Tuesday 19 January 2016

Speed Review: Lee Stafford Poker Straight Shampoo and Conditioner

Lee Stafford Poker Straight Shampoo & Conditioner review

I've recently been trialling the shampoo & conditioner from Lee Stafford's Poker Straight range.

Both the shampoo and conditioner are presented in unashamedly girlie, bright pink bottles which would stand out on a shop shelf. I feel that the bright pink is fun and in keeping with the brand's image & wallet friendly price point. Aside from the text on the packaging, there's nothing to distinguish between the shampoo and conditioner & I'd have preferred slightly different packaging so as to easily be able to tell them apart in the shower. That said, the shampoo & conditioner are visible through the transparent plastic bottles so that goes some way to being able to tell them apart, whilst also being able to tell how much product is remaining.

Both products have the same scent which is described as being "a subtle fragrance boosted by a sweet chocolate, caramel and raspberry fruit heart, layered with velvety vanilla that entwines with a sensual base of fine woods and musk". I can't say that I was able to detect any of these notes. I absolutely hated the scent, finding it to be cheap smelling, synthetic & overpowering. It reminded me of cleaning products so I was pleased that whilst it lingered slightly after I'd dried & styled my hair, it was very subtle & I didn't find it offensive at this stage.
Lee Stafford Poker Straight Shampoo is described as containing "Mega Quat" to take kinks into submission & make early morning wrestling sessions with hairdryers a thing of the past. The claims state that it gently cleanses and softens hair leaving it super shiny and poker straight, whilst the (rather gimmicky sounding) P2Fifty Complex helps to protect hair from excessive heat damage. I appreciated the inclusion of heat protection.

Lee Stafford Poker Straight Shampoo has a relatively thick gel formula which I found easy to dispense thanks to the bottle's flip top lid. The clear directions on the bottle state that the shampoo should be used twice before conditioner & whilst I know some people like to follow this routine when washing hair, I'm not convinced that it's necessary owing to the generous lather which the shampoo produces. My hair felt tangled following use but otherwise, the shampoo rinsed out easily.

Following use, my hair was left smooth and with frizz diminished, although my naturally wavy hair wasn't straight with blow drying alone. It felt soft and had a high shine finish so in this respect, delivered on the claims. However, I don't agree that it "gently cleanses". The shampoo felt cheap to use and I was concerned that the harsh formula would irritate my sensitive scalp. Unfortunately, my fears proved correct and for this reason, I wouldn't repurchase.

Lee Stafford Poker Straight Conditioner also has a flip top dispenser but I found that this didn't work particularly well with the formula, which is a pearlised lightweight white cream. I found it difficult to control how much product was dispensed and I'd have preferred the convenience of a pump. That said, the directions were clear and easy to follow. I liked that the conditioner was easy to work through my hair and that it rinsed out with relative ease.

Whilst I thought that I had rinsed the conditioner out thoroughly, I noticed that my hair had a "plastic-y" coating following drying & styling, both in terms of look and feel. My fine hair was weighed down but admittedly, was noticeably straighter than usual. Conversely, there were more flyaways & static than usual so I wouldn't describe this as a smoothing conditioner. My hair looked shiny but because it appeared that there was product on it, it didn't look natural or healthy. Whilst my hair felt soft and silky, my sensitive scalp was irritated. I didn't feel that the cheap formula was beneficial.

Even putting aside my personal feelings about the scent, I wouldn't repurchase because I don't feel that these products are suited to someone with my fine hair and sensitive scalp. Someone with thicker hair may have more luck with these products.


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