ve tried all the versions and right now like the Classic and Indigo formulas the best.
  • Supergoop! Invicible Setting Powder * ($30 for 0.15 oz/4.4 g) is a great way to touch-up your sunscreen on the face mid-day. Swatches and review in this post here.
  • Kopari Coconut Deodorant * ($14 for 2 oz) is what I’ve been using this year for deodorant. My usual go-to has been anything from Lavanila which I still like. But since I only use 1 at a time I decided to try something new. It’s a sweet coconut with an emollient feel. It keeps odor away for me the entire day. Your mileage may vary depending on your body chemistry and how much you sweat.
  • Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask ($26 for .52 oz/ 15 g) is probably one of the best hydrating lip treatments on the market. The newest one I have is Maple which I haven’t reviewed on the blog yet. You can see Smashed and Champagne reviewed here and here though.
  • Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist ($30 to $90) is my favorite light-weight face mist that is refreshing and not too heavy.
  • Christophe Robin Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt ($19 to $53) is my go-to clarifying hair cleanser. I use it once a week to clean the scalp and remove buildup. I’ve bought so many I can’t recall how many I’ve bought. I also really love his Cleansing Volumizing Paste and Cleansing Mask with Lemon.
  • Drunk Elephant Sukari Baby Facial ($80 for 1.69 oz/50 ml) is a gentle AHA 25%/BHA 2% resurfacing mask that has a blend of several acids. You leave it on the skin 20 minutes and then rinse off with warm water. I have sensitive skin but with this one the tingle factor has varied to no tingle to a sharp tingle. The first time I used it I saw no difference. With regular use around 1-2x per week I started to see smoother fresher looking skin after a month. Also available in a mini in the Acid Trip Kit.

Shelf 4:

  • Fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Face Mask ($25 to $62) is the best calming refreshing radiance mask I’ve tried. It’s soothing and really hydrating in a gentle way.
  • Kiehl’s Ginger Leaf and Hibiscus Firming Mask * ($54 for 3.4 oz/100 ml) is the newest from Kiehl’s. I don’t like most sleeping/overnight masks because I find them too heavy and sticky. This one is nicely moisturizing without the tacky feel. It firms and smooths the skin and has a nice velvety dry down.
  • Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask ($22 to $45) is my favorite overnight mask. It smells delicious, hydrates the skin, doesn’t feel heavy and makes the skin glow.
  • Tatcha The Water Cream * ($68 for 1.7 oz/50 ml) is one of my favorite lightweight moisturizers.
  • Deborah Lippmann Cuticle Remover ($20) is my holy-grail cuticle remover. So many of you ask how I maintain clean looking manicures even when I do them on my own. I call this my secret weapon. I’ve tried a number of other brands but this one is the best. My hand care routine here.
  • Kopari Coconut Melt (mini shown) ($18 to $38) is the best body moisturizer that hydrates the skin on my driest days. I had a large bottle but used it up. I plan on restocking during the Sephora event. More on the Kopari products in this post here.

The Event Fine Print: Weekend #1 US & CA (Rouge Early Access) : 15% offer valid for Rouge clients on merchandise purchases made from 4/13/18 through 11:59 PM PT on 4/16/18, and from 4/20/18 through 11:59 PM PT on 4/23/18 in Sephora U.S. stores, Sephora Canada stores, Sephora inside JCPenney stores, and online. Offer not valid on jcp.com. On Friday, 4/13/18 in stores only, Rouge client and one guest of Rouge who is a member of the Beauty Insider program and is present at the time of redemption will be eligible for 15% off all merchandise purchases, along with a sample set and card case free with any merchandise purchase. Sample set and card case offer valid only in Sephora U.S. and Canada stores and Sephora inside JCPenney stores. Limit of one sample set and one card case per Rouge client and one per guest and provided on a first-come basis. Quantities are limited. Not valid on The Ordinary-branded items and not valid on purchases of customizable sets online or through Sephora’s Customer Service. Clients are limited to the purchase of one Dyson – branded item and three Drunk Elephant-branded items per SKU per transaction. Not valid on previous purchases, purchases of gift cards or eGift cards, FLASH, PLAY! by Sephora, gift wrapping, packaging, taxes, or shipping & handling charges. Return of discounted merchandise will be for the price actually paid. Sephora is not responsible for damaged, lost, or stolen promotional barcodes. Promotions have no cash value and may not be altered, sold, or transferred. Rouge status must be attained prior to redemption. No minimum purchase required. Due to heavy demand, Sephora FLASH delivery times cannot be guaranteed for this promotion.Not valid on orders shipping outside the U.S. or Canada. Cannot be used in conjunction with other promotion codes. Sephora and JCPenney employees are not eligible for these offers. Offers are subject to change, alteration, or termination by Sephora at its sole discretion at any time.

I’m hosting a giveaway! I’m giving away 5 $100 eGift Cards to Sephora. Open internationally. Simply enter through the widget below and follow the instructions. Giveaway will run through April 14th 11:59 PM EST. Five separate winners will be selected and contacted via e-mail or Instagram DM on the 15th. Selected winners must respond within 48 hours or another person will be selected in their place. Prizes will be sent out within 24 hours. Not sponsored or affiliated.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

To quickly recap the dates, details and codes for the Sephora Spring Bonus Event:

  • Rouge Members: receive 15% off 4/13 through 4/16 and 4/20 through 4/23, use code YAYROUGE
  • VIB Members: receive 15% off 4/20 through 4/23, use code YAYVIB
  • BI Members: receive 10% off 4/20 through 4/23, use code YAYINSIDER

Makeup recommendations to follow next!

Products that were press samples have a * next to them.

Haircare Sephora

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Blown-A-Ouai Set

November 10, 2017

Dyson Supersonic Dryer Blown-A-Ouai Set Review | The Beauty Look Book

I finally splurged on the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer because Sephora has a Dyson x Blown-A-Ouai Set this season. It’s one of the most expensive beauty tools I’ve purchased and based on my testing I think it 100% lives up to the hype. After reviewing the new Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer I was thrilled to see how many of you love haircare posts and especially surprised many expressed interest in a review of the Dyson Supersonic. This dryer has been out on the market for quite some time now and it has caught my eye on numerous occasions but I could not bring myself to splurge as I already own and love several other dryers. The Sephora set pushed me over the edge and for those who have been contemplating it for the Beauty Insider Sale I hope this review helps you make your decision either way. This dryer comes with an ultra-hefty price tag but it 100% exceeded my expectations and to me I think it lives up to the hype.

The Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer currently runs at $399 which includes the dryer, smoothing nozzle, styling concentrator, diffuser, non-slip mat and storage hanger. There are a few value sets available at various retailers that come with a case or other accessories. The Sephora Blown-A-Ouai Set caught my eye because it comes with all the nozzles, diffuser, mat and hanger but also has a travel bag and four Ouai haircare products including the Repair Shampoo (2 fl oz), Repair Conditioner (2 fl oz), Soft Mousse (1.7 oz) and the Hair Oil (1.5 fl oz). Because of the mousse do note this must ship ground so it may take a little longer to get to you if you order it. Also it appears that this is an online exclusive at Sephora. Note the one I’ve reviewed is limited-edition for 2017. Current 2018 version Dyson Blown Ouai Set comes with the matte black dryer and slight variation of products.

Dyson Blown A Ouai Set Sephora

I didn’t take pictures of the boxes but the entire set comes beautifully boxed in three separate boxes. The dryer + attachments come in its own box. The bag has it’s own box. The Ouai products also come in their own box. Everything is packaged in a way that even in transit nothing moves around and all pieces are held securely in place. It may seem excessive but I really appreciate when items are carefully packed (especially liquids) and to me this is super important especially at the price.

Dyson Supersonic Dryer | The Beauty Look Book

I must admit I thought there was a chance this dryer was going to be a high-tech gimmick but we’ve owned a few Dyson products for the home and found them 100% worth the splurge. We also own a Dyson Cord-Free Vacuum that we bought four years ago and it’s held up remarkably well even with daily use. We find it essential as we own 3 pets with white fur and they shed constantly. We are always vacuuming, using swiffers and washing the pets. When Andrew first saw this dryer out of the box he did not think it was going to be anything special. Then I turned it on and we did a side by side performance comparison to the Harry Josh Ultra Light and T3 PROi and we both saw that the Dyson Supersonic has a lot more power, more control options, and although it is odd-shaped for a dryer, very ergonomic and easy to hold and maneuver. The air flow is a lot more controlled and for some reason the way it’s designed makes for a less frizzy blow out. I’ve experienced a lot of hair breakage from hair ties over the past few months and as parts of my hair have grown out I find my hair is prone to a lot of static or flyaways that stick up. This of course can be fixed with a bit of pomade, gel or shine product. The Dyson dryer seemed to reduce all frizz for me.

Dyson Supersonic Dryer in White/Nickel

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer White | The Beauty Look Book

This is one of the fanciest products I beauty tools own. It has what Dyson calls Intelligent Heat Control technology because it measures temperature 20 times a second and transmits data to the microprocessor. This in turn controls temperature to prevent heat damage. Power-wise- it has a Dyson Digital Motor V9 which is supposedly on average 6 times faster and a third of the weight of other dryer motors. The motor is actually in the handle which is why it feels different in your hands compared to a traditional one. It is so powerful it nearly knocked off all the things on my counter as I didn’t pay attention where I was pointing it when I turned it on.

For the features:

  • There are four heat settings and a constant cold mode
  • There are three airflow power settings
  • The nozzles and diffuser are magnetic and easy to rotate
  • There is a removable filter cage at the base you can remove for easy cleaning
  • One of the best things to me is the mat which helps prevent it from slipping or getting scratched once you set it down
  • I don’t have the hanger cord shown below as I’m always losing little things like hair ties and I’ve already misplaced the little hanging device

Dyson Supersonic Hairdryer Review | The Beauty Look Book

Due to the high power it does indeed give me a super fast blow out. I like the lightest or medium heat setting for my hair type. It isn’t the quietest I own or the lightest but it’s easy to hold and use. The only con I see is the extra long cord. This could be seen as a pro or con depending on your preference and needs. I find it long and cumbersome and it takes up a lot of space. The bag it comes with doesn’t quite fold over at the top like the stock photo shows but it’s not a deal breaker. It holds the dryer, it’s super long cord + two nozzles which is perfect for travel. The cord takes up most of the space. I don’t usually use a diffuser so I did not test it out, but both nozzles provide precise control.

Dyson Travel Storage Bag

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer White | The Beauty Look Book

For the Ouai products that come in this set I have already tried and fell in love with the Repair Shampoo and Repair Conditioner. I have been meaning to restock on the full sizes but just bought the Verb Ghost Shampoo and Conditioner which I also really like. The Hair Oil is something I wasn’t a fan of originally because of the scent but it has grown on me over the past year. I gifted several partially used bottles away to friends who were dying to try it but didn’t want to buy the full size without trying it first. I’m glad I have another one now. The Soft Mousse is new to me. I’m not a mousse fan simply because I don’t like the texture and find them sticky. This one is exceptionally soft like the name implies and has a very nice dry down.

Ouai Haircare Products in the Set

Dyson Blown-A-Ouai Set Hair Care products

A quick hair demo. Since I just got this I haven’t been able to put weeks of testing into this. I have tried it 8 times so far and used this multiple times in a single day. My hair has held up just fine to the heat and power. I do find the highest heat setting too strong for me right now (just for scalp sensitivity) but it did not scorch or dry out my hair. Do note the components will get hot so after you dry your hair I recommend you don’t touch it. I used the Ouai Hair Oil to prep my towel dried hair. Hair was dried very quickly within 5-6 minutes. The result was perfect evenly dried hair with a lightweight feel and airy feel without any signs of frizz. My ends needed a bit of work but I haven’t had a haircut in months.

Quick Demo with the highest airflow and middle heat setting and highest heat setting

Dyson Supersonic Dryer Demo

Because I know you all love the comparisons here is a side by side look at the Harry Josh Ultra Light and T3 PROi. I really cannot pick a favorite. All three perform exceptionally well. The Harry Josh and T3 are both lighter in weight than the Dyson. The Harry Josh is the most gentle on the hair – if you have sensitivity to heat, this one has the softest (but still powerful) heat settings so you don’t get that crispy feeling on the scalp after drying your hair. The T3 gives me shinier hair after a blow out but doesn’t cut down the dry time. The Dyson is by far the most powerful. When you look at the Dyson it doesn’t look like it would be travel friendly but when I compare it to the other two, based on the shape and design I think it is.

If I were forced to pick one to keep right now I’d say I would keep the Dyson. Harry Josh comes in very close second. Why? Simply because the Dyson packs in more power and the fact that it leaves my hair with zero frizz is really impressive. That being said I did read some of the negative reviews online and if you have very dry hair or a sensitive scalp, I’d recommend opting for the Harry Josh instead. While the Dyson did not dry out my hair I think the sheer strength and power could be too much for some.

I have a couple upcoming trips before the end of the year. I’ll be sure to let you know which one I end up packing with me as I know many of you like my packing posts as much as I love sharing them 🙂

Dyson vs Harry Josh vs T3

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer, Harry Josh Ultra Light and T3 PROi Hair Dryer | The Beauty Look Book

Bottom line a winner for me. I wholeheartedly recommend it and for me it 100% lived up to the hype. Definitely worth the splurge for me and I still can’t believe I spent $400 on this (I ordered it before the sale started). While I love it, I don’t think you need to spend this much to get a good quality dryer. There are definitely other more affordable tools that will get the job done well.

Dyson Supersonic Blown-A-Ouai Set Sephora Review | The Beauty Look Book

You can find the Dyson Blown-A-Ouai Set exclusively at Sephora for $399. One shown is 2017 version. New version here.

There are a few other sets available right now and as the holiday season approaches I suspect more could pop up. You can find the Iron/Fuchsia win a special limited-edition Dyson Your Blowout Set at Nordstrom for $399. There is the Iron/Fuchsia with a Light Pink Case at QVC for $399. Also three variations of the Supersonic + Living Proof at QVC for $399 as well.

Have you tried the Dyson Supersonic before? What did you think?

 

Haircare Holiday Gift Guide Shu Uemura

Shu Uemura x Super Mario Bros for Holiday

October 27, 2017

Shu Uemura x Super Mario Holiday 2017

Sometimes there are beauty collections that are simply too cute to handle and the Shu Uemura x Super Mario Brothers Collection for holiday is one of them. Many years ago I used to use and buy a lot from Shu Uemura. It was hard to find in the US so I first discovered the items in Asia and UK during my college days. They eventually launched in a few stores like Sephora and Neiman Marcus. When I lived in California I’d sometimes make a long drive from San Diego to their boutique at South Coast Plaza. Unfortunately they decided to pull the brand from all retail stores and they kept it online only. I hope they will bring it back to more places someday! The holiday collection is super cute and speaks to the young at heart.

Color items and makeup come in limited-edition packaging:

  • Rouge Unlimited Supreme Matte in M PK375 ($30) is the first matte lipstick I’ve tried from Shu Uemura and wow is the formula impressive. I’m not a fan of matte lips in general but this formula is smooth and manages to look velvety without that dried up look. Pigment is opaque and smooth, there’s no tugging and lasting power is really phenomenal. It stays put adhering well to the lips. It also leaves a slight stain on the lips so if as it fades or transfers the color pretty much stays put. PK375 is a pinkish berry color.
  • Rouge Unlimited Sheer Shine in Saved Peach ($30) is one of those sheer glossy peachy colors in the tube but on my lips it turns more pinkish. This has a soft glossy finish with a cushiony feel. Lasting power isn’t as good as the matte but it does feel nice and hydrating on the lips. It has quite a bit of slip and while it looks pretty I’m not the biggest fan of the formula.
  • Tint in Balm in Fire of Flower ($30) is a lush pigmented balm. The formula is so good with this one and even though the color is a lot brighter than what I normally wear, I think it’s worth checking out if you are in the market for a brighter red. Lasting power with this is also very good, especially for a balm. I definitely plan on checking out the other colors in the regular line.
  • Drawing Pencil in Matte Black ($24) is a classic rich opaque smooth black eyeliner. It has a soft matte finish and on my eyes it lasted all day without smudging (even in humidity).

Shu Uemura x Super Mario Holiday 2017

Shu Uemura x Super Mario Holiday 2017 Lips and Eyes

Shu Uemura x Super Mario Holiday 2017 Lip Swatches

The hair care line Shu Uemura Art of Hair is carried on it’s own website, separate from the makeup and skincare items. Each holiday season they usually repromote classics with the holiday packaging so in the event you don’t like the designs you can always buy them with the standard bottles.

  • Cleansing Oil Shampoo ($57) is a classic shampoo I’ve used up entirely multiple times. With my hair type it’s best as a clarifying one to two times a week kind of formula. I always combine it with the corresponding conditioner and the two together are really good for soft clean hair.
  • Cleansing Oil Conditioner ($58) is the coordinating conditioner for the Cleansing Oil Shampoo. I actually like this formula a lot better than the shampoo and use this one with other brands of shampoo. I’m one who washes my hair daily. Back in California I didn’t condition it every day because I didn’t need to. In Florida the water is different and while the weather is hot and makes me prone to sweat more, the water dries out my skin and hair (even with filters). I’ve found I need some kind of conditioner daily and this one is definitely a favorite because it’s light enough to add moisture but not so heavy and rich that it makes my scalp oily.
  • Essence Absolue ($69) is one of their best-sellers and for good reason. It’s a lightweight oil that can be used in a number of ways. I apply it to freshly washed and towel dried hair and it works as a detangler. I also use it pre-heat styling and as a finisher on the ends. It’s consistently in my top picks for hair oils because of the lightweight texture, beautiful scent and great shine it gives my hair without weighing it down. I absolutely love that it comes with a pump dispenser.
  • Master Wax ($39) is another classic from Shu Uemura but this was the first time I’ve ever used a wax. I had to do some research on how to use and apply it because I usually associate a hair wax with a men’s grooming kind of product. It has a nice lightweight scent but feels thick like a gooey pomade. Instructions say you can use on damp or dry hair – I tried both. A little goes a very long way. With my hair styling I usually do the same thing every day. I just like it down and free flowing unless I’m working out and then tie it up. I rarely use hair spray as it gives my hair that crunchy feel. This wax seems like it would be the perfect styling product if you style your hair and need it to stay in place or get that piecey look all day without stiffness. For the most part I’ve had longer hair, at least slightly past the shoulders. There have been times I cut my hair shorter and found it extremely difficult to maintain and style. Shorter hair means there’s less weight and I found my hair kinda flew around in ways I couldn’t manage. Had I known about hair wax back then I think it would have been a styling savior. For now since I’m very minimal with my hair styling I prefer the Essence Absolue or softer creams.

Shu Uemura Art of Hair x Super Mario Holiday

Beauty, skincare and makeup items are available online at Shu Uemura and Shu Uemura Canada. The team has offered Beauty Look Book readers a special offer for orders. With code BLBXSHU online you will receive 5 free deluxe samples and free shipping on orders $50+. Samples include: a mini laque supreme sample rd01, maxi:hydrability essence-in cream 13 ml, sakura-rose-petal-mask 13 ml, ultime8 sublime cleansing oil 15 ml and nutri:nectar sample 15 ml.

The hair care line can be found at their own site Shu Uemura Art of Hair.

Shu Uemura x The Beauty Look Book GWP

That wraps up my look at some of the holiday pieces from the Shu Uemura x Super Mario Collection! Have you tried anything from Shu Uemura recently? What are your favorites? I’m still working on my skincare routine but I’ll say for now that their Sakura Rose Petal Mask is one of my latest obsessions for hydration and soothing.

Holiday collection items and promo code provided courtesy of the Shu Uemura team.

 

Haircare

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer

October 23, 2017

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer Review | The Beauty Look Book

I’m excited to share a review of the new Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer ($349) which launches exclusively at Dermstore this week. For those who aren’t familiar with the line, Harry Josh is a celebrity stylist who has created a line of hair tools called Harry Josh Pro Tools. His products have a signature soft mint green color which I think is fun and unique. I was sent one to test out and this is my first time using anything from his line. Since I’ve already tried and fallen in love with a number of other great hair dryers including the t3 PROi, ghd Air and DryBar (reviewed here) I did not think this one could be better than what I’ve tested but it is.

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer Review | The Beauty Look Book

Also shown above is the Round Brush 2-inch size.

For as long as I can remember I’ve blow dried my hair on a regular basis because I find it essential to tame my thick unruly hair with a slight natural wave. If you’ve read some of my packing posts you know that even though I’m a carry on traveler for the most part I still insist on bringing my own hair dryer with me. The two main inconveniences include the fact that they take up a lot of space and also it weighs down the luggage. The Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer is smaller than the average dryer and extremely light weight under 1 pound. A lot of dryers are design to be “lightweight” but this one is noticeably lighter but still feels like it has substance. It’s easy to hold in the hand for an extended period and easy to maneuver.

Even though it is compact, it has a very powerful motor with a speed of 94 mph which makes for super fast drying time. I set my stopwatch to time my hair drying process with this one on 12 different occasions of using this and each time I was able to get completely dried hair in under 6 minutes (usually around 5 minutes and 46 second mark). Most of the dryers I own take around 7 to 10 minutes for me to get completely dried hair.

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer | The Beauty Look Book

A quick look at the drying steps from wet towel dried hair to all the way dried hair. Also held and shown for scale. I’ve tested drying with a number of hair products for prep and heat styling. Lately I’ve been alternating between the Christophe Robin Hydrating Leave-In Mist (c/o, it’s lightweight and detangles my hair), Shu Uemura Art of Hair Essence Absolue (c/o, available in a fun Super Mario packaging version for holiday) or the Moroccanoil Light. The last image shown is without any extra shine or finishing product so I could show you how the dryer performs on its own as much as possible. To finish and smooth the ends I usually add a bit of the Shu Uemura product, Moroccanoil or Oribe Supershine Moisturizing Cream. Also shown above: The Daily Edited Large Cosmetic Bag (review soon), Drybar Hold Me Hair Clips, Diptyque Berlin Candle (city exclusive).

My drying process includes a quick rough dry all over. Then I section it by parting my hair or by using clips. If I don’t have clips I simply flip over sections and part my hair to separate it.

For brushes I still use a CHI Turbo Small Paddle Brush to do most of my brushing or drying. Then I finish with a bristle brush to smooth everything out. I tried the Harry Josh Pro Round Brush (made of boar and nylon bristles, made in China) and it was surprisingly easy to use and very effective in smoothing out flyaways. I say surprising because even though I know boar/nylon bristle brushes are the best for smoothing out hair I find them difficult for me to use in general just because of my hair type.

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer In Action | The Beauty Look Book

I’m not the most savvy when it comes to hair dryer technology, but I do know that I see a difference in results with regards to smoothness, shine and the frizz factor. All three that I had previously reviewed provide excellent results: smooth, sleek, frizz-free finish. The Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer also delivers with ion technology and has two ion settings: off will deliver full voluminous style, on will give a smooth sleek finish. I tried both settings and feel that there is actually a visible difference with the two settings as the booklet describes.

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer Review | The Beauty Look Book

For the settings, there are:

  • 3 temperature control settings
  • 2 ion settings (as mentioned above)
  • 2 settings for speed/air flow
  • 1 cool shot button
  • 2 removable nozzles
  • removable air filter
  • 9 foot extension cord

For other features it’s relatively less noisy than other dryers but not 100% silent. It is described as being energy efficient with the dual filtration system. The tool is made in France and with the power and settings I was particularly impressed at how fast it dried my hair without making my head feel super hot from the heat like it does with most other dryers.

Size comparison to the T3 PROi (c/o, previously reviewed here):

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer vs T3 PROi | The Beauty Look Book

I didn’t want to fall in love with this pricey hair dryer but I have. As with everything I test regardless of whether it’s a press sample or something I purchased on my own I do assess it for the price point to see if I think it’s worth it and in this case I think it is. Still it is very spendy and you can definitely find great hair dryers for less. This one wins for me on dry time, size, weight and performance. It’s truly exceptional in every way and among the best ones that I’ve tried. If there is one thing I think it’s missing it’s a dust bag or something to carry it in for travel – but that being said most of the dryers I’ve seen don’t come with one either. Performance-wise I still think the t3 PROi and ghd Air are also very good ones. The main difference for me is the weight and dry time.

A lot of you have asked me over the past year if I’ve tried the Dyson Hair Dryer and I have not. However this season there’s a Dyson Blown-A Ouai set available which might push me over the edge to try it out. Let me know if you’ve tried it and what your thoughts are or if you would like to see a review.

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer Review | The Beauty Look Book

Bottom line the Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer gets a huge thumbs up for me. You can find it exclusively at Dermstore. Have you tried anything from Harry Josh yet? If not what’s your current favorite hair dryer? I’d love to hear what you use!

Harry Josh Ultra Light Pro Dryer and Round Brush sent by Dermstore without charge for review. Other press samples featured indicated with c/o.

 

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