I Used It All Up: Julien Farel Vitamin Restore

I finally used up the last of this lil’ beaut: Julien Farel Vitamin Restore. It’s the first low shampoo I ever tried, and liking it so much I hoarded it for-basically-ever. It’s got hyaluronic acid in, as well as echinacea stem cells, and vitamins B, C and E, and triples as a cleanse, treat and condition formula.

Everything about it is neutral in the best sense: zero fragrance, no lather, and yet its effect is shiny, healthy, bouncy hair.

I wondered: exactly how many years has this been perched on the lip of the tub, waiting for an outing? How long had I kept in reserves for those days when I wanted a guaranteed Good Hair Day™ or I was simply not arsed to do the whole shampoo/shampoo/condition thang?

I thought about doing a search on my hard drive and went: Nah. Cannot be arsed to do that, either.

I did want to find more of it, so I googled it, and lo and behold. It is alive! My past self was there all this time, hidden in The Herald website, which deigned not to give me credit, but does at least still keep a record of my tried and tested days.

Upshot: I hoarded this stuff for three years. Is that nothing or is that mad? I am not that impressed, tbqh. Maybe next time I’ll do better.

(Just fell down the Julien Farel rabbit-hole: a haircut with the man himself is $1000. FYI.) (Buying this internationally may be a ‘no’; I think I’ll pick some up in NYC at Christmas.)


As regards the rest of that link: I quickly fell out of love with the Dermalogica‘s Ultimate Buffing Cloth. The length got on my nerves. I fondly recall both the Vaseline Spray and Go Body Moisturiser and Garnier‘s BB Cream + Blur — might be time for a run to the chemists…


I Try Before You Buy: Lush Tangled Hot Oil Treatment

Hmmm. I wasn’t sure that Lush’s venture into deep conditioning hair care was gonna work — way to keep an open mind! I do like the brand’s Jumping Juniper Shampoo Bar {and while I was checking, I see that there’s a Karma-scented bar, must try!} but also remember a foray into a solid conditioner that did not work.

Our friends at Lush are never afraid to take a risk on innovation, so holding fast to my own courage, I went for it.

Hot oil on a stick?
01 treat on a stick

The instructions said to go boil the kettle, get a suitable container, and prepare to swish. Okay!
02 in the mug

The swishing began. Adding enough to cover the solid… stuff, I swished and swished, keeping in mind that it was suggested that increments of hot water be added. A timeframe of five minutes was offered; as an impatient person, five minutes of swishing felt like five hours. Due to this impatience, I definitely jumped the gun; I applied some, and then realised that I could in fact get more out of it. Given how much hair I have, I immediately thought I’d ruined the whole undertaking. I added more water, swished a bit, created more, but less creamy, product — I make these mistakes so you don’t have to. Be patient! This process really does work!
03 mixing it up

Even with my inability to do what the packaging told me to do, there was plenty of this to go round. Having learned my lesson, I waited the requisite 20 minutes.
04 doing its job

Woweeeee: shiny! Also: soft, beautifully scented with ylang ylang and rosewood, silky, touchable — an amazing result. I wanted to do it all over again — with less impatient swishing — as soon as possible. There’s also one called Damaged, chock full of almond, avocado and extra virgin olive oils, if your hair has got the wintery weather blues. Take a chance on either one — it’s worth it.



Speaking of Hair: Zeba Salon Fundraising Event

When am I not speaking about hair?

I had an amazing session at Zeba Hairdressing in South William Street, and it wasn’t all about me getting a beautiful cut and new highlights — although, of course, I have to be able to say with conviction that the services provided are top notch, right? Well, they are, and what’s more, the stylists and colourists at the salon are not only good with their hands, they are good with their hearts.

On Sunday, 15 April, Zeba are hosting a ‘Treat Yourself and Help the Children’ fundraising day in aid of Temple Street Children’s University Hospital, with proceeds going to the Cleft Lip & Palate Department. Owners Paul and Angie Drumgoole have a particular attachment to this department, as it has provided necessary, and exemplary, care for their youngest son Christian, who was born with a cleft palate.

All proceeds from the day go to the hospital, and all staff at work during the 11 am to 5pm time slot are working for free.

Treatments on offer are:
>A cut and blowdry for €50
>Colour, cut and blowdry for just €100
>Highlights and a cut and blowdry for €150
>Nail treatments in the salon on the day for €10.

And you get a  L’Oreal goody bag to take home with you. Bonus!

The salon is top-grade, and amongst the many pleasures — expert colour consultation with Laura, thorough discussion with Paul as to exactly how much hair was going to end up on the floor, and how to get more bang for my highlighting buck — the seats at the sinks are massage chairs, and oh! if only I was sitting here now, blogging away, in a massage chair… I would be asleep and would never publish this a’tall.

Paul speaks quite movingly about how Temple Street have been there for Christian every step of the way, and it is really quite exceptional that his staff are donating their talents gratis. The vibe in the place was very buzzy the day I went in, and it wasn’t just from busy-ness: it was clear, from the warm reception through the great attention paid during my session, that the people that work there not only like working there, but they like each other, too.

There’s more info at zeba.ie — check out the raffle prizes! Hampers of haircare products! Jewellery! A Trocadero restaurant voucher! How much better can this actually get?

To make an appointment, ring Zeba on (01) 671 6444. Pictured: a gorgeous result.