Remember Garnier’s Fructis hair care line? That was the last time the brand had feet in the sham and con market in South Africa and I have no clue when that was but it felt like a lifetime ago. They’ve stepped in again, however, with Ultimate Blends, a line that’s been killing it overseas for a while now but will be new to SA shores next month.
Created using precious lightweight oils and natural extracts, Garnier Ultimate Blends is a nature-inspired hair care line that includes shampoo, conditioner, masks and more.
Overseas there are what feels like a million different variants but here we’ll soon have the following:
Cranberry & Argan colour illuminator (colour treated hair), Honey Treasures strength restorer (fragile hair), Coconut Oil & Cocoa Butter sleek restorer (dry, frizzy hair), Avocado & Shea Butter nourishing repairer (very dry hair) and 5 Essentials The Fresh Revitaliser (‘normal’ hair).
When I first saw the packaging at launch in Jozi I wasn’t in love with it. To me the sham and con bottles look too much like a Radox shower gel but hey whatevs. I don’t judge products by their packaging. If it works like a boss, into my shower they go. This is what happened with the rather festive-looking Cranberry & Argan duo for colour treated hair. I used it with zero expectations and have been super-duper impressed with them. The shampoo lathers a lot so you don’t need to use loads of it but it cleans gently and doesn’t feel strippy at all. As for the conditioner, again, you don’t need to use a lot of it and the result is clean-feeling hair with lots of bounce that feels sleek to the touch. It also doesn’t ‘build’. I’ve used it for almost a month now and I’ve never felt like I need to switch to something else to avoid any kind of silicone over dose.
As far as fragrance goes, Cranberry & Argan smells just like the limited edition cranberry shizzle the The Body Shop launches round Christmas time and while I’m not especially cranberry crazy this isn’t a deal breaker as the scent doesn’t linger once you get out the shower. Your hair just smells clean. (For the record, I really liked the smell of the Honey Treasures collection (again, it made me think of The Body Shop – their Honeymania line – but it wasn’t included in our press pack.)
I was given two other variants to try – Avocado & Shea Butter and Coconut Oil & Cocoa Butter but both were too heavy for my fine, blonde, colour-treated hair so I passed it on to my flat mate Gaylene. Gay’s got fabulously thick, colour treated hair that’s natural a bit curly but she straightens the living daylights out of it. She found the Avo mix was too heavy for her but she’s a big fan of the Coconut Oil duo. She’s always liked Cocoa Butter fragrances, says it’s just the right ‘weight’ for her hair and definitely leaves it looking shinier and feeling softer.
But now for the best bit – Ultimate Blends is as cheap as blerrie chips! A big 400ml bottle will set you back just R69,95 and the smaller 250ml is R39,95! I don’t know about you but I’m feeling the financial burn this year so finding hard-working wallet-friendly products is a real priority right now and Ultimate Blends really fits the bill (literally).
Anyway, like I said, these dudes will only be in stores come March so keep your eyes peeled.