Friday, December 5, 2008

Citre Shine Colour Prism: It snuck in

I am moving this week and next, so I thought I should probably talk about this product before it got packed away and I didn't see it for months to take its mug shot.

I'm always looking for good conditioners to comb my hair with. My favorite thing to do is find little gems in drugstores that have nearly identical functioning ingredients as more expensive brands. I then happily take my new discovery back home like a squirrel that has just found a giant acorn.

A while back I found Citré Shine Colour Prism Conditioner. On the bottle, it says it contains "Multi-Reflective Illumination", and "Citrus Prismatic Waxes" and I imagined combing into my hair a slippery, sparkly cream that (hopefully) shimmered slightly when dry. Perhaps the images of shimmery hair danced before my eyes, and blinded me on my first scan of the ingredients in the store. I usually scan a product twice before I buy it, looking for any ingredients I know to be bad. If I don't see any (well, or notice any), I then go home and research any additional ingredients I'm not familiar with before it even touches my hair.

Almost all the ingredients on the long list on the back were familiar, and there were even many conditioning ones in there. It wasn't until I got it home and was looking it over again that I saw this one had three ingredients I consider bad for the hair: isopropyl alcohol, zinc chloride and styrene/acrylamide copolymer.

Isopropyl alcohol is an easy one. I just overlooked it. It's known to be very drying to the hair. What it's doing in a conditioner is beyond me. I mean, I know it's only in there by a very tiny amount, but still...(I guess I really was blinded by the hope there were shimmery prismatic waxes in there).

The second ingredient was trickier: zinc chloride. I had to do some research. But from what I've found so far, it looks awful. Every scientific site that mentioned it had a big CORROSIVE listed for this product, saying it dissolves fibers including skin, and even some metals, apparently. If this wasn't bad enough, it also does terrible environmental things when it's put in water. Again, I know it's in there in tiny amounts, but why they would put something like this in a product at all is odd.

The third ingredient, styrene/acrylamide copolymer, and I go way back:

You see, long ago when I was still a teen, when I was trying to learn what to do with my hair, I thought I'd found the perfect products. I loved this particular orange colored shampoo and conditioner, and faithfully used them every week. This was back in the days when I thoroughly rinsed out my conditioners, and then used some kind of hair dressing to moisturize. So imagine my horror when I was doing my hair for school one morning, and found that it was sticky! My fingers actually stuck to my hair. And of course I couldn't leave it alone. I had to keep pressing my hair between my fingers, getting more upset as my fingers got stickier. School papers stuck to my hands like I was Spider Woman.

Being the easily mortified teenage girl that I was, I had a dramatically bad day, until one of my teachers pulled me aside and asked what was wrong. I told her about my sticky hair, and she told me about product build up. Needless to say, I never used that brand again. Unfortunately, I had no idea what ingredients in the products caused the build up.

Now that I know ingredients, I know which ones get crunchy or sticky. And styrene/acrylamide copolymer is one of them. This ingredient is often found in hair gels, and it's one of the things that gives gels their hold. Now I know you are supposed to rotate products so this doesn't happen, and I do rotate them. But since I leave in my conditioners, I don't need all that stickiness in my hair, ever. Plus, you need stronger cleansers to remove sticky/ crunchy ingredients than you would with a product without them. I won't say that this ingredient would hurt your hair unless it really built up on there. If you want a little hold, a product with them in it is perfect for you. But after my sticky-note hair incident, I am staying away from it.

So alas, with a sigh I have to pass on this juicy conditioner, with its promise of shimmer, because I am paranoid. That and I hate having hair that can double as fly paper (along with a few other issues).

*Note: I understand that this product (as are nearly all the conditioners I review) is meant to be rinsed out. And there are plenty of wonderful reviews for how this product works when it's rinsed out. However, since my method involves leaving the product in our hair, I review how a product functions this way.


Chanel said...

good eye! trace elements can do damage as well! good luck on your move :)

Former Mushroom-Haired Child said...

Hi Chanel: yes, this one totally got me to take it home!

Thank you for your kind wishes on the move.