Gentle reader you have been saved. Your pocketbook has been saved, your hair has been saved. Alicia T. came through and rendered her services for the sake of a greater good - testing products so you won't have to.
A word about the products. BioBotantic, is an Italian brand that offers, professional- grade organic products. The company claims that their products are suitable for all hair types and versatile enough to enhance hair in any condition. The company approached Olivia's with free product for testing and review some time ago.
Clearing throat - I know I've been slacking, but I'm getting back on it... PROMISE
In this, the first of a multi-part review of the range of products received, we'll test the BioBotanic Beauty Drops on Alicia T's wavy, color-treated type 2 hair. The main ingredient in the Beauty Drops is Horsetail. Yeah I didn't know about the benefits of horsetail until I looked it up either. Lemme learn ya right quick. Resembling alfafa in appearance, horsetail is actually classified as a living fossil (which is pretty cool and mind-blowing - living. fossil. think about that for a moment)
Ancient Greeks, Chinese and Roman herbalists have been using horsetail for its medicinal benefits for centuries. Horsetail is known for its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, healing antiseptic and antimicrobial properties.
Okay all that sounds good but what makes horsetail such a hair wonder? It can, unlike many other plants, absorb silica! SUPER RARE! Super good for hair! Think: SHINY, GLOW IN THE DARK SHINY HAIR, think men collapsing with wonder shiny, think of the possibilities! Additionally, (in a sensibly pitched voice) the plant contains nutrients like calcium, manganese, iron, flavonoids tannins, fatty acids and other things that are crunchy wholesome but no one can pronounce.
The quick and dirty hair benefits:
1. Promotes hair growth (we like)
2. Cures dandruff and helps prevent split ends (we like)
3. Works as a natural conditioner (lemme pop down to the GNC and start ingesting this stuff as a supplement)
Okay now you know all about the main ingredient in the BioBotanic Beauty Drops, lets get down to the review.
For your reference, our reviewer, Alicia T is of Chamorro/Japanese decent, has a thicker hank of hair and is in her fabulous 40’s. While Alicia’s hair tends toward the dry, she has not shied away from color and actively engages in the quest for the perfect bleachy wave. It is in the spirit of this quest that I have suggested Alicia test this product. First to restore moisture and then enhance and beautify the natural wave in her hair.
When presented with the Olivia’s product review survey, these were Alicia’s thoughts.
1. The product was odorless. Let me be clear in saying that I think that it's great that the product is odorless. I have allergies and sometimes strong smells irritate me.
2. I don't know if the bottle comes in a separate box. I hope not. The bottle is a perfect size for home and travel uses. User friendly for small hands. I used as directed three inches away and all over the hair.
Olivia on packaging: Products were all provided in a brown craft box tied with raffia and nestled in shredded paper. Sleek and simple.
3. I used as directed, First I washed my hair as usual and sprayed on after towel drying.
4. I had some reservations but I really liked the product. On application it wasn't sticky and bonded to the hair nicely. When dried all the way, my hair was super shiny.
5. Not one dislike thank you!
6. The product made my hair feel soft, airy voluminous - just the way I like it.
7. I will definitely purchase this product! Who knew I'd need something called beautifying drops?
8. My other observations were about the packaging of the product. I appreciate the length of the plastic tube for the pump. I know that would make it easy to spray at any angle and volume.
Parting (unsolicited but ever so gracious) words from Alicia -Thank you for inviting me to test this product.
BioBotanic's Beauty Drops gets Olivia's stamp of approval for type 2 hair. The product is pricy at $16.48 for 3.3 oz. however, the BioBotanic representatives have let me know that they do ship internationally!!!! You can purchase BioBotanic products here. Don't forget to check the hyperlinks to the entire range of BioBotanic products above and follow them on Instagram!
If you try the beauty drops and have a different hair type, let me know how it works out for you! Any recommendations or comments on the product review (because we always want to improve) leave it in the comment section below!
It's been a long, long time since I've commented. The whole year has nearly whooshed by and between tracking the absurdity that is the news and trying to stumble half sane through the days, things have slipped...
Well no. Not exactly. The silence started with a MAJOR hair mistake. MAJOR. Let's just say this, my hair finally (at long last) took a last gasp of air and died! DIED! I had a very emotional wake. I screamed. I cried. I dressed up a donkey and sat in a pile of tissues (mascara running) in sack cloth and ashes.
So what have I been doing these past months? Gathering myself and taking to major hair repair watch. It's been nothing short of terrible. I've had a cut and taken to ingesting fist fulls of hair growth vitamins (as if eating another hair gummy before bed will actually result in magical chia pet type growth in the morning.
It doesn't. *sigh*
In search of an immediate fix that will keep me from leaping from the kitchen cabinets, because that was on my list of things to do next, I have resorted to months of protective styling. First, I look like a terrifying apparition of my 23 year old self in hombre braids. I was not pleased but was presentable and no one was the wiser.
On the upside, its a good time in life to experiment with my hair. You know before I morph into my ideal self.... Lord when is that stoke of luck going to happen? More heavy sighing. Anyway, I'm going to keep experimenting with and featuring protective styling (for all textures and lengths and ethnicities). There will be weave, maybe a wig, definitely a braid or two and color throughout. One cannot cease living in the name of hair! ...Although to be fair the recitation above would lead you to believe (correctly) that committing suicide off kitchen cabinets implies that I wasn't too keen on the idea joyful living with damaged hair.
So just to clarify, that scream you heard in February/March, that defining howl, heard round the world - Yup... that was me. But... I'm on the rebound. Here we go!
Valentines day is here and this means preparations of the heart-shaped variety. I love and celebrate all holidays and will not be joining in any celebrations that include wearing black and looking dog-faced because I am not celebrating with a significant other.
Yeah, I said dog-faced. You know who you are.
Instead, I will be moisturizing, (because who wants to date a dog face???) wearing some rich reds and showing my hair some love!
For those of you going out, definitely try a 'work-to-evening' hair style, like a messy bun, loose waves or curls. Do not come up with some elaborate disaster like a braid in the shape of a heart if you are over the age of 12.
If you're like me and home for the evening (where friends will be descending for Indian food and a showing of Be My Valentine Charlie Brown), then you might as well make yourself a mug of hot chocolate and mask your hair...after everyone leaves of course!
First, we need to understand the difference between a hair mask and a deep conditioner. The way that I distinguish a hair mask from a deep conditioner is by the purpose of the product.
Masks strengthen and seal (usually a protein based formula)
Deep conditioners soften and moisturize
Simple right? Well, read those labels to properly determine whether you're getting a deep conditioner posing as a mask. Or a real mask. The marketing people can be so tricky!
As your valentines treat, Olivia's recommends the masks below.
It's 2017! I can hardly believe it and yet we are nearly through the first complete month of the year!
Let's take some collective steps in the right direction and make this year our best hair year ever! Are you in? The game plan is as follows:
1. Develop and (guuuurrrl) stick to a hair care regimen - Olivia's believes that haircare is SELFcare! It's so important that we take care of ourselves, respectfully and regularly. That means STOP skipping the washes, do some deep conditions and don't wait until your hair is shedding uncontrollably to think about a special treatment.
2. Check out new features on Olivia's - Our two new features Just for the Guys and Tips and Tools! We decided to revamp the site and include more content for men! Ah men! Their sharp cuts, fades and beards. The whole thing! Tips and Tools is a section devoted to those burning questions we have about our blow dryers, brushes, combs etc. I mean how precisely do you modify and Denman anyway? (I bet some of you want to know what a Denman is! LOL!)
3. New ways to connect - Olivia's is gearing up to launch new platforms where we can connect via social media! Exciting right? We want to hear more from you wherever you are! Let's take some of the guess work out of hair and help each other out. Know of a fantastic salon in London? Dubai? Stockholm, or Fayetteville (oh yes there is good hair in Fayetteville! ,,,we just don't know where it is) We are looking for locations, suggestions, the best products, products to avoid and especially where to go to get your hair hooked...UP that is.
It's going to be a great year!
Don’t bother to leave the couch! Olivia’s got you covered for Cyber Monday haircare deals! Shop by hair type and need. Grab your debit card and get to stocking up! Great deals for you and stocking stuffers for your friends and family await! Get ready. Get set. CLICK!
Type 1 - Do you have very fine poker straight hair???
Shu Uemura – Add amazing volume and texture with Shu Uemura’s Texture Wave Dry Finishing Spray. Take 25% off sitewide with the code CYBERSHU.
Kiehl's – Get the Kiehl's Rice and Wheat Conditioning Volumizing Rinse with this great deal! Receive 4 FREE deluxe samples and FREE shipping on orders of $25 or more including gift sets! Use code: BFRIDAY . Only valid until 11/27/2016!
Type 2 - Do you have wavy hair? Whether its thick, thinning, oily or some combination there of, the deals below are for you.
Phyto – Take 40% off site wide! Code: CYBER. Olivia’s recommends PHYTO Phytheol Oily Hair Purifying Scalp Exfoliating Shampoo for those who have oily hair. If you use a lot of hot tools on your hair, keep it safe with PHYTO Phtyokeratine Repairing Thermal Protectant Spray.
Eprouvage - Receive 50 percent off all Eprouvage products. Now is the time to save your hair from thinning or prevent the appearance of thinning hair even before the symptoms start! The Eprouvage regimen results in a healthier scalp and thicker, fuller-looking hair. Code: HOLIDAY50
Type 3 - S curls to ringlets the sales below are for you!
Ouidad – Use the promo code THANKFUL to receive a free holiday travel bag with five travel-size favorite curl products with any purchase over $85. To know which Ouidad products suit you best, use their profiling system to make your selection.
Shu Uemura - For dry curly or chemically relaxed hair, Olivia's recommends Shu Uemura’s Essence Absolute Nourishing Cleansing Milk. Get a great deal by using the code CYBERSHU.
Type 4 - Great deals are in store for super curly to coily to kinky hair!
Hair Rules – 50% off all sets! Code: hairrules. Order the set uniquely formulated for your hair type and embrace the most moisturized hair you’ve ever felt in your life! International Shipping Available!!!
Jane Carter Solution – 40% off all products + Free shipping with $50 purchase. I recommend the Jane Carter Solution Wrap and Roll for you kinky curliest that want a flawless holiday roller set. International Shipping Available!!!
We could all do with a little extra help. Regardless of hairtype check out these extra deals below!
GHD – Take 25% off site wide (excluding the Copper Luxe collection). GHD White Platinum Styler was the Allure 2016 Best of Beauty Winner you can shop it for a great deal!!!!
Q- Redew – You know how I’ve been going on and on about steaming your hair for maximum hair health???? Well, Q-Redew is the hand held steamer for you! Get $10 off Q-Redew. Code: Cybersale
Rapunzel of Sweden – When's the perfect time to experiment with hair extensions? When they're on sale of course! 15% off tape-on extensions from Rapunzel of Sweden while supplies last!
On a plane recently, as is so often the case, during which slumber just wouldn't come, I read through as much as I could digest of a great book given to me by one of my best friends, I looked around in my smashed confines known as seat 25F despairingly and opted for a movie. I had already been woefully disappointed. WOEFULLY disappointed by the Batman, Superman situation on a separate flight and wanted to make sure I wasn't hoodwinked into wasting my time again. I turned ... or rather positioned my head in a way that I could delude myself I wasn't going to suffer from eye strain, (which could, you know), lead to mother's warned of blindness!
My choice: Mr. Dynamite : The Rise of James Brown.
I'm not a huge James Brown fan, nor am I ignorant to his influence in musical culture today. For instance, as soon as I heard and then saw the music video of Janelle Monet's hit song Tightrope (the lyrics of my life), her toe tilting, lightening fast spins, acreage covering slides and emphatically joyful hands punctuating each stated move, made me acknowledge - this is James Brown's "daughter"!
I know a few James Brown songs from my father, a vocal man who, as I never realized when I was growing into myself, was constantly teaching and influencing his children through attuned and political - subliminal messaging. I'm not joking! The man silently but constantly "spoke his mind". A few years ago, I remember my father seemed to get hooked on James Brown's "Pappas Got a Brand New Bag" I've listened to that song in its entirety several times trying to figure out what my papa was really trying to say. Still haven't figured it out.
In this documentary I learned that James Brown had a hell of a lot to say. His showmanship, driving bass lines and repetitive lyrics demonstrated his creation - James Brown. My interpretation of James Brown's musical journey were statements about his creation.
I am good enough, (1957's Try Me)
I am better than what you think I can be, (1963's Please, Please, Please)
I AM a man ( 1968's Say it Loud - I'm Black I'm Proud).
Through his music came the outward statements that showed up on his head. Funny how hair is strong statement of what is going on internally. James Brown cut his hair, chemically straightened with then used congolene, aka conk, a hair straightener gel made from lye, and embraced his natural hair, encouraging others to do the same - The fro!
Over time other men, beatniks, hippies, anticonformist grew their hair to demonstrate solidarity with each other against "the system".
Across the world hair is a power statement. We think, at least I did, that these statements of hair are not so much political anymore but ones of self-expression. I mean we're not exactly fighting "the man"... are we? But hair, I assure you, is still very much a statement.
To cover ones hair or not to cover,
To dye one's hair blonde to match an expectation of "superior" standard of beauty or not.
To straighten ones hair to pass the "pencil test" or not.
Wait.. what test?
Recently the New York Times featured an op-ed piece White Schools vs. Black Hair in Post-Apartheid South Africa which opened my eyes to the pencil test. In apartheid South Africa, under the Population Registration Act of 1950, subjective measures like the pencil test, were used to determine whether the person was to be classified as black, white, colored, or Indian. The test simply instructed the tester to put the pencil in the test subject's hair. If the pencil held its place or fell through would determine into which of those "neat" categories the test subject fell.
I wonder... was there a velocity measure? Was this a Ticonderoga pencil? Was the pencil sharpened,? Should the test be conducted with a pencil that had an eraser? If so, unused or used and to what degree?
Complete and utter foolishness!
Okay - so that was the 50's. How about today? Evidently, vestiges of that offensive and degrading legislation still exist. Young men and women are still being barred from school examinations, being told that their natural black hair styles are "untidy".
Ummm... what about Bob Dylan's hair above? Would the head of that recent Nobel Laureate have passed the pencil test? How about being barred from examinations for untidiness?
Hair is still a statement. It changes the way you look. It effects the way people look at you. What statement are you making? Like it or not you hair is speaking for you. Check out the link to this article above and let me know what you think in the comments section below.
Unfortunately, at this late hour - my hair is saying nothing powerful or kind about me! HAHA!
There is a TON going on in the world of hair lately! Autumn has brought with it swift and interesting changes.
An update on The Honest Company. Co-founders Jessica Alba and Eric Lee are all over the business pages with news of Uniliever' s bid to acquire The Honest Company. According to the Wall Street Journal, Uniliever wishes to expand its market share to reach the eco-chemical conscious consumer and pinpointed Honest as the brand to take them there.
While I have been monitoring the Unilever bid these past few days, it is doubtful that they will actually get to culminate its courtship of Alba's Honest in acquisition. Why you ask? Alba and Lee turned down a ten figure deal! A ten figure deal!!!! Who turns that down? Well Alba and Lee do. I guess relinquishing the control as a unique (yep still very unique) woman at the helm of a hugely successful company with lots of growth potential still ahead isn't that appealing and for that Ms. Alba, Mr. Lee I applaud you!
Unilever recently acquired Dollar Shave Club for a similar ten figure offer. A billion is the magic number these days. For those of you not familiar with Dollar Shave Club, this company sells subscriptions to razors, blades and shaving products for men delivered right to the customer's door for a measly $3.00 INCLUDING shipping and handling (for its most basic package)!
Take that Gillette!
Unilever bought, lock stock and barrel, the Dollar Shave Club for about five times its value, basing its business decision on the quick growth of the Dollar Shave Club start up. Only time will tell whether that tenth figure is worth it or not.
Large companies swallowing up smaller ones seems to be the trend of our venture capital start up times - but is this good?
I'm so excited about the decision to "keep" The Honest Company completely honest. Partially because I'm excited to see a woman who understands the needs of herself and family continuing to develop a lucrative business that addresses universally shared needs, but also because we, (Joe and Jane consumer) need more competitors keeping giants like Unilever, Proctor & Gamble and the mega giant L'Oréal coming up with innovative products at reasonable prices. Once the control is wrested from relatively small companies and turned over to the giants we, the consumer, are left with products that meet the shareholders bottom line rather than primarily serving us.
What do you think of larger companies acquiring small green-centric companies? Do you think the infusion of cash makes these companies better? Worse? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.
I'm still hoping someone has tried some of the products from the Honest Beauty Haircare and will share their experience. Again, do share feedback on the products interaction with your hair type below!
Ah it's autumn! One of my most beloved times of the year! It's also the time of year to try and get a handle on a pressing hair problem - how much moisture does your hair need at anytime of the year to make it look its best. Much of the hair puzzle can be solved when you examine how your hair absorbs moisture. Determining the moisture balance for YOUR HAIR is the key to nearly every hair conundrum.
"My hair is frizzy!" you exclaim, (too much humidity). "My hair is too dry!" you exclaim, (brittlely cold weather drying out everything in sight).
I don't know a single woman who doesn't say something like the above about her hair. I don't care how enviable the hank of hair.
With all that "noise" swirling in the ether, you stumble upon some fussy know-it-all, like yours truly , who wants to elaborate on the obscure topic of porosity? You can roll your eyes, it’s okay - but keep them open and read on.
The concept of porosity is quite simple. First, all hair is porous. If your hair shaft is more porous moisture will go straight in… and escape just as easily. If your hair isn’t as porous, (note I said isn’t as porous) moisture will have a harder time penetrating the shaft and in turn will not escape as quickly. Hope that makes sense.
Hair in it most natural state isn't as porous and may be classified as "low porosity". But please, do raise your hand if you have done NOTHING to your hair. Anyone?
I hear those crickets.
It's all about balance. Without the right amount of moisture retained by the hair you will take up residence in the township of Hot Messton.
In this post we are going to focus on low porosity hair. But first, we have to determine the porosity level of your hair (high/low), by conducting the “floating hair test.” (which I will sheepishly say I did while working because... it crossed my mind...?) Anyway:
1. Take a couple of strands of your hair and drop them into a full cup of water. (Don't rip them from your head in front of people. That's off putting. Just grab a few from your hair brush or comb after a sweep through/ fix up - before a meeting *cough*)
2. Let them sit in the cup of water for about two to four minutes.
3. Observe your hair. If you hair is floating in the water, you have lower porosity. If your hair is sinking, you have higher porosity.
I left my hair in the cup just to see how long it would take my hair to sink... as it didn't after 4 minutes. Well, a half hour later, I got sick of monitoring my test as my hair was still only partially submerged on the very top of the water and I came to the conclusion that my hair wasn't all that porous... yeah it took me that long to catch the hint.
Low porosity hair is typically resistant to moisture. This does not mean that the hair is unhealthy; it simply means that I need to help my hair retain moisture. With that knowledge, I am determined to help my hair out!
Recently, one of my favorite product lines, Shea Moisture released two brand new collections which I am pleased to say I got my mits on while in Atlanta recently.
I'm going to try the low porosity collection for the first time tomorrow! Churrah! I certainly will let you know how it turns out!
This collection includes a Protein-Free Shampoo, a Protein-Free Conditioner and a Protein-Free Leave-In Detangler. Are you catching that theme for low porosity hair. I didn't put together that my hair didn't like protein for well... some years. So there's a short cut for you!
The Shea Moisture low porosity collection has natural and certified organic ingredients which include: Baobab Oil: Extracted from the African “superfruit”, this deeply moisturizing oil is rich in vitamins and antioxidants. Tea Tree Oil (my dermis LOVES tea tree oil): Moisturizes and comforts scalp for healthy-looking hair. Spearmint Extract: Effectively revitalizes hair and scalp with a fresh stimulating fragrance. Sounds good and I'm excited!
I'll depart with a few quick tips on caring for low porosity hair:
1. Use a pre-poo treatment - Add a penetrating oils like coconut, sunflower, olive, avocado, or grapeseed oil (my favorite) to your conditioner, apply a couple of hours before rinsing it out and shampooing your hair.
2. Water down your conditioner - Water is the best moisturizer! I use about 2 ounces of conditioner to 6 ounces of water. I divide my hair into sections and then work this conditioner mixture throughout. Proceed to deep condition with heat.
3. Always deep condition - that's pretty much it.
4. Seal in moisture with an oil - Low porosity hair usually responds better to the L(liquid/leave-in), C(cream), O(oil) method rather than the famous LOC method. Always use your liquid/leave-in first, and your oil last.
5. Make satin your best friend - use a satin pillow case... "because you're worth it" but also because its ALSO good for your face! Cotton also sucks the moisture out of your face so using a satin pillow case will also help fend off the wrinkles! Double duty !!!!
Well that was a lot of information so I'll depart for now. We will revisit porosity on the other end of the spectrum soon!