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Tag Archives: balsam of peru contact allergy

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Product Review – Burt’s Bees More Moisture Baobab Shampoo And Conditioner

Burts Bees Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner

This is the fourth in a series of Shampoo and Conditioner reviews. I will be reviewing a Burt’s Bees shampoo and conditioner. Don’t forget to check out my last review on the Free & Clear Shampoo And Conditioner.

My Hair And Scalp Type

(notice this section will be in every shampoo and conditioner review for reference. This is for convenience so you do not have to look back at earlier posts)

My hair is very thick and coarse. It tends to be very dry, and can turn brittle if I wash it too often or don’t condition it enough. But my hair is reasonably healthy outside of that, as I do not use heat on it very often and I try to take care of it to the best of my ability.

My scalp goes back and forth between dry and oily depending on the time of the year and the products I have used. My biggest struggle with my scalp is from the allergic contact dermatitis caused by my allergy to Balsam of Peru. This causes a dry, scaly, itchy coverage on the scalp that looks a lot like dandruff. I have never been able to get it fully cleared up on my scalp. At its worst, when I have a reaction to something, it also burns and can blister.

 

The Product

Burts Bees More Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner

This is the Burt’s Bees More Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner with Baobab. I purchased mine at Meijer’s, but they don’t seem to currently have a website to link to. So I have linked to Amazon. Of course it is also available on Burt’s Bees website and some of the places Burt’s Bees products are sold. Each bottle is 10 fluid ounces, and it sells for anywhere from $7 to $8 depending on where you buy it at.

There were a lot of reason I wanted to give this a try. Most of all I had not seen this products before and I really wanted to give some product out of the more natural category a try. There are some things on the label that really intrigued me, which will be a big part of the discussion in several ways.

 

How It Performed

Burt's Bees More Moisture Shampoo

Moisturizing shampoos for me, at best, usually means not drying. I rarely find one that I actually find moisturizing. In fact there is only a few that I can think of that is actually moisturizing, and most of those are more oil based. This really performed well on my hair. It was moisturizing, it wasn’t oily, it left it soft and manageable. I really like what it did for my hair.

Burt's Bees More Moisture Conditioner

The conditioner performed well also. I would say it verged on almost being too moisturizing for me, but not quite. I definitely don’t need to use a hair mask with this one. And just a little bit goes a long way. That is probably the first hair product I have felt that way about, but its true.

Overall I would say that I am very happy with the way this shampoo and conditioner performed for my hair. And I think most people who have very thick, course, and dry hair will like it. I would not recommend this for anyone who has fine, thin hair or anyone who struggles with their hair being limp or oily.

 

The Allergy Affect

Before I say anything else here, let me say that I have not had a reaction to this product. It hasn’t improved my scalp from previous reactions, but it has not caused a reaction either. This is a very distinct difference that perhaps only other with contact dermatitis will understand. For the rest of what I want to say, there is a bit of a story involved.

When I am trying to decide whether to give a product a try there are always a few things I do to make that decision whether I think it will cause a reaction or not. Two of the top things are reading the ingredient list and smelling the product. I have probably mentioned this many times over the years.

I smelled the product and no alarms went off. So I read through the ingredient list, and again no alarms went off. But I did notice something interesting I had not seen on any of the other products I have tried. In the ingredient list it has fragrance, and right by it is a little asterisks mark. When you look at the bottom to see what the asterisks is about, it says natural fragrance. When I smelled the product it had that very natural kind of smell like many Korean products do. This had me intrigued, so I visited their website for more information.

Looking at their product page didn’t really give me any more information than the bottle did, so I decided to look around the rest of their website. After much searching I found no information that directly answered my question, but I did find on their contact page a link that says it is to email them about product and ingredient inquiries. So of course I sent them and email.

I messaged them and let them know that I am a blogger and that I was working on a review of their product and why fragrance information was important. I of course let them know what product I was reviewing, and I asked for information about their fragrance mix used. The initial reply I received was an automated response saying they needed more time to research my question. But when I got the actual response from a person, this is where my problem started.

The first response I got back from Burt’s Bees was odd, to say the least. All it said was, ‘Thank you for your patience. So we can help, would you mind providing the UPC for the product in question? We look forward to hearing from you.”. Now remember my question was a general question about fragrance for the anyone, not one specific fragrance, and definitely not about me having a reaction to the product I purchased. The response I got was more what you expect when you have told the company you had a reaction to the product.

So I responded  back to them, not with an answer to their question, but I just sent back a message saying I was a little confused why they needed that to answer my question. Did they perhaps misunderstand what I was asking. I mean, this should be a simple answer from them. They are not creating a different fragrance for each bottle of moisture shampoo they make.

I did get another response back from them, and I felt just as frustrated by this one as the last. Their response read, “Thank you for getting back to us. The majority of fragrances in Burt’s Bees products are natural, composed of proprietary blends of essential oils and natural extracts. We ask that you please consult with your doctor before using our products. If you happen to have an allergy to a specific ingredient, please provide the name so that we can let you know if it is in the product.”. Again, I didn’t have a reaction and wasn’t asking for that reason. And even if I had, with a allergy to something like Balsam of Peru, it’s not as simple as just saying I am allergic to Balsam of Peru.

First of all most doctors and health professionals don’t even know what that is, I don’t expect someone at a beauty company to know. You can literally react to hundreds of things that are chemical twins to Balsam of Peru. And people with my allergy don’t all react to the same things. So admittedly I was very frustrated when I sent my last response back to them. I sent back a simple question. “Did you even read my initial email?” I never received another response from them.

 

Final Thoughts

I have really mixed feelings about this, and a lot of it has to do with the email exchange. On the one had I think the product was excellent, but I have said many times how important customer service is to me. And the email issue isn’t just that they didn’t want to tell me what their fragrance is, but that they indicate that you can ask and then rather than directly saying in the beginning that they can’t share that sort of information. (I am guessing that is what all the dancing around the subject is about. I would hate to think they are really so incompetent that they can’t read an email and comprehend it.)

So I am at that point where does the product outweigh the behavior of the company and my frustration with them. But I suppose only time will tell with that. I am still testing out shampoos and conditioners. Maybe I will find something I like better.

Tell me in the comments if you have tried this shampoo and conditioner. I would especially love to hear from any of you with contact and fragrance allergies. And don’t forget to let me know if there is a specific shampoo and conditioner you want me to put on the list to try out.

 

 

 

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My Hair Went Crazy On Vacation, And What I Used To Tame It

The hair products I picked up at Sally Beauty

Right before I went on vacation I got a hair cut and color. This is pretty normal for me, but some different techniques got tried on my hair because I had went to someone new.

If you  follow me on Instagram then you saw this picture posted the day I got it cut.

Newly cut hair

The hairstylist had done a thinning technique with hidden layers. And those layers were not supposed to be noticeable and they were suppose to lay flat under the top layers. But that is not what happened. My hair was actually fine the first few days while I was home and then travelling. Once I got to New Orleans and got rained on my hair freaked out.

Don’t get me wrong, I am in not angry at the stylist. I do wish she had asked me about the layers before doing it. But I think there were a number of factors at play here that played into my hair going crazy like a different humidity level and maybe she isn’t use to cutting mixed girl hair. My hair texture isn’t really like anyone else’s I have ever known. My hair is wavy, with a tendency to frizz. I have learned over the years that intense moisture helps it a lot along with the right hair style.

This is what my hair ended up looking like after it went crazy. (Sorry I don’t have anything closer up to show you of my hair, this is the one and only picture of me that was taken that day. I think everyone will understand I wasn’t exactly in a picture-taking mood)

My hair looking frizzy in New Orleans

So I essentially had to walk around a day with my hair looking like a frizz ball because I did not have anything to fix it. I don’t typically put products in my hair because of my Balsam of Peru contact allergy. And I brought minimalistic amounts of products to wash my hair with on the trip.

So if you saw my vacation look book last week, you know I didn’t walk around with my hair looking this way the whole time. So how did I get my hair to go from this crazy mess to looking like this.

How my hair looked the last day in New Orleans

All I can say is thank goodness for Sally Beauty. I am so thankful that they carry a line of products that I have used for years and I know I am safe using for the most part. There are a few products in the line I can’t use, but overall it’s usually a safe choice for me. And that is the ION brand.

I pulled up Google Maps and found out there were quite a few Sally Beauty Stores in and around the City of New Orleans. One of them was less than a mile away from where we were staying. I was so thankful it was so conveniently close to us. The store itself was quite a bit smaller than my local store, but I still found a couple of products to tame my hair.

The hair products I picked up at Sally Beauty

I found the leave in conditioner I use on a semi-regular basis, and I found a new product I had not seen in my local Sally’s Beauty store. Each store has a slightly different selection of products in stock. Some of it is bases on space available and I am sure some is based on what sells in the area. But of course all products are available online if you can’t find something locally.

So let’s talk about each of the products and why I went with them.

Ion Reparative Leave In Spray availale at Sally Beauty

This is the Ion Reparative Leave In Spray. It is essentially a leave in conditioner with some extra pizzazz. So in addition to making your hair soft it is also supposed to strengthen and improve elasticity.

I have been using this product for close to 15 years now. It works great in my hair. I generally use this just for conditioning purposes, but I have always noticed it helps keep the frizz away a bit. So this was the first thing I picked up when I went in the store.

Ion Luxe Hair & Body OilThe second product I picked up was the Ion Luxe Hair & Body Oil. This is part of a brand new line from Ion, the Ion Luxe line. When I was looking around I didn’t see any of the other products I was familiar, but I saw this and thought  I would give it a try.

This can be used on wet or dry hair, but I used it on dry hair. On Sally’s website it doesn’t say this is for frizz, but you can see in the picture the bottle does. This contains several different types of oil, but the application is that of a dry oil. It definitely did not leave my hair looking greasy and oil like a wet oil would.

Both the Reparative Leave in Hair Spray and Hair & Body Oil do have fragrance. The fragrance mix used in most of Ion’s products do not cause me to have a reaction. However as I have said many times before if you are one of the people who are following me for allergy related issues, then you need to check for yourself. Any fragrance related allergy can be complicated, but a Balsam of Peru allergy is even more so. We all react to different things, so just because I don’t have a reaction to these products doesn’t mean you won’t.

Whether you have allergies or not, no review or recommendation can ever replace trying something out for yourself. So if you would like to try these or other Ion products for yourself, you can find them on the Sally Beauty website, or click here to find the closest Sally Beauty location near you.

Tell me in the comments what you use to help tame the frizz in your hair.

 

 

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Product Review – Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal – Firming & Polishing Body Scrub

Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Body Scrub

If you caught my post titled My First Order From Riley Rose, then you already know that I purchased this Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Firming & Polishing Body Scrub during that order.

Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Body Scrub

In addition to being my first order from Riley Rose, this was my first time trying anything from the brand Vitamin Sea Beauty. And let me just say now, that is a totally cute name for a brand that uses ingredients from the ocean.

So there were a few things that initially interested me in trying this product. I do use a lot of body scrubs, especially in the summer time. They quit making my favorite one, and I had been struggling to find one that didn’t irritate my Balsam of Peru contact allergy. I usually, not always just usually, have good success with product contain kelp. The same really goes for charcoal. I didn’t see anything that stood out in the ingredient list that would trigger a reaction other than fragrance, and fragrance can mean a lot of things. I don’t react to all types of fragrance. So I felt pretty confident that this might work for me going in.

As you can see on the label this body scrub boasts a few claims. Here is what it says it will do:

  • Scrubs away dry skin
  • Smoothes knees and elbows
  • Clears blackheads
  • Perks up skin

I think the name also implies that it will have some firming properties.

What I personally am looking for in a body scrub. I need something that is moisturizing for my dry skin and that can exfoliate gently, but deeply. I need little to no fragrance, and I am always looking for something that doesn’t contain an ingredient that I will react to. I use scrubs year round on my legs after I shave or wax, and under my breast. You all know that area under your breast where you sweat and if you don’t exfoliate you start to get a rash. I increase my use in the summer because of heat and the an increase in shaving and waxing. I don’t typically get a lot of blackheads on my face, but I do get them on my shoulders, so if it works for that its kind of a bonus.

First let’s take a look at the actual product.

Inside the jar of Vitamin Sea Kelp and Charcoal Body Scrub

This was obviously taken after I had already used out of the jar a couple of time, but it doesn’t really change what you are able to see. You can see the charcoal bits in there if you look close. They have been milled pretty finely, so no big harsh pieces.

A bit of the Vitamin Sea body scrub on my finger

I wanted to get a bit on my finger for a close up so you could get a better idea of this products texture. It’s not like the typical salt or sugar body scrub where it’s really grainy surrounded by liquids. This has almost the consistency of a body butter with the scrub aspect from the charcoal in it. It’s unlike anything I have every personally tried. Even with this picture being so close up you can barely see the bits of charcoal because of how finely milled it is.

I have now used this product for about four weeks. And I use it four times a week approximately. I just leave it in the shower so it is convenient to use when I want. I even packed some in a travel jar when I went on vacation.

I have not had any allergic reactions to the product, which I am really happy about. Of course I am not using it near my face where most of my reactions happen, however I have had reactions in the past to products that got nowhere near my face. The fragrance is super subtle, and it does not linger on the skin after you use it. It smell a bit like the beach after a storm if you have ever been there for that. Definitely not like fake ocean scented candles or perfume, but more fresh and clean. It’s a bit hard to explain beyond that or maybe I am just really bad at describing scents.

I was exceptionally happy with how well it worked at exfoliating under the breast area without feeling harsh. I also think it does a decent job at exfoliating the places I shave. I don’t think it does quite as well as my past favorite I am trying to replace, but this comes closer than anything else I have every tried. As for blackheads, I noticed it does clear out any that are closer to the surface, but any that are a little deeper it doesn’t really touch. I really don’t think I see any difference in the firmness of my skin, but I also don’t think that I have very much skin that isn’t firm in areas I would use this body scrub.

Overall I am really happy with the Vitamin Sea Beauty Sea Kelp & Charcoal Body Scrub. I most likely will be repurchasing this in the future. If you are interested in trying this for yourself then or trying other products from this brand you can find them on the Riley Rose website as well as Vitamin Sea Beauty’s website.

Tell me in the comments if you have tried any of the products from Vitamin Sea Beauty and what you thought of them.

 

 



 

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