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Having recently returned from camping and being introduced to the wonders of dry shampoo on the go, I stumbled across this product in Superdrug and was drawn to its affordable price, attractive packaging and the thought of mouth-watering chocolate brownies. However, using the product for the first time I was left largely disappointed and I have returned the can to the shelf ever since. If you're going to buy dry shampoo, I would not recommend this product and would urge you towards Batiste dry shampoo instead. The superdrug brand retails for about £1.99 a can and so it undercuts Batiste by about £1.00 per can. However, Batiste produces a much better result and would be a much better investment for your travel bag.
Heavenly aroma? -
Although the smell of the product isn't in itself unpleasant, it certainly doesn't smell like chocolate brownies fresh from the oven. The main thing you notice after you've sprayed the can is the toxicity in the air so if you're going to use it, doing so in a ventilated area is largely advised! From bitter experience I have found myself having a minor coughing fit after spraying a less-than-generous amount of the product into my hair and I have also had to vacate the room after doing so as the heavy air lingers for quite some time. I would hazard a guess to say that this would probably not be the best product for asthmatics!
Clean as a whistle? -
The biggest disappointment about this product was the result it had on my hair. I have a normal hair type which is not particularly prone to being greasy and I used the spray having not been able to wash my hair when I was away for a weekend. I found the product made absolutely no difference to the feel or look of my hair at all; my hair didn't feel or look any cleaner in the slightest. The only real difference that I did notice after using the product was (after I had regained my breath and left the room!) that my hair smelt slightly better than before - but even then it didn't smell like it had just been washed or what I would described as particularly 'fresh'.
A touch of colour -
A novel thing about this product is that the spray itself contains some kind of pigment whereby you're spraying a bit more brown into your hair. Presumably this is to give your hair a bit of a fresher look (similar to the principle behind henna enriched shampoos) however I didn't actually notice any difference to my hair from the pigment. The packaging doesn't make reference to the pigment at all and I only accidentally stumbled across this aspect of the product when I noticed that there was a build up of brown residue on the aerosol after it had been sprayed. This seems a good idea in principle but lacks in execution. It also means of course that this product is only suitable for brunettes - not good for sharing with your mates while your away if they all happen to be blonde!
Superdrug produce some really good products as a cheaper alternative to main line toiletries however this is a real let down which simply doesn't do what it says on the can!
Barry M effects paint is a brilliant must-have for anyone who likes to express a little flair at their finger tips. Providing you apply it properly, it produces an effective and individual result every time, leaving you with a funky and unique 'brickwork' pattern over your chosen base colour which can easily be mistaken for professional nail transfers. This polish is an affordable, DIY makeover for fingers and toes.
Against its rivals :
This low-cost nail polish retails at most outlets at around £3.50 however Superdrug tend to do 3 for 2 offers on Barry M products meaning it works out slightly cheaper if you buy in bulk. Retailers such as Superdrug, New Look and Claire's Accessories do sell their own brand of crackle polishes which are slightly cheaper than the Barry M paint but these do not provide anywhere near as good of a result. These cheaper alternatives leave a less vibrant 'streaky line' pattern (as opposed to brickwork like this polish) and they don't tend to get the proportions of base to overlay colour quite right when the crackle takes effect. The Barry M effects paint, however, reveals just the right amount of the base coat once it's worked its magic and the pattern is very detailed and distinctive. Furthermore, the consistency of the effects paint is perfect (not runny like low-priced polishes often can be!) and the brush gives flawless application. The only real down-side with this range compared to it's alternatives is that there are only limited overlay colours available - this isn't really too much of a problem though as you can pick and chose whatever base colour you like with the potential combinations being endless.
It's all in the application :
I understand that quite a few people seem to have problems getting a good result from this polish which I can only assume is due to application. The most important thing to note is that you must wait for each layer to dry properly; if the layers aren't dry the crackle won't work properly and the colours will smudge. If the crackle becomes smudged you will need to start that nail all over again because the crackle polish will only work once - that is to say, you cannot put a second layer of crackle polish to cover up a mistake as the effect won't work properly on second application.
For best results, you should :
1. Apply clear base coat and wait to dry;
2. Apply chosen base colour (any standard nail polish of any brand, the stronger the colour contrast against the crackle paint the better);
3. Wait for base colour to dry thoroughly;
4. Apply one thin layer of crackle paint and wait to dry (do not put a thick layer!); and
5. Apply clear top coat to finish.
Be warned - there is a strong urge to get impatient and apply the layers too quickly ; hold back and the effect is worthwhile! You will find the more you use this product, the more addictive it gets as the more combinations you try!