My skin has always been my thing. Consequently, my hair has fallen like dead last as to things I pay attention to. Some people prefer to hide behind their hair for any particular reason, but I hate to hide behind it because it feels worse than just putting the problem all out there and not being nerve racked wondering if people notice. No need to be nervous if the fact that my skin is jacked is out there (covered under some makeup, but still you really can’t hide jacked skin).
For most women hair is their thing. It is not mine. My hair is just there as far as I am concerned. A huge part of it is laziness and lack of skill. Do I really want to wield a hair dryer/curling iron? NO. It is long, abundant, fine-textured, leans dry and frizzy at the ends. My hair is in the awkward spot where it’s not really straight or wavy. It’s in between hair that requires some skill and time. I have no problem spending 20 minutes on my face. I hate spending more than a few minutes on my hair.
But times are a changin’! I am going to learn how to treat my hair well. It has been neglected for far too long.
Pre-2006, I always used shampoos and conditioners for dry, coarse damaged hair. In my mind, my hair was dry and needed moisture. I did not realize until I started Japanese Thermal Reconditioning in 2002 (which I stopped in 2006) that I was using the wrong stuff. I liked how these shampoos and conditioners made my hair feel saturated, buttery with lots of slip in the shower. I thought this was a good thing. But then my hair would dry hard and crispy. I thought it was my hair. So I would go for even heavier creams. It just made it worse. It was the heavy cones filling in the thin ridges in my hair and weighing it down like no other. I then went to products meant for fine hair. But all of these focus on volumizing, and had very little moisturizing element to it, adding stiffer, fluffy texture. I still have dry frizzy-leaning hair. Fortunately, hair care companies have figured out there is a lot more hair texture variety in the world. So, now I am on the hunt for the right hair care products for my hair and I have found a few promising items in the drugstore.
Renpure Originals Brazilian Keratin Straightening Shampoo and Conditoner
Before I begin as to why this set was awesome and a repurchase for now I need to tell you what I consider my “ideal” hair. Everyone has a different idea of “great hair” because it is personal to them. There are infinite hairtypes and ideas on what great hair is (which could mean no hair ala Amber Rose or Sinead O’Connor), are all equally valid. My fantasy hair is FULL, VOLUMINOUS, WAVY-CURLY, equal parts SOFT, SILKY with some roughed up TEXTURE. In two words – RUMPLED BEDHEAD! But who the hell wakes up looking like that! NO ONE! I have seen enough behind the scenes video to know this type of hair requires alot of product and work! But I am schlepping my way to the lazy woman’s version! So with that….let’s get to the review.
First off, I don’t like heavy cones in my shampoos and conditioners. I am not necessarily anti-silicone. There are many types of silicone that are not heavy, greasy or crunchy on the hair. For me, it is useful in smoothing the hair shaft since mine does not have a very thick coating that increases shine (the reason why asian hair is so glossy). This has silicone quaternium-17 listed as one of the bottom ingredients and it is a water soluble silicone that is used to “condition” hair and impart shine. It is not necessarily bad. It is a modified form of silicone that can condition the hair and impart shine without being completely hydrophobic. This system also utilizes coconut oil, keratin, and shea butter as additional hair shaft smoothers and conditioners.
This is marketed as a straightening set, but I do not put much stock in marketing. Hair care products promise a lot and deliver a little. There is no way this bad boy is really going to “straighten” your hair. This, however, did smooth my hair shaft without weighing it down which is what I was looking for.
I used this set a couple of times consecutively to get a feel for how it worked with my hair. One thing to know about my haircare habits is that I rarely blow dry my hair. Like ever. I let it air dry. So first day hair is a bit poofy looking because it takes a LONG time for my hair to fully dry. For the photos below, I let my hair air dry in a low ponytail and then wrapped it in a bun. I got a little impatient and took down my bun before it was completely dry and took these shots, but I think it’s valuable to see my hair like this to see it’s porosity (high), texture (fine), and problem with frizziness and dryness (a lot). One more word. I am in a desperate need of a trim. You can clearly see all the flyaways and some split ends. Plus my ends are fried from the times I have used heating appliances.
My hair tangles easily left on its own. If I were to let me hair out for more than five minutes I develop knots and tangles.
The picture below shows the incredible smoothing power of the shampoo and conditioner. However, the inside section of the bun is always smoother than the outside section when it is unwound.
With Renpure Originals Brazilian Keratin Straightening Shampoo + Conditioner my hair dried softer, volumized and smoothed down, allowing my hairs natural wave to retain its shape for a bit and not become as poofy and dry down super frizzy with a crunchy feel. Had my hair been allowed to fully dry, it would have been less poufy in the center on my hair.
A couple of things though. I am still used to shampoos that lather really well, and I love lather. The shampoo does not really lather and this is a good thing, even though I like lather. Lather comes from the sulfates which is actually very drying on hair. I also love conditioners that provide major slip in and out of the shower, when hair is wet. This leaves no coatish, siliconey slip. It feels thinly moisturized. So, you will feel tempted to dump several ounces in your hair. It won’t help. This does need slightly more moisture to it for drier, porous hair like mine. When I got out of the shower, I was annoyed that my wet hair did not feel slippery and easily untangible (I really should have untangled before I got in the shower). But my hair still dried down soft, softly moisturized (but not as moisturized as I would have liked), and volumized. I loved touching my hair.
My hair is so fine textured, but abundant that the waves loses steam and straighten out pretty quickly. This was a good find. I will not stop trying out other brands, but it is great to know I have a fallback, which is what this is while I try other brands.
This may be a great find if you are trying to smooth your hair strands without weighing it down and you don’t need that MUCH moisture for your hair. This is not a great set if you require more moisture for dry to very dry hair. Of course, you can add that later with a fine moisturizing mist that won’t weigh down your hair.