My Favorite Charcoal Products!

Epic fail. I haven’t blogged in forever, but I’ve wanted to write this post for a while now… so here goes! I’ve been loving various charcoal products lately, and here are my favorites!

favoritecharcoalproducts | by themani-ac

Basin Charcoal Shampoo Bar

Have you heard of Basin? If you’ve been to Disney Springs (Downtown Disney), you’ve probably seen the store. I’ve seen it so many times, gone in a handful of times but never really paid attention to what they had. A couple years ago, we decided to actually look around and we picked up some shampoo bars to try. I Instantly fell in love with the charcoal bar (peppermint is second). It is amazing. If you’ve never used a shampoo bar.. it’s just like soap, you wet the bar and lather it up. It lathers really nicely, leaves your hair literally squeaky clean and washes out without a problem. It’s great it you use a lot of product or dry shampoo (like me), it gets your hair super clean.

Boscia Charcoal Deep-Pore Cleansing Stick

I did a separate post on this products already, but it definitely deserves another mention. I’m super glad I got this when the charcoal mask was out of stock. I use it every day, and it keeps my face amazingly clean and clear. Any breakouts I may have, this helps get rid of them super quickly.

First Aid Beauty Cleansing Body Polish with Active Charcoal

I’m always looking for new products to deal with KP (keratosis pilaris) or ‘chicken skin’, which are those little bumps you can get on your arms and legs. I have a lotion that I use that controls it very well, but when I saw this product, I had to try it. These are some of the key benefits:

  • Chemical and physical exfoliators buff away dry patches of skin and even the bumpy “chicken skin” associated with keratosis pilaris
  • Active charcoal sloughs away dirt and impurities
  • The paste-like texture transforms into a foam when mixed with water
  • Perfectly preps skin for a flawless self-tanning application
  • Argan oil and vitamin E hydrate and calm skin

So far, I really like it. The only downside, for me, is the scent. It smells almost seaweedy… I hate seaweed lol, but I can deal with the scent.

So there you have it! Those are my top 3 charcoal products at the moment. I’m definitely looking to dry more, like a charcoal peel off mask. Do you have any favorite charcoal products?

 

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Function of Beauty Update!

So, I’ve been using my custom Function of Beauty shampoo and conditioner for a while now, so I thought I’d give you an update!

functionofbeauty2

I’ve been using it for about a month, 2-3 times a week, and what you see above is how much of the product I’ve used so far. I’m going through conditioner a bit faster than the shampoo, which is normal for me. I have changed up the way I use the product, for my first shampoo, I lather it up in my hands, but for the second shampoo, I apply to directly to my scalp and lather. I usually end up with 5-6 pumps for shampoo and the same for conditioner.

Pros:

  • I have noticed that the middle section of my hair is very soft and stays soft for days after washing.
  • My hair is noticeable shinier, I definitely see a difference with that, and it stays shiny for days after the wash.

Cons:

  • Even though my formulation is basically just hydration, for some reason, I’ve noticed my scalp is drier than normal.
  • Right after hair washing, my hair feels nice and soft but a day or two later the ends dry up again. If I do any kind of heat styling or even no-heat overnight curls, my ends get very dry, even if it’s right after washing. I don’t use it every day, as suggested, so that might be the problem, but it is worth noting.
  • I haven’t seen any overall improvement on my dry ends. The longer you use it, the more you’ll see the effects, but so far… I haven’t seen any improvement in end hydration, they still get very dry and brittle.

I’ve avoided using any other hair products while testing this one, I just started using argan oil again after my last few washes because I couldn’t take my dry, frizzy ends anymore. My ends are a bit color damaged, so I don’t expect anything to heal them, that’s what haircuts are for lol. However, I am a bit disappointed with the dry scalp, I was not expecting that at all. I actually just decided to switch up my routine, my last wash I used totally different products (one to review!). I’ll probably go back to Function of Beauty after my scalp is back to normal and see how things go from there. I’ll most likely be back with another update!

Function of Beauty Initial Review!

I’ve been wanting to try Function if Beauty for a while, so I was super excited to get this as one of my Christmas presents!

If you havent heard of Function of Beauty, it’s a company that makes totally customizable shampoo and conditioner!

functionofbeauty

So, basically, you take a hair quiz, choose the benefits you’d like, pick the color and scent annnnd they’ll make it.

These are my hair profile answers:

  • Hair type- wavy
  • Hair structure- fine
  • Scalp moisture- normal

For my 5 hair goals I went with:

  • Deep condition
  • Replenish hair
  • Fix split ends
  • Strengthen
  • Hydrate

I opted out of a color, and for the scent I chose cucumber mint, light fragrance.

There are also different size options, I got the two biggest sizes.

I’ve heard it takes about a week for you to get your customized set, mine did take a little longer because it was right after the holidays and one of their machines broke, but they actually managed to get it to me really close to the estimated date they originally gave.

When you get it, it comes in a cute almost Tiffany blue box, ad you get your shampoo, conditioner, pumps, and a little booklet with your hair profile, goals, a description of each goal with the goal specific ingredients, instructions on the optimal way to use your set and active ingredients on the back.

I usually like to start with scents, so here we go… it’s a bit minty and herbally… reminds me of a spa almost. I think it may be because I picked the light fragrance and I’m picking up on some of the ingredients.

As for consistency, I was a bit surprised because the shampoo is pretty thin, I’ve never used a shampoo that was runny before. My directions say to lather it in your hands first, which I thought was interesting. It does lather very nicely. It also says to shampoo, rinse and repeat. So for my first shampoo I use 3 pumps and for my second I use 2.

The conditioner is nice and thick, it feels really hydrating, just like I like it. My directions say to leave it in for 2-3 minutes, which I do with most of my conditioners anyway. I like to tie it in a low bun while I leave it in, and with this conditioner I actually feel the minty-ness on the back of my neck, it’s like that tingly cooling feeling… I’ve never experienced that with a conditioner, really cool. I use about 5 pumps of conditioner for all my hair.

So far, I’ve used it three times. Haven’t used it their suggested 4-5 times a week, as I usually only wash my hair twice a week. The first time I used it, I didn’t follow the instructions, but did the last two times. Overall, so far so good. My hair is definitely very soft, it feels hydrated and the more I use it, the more hydrated my ends are feeling, which is important. I haven’t been using any other leave-ins or oils on my hair to give this a fair try, and I’m going to continue to do so!

If you’d like to try Function of Beauty, you can use my affiliate link and get $5 off your order! (and I get a $5 credit, win win!)

Have you tried customized shampoo and conditioner before?

Updated Hair Care Routine!

I feel like I haven’t done an update on my hair in forever! I think the last thing I showed you was my pink hair. Well, that’s long gone. I dyed my hair back (as close as I could get) to my natural brown hair color, and I’ve just been trying to grow out all my gross ends.

So, first and foremost, I now get a trim every 8 weeks. My last one was a really big one, I chopped off two inches. It needed to go.

The shampoo I have been using for a while now is L’oreal Ever Pure Moisture Shampoo.

l'oreal everpure

It’s amazing. I had a pretty dry scalp before I started using this and I haven’t had any problems since. It’s now a staple of mine. And it smells awesome!

I am using some new conditioners though. I finally ran out of what I had and decided to go get some stuff I haven’t tried before.

The first one is It’s A 10 Silk Express Miracle Silk Conditioner

it's a 10 silk

I’ve only used it a few times, so I don’t have any strong opinions about it yet. I do have to say that I noticed that my hair did dry faster after using it. Honestly, I didn’t know it was supposed to do that until I accidentally read it somewhere lol. I’ll keep testing and may put up a full review.

Another conditioner I just started using is OGX Hydrate + Repair Creamy Hair Butter

ogx

This is a leave in or rinse out, which is pretty cool! It is very buttery. Again, I’ve only just started using it and I’ve been switching between it and the It’s A 10, so I need to use one at a time for a while before I can formulate a real opinion.

I like both of them so far, so that’s good news lol.

A conditioner I’ve been using for a little while now is the It’s A 10 Miracle Leave-in.

10 leave in

I use it every time I wash my hair, after using a rinse out conditioner. I like it, my hair definitely feels softer, especially right after I comb it out.

And finally, OGX Argan Oil.

argan oil

I really like to use this on my ends, I find that it helps when I slather it on my ends before bed and it soaks in overnight. Also, if I do a no-heat overnight curling thing (which I usually do) I like to add just a tiny bit of this all over my hair after I brush it out.

And that’s it! I think I still have another 2-3 inches to get rid of until my hair is where I want it to be. But in the meantime, I’ll be trying all the hair things!

What are some of your current favorite (or all time favorite) hair care products?

My Current Hair Routine!

I recently switched up my hair routine! About three weeks ago I bleached and dyed my ends purple so I knew I’d need to change up my routine to help my hair out.

First and foremost, I now do a coconut oil pre-wash

077890377000I did do a post about my initial thought a little while back, you can check that out here. I think it definitely makes my hair shinier, but I haven’t really seen a huge difference so far. But, to be honest, I haven’t been paying close attention… I’ll have to get on that lol

I also changed my shampoo!

500I learned that my shampoo had sulfates, womp womp, so I decided to switch to something sulfate-free. I really like this so far, not sure if the lack of sulfates really makes a difference BUT I love the scent! Although sometimes it does make me kind of hungry… coconut mixed with rosemary haha

I’ve also started using a few different conditioners on somewhat of a rotation. My normal conditioner is SH-RD Nutra-Therapy Conditioner.

My hairstylist gave me a bottle of this and the shampoo for my birthday last year, and I liked it so much that I ordered a big bottle of it (you can find it on Amazon). It also has a rosemary-ish scent, which I really like and it leaves my hair nice and soft, which I need.
Sometimes I’ll use it alone, but sometimes I’ll also add some Pantene Overnight Miracle!
300I remember the first time I saw the commercial for this with Zooey Deschanel and something possessed me to go out and get it… and I fell in love from first use. It really does leave your hair really silky and soft and I love that I can just sleep in it and not be bothered with anything else. Sometimes I’ll use just this as my conditioner, but recently I’ve been starting to use it mid-week. On a night when I don’t wash my hair (which is most, because I only wash my hair once/twice a week), I’ll dampen my hair and add this stuff right before I go to bed. It just refreshes my ends and add lots of moisture.
If I’m going for a deep conditioner, I have to go with It’s a 10 Miracle Hair Mask.
1383435_it4__43395_zoomThis will forever be one of my favorite deep conditioners, if not my all time favorite. I like to leave in on for about 30 minutes, and when I wash it out my hair feels silky and soft and manageable!
I’ve also been rotating between a couple of serum/creams. The one I use most often is good old Biosilk!
14229282I’ve been using Biosilk for a long time now and it never fails me. You can use it on wet or dry hair, I prefer dry. It absorbs nicely, adds great shine and enhances your hair texture. When I do my overnight waves technique (lol) I like to brush my hair out in the morning to loosen the waves, then add a good amount of Biosilk, which keep my waves from getting frizzy and just tames them and helps them stay pretty all day!
The other product that I use is SH-RD Protein Hair Mask!
91f2EeVE13L._SL1500_This one was another suggestion from my hair stylist.. he uses it on everyone! The good thing about this product is that a little goes a seriously long way. I’ve had mine for over a year, maybe longer, and I’ve hardly made a dent. I especially like to use this on my ends, it adds a lot of moisture. When I do my over night waves, I pin up my hair, and before I do that I put a bunch of this right on the ends so they don’t dry out too much overnight. You can use this on wet or dry hair, I like to use it on damp hair.
Phew, almost done! The last thing I want to share is my new favorite dry shampoo… Batiste Strength & Shine!
16986870You know how some dry shampoos leave your roots looking dusty? This does not do that! I have dark hair.. so that whitish residue was not a good look for me. I really didn’t like to add shine cream, because that’s just too many products for me (because ONE more would make such a huge difference lol). Anyway, this does not leave your roots looking grey and dull, so it’s a major winner in my book!
It feels like a lot, but when I remember that I don’t use all these things at once it doesn’t seem so bad. What are some of your current favorite hair products?

Coconut Oil Pre-wash Initial Thoughts!

I decided it was time to switch up my hair routine!

A little background on my hair… I’ve been coloring it for a long while now, and I have pretty dry ends. I might be bleaching said ends this weekend for a plummy ombre, so I really needed something to add lots of moisture. My normal routine includes a shampoo and conditioner recommended by my hair guy and some hair serums, like Biosilk. My hair guy actually gave me the shampoo and conditioner for my last birthday and when I ran out, I decided to buy it on Amazon because I could get a bigger size for cheaper. What I didn’t realize is that the shampoo I got from Amazon has sulfates! GASP! But I used it for a while anyway, then I started to find my scalp getting really dry. It might be from sulfates, or our hard water, or both. So it was time for a change.

I present to you… coconut oil!

This is the one I got… it is Wegmans brand extra virgin unrefined coconut oil.

So coconut oil is a little weird, it comes in a tub and it’s solid. Some blogs recommend microwaving it to melt it, I just rubbed it in my hands until it melted. It was a little messier, but worked.

I started by parting my hair into two sections and just working the oil in starting from my ends going up. Then I flipped my hair over, and made sure that I got every strand. Then I added a little bit to my scalp and roots, and finally extra on my ends. Then I put it up, threw on a shower cap and went about my business for an hour.

To go along with this, I also bought a sulfate-free shampoo. I opted for L’Oreal EverPure Moisture Shampoo, which is part of the Color Care System.

So after the hour was up, I washed my hair as I normally would. I did double shampoo, just to ensure that I got all the oil out of my roots. I lightly shampooed my ends for the same reason. Then conditioned, and that was it!

I was nervous about my hair being really oily, but I had no oily residue, just super shiny hair! I really tried not to brush it too much and just let it dry as it would naturally. I did add some hair serum when it was damp, just to reduce frizz. Also, I left my hair as it was, no styling. I usually do an overnight no-heat curling thing, but I decided against it just to test what my hair would be like.

Overall, I like the results so far. My hair is nice and shiny, and the color is more vibrant. It’s really soft, my ends are still a tad dry, but I do have a bunch of split ends that need trimming. So far no change in my scalp, but I wouldn’t expect that (or the dry ends) to change overnight.

I’m definitely going to keep doing this, probably once a week and I’ll write another update in a month or so!

Have you guys done any pre-washes? Thoughts?