Product Type: Clairol hair care products
Newest Review: ... of my hair like I have before! In the end I opted for Nice n Easy Colour Blend Foam in the shade lightest blonde. I paid £4 for the dye... more
Is the future foamy?
Clairol Nice 'n Easy Colour Blend Foam
Member Name: ladybracknell
Clairol Nice 'n Easy Colour Blend Foam
Advantages: Very easy to apply and gives natural looking results
Disadvantages: Quite a bit of wastage, especially when used on short hair.
Whilst in Tesco the other day, I spotted Clairol's new Colour Blend Foam hair colourant, reduced to £5. This is a few pence more than my normal hair colour but having read the blurb on the box which assured me it was quick and easy as well as being a revolutionary new way to colour my hair, I decided to give it a go.
Price and availability:
The recommended retail price for this product is currently £6.99 however it's available from most high street chemists and supermarkets where reduced offers are frequently available. It's currently selling for £4.99 in Boots and £5 in Tesco.
Clairol claim that this foam colourant will tone and highlight whilst being drip-free and can be applied with the hands. Their advertising slogan reads "Shake it! Foam it! Love it!
The product comes in a box containing 60ml Nice'n Easy Colour Activating Crème, 60ml Nice n' Easy Colour Blend Formula, 2 sachets of Nice n'Easy Colour Seal Conditioning Gloss, a pair of disposal gloves and full written instructions. The gloves are supplied in a tiny plastic bag which is fairly tricky to open and is a retrogressive step in my opinion because the normal Nice n'Easy comes with the gloves in a little cardboard sleeve which is easy to open and far more environmentally friendly.
It also comes with the usual allergy warnings written both on the packet and in the instructions, advising that the product shouldn't be used on scalps which are sensitive, irritated or damaged and that a strand test should be undertaken 48 hours before use. This colourant isn't recommended for people under the age of 16 or those who have black henna tattoos. Black henna is likely to increase the risk of allergy.
There are several other warnings about not using on eyelashes or eyebrows and if any product accidentally finds its way into the eyes, they should be rinsed immediately. So, having been duly warned, it's time to get colouring!
As this is a permanent hair colour, it contains fairly harsh chemicals including ammonia, phenylenediamines, resorcinol and hydrogen peroxide.
There are 18 colour shades to choose from ranging from Black to Light Blonde and it's recommended that the shade used should be no more than two shades lighter or darker than your natural colour. I used shade 8A Medium Ash Blonde, despite my natural colour being, the last time I saw it many moons ago, very dark brown. I'm pretty certain it isn't that shade anymore!
Preparation and application:
We'll assume that I've already done the strand test. I'm afraid I didn't, which is very silly but, I like to live dangerously! On this occasion I didn't suffer any ill effects.
The process for colouring is pretty much the same as for normal Nice n'Easy hair colour in that the Colour Formula is added into the Colour Activating Crème container, the cap is replaced and the container is shaken vigorously until the two liquids are blended. The cap is then removed and replaced with the Foamer Cap. I thought maybe I'd bought a box with a damaged applicator because the plastic tube which feeds the colour into the cap has a little kink in it but I think this is intentional and part of the foaming process given that the drawing in the instruction leaflet also shows a bent tube!
Now we're ready to apply the foam. It's recommended that a golf ball size dollop of foam is squeezed from the bottle and first applied to the root area using fingers. Once the foam comes into contact with the hair, it liquifies and wets the hair but because it's being applied to the required area, there won't any messy drips. The applicator bottle has a line showing how much product to use on short hair and those with long hair are advised to use the entire contents. This product foams up to six times its volume and should be adequate even for the longest hair. I found that once my hair was thoroughly wetted with the foam, there was still slightly more than half the bottle left. As my hair is cut in a short shaggy style at the moment, I suppose it would be possible to only use half the product and save the rest for the next time, although I've previously had mixed results when doing that with the normal hair colourant. It's quite difficult to guess how much of the formula has been added when the bottle is opaque.
One slight warning here is that the bottle once foamed up needs to be kept upright. It you tilt it, the foam turns to liquid in your hands before you've time to apply it to your hair. I soon got the hang of it though and after that application was as easy as pie.
If you're in any doubt about application, I recommend visiting Clairol's website where they have a video clip showing how it's done. http://www.clairol.co.uk/niceneasy-foam/
Once the colourant has been applied, fasten hair away from the face (only necessary if you have longer hair) and wait for 25 minutes. Once the waiting time is up, rinse the product out of the hair until the water runs clear. Finish off with the Conditioning Gloss which is applied to wet hair, left in for 2 minutes and then rinsed off. This final step is essential to maintain hair colour intensity for up to 8 weeks. Once again, Clairol have been very generous with the amount of product supplied in the sachet so there will be more than enough to deal with long hair. I would advise anyone at the rinsing and conditioning phase to remove the top off the sachet before starting. I didn't and ended up having to search around for a pair of scissors to open the sachet, dripping water all over myself and the carpet into the bargain!
As I'd chosen a shade very similar to the one I normally use, the results weren't very noticeable other than that my hair felt soft and was very shiny. The colour coverage was excellent and even the back of my head, which is a tricky place to ensure full coverage when you're colouring your own hair, was fully coloured. Where I have streaks of very grey hair, the colour is less dense which appears as though I'd had low lights put in. Overall, I'm very pleased with how my colour has turned out. However, I do have one or two reservations.
Firstly, my hairdresser has always recommended only applying hair colour to the roots and then combing the product through to give a more natural look. With this foam product, although it's possible to do that, there would be a huge amount of wastage and if you applied all the product every time you used it, I suspect there would be quite a build up colour and the results may be less good.
The conditioner provided in sachets is plentiful but I feel that this would have been better if it was provided in small tubes, again like the normal Nice n'Easy. This would certainly make it more user friendly.
It's now six weeks since I coloured my hair with this product and although my roots are growing out, the colour has stayed remarkably true and my hair has remained shiny. I did apply more conditioner a week after colouring, as instructed. However, I shall need to use the Nice n'Easy Root Touch Up kit in between colourings, to ensure that the colour doesn't build up too much.
Because of these one or two negatives, however minor they may be, I don't feel able to give this product the full 5 stars. I hate waste and for people with shorter hair, there will always be wastage with this product. With the liquid colourant, I'm able to reserve some of the formula and developer for a later application thus making it more cost effective and as I only ever colour my roots and then comb through, there hasn't been a need to use a root touch up kit in between colourings.
With all those things in mind, I don't feel that I can give this product a wholehearted endorsement. I'm undecided whether to switch to this foam colourant permanently or continue to use my normal product because there isn't any appreciable difference with regard to the results but the ease of application is certainly a point in its favour.
Clairol seem to regard foam colourants as the future but I think I'll sit on the fence a while longer before deciding which way to jump.
Summary: Hair colouring made easy