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I am having a mid life crisis - or as I prefer think about it my artistic flair is coming out? Well whatever it is I always need to colour my hair as I have been going grey since I was 18 and I dread to think how old I would actually be looking without my beloved hair colour (I'm just not old enough to have grey hair!).
So on my last trip to the hairdressers I was asked if I wanted to have an all over colour (I stopped highlighting my hair about 18 months ago) or if I wanted something different. After asking if I could have blue put in and being told it wouldn't suit me I said - "oh well better make it red". So I now have a lovely striking red colour in layers under my normal colour. All looks very arty but potentially problematical - the last thing I would want is for the colour to fade and to look washed out.
For the last few years I have entrusted my hair care to Aveda - they cut it for me, they colour it for me and they take care of all my hair care needs at home. Aveda is 30 years old now and have a mission to provide high quality beauty products using the power of plants and botanicals to reduce the reliance on chemicals and the look to source ingredients which ecologically and ethically sound. They believe in responsible packaging (for more details see www.aveda.co.uk) and their ethos as well as their products really strike a chord with me so naturally when looking for a colour safe shampoo I turned again to this company and purchased a bottle of Aveda's Colour Conserve Shampoo.
In the past I have used a variety of colour safe products and have found a couple of issues with them - they either make my hair so soft and fly away that it goes frizzy and then very greasy or it dries my scalp out. I do have a problematic scalp but thanks to Aveda I have that sorted but using another product could wreck all the good work so I was a little bit nervous about using something like this all the time for while. A lot of Aveda products are quite gentle so they don't strip your colour overly quickly anyway and they are quite gentle on the scalp and thankfully I didn't have anything to worry about on that front. I do use my scalp benefits shampoo and conditioner once a week still to keep things in check but for the majority of the time I am using the Colour Conserve to try and keep me seeing red!
So how does my hair and scalp feel? Well my hair always feels clean and well nourished. It is soft but it isn't frizzy - in fact it is really manageable. My hair is chin length and we live in a hard water area and a 50p size dose of shampoo is plenty to wash my hair thoroughly. A lot of Aveda's shampoos are clear in colour but this one cream coloured shampoo has a rich creamy/pearly texture. It comes up to a lovely soft lather which really feels like it is doing my hair good and it smells lovely too whilst you are washing it and when you dry it. It is very fresh smelling - slightly earthy but with quite a warm herb like fragrance. Once it has been dried it smells fresh for a couple of days. You can use the shampoo every day but to be honest unless you really need to it works really well washing it every other day. And thankfully my scalp hasn't flared up so I can continue to use it for a prolonged amount of time.
Its active ingredients are Babassu betaine (from certified organic babassu nuts), lavender, peppermint, ylang ylang, vitamin E derived from soy and rose geranium oil. And Aveda's commitment to using sustainable and ethically sourced ingredients is shown on their website by how and where they source their geranium oil and babassu. All of these ingredients are organic so you know that you are minimising the amount of chemicals you are using as well as helping communities support themselves.
But the important thing about this shampoo is how well it "conserves" my colour. One of my biggest gripes in the past with colour safe shampoos has been that they are great for a couple of weeks and then you can see the colour fading. When you have highlights or an all over colour this isn't too noticeable to any except me but when you have bright red put in against my all over brown it would be easy for the colours to look noticeably faded. But after 6 weeks the only thing that needs work is my roots! The red is as vibrant as it was the day my hair was coloured. It claims to protect coloured hair from the effects of the sun, water and environmental stresses. Well I am never too sure about claims like that but I can be sure that this gentle cleansing shampoo has protected the colour of my hair for longer than any other products that I have tried.
Another big advantage of this product is that my hair has retained the shine and manageability that it got from the deep conditioning treatment that I had following my hair colouring at the salon. When I blow dry my hair it is soft and it looks healthy even though I straighten my hair quite a lot. It always recovers nicely when I wash it even when I don't use the matching conditioner (I only use the conditioner every other wash because my hair would get really greasy if I used it every wash). And when I just let my hair dry naturally it doesn't get tangled. It still has a nice healthy look to it.
A 250ml bottle of this shampoo is £12.50 and 1 litre is £33. Yes it is expensive but with any Aveda shampoo it really lasts. You can use them for up to 2 years after you open their products and as it took me 18 months to use a litre of one of their shampoos (using a pump dispenser rather than pouring it direct from the bottle) it is actually quite good value for such a good quality product. It does of course add up if you purchase the conditioner as well but for the way it makes my hair feel it is a price well worth paying!
Obviously this shampoo won't be for everyone depending on their hair type but if you are fed up using colour safe shampoos which don't keep your colour safe then I would thoroughly recommend that you give this product a try.
Aveda Color Conserve Shampoo 1000ml / Color ConserveShampoo extends the vibrance of colour-treated hair as only nature can / Our gentle plant-infused shampoo / with 100% organic aroma / helps do what harsher cleansers can't resist fading / Keeps hair colour vibrant longer / Protects colour-treated hair from damaging effects of sun / water and environmental stresses / Leaves hair silky / soft and shiny / Coloured hair.