My hair and I have an ongoing love/hate relationship. I know you can relate, most of us have been there. There are days, nay weeks, during which time it behaves impeccably. It does what I tell it to, listens and behaves, and stays exactly how I place it. And then there are days when no matter of talking, reasoning and even scolding (aka cursing like a crazy woman and throwing the hairdryer half way across the room in disgust) will result in in creating the desired result.
Currently, my hair is doing its annual impersonation of straw. Dry, brittle, sun-bleached straw. It does this every year on my return from my summer holiday. You’d think it would appreciate a summer break but oh no! Like a spoilt-brat child, as soon we return from our trip, it misbehaves. Cue bi-weekly Elasticizer hair masks until it starts to behave itself again.
This year has been no different in terms of how my hair has behaved since we got back. But. And this is a BIG but. I’ve taken a different route to regaining control of of my naughty mane.
I’m using Ouai Haircare from Panache Cosmetics, one of my favourite online beauty stores, (can we just take a moment to appreciate how beautifully packaged my beauty goodies are?), and boy, what a difference! This is seriously high performance haircare, created by celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin, known for creating enviable hair for the Kardashians. Just one wash with the Smooth Shampoo and Conditioner and I can feel and see the difference. If you follow me on snapchat, (username Ambarina.Hasan), you’ll already have seen my first impressions. Suffice to say, I was very impressed.
Insanely concentrated, you only need a tiny amount of the Ouai Smooth Shampoo, and I mean tiny. After the first wash, I could feel my hair was clean (and smoother), but I always do a second wash after Ian Florey advised me that’s the way to get the hair I want. After the second wash, I couldn’t stop stroking my wet hair – the coarseness had gone! Using the Ouai Smooth Conditioner was such a joy; I could literally feel my locks being moisturised and hydrated into submission. When I say it felt like silk, it sounds like I’m being overly dramatic, but I can’t describe it any other way.
I followed this up with the divine Ouai Hair Oil. The first thing that hit me was the scent – the most beautiful Jasmine, Iris, Lily and White Musk fragrance that envelops the hair and my headspace. (It’s the same scent that runs throughout the range and for a white-flower-scent lover like me, it’s heaven). I found myself asking anyone I met that day to smell my hair, garnering some odd looks but so many compliments. Chock full of Asian Borage, Ama and African Galanga oils, it aims to add yet more moisture, tame and smooth the frizz, seal the appearance of split ends and give the hair a super-smooth, high-gloss finish. And when hair is well moisturised, hair colour is revived and refreshed. I use it much like I use most of my hair oils: a few drops on damp hair before blow-drying and then a few drops more on the finished style to tame any flyaway and frizz. I’ve also been using a few drops every day in between washes to keep the frizz at bay. What I will say is that it’s not the most moisturising of hair oils that I’ve used – but it’s definitely the best smelling!
Of the four products I’ve tried, the Ouai Treatment Masque has got me completely addicted after just one use. When I first looked at the size of the sachet, I had visions of having to use at least two, if not three per application, which would make it quite an expensive proposition at £25 for a box of 8 sachets. I should have remembered my experience with the shampoo and conditioner and how concentrated the formulas are. My long hair was more than amply covered and I could feel the mask working straight away. I had high hopes, as I pinned it up into a top knot to let it do its work. Ouai suggests leaving it on for 5-10 minutes, but when have I ever left a hair mask on for that little time. True to form, I kept it in for half an hour before rinsing out, resulting in smooth, soft, shiny, tangle free hair. For severely damaged hair, Ouai suggests using it 2-3 times a week, for super coarse hair, daily usage. I’m so tempted. I know I’m already addicted and actually, I like the sachet delivery system so that I have a pre-measured amount ready to hand.
Seriously, I never want to be without this Masque.
When my hair looks and feels good, I feel good. A little daily luxury that is accessible and to my mind, necessary.
Ouai Haircare, buy here
BEFORE I GO: A huge apology to my hair dryer – you did nothing wrong, you’re not to blame and I’m sorry I took my anger out on you. Please know I can’t live without you.