Just like foundation and moisturiser, ‘if you ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ is often a truism when it comes to haircare. And while there’s nothing wrong in knowing what works for you, every so often it’s good to break out of your comfort zone and see what new technologies and formulas could do for your hair that your regular beauty buys don’t. From a scalp scrub to a shine-boosting mask, try one of these hot new hair treats to put some fresh oomph in your style.
As one of the world’s most celebrated colourists, Josh’s collaboration with M&S Beauty to create a range using only national ingredients and manufacturing was guaranteed to be a hit as well as a coup for our beloved British brand. Following the huge success of his care collection and innovative Blending Wands (which cleverly hide grey hairs) comes three Glossing Mask – Blonde, Black and Brown – created to bring hair back to full strength after the chemical colouring process. The hero ingredients are shea butter, quinoa protein and Abyssinian oil, which combined, deeply nourish and smooth the hair follicle for a lustrous finish, as well rebuilding hair that has been weakened during chemical colouring. The result is soft, glossy locks and colour that stays brighter for longer in just five minutes a week.
Hairstylists Paul Windle and Neil Moodie, fêted for their catwalk and magazine work as well as roster of celebrity clients, joined forces to open their destination hair salon in Covent Garden several years ago. Now their eponymous haircare line is creating a similar stir. Formulated to put their backstage and red carpet experience into bottles, the range is eco-friendly, made in the UK and packed with natural ingredients. While the styling products are cleverly created with the techniques used on models’ hair in mind, it’s the shampoo and conditioner that really wow me. Each contains food-grade teas such as green and rooibus, included for their antioxidant abilities to protect and so enhance shine and prolong colour. And while ‘natural’ haircare often gets a bad rap for not cleansing or conditioning as well as their chemical counterparts, the Windle & Moodie formulas have made my hair feel softer and look glossier as well as keeping highlights fresher from day one.
Newly re-launched, Phyto Specific – from the cult French haircare company Phyto – is aimed not only at afros but at all types of textured hair, from curly to coiled to relaxed. The range approaches textured hair differently from straight as it has different features, such as a more matte finish and irregular strand width, so is formulated with ingredients that combat the dryness and lack of shine that this hair type is prone to. Another key difference is how easily textured hair can break because it’s finer and weaker, exacerbated by stress caused by styling like extensions or in my case, habitually tying my hair in a top knot. So while Phytotraxil has been created for those with traction alopecia where there is localized or more severe hair loss, it’s also an amazing booster for anyone finding more broken shafts around the hair line, fortified with natural ingredients such as wild apple tree and Boerhavia roots, plus essential oils of rosemary, sage and lavender to encourage growth, strength and a healthy scalp.
An itchy scalp is hardly the sexiest of subjects but at some point most of us will have felt like we wanted to remove our hair like a wig and give the scalp a good scratch. And it figures – the face needs regular exfoliation to keep if clean and flake-free and as the scalp is an extension of that skin, why shouldn’t it get the same treatment? Enter the Scalp Scrub: a gentle exfoliator in a gel formula with prickly pear extract renowned for its soothing abilities. The nozzle tip ensures precision application as you make partings around the hair, before massaging it into the scalp and leaving for up to 10 minutes to slough away dead skin cells, hydrate and calm inflammation. After a double shampoo, locks feels super clean while the scalp is free from any build up so new hair can grow stronger and healthier too.
As someone with hair that often seems to have a mind of its own, I need both a styling product and a finishing one to fight off frizz and knots. And so I’m a huge fan of anything that can be used both pre- and post-drying to ensure a smooth, tangle-free finish. My latest go-to is the 2-in-1 Volumizer from American haircare range Alterna, which can be smoothed through damp tresses as a cream to add some serious body, while rubbing a little between hands transforms it into a paste for scrunching into the underneath sections of dry hair to add even more oomph. The formula is also infused with an organic bamboo extract that strengthens hair and deeply hydrates, meaning the result is healthy, glossy tresses that are full, smooth and tack-free.