Tag Archives: hair

Fekkai is Fabulous. A review of their Brilliant Glossing Line

22 Jun

Hair products are a lot trickier than one might think. It seems simple enough, you buy a shampoo and maybe a conditioner and then lather, rinse, repeat, condition. Most, however, know that it’s far from simple. Finding a hair products that works for you can be a nightmare and cost a future with all the products you buy and then hate. Lately, I’ve been struggling to find something I love but London Drugs sent me a sample of Fekkai’s Brilliant Glossing shampoo, conditioner and cream and I must say, I was super impressed.

A little background for those who have never read my blog. My hair is blonde. Is it natural? NOT EVEN CLOSE! My hair gets bleached out every 6 weeks or so, and to top it off, I flat iron it almost every day, so I think it’s pretty safe to say that it’s rather damaged. I need a product that controls frizz, moisturizes and adds shine back to my poor tortured hair. The Fekkai Brilliant Glossing line does just that. After using the three products my hair is soft. My hair is smooth. My hair is easier to style. I am a happy camper.

The product smells strongly, but it’s a nice smell and isn’t overwhelming after the fact. The Glossing Cream is awesome either before or after you flat iron, it smoothes away fizzies, adds sticky free texture and tons of shine. They warn that a little goes a long way, which is code for “can get greasy” but I find my hair is never greasy, just soft and smooth.

The thing I love most about the product is that it gives great memory to my hair, meaning that I don’t have to wash it every day, it’s easy to style without wetting, day two. So basically, I’m super happy with this product. And if you read about some of the other hair products I’ve tried, that is certainly not always the case. Fekkai products can be purchased at London Drugs and other retailers, you can also find it online here.

If you have dry, damaged or dull hair, I would put this on the list of “to try.” That being said, if you have oily, flat, limp or very fine hair this would certainly not be the product for you. Fekkai has a whole pile of interesting products and now I’m super curious, so I’ll certainly be checking out more of them and their website offers mini kits, which I love because you can try things out without it costing a fortune.


Review – Moroccanoil Treatment

29 Apr

Moroccanoil has been out for a while, and I really didn’t want to like it. I know that sounds nuts, but it started showing up in EVERY salon, high end, low end, but always the same price and attempting to distinguish itself as premium by not allowing salons to include it in their own promotions. This frustrated me. If you’re high end, be high end, have standards of where you sell the product because not all salons are created equal. What I do like, is that every bottle is tagged and so they know exactly where that bottle comes from. This means, it’s easy to track diverted products and prevent fakes from showing up in non professional shops.  And now that you’ve heard my thoughts on their distribution methods, what about the product itself?

Moroccanoil, is actually an entire line of products that are all based around Argan Oil and their signature product Morrocanoil Treatment. The only product I’ll speak of in this review is the treatment.

As I mentioned, I wanted to hate it. I hate fad hair products and they usually turn out to be a bust, anyone remember the Brazilian Blowout recall by health authorities? But the fact of the matter is that this product is good, actually it’s better than good, it’s great.

My hair is bleached and I flat iron it pretty much every day, so you might say that it’s a wee bit damaged. Also, and sorry to gross you out, but my scalp has always been super flaky from dry skin. I put Morrocanoil Treatment in on damp hair, just the tiniest little drop. I emulsify it between my hands and then put it on scalp and hair before blow-drying. Let me re-enforce that I use one drop, the treatment is an oil and I can see things getting really slippery, really fast, if you got carried away. Because my hair is bleached I always buy the light version of the treatment as the regular one I find a bit too heavy and it can leave my blonde hair slightly yellow.

What have I noticed? Well, believe it or not, after a few uses my hair dries faster. Yes, this sounds like total BS, but the treatment helps smooth the porosity of your hair and thus it absorbs less water and voila! Hair dries faster. Also, my hair is softer, smoother and my scalp….way less flaky! It’s, forgive the overused expression, my new “go-to” product. My only dislike is the smell, everyone else I know LOVES the smell, but I am super sensitive and it’s a bit much for me, but other than that it really is one of my favourite products.

I would definitely recommend the Morrocanoil Treatment, I can’t speak for the other products, but the treatment is a great product to have on hand.

The Hair Loft – Ottawa

14 Apr

Oh The Hair Loft, where to start?

Well, I guess I should start from the beginning when I used to work with many of their staff in various salons. Gradually stylists from all over the city started gravitating towards  The Hair Loft. Back then, they were a small salon and have now grown into a beautiful, fun, funky, modern salon.

I don’t live in Ottawa, I haven’t in about ten years, but that doesn’t stop me from getting my hair done there. I actually plan my visits to Ottawa around when I need to get my hair done, and it takes about 5 hours to get there. I think that on its own speaks volumes as to the awesomeness of this salon.

There are two main stylists that I see, Howard and Gina, for my bleach, toner and haircut. Both are incredibly talented and I always leave pleased. Gina is bubbly and fun and always in a good mood, she really makes your experience something special, not to mention that she knows hair and leaves you looking stunning. Howard is incredibly talented,educated and accurate, you know when he’s got you in his chair that you’re not leaving until it’s perfect.

Not only are the two stylists I see wonderful, but really the whole team is. People are always checking on you to make sure that you’re comfortable and to see if they can top up your drink.

The Hair Loft also has a hair school, it’s called The Loft Academy, where Suzanne is an educator. I have worked with her in the past and she really is something special, she also works at The Hair Loft as a stylist.

So yes, a lot of the staff are people that I know, have worked with and many I consider friends. But I DO pay for my hair, and our friendship doesn’t cloud my judgement when it comes to recommending them. Like I said, I travel 5 hours to come to this salon.




Got2B Hit and Miss – Review of Got2B Hair Products

11 Apr
Photo Credit:  Fabulously Innovative Marketing

Photo Credit: Fabulously Innovative Marketing

So here’s the deal. Schwarzkopf makes both a professional line of hair care products and one that is available in retail store. I was very familiar with their professional line but had never used the non-pro line got2B until I was given the opportunity to at the “Come Fly with Me” beauty event put on by London Drugs. I was given the got2B Oil-licious shampoo, conditioner as well as the got2B POWDER’ful volumizing styling powder.  The results were hit and miss.

Let’s start with the miss. I didn’t love the Triple Oil Shampoo and Conditioner as it isn’t hydrating enough for my extremely damaged hair, I also don’t love the smell.  But if you are a big fan of incense smell or don’t have extremely damaged hair then you may love it, it all comes down to personal preference and hair type.

Now the hit. I absolutely love POWDER’ful volumizing styling powder! Even though my hair is damaged it still can get oily from all the products I use and well, no one wants a greasy head. This powder is awesome for adding texture to your hair without the goop or grease. I highly recommend it and will definitely be buying it again when this bottle is done.

 All got2B products can be found at London Drugs.

(This post was originally featured on Fabulously Frugal in Vancouver)

A Blow-Dryer that most certainly blows, but in a good way

14 Aug

All right, I know you’ve heard me say this but when it comes to hair care I swear by professional products (sold only in salons), my current blow-dryer is a a Chi Pro Low EMF Ceramic ANION Infrared Professional Hair that retails for about $200.

One of the tools that Conair was generous enough to let us take home at the London Drugs beauty event was the Infiniti Pro AC Motor Hair Dryer. I was very excited to try this dryer out as it is designed to be light and dry your hair faster, reducing the exposure to heat and thus damage. My hair is very porous from years of bleaching, and it’s also quite thick, meaning it takes forever to dry.


Photo courtesy of Fabulously Innovative Marketing

The Conair Infiniti Pro Ac Motor Dryer definitely dries my hair quickly, in fact, surprisingly quickly and I have actually noticed that my hair is less damaged since I have started using it. It handles well, and has various settings including 3 heat settings and 2 speeds. It also comes with both a concentrator and a diffuser, it also pack a whopping 1875 watts. My only complaint is that, although they say it’s quiet, this is not the dryer you want to use while your roommate is sleeping, but other than that I love it and have started using it as my day to day dryer.

The Conair Infiniti Pro AC Motor Dryer is available at London Drugs.

This blog post was also featured on Fabulously Frugal in Vancouver.

What It Takes To Be A Blonde

4 May

I certainly have the personality, but the fact of the matter is that I am not a natural blonde. Shocked? You’re not alone. I’ve been faking it since I was about 20. At that time, I started having my hair bleached every 6 weeks or so; that means I’ve probably had somewhere in the area of about 70 bleach-outs.

There are many different ways you can go blonde. For me, I have a solid bleach-out done, meaning that I am totally blonde. In the past I have had highlights done, but with my length of hair (quite short) I find it’s easier to go for the all-over colour.

My dark roots

My hair is naturally dark brown so the process involves removing my natural pigment (bleaching) and applying a new tone to my lightened hair (toner/balancer). In the past this service, including a cut, would take over three hours, but now I see Simona at Rain Boutique and Salon in Vancouver. Simona has managed to cut (obvious hair pun) that time down to an hour and forty-five minutes or so. This is a huge plus for me, because it means I can fit these appointments into my life with much more ease. Not only is her timing amazing, but both the colour and cut are always perfect.

The first thing that Simona always does before starting is to go over what we are doing. She asks if I was happy last time and if I want to make any changes. Once we have formulated a plan we get down to bleaching. Simona uses a L’Oreal bleach and applies it section by section to only the roots of my hair. She takes special care to not touch the existing blonde to make sure my hair does not get damaged any more than necessary. Avoiding the existing blonde also helps her prevent what is called banding i.e. those tiger looking stripes that look TERRIBLE.


So what does bleach feel like? I wouldn’t call it painful, but you definitely know that there is bleach on your scalp. At some points it feels a bit itchy like little ants are crawling on your scalp. Sometimes it can feel quite warm and stinging. But after a little while you almost get numb to it and stop feeling anything at all. It’s really quite tolerable. I am a huge wuss, so if I can do it, trust me, anyone can do it.

Bleach-outs are not without risk. Even with the most experienced stylist there is always the possibility of chemical burns, especially for those with sensitive skin. In my time as a blonde I have had many, but have never had complications from them. They heal quickly, although the pus that sticks to your hair can be REALLY gross. The best way to avoid them is by finding a good stylist and staying with her/him. Once they learn how your skin reacts to products you won’t have to worry about anything unexpected. Also, there are great new products on the market for people with sensitive skin. L’Oreal even has an ammonia free bleach that can be used on much more sensitive scalps.

Simona keeps an eye on my hair the entire time, checking it to make sure that it lightens to the right level and not any more. Once we have attained this level we head to the sink for a rinse. There, she shampoos my hair with a “post colour” shampoo that ensures all traces of bleach are gone and evens out the porosity of my hair. Next step is the balancer. So what is balancer you ask? A balancer, or toner, is what is used to add colour back into my hair. It is adding the tone or shade to my hair. Generally a semi-permanent or demipermanent colour is used. These colours will gradually fade over time. Without a balancer I would just have that nasty at-home bleached-out look. Think of a famous rapper who shall not be named.

The balancer is only left on for a few minutes and then rinsed off. Simona takes great care to choose a good, rich, deep-conditioner to use for my scalp massage to ensure that some of the damage caused by the bleach is repaired. Once that is rinsed, we always cut my hair to make sure that it looks its best and that any damaged ends are removed. She styles it and I’m back to looking like my fabulous blonde self.

Me and my fabulous stylist Simona

Having bleached hair does require some at-home maintenance to keep it looking its best. There are two accessories I simply can’t live without.

1. A purple shampoo. I use L’Oreal Professionnel Silver Shampoo. I use this once a week to eliminate any yellow or “brassy” tones from my hair.

2. A good conditioning mask. I use Noctogeniste Serum Nuit by Kerastase. This ensures that my hair is soft and shiny, and not rough like straw.

Being blonde may sound like a lot of work, but remember…we do have more fun.

Daring To Try A New Salon

3 Mar

So you’ve decided to try a new salon! Maybe it was based on a recommendation or maybe you bought a daily deal from one of those websites. No matter what the reason, you are now contemplating putting yourself in a new stylist’s hands. But how do you know if they’re someone you can trust.

Firstly, do your research! We live in the age of the internet, so get on it and search. But remember, no one stylist can make every client happy and everyone gets a bad review now and again. Not to mention the fact that an unhappy client is way more likely to write a review than a happy client. Still if all the reviews are telling you to stay away…you should probably do that.

Research shouldn’t just include reading reviews, you need to learn about the stylist and often the salon website is the best place to do this. Make sure the stylist is staying current with their education. Education is ONGOING and classes should be taken on a regular basis. Feel free to ask them about this, it should be their pleasure to show off how educated they are.

Many talent driven stylists will even have portfolios so that you can take a look at their work; just ask, they may have a hard copy or point you in the direction of their Facebook or Twitter account…a proud stylist will be displaying their work for the world to see.

By educating yourself you can help limit the chance of a total hair disaster; remember that this responsibility lies in your hands. Yes, hair eventually grown back, but if you’ve ever had a bad cut you know that a bit of time educating yourself is well worth it.

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