23 Jan 2011

Liz Earle shampoo review and my life as a grease ball =(

I'm always on a mission to find a good shampoo for my hair type.  Unfortunately, by virtue of the fact that I'm always on said mission, I've not yet found the holy grail shampoo that will give me the wondrous barnet I'm after.  To be fair, I'm not asking for Kardashian hair or anything like that - I'm not greedy - I just want hair that doesn't turn into a grease ball within 24 hours or less.  I truly believe I have the worst possible hair type - feel sorry for me...

ü greasy roots
ü dry mid lengths
ü dry ends
ü split ends
ü fly-aways
ü frizz
ü straight-ish
ü mousey brown
ü never holds curls
ü flat
ü dull

Do you have tears in your eyes?  It's a sad state of affairs isn't it?

So I thought I'd document my sorry little hair journey.  The latest challenger to step up and take on my greasy mop is Liz Earle botanical shine shampoo.

There's only one shampoo meant for all hair types and then a choice of conditioner - normal / dry or damaged / oily.  Of course I chose oily, although I've now realised that was probably a mistake.

The shampoo contains lots of lovely natural and botanical ingredients and no nasties such as sodium laurel sulphate.  I decided to try it out for a few reasons, mainly because it didn't contain SLS which I've often read is bad for the greasies (although I have tried other non-SLS shampoos before), and also because Liz Earle is a brand known for making products that deliver results.

When I first tried the shampoo, I wasn't too sure on the smell - I'm not overly keen on herbal smells and would rather have something sickly sweet any day, but it didn't smell bad, just not what I'm used to.  The main scent I picked up was orange, which I like.  I expected it to be difficult to lather up, and it was.  Most times I tried it I washed twice as the first shampoo hardly lathered at all.  I wasn't surprised by this, it's the SLS that helps most shampoos to lather easily and also, the grease in your hair prevents combats the lathering too.

The conditioner had an equally natural and fresh smell and was easy to apply from the squeezy tube.  It felt light and not like it was going to do much deep conditioning, but I had bought the version for oily hair, so that's to be expected.

After trying the shampoo out for the first time, I excitedly checked my hair the next morning to see if I looked like I'd been serving cod and chips the night before - sadly no change.  I gave the shampoo a good few weeks of daily use, as I do with all shampoos I try out, but there was still no affect on how greasy my hair became at the roots after 24 hours.  However, there were some other noticeable changes... My hair really didn't like these products.  I noticed that my mid lengths and ends were becoming rather dry and frizzy and on some occasions had a really bizarre texture, almost like I'd put too much of a product on my washed and dried hair, even though I hadn't.  My hair was becoming harder to de-tangle and dry, it was looking dull and out of control and was becoming tangled during the day.  I stopped using the products with probably more than half still left in the bottles.

How ridiculous that one half of my hair could become so dry but there was no change in the greasy roots department?  Ah well.  I think I probably should have bought the conditioner for dry / damaged hair as I would only be putting it on the mid lengths and ends and I might not have then experienced some of the unpleasant changes in my hair.  Still, the shampoo couldn't cure the greasies, so I won't bother trying it with the other conditioner.

This, and a conversation on twitter brought me round to thinking I should start a list of the shampoos that have failed to keep my hair clean for more than 24 hours, so here goes...

Liz Earle botanical shine
Lush Big
Lush jumping juniper bar
Aussie Mega
Pantene smooth and sleek
Pantene ice shine
Pantene clarifying shampoo
Herbal essences fresh balance
Herbal essences greasy roots / dry ends
Head and shoulders for greasy hair
Tresemme vitamin C deep cleansing shampoo
Tresemme thermal recovery shampoo
Elvive nutri-gloss light
Nutrogena t-gel greasy
Body shop nettle oil balance
Body shop ice blue
Klorane sebo-regulating shampoo with nettle
Kerastase bain clarifant
Wella SP regulate scalp treatment
Phytocedrat sebo-regulating shampoo
Sunsilk for hair that gets greasy quickly
Fructis oily roots dry ends
Tigi bed head superstar
Mop lemongrass shampoo

That's a long list and I know there will be more that I've tried but can't remember.  See, I'm not exaggerating when I say I can't find a good shampoo for my hair type!  I've tried all the usual brands, high end stuff, nettle concoctions and scary scientific potions.

Is anyone feeling my pain?  If you have any suggestions for good shampoos I can try, please comment and tell me about them!  Just to add, I have tried various dry shampoos, but I think they make my hair look dull and rough and I think people can tell when you've used dry shampoo - I can!  The other thing about dry shampoo is that it only masks the problem - when I use them I feel unclean!  No offence to anyone who loves a bit of dry shampoo between washes - for people with an average level of greasiness I'm sure they're a good trick.

Happy to try anything (as you can see from the list!) so I'd love to hear any tips you have =)


  1. Right... I used to use John Frieda Brilliant Brunette which I loved but when I randomly switched to Elvive Nourish and Shimmer I realised that the JFBB was actually leaving me with greasy hair (as you say, after about 24 hours). I notice that the next morning with the Elvive my hair is much fresher.

    Why not give it a go? It's pretty cheap and it's 2 huge bottles for £4 in sainsburys right now.

    I've got a review on it on my blog too:
    Read review here.

    Clever Rabbit Beauty Blog
    Polish. Potions. Whatever.

    Follow me on twitter: @Clever_Rabbit

  2. Oh, I didn't know about the sodium laurel sulphate/greasy hair thing! My hair gets greasy quickly and it's such a pain.
    I'm really surprised the T-Gel one didn't work; I've heard lots of good reviews about that! I suppose it just shows that everyone really does react differently to different products.
    Maybe you could try more "natural" shampoos? Like the ones you make yourself out of eggs or yoghurt or something like that?! Never tried it myself but if the shampoos in shops aren't working, maybe it's worth a try? x

  3. Thanks for the tips! I'm not sure if I want to put eggs on my hair, but if there's a chance it'll work...!

  4. Have you tried not washing it? This works with some people, but is not for everyone, but is worth a go when all else fails...just pick a time when your appearence isn't crucial..Basically you stop using all foaming products on your head completely for a couple of weeks. I know you are probably saying EEK! right now, but there are reasons for this. Over cleaning your hair makes your skin produce more of the sebum that is making it greasy, and after a period of time, the hair self regulates the amount of oil it produces. It can happen in just a couple of weeks, some people take longer, and some just cant wait that long before they wash it lol. You can of course wet it, and if you are really struggling you can use conditioner only which emulsifies much of the oil and dirt out, and refresh with alcohol wipes at the root when really bad. The old fashioned 100 strokes of the hair had a good logic behind it, it help to distribute much of the hair oil from the root to the ends which will also help with the dry frizzies so this may also help. Anyway, thought I would mention it. Try a search on "no 'poo", the long hair forums have a lot of info on it. And good luck x


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