Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Drugstore 2-for-1 Dry Hair Wonder: L'Oreal EverCreme Cleansing Conditioner

I've tried countless times to find drugstore hair products that impressed me. But I usually end up wasting my pennies on products that don't work for my hair type — dry, curly, and extremely sensitive to sulfates and silicones. However, after hearing some positive buzz around the beauty blogs and curly hair web communities, I decided to try L'Oreal's EverCreme Cleansing Conditioner. It's part of a new drugstore product line designed for dryer hair types.

EverCreme Cleansing Conditioner is is an ultra-gentle, combination of 1/4 cleanser + 3/4 moisture, which is formulated with Omega-3 and 6 to leave hair super soft and nourished without weighdown. According to L'Oreal, its a low-poo, or low-lather, cleansing product that reduces friction of the hair fiber to help minimize breakage.

In my experience, there is absolutely no lather. It's pretty much like trying to use conditioner as a cleanser, which is a growing trend in the curly girl community. Unfortunately, I've never had great luck with low-poo products since they just weighdown my hair and leave flaky buildup. But I decided to give this one a whirl.

On the first "shampoo," I made the mistake of not following the directions correctly. I treated EverCream Cleansing Conditioner as a regular shampoo and rinsed it out immediately and followed with my regular conditioner, Matrix Biolage hydrathérapie Conditioning Balm. I then washed out the conditioner and applied a leave-in conditioner plus gel. Once my hair dried, I immediately noticed that my hair was over conditioned and extremely dull. Rather than wait a few days between shampoos, I immediately went back to my regular shampoo and conditioner routine the next day. And, I had the best hair day ever! Hmm...interesting.

I don't give up easy, so I gave EverCream Cleansing Conditioner another shot. This time I read the directions on the bottle! I realized that I needed to leave the product in my hair for 1 to 2 minutes BEFORE rinsing. Since I was shaving my legs, it probably stayed on for about 5 minutes. In addition, I generously worked the product in through from root to end. The last time I just applied to my scalp since I was treating it more as a shampoo.

I also read on the bottle that there is no need to use another conditioner. So, I went ahead and combed it through at the 3-minute mark just as I do with the Biolage rinse-out conditioner. Since the comb slipped through my hair super easily, I skipped the Biolage. However, I still used my leave-in and styling gel combo.

Once my hair was completely dry, it was incredibly shiny and soft — yet not over conditioned — and my curls were well defined. The typical "extra" hair volume and frizz were gone even on a rainy day, a curly girl's worst nightmare! In fact, it stayed nearly perfect for another two days.

I've repeated the same process four times and had the best hair days ever. My only complaint...the product's pump. It's terrible in dispensing the rich product. I think it would dispense easier from a tube.

Purchase info: L'Oreal EverCreme Cleansing Conditioner is available at drugstores and mass retailers. It retails for $6.99 (8.3 oz bottle). I bought it on sale at Target for $5.99.

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