New Hair Toys

Hair care is something I've focus on recently. My hair has always been naturally thin, flat, yet glossy and straight. I don't perm nor color my hair. 

On normal days (read: a 10-min speed shower + hair wash while ToddlerLorp is outside, flushing the toilet for the n-th time or trying to eat the whole roll of toilet paper) I wash my hair, condition, blow dry it to about 50% and let it air-dry. During luxury time when I've got coverage of someone looking after the toddler, I style my hair as explained below.

My overall goal is to maintain glossy-looking but voluminous hair. Some of the things that have helped me: 
  • Using a moisturizing shampoo (in addition to conditioner) to maintain the glossiness of my hair. I've used Kevyn Murphy products (Hydrate-Me Wash and Hydrate-Me Rinse) but need to branch out for some other shampoo/conditioner combo that will give my hair more volume. Volume and moisture seems to be opposite end of the spectrum in haircare because too much conditioning will weigh down the hair. 
  • Investing in a good professional hair dryer is a must, especially when styling hair daily. Professional hair dryer has the right amount of heat and speed to dry the hair quickly and efficiently. Right now I'm using Sedu Revolution Pro Tourmaline 4000i (got this at folica.com for approx $120 after discount coupons/code).

These are the new items I got during Lisa Eldridge's promo code for HQhair, a company from UK (but for some reason ship their product from Sweden, at least in my case). 

Kerastase Nectar Thermique.

This is designed as a leave-in conditioner that is applied on towel-dried hair. I applied only about a dime size or less on my shoulder-length hair, focusing just mid-length to end. I think it is more than enough as too much product will weigh the hair down. It leaves my hair silky soft and glossy. It does reduce the appearance of dry ends & flyaways. Again, the key is to use this product sparingly.
Compared to my standard Phyto 9 Cream (which I also use as a leave-in), Phyto 9 is more versatile as it can be used as a grooming cream after blow drying. Also, I like that Phyto 9 is unscented (Nectar Thermique is heavily scented but somewhat dissipate after blow drying).
THM: not must have, but nice product nonetheless.

Percy & Reed Mini Volumizing Travel Pack.

I've never heard about Percy & Reed before Lisa mentioned it in this video. Reviews of their product are available across the blogosphere, but the products are not readily available in the U.S. This travel pack is quite generous in size and the variety of products offered (six all together). 

First, I love the illustration, it is very English, down right to the font and logo. Second, the scent is very fresh with masculine twist: sharp bergamote, vetiver, perhaps a bit of rosemary, love it! 

  • Bountifully Bouncy Volumising Shampoo.
    Rinses clean and leaves my hair clean. I only shampoo once and it seems enough to remove the excess natural oil from the scalp and other styling product (I normally use very light mist of Bumble and Bumble Prep and Thickening Spray, with Phyto 9 afterwards). It does lather quite nicely. I use about a quarter size for my shoulder-length hair. You may need more as my hair is quite thin.
  • Bountifully Bouncy Volumising Contidioner.
    The third ingredient in it is the same main surfactant of Kerastase Masquintense. It rinses clean yet leaves the hair very silky: you know, the feel of a good conditioner when you rinse your hair and the hair just naturally flows with the water, no tangle that you have to comb with your fingers? This one is it. This conditioner is on the lighter side, but still, it makes my hair "flows" with the water without any tangle/knots.
  • Smoothed, Sealed & Sensational Volumising No Oil, Oil (for fine hair).
    This one is a peculiar product: it claims to smooth the end and add volume to the root. The direction says to use 1-2 pumps from root to end on towel-dried hair. To me, this translates as some type of heat-protectant (the ingredients after alcohol is silicone). I use one pump and it doesn't really add volume to the root. In fact, it makes for a greasy root the second day, so I just use this from mid-length to end. 
  • Abundantly Bouncy Volumising Mousse
    I love this product! It adds a flexible hold to my hair without the greasy feeling. I use about a large walnut size, concentrating on the root, using a hair comb to distribute it. I'm not sure if I've tried any other mousse recently, though, so I can't really compare.
  • Reassuringly Firm Session Hold Hairspray
    I also love this one. It really adds a flexible hold without being crunchy. Again, I use this sparingly, just as a light mist at the end of blow drying. It does help extend the styling to the second day.
  • Superstar Supersized Bodifying Cream
    I'm not particularly amazed by this. I think this is marketed as a combo of styling + grooming product. The more you use this, supposedly, the more hold you get. Well, I only use a dime size to start with, and I think I get more styling hold from using the mousse. This is a good alternative if you don't like mousse texture, I guess. I have to experiment with this a bit more to contrast/compare, but so far I've got good combo from the mousse + hairspray and very pleased with the result.
THM: I'd recommend this kit to those who are curious about the range. My next try is the Mini Moisturising Travel Pack.

Percy & Reed put up lots of video hair tutorial -- here's one of them.

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