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Shampoo and conditioner poll; expense and effectiveness


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Hair care  

147 members have voted

  1. 1. What price point is your hair care?

    • High-end shampoo/conditioner
      18
    • Mid-range sh/cond
      63
    • Low-price sh/cond
      64
    • Don't use any
      2
    • Only use homemade
      2
    • Use whatever I stumble upon, coupon, get free, etc.
      5
  2. 2. Does price coincide with quality

    • Yes; cheap shampoo isn't quality
      30
    • No; price point is irrelevant
      35
    • Maybe; I have experienced both high and low-priced quality sh/cond
      78
    • I don't buy shampoo/conditioner
      4
  3. 3. How did you come to use your current products?

    • My stylist recommends it
      12
    • My friend recommends it
      1
    • I researched it and decided on this
      25
    • I experimented and decided on this
      72
    • I buy according to coupons or sales or giveaways
      13
    • I don't especially care what I use
      23
    • I don't buy products
      1


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Here's my story:

 

I had happily used Amway's hair care products, but when my dd became a stylist and earned points or some such thing when people bought products from her, I started using what she recommended. Eventually that was Pureology. I *love* Pureology, but boy howdy, is it expensive! Mr. Ellie was laid off a few years ago, and so the first place I cut back was hair products. I tried many on the market and was dissatisfied with all of them. Eventually, he found work again, and I went back to Pureology, but ouch...So one night I was watching TV and there was a commercial for Suave Professionals, and I decided to try it out. Turns out that I cannot tell the difference between the "Humectant Moisture" and Pureology, and it's a fraction of the cost.

 

So there you have it. :-)

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I use Suave professional  Rosemary and mint-- I like the smell, the price, the quality.  My DH only uses Pantene and he gets upset every time they change it (and that is often)  I can tell a slight difference.  I sometimes add infusium leave in conditioner and I like it for more deep conditioning. 

 

Honestly, the thing that I have noticed that makes the biggest difference is when I stopped using gel (esp with alcohol in it) and started using Cetephil hand lotion-- yes hand lotion in my hair-- it isn't greasy (I found the frizz ease to be more greasy) and it tames my curls.

And I started to wash my hair less--

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I use high end hair care products because my stylist recommends them, but I've come to realize they probably aren't

any better than the cheaper drug store brands and I am going downscale next time. I've come to think they are a waste of money, and that my hair appearance depends more on what I eat, hard or soft water, and the humidity in the environment.

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Here's my story:

 

I had happily used Amway's hair care products, but when my dd became a stylist and earned points or some such thing when people bought products from her, I started using what she recommended. Eventually that was Pureology. I *love* Pureology, but boy howdy, is it expensive! Mr. Ellie was laid off a few years ago, and so the first place I cut back was hair products. I tried many on the market and was dissatisfied with all of them. Eventually, he found work again, and I went back to Pureology, but ouch...So one night I was watching TV and there was a commercial for Suave Professionals, and I decided to try it out. Turns out that I cannot tell the difference between the "Humectant Moisture" and Pureology, and it's a fraction of the cost.

 

So there you have it. :-)

That's interesting, Ellie. I was thinking of buying three types and having my dd set up a blind test for me.

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My oldest daughter and I use what I consider mid-price --Matrix Amplify.  (Some may consider it high end, but since I know of several brands that are more expensive like Bumble and Bumble, so I consider it mid-range).  DS uses Nioxin which is quite expensive.

 

I went through a phase of trying several different shampoo/conditioners by utilizing a salon store's policy of love it or return it.  There was a sales clerk there that helped me try several brands back to back, allowing me to return them until I found a brand that I liked.  I chose the option of 'sylist recommended' because she was a stylist, but mainly because it was the most appropriate of the choices, since she actually understood what she was choosing by her education/experience not just personal use.

 

I don't think all high end brands are worth the money.  I think some cheap brands are great.  For dd8, I use Suave coconut.  She has easy to care for hair and it doesn't look any different when I use good shampoo vs the cheap stuff.  She likes to use lots of shampoo when she washes her own hair, so I buy her cheap shampoo.  

 

 

DD and I have a lot of very fine, fly away hair.  It is hard to find a shampoo that doesn't weigh our hair down, but controls the fly aways.  

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Honestly, the thing that I have noticed that makes the biggest difference is when I stopped using gel (esp with alcohol in it) and started using Cetephil hand lotion-- yes hand lotion in my hair-- it isn't greasy (I found the frizz ease to be more greasy) and it tames my curls.

And I started to wash my hair less--

I think you have a point. I infrequently use official hair-styling products, but I often use some straight Jojoba Oil through my dry hair. My hairdresser really resents it, lol.

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I voted "My stylist" but she was my girlfriend before she was my stylist. I use Redkin All Soft which cost $36 for the 33oz set (66oz total) at the schmancy haircut place which I don't go to. It lasts forever and my hair is soft and gorgeous.

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I said mine are mid-price, but that's a guesstimate, since you didn't provide any specifics.

 

I have, in the past, happily used cheaper products. So, I'm not convinced that price point makes much of a difference.

 

I use what I do because we buy only cruelty free products, and this line is the offers the best combination of reasonable price, ease of finding in stores and effectiveness.

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I'm not sure how you're defining high end?

 

I usually use Paul Mitchell or Matrix Biolage.  I've done lots of experimenting and those work best for my 50+ year old hair.  They're world's better than the less expensive brands (and I've tried a really high percentage of everything on the market, I think). When I was younger and my hair wasn't so dry I could use anything and my hair still looked good.  Those days are gone.

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I buy mid-priced mainly because no low-end shampoos/conditioners are paraben and dye/perfume free.

 

I think it's all about what works for one's own hair. Some people have hair that NEEDS high-priced shampoo. Whatever that ingredient is, they need it. Other people can use shampoo that is just $3.00 and they look fabulous.

 

I am probably one of the low-pricers, but I hate the perfume. I really wish someone would make a decent no-perfume, no-paraben low-cost shampoo.

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High end shampoo and cheap shampoo make zero difference in my hair. A cleanser for my scalp works regardless, if it has the ingredients I do best with. This could be anything from Nature's Gate to Biolage.

 

Conditioner, on the other hand, has efficacy directly related to price point for me, with only two notable exceptions. The more expensive and higher quality the conditioner, the better my hair looks and behaves.

 

So I use cheap shampoo and pricy conditioner.

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A lot depends on your hair type, not all shampoos and conditioners work well for every type. 

 

In general, I haven't found a salon product that works that much better than some cheaper alternative, or a natural product or process (oiling/ACV/etc.). I must admit I haven't done an exhaustive trial, so I leave open the possibility that there is an awesome and expensive product I don't know about. IMO, there is a limited range of working active chemicals, so a lot of the differences are minor. Sometimes it's a matter of isolating what you like from one product (or don't like) and then finding another which fills the same niche. 

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I can't get a comb or a brush through my hair with cheap shampoo/conditioner but my hair is a wee bit extreme being super thick, long, and wavy. I agree that conditioner matters more than shampoo but I find even cheap shampoo dries my hair out more than the more expensive kind. 

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I will cheapen out on shampoo but have to get decent conditioner as my kids both have long hair.

 

Our biggest problem is finding cruelty free brands. Almost all drugstore & grocery brands are made by companies that test on animals.

Yes; I meant to include that parameter in my poll.

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BTW, a couple people have asked what I consider high end. Just go with your gut. It's not a carefully controlled poll, so just say whether you think it's high end or not. There is sure to be some overlap - is $18/bottle high end, when there are some that are $36/bottle? I know; it's not perfect. If it gives you pause when you buy it, it might be high end, or at least on the high side of mid-range. ;)

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I tend to try to use more natural products (without making my own.)  I have very fine-textured but thick curly hair.  I have found that I can get away with a relatively inexpensive shampoo, but need to get the best conditioner I can afford.  Right now, I am using a tea-tree shampoo from Trader Joe's for my temperamental scalp (I would like something with less of the objectionable ingredients, but I don't want to be the "before" picture in a dandruff ad.)  I am using Alba Botanica Hawaiian conditioner and am very happy with it. 

 

Although I voted high-end, I guess I am really mid-price.  I get the conditioner at Whole Foods. 

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I use Suave and I like it. There are certain ones though... One says 'sleek'. The other one I like is the color care one.

 

OTOH, I buy diva curl products for Pink. Granted, I get them at a fraction of the cost (if I didnt, I wouldn't buy them). They are the best in her hair, but when we didnt get them as low-cost, I used various things. Some were ok, some were horrid, none were as good as diva curl.

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BTW, a couple people have asked what I consider high end. Just go with your gut. It's not a carefully controlled poll, so just say whether you think it's high end or not. There is sure to be some overlap - is $18/bottle high end, when there are some that are $36/bottle? I know; it's not perfect. If it gives you pause when you buy it, it might be high end, or at least on the high side of mid-range. ;)

.

If it is a handcrafted boutique conditioner like some of my favorites on Etsy and eBay, or a system that can be obtained only through a licensed salon, I consider that high end.

 

Medium range would be the nicest natural/organic labels and mainstream products obtainable at your local Meijer/Kroger/Walgreens.

 

Cheap/low end is your run of the mill Suave/V05/White Rain.

 

As someone who has been a members of a long hair board for almost a decade, these seem to be the agreed upon definitions. And yes, there is overlap ;)

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I use Suave and I like it. There are certain ones though... One says 'sleek'. The other one I like is the color care one.

 

OTOH, I buy diva curl products for Pink. Granted, I get them at a fraction of the cost (if I didnt, I wouldn't buy them). They are the best in her hair, but when we didnt get them as low-cost, I used various things. Some were ok, some were horrid, none were as good as diva curl.

Where are you obtaining inexpensive Divacurl, if I may ask? I haven't been able to find it inexpensively and I LOVE the products.

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I've used expensive shampoo and conditioner (Pureology, Matrix), cheap shampoo and conditioner (Suave, Pantene), and no shampoo and conditioner. For my fine, limp hair, baking soda and vinegar work best. I have more body and control with my current baking soda and vinegar routine (going on 4 years now) than I ever had with "real" shampoo and conditioner. That said, I have recently started using high-end styling products again (Moroccanoil) and I'm loving the result when combined with my no shampoo washing routine.

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oh & wanted to mention that if you're interested in finding out whether your product is cruelty free there are several apps you can load on your phone which just scan the bar code & let you know.

Here's a nifty graphic of the most common big companies which DO test on live animals.

http://cruelty-cutter.org/cruel_companies

If you download their app, proceeds go to the Beagle Freedom Project which rescues beagles from labs across  the country

 

 

 

/end of hijack but I've been a bit dismayed lately at personal conversations with people who somehow thought that battle was won ages ago. It hasn't been ;(

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I buy some of the better quality stuff Costco carries.  I might try a higher end if I can get it for a good price.  while I'm willing to pay a bit more - I also don't believe in paying retail.  ;)

 

I've used a wide variety of prices for products - and they vary in effectiveness just as they do for price. 

the best deal for a purifying shampoo I've found it suave clarifying, is great for absolutely getting rid of all product build-up  (or the equivalent.  oil build up from oily hair).  dh uses it - he believes in as cheap as you can get - and the suave was a step up from a bar of dial. I'm much pickier - I also have a lot more hair.  when my hair is short, I've found it doesn't matter as much as when my hair is long.

 

and those "all-in-one" things,  puh-leeeaaassseee.  they're some of the worst offenders at leaving junk in my hair.

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I use the Matrix dandruff shampoo. I don't actually have dandruff, but it solved an itchy scalp problem. I use the Paul Mitchell original blue leave-in conditioner. My friend picks up stuff cheap for me at the beauty supply. I think I paid about $17 for a liter of shampoo and that will last me 6+ mos. The conditioner lasts me years. I wash every other day.

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I used Kerastase or Alterna when my hair was long (it's curly, coarse, and super tangly). But now that I have medium length hair, I use more natural/eco-friendly/cruelty-free products (I voted mid-priced). My hair just isn't as tangly when it is shorter, so I cheap out. But, when it is long, I absolutely need a heavy duty conditioner. 

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I use Mastey Traite shampoo which I suppose is edging into high end. I don't need conditioner with this shampoo and (very important for me) I can tolerate the scent. 

 

I've been using it for years, even before I started going to my current salon. I got them using it and now it's one of their best selling products. It's sulfate free and the company doesn't do animal testing.

 

Two male members of my family are very content with Suave, and the other uses a mid-range shampoo we get at Beauty Brands. My teen daughter has hair that only responds well to a shampoo for a few months, and then she's off trying something new again.

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High end usually makes my hair look great. (My mom uses Pureology, and I'll use it at her house.) But I'm much happier in the long run using natural products. These days I'm quite pleased with Kinky-Curly. You can get it at Whole Foods. It is scented, which I usually hate, but the scent isn't strong. It's also nice and lightweight, which is perfect for my fine curls which can get smothered by some "curly" products. I use Come Clean for shampoo and Knot Today for conditioner.

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I have crazy, curly hair. I have tried just about everything from the cheapest grocery store brands to very expensive salon brands over time and my hair was still crazy. A couple years ago, after some research, I started using coconut oil to deep condition regularly, Dr. Bronner's natural soap for shampoo, and some super cheap V05 to make the curls hold together. It is by far the cheapest routine I've ever done and the results are better than anything else I've ever tried.

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I used high end products for the first 30 years of my life---Matrix, Aveda, etc.

Then I went through a cheap products phase--Pantene, Suave, etc.

 

I actually have a mixed product array right now. I use It's a 10! miracle leave in product http://itsa10haircare.com/conditioner-products/detanglerfor my girls who have long, fine hair.  I use Tigi BedHead after party if I need a smoothing cream for my wavy hair for up-dos or if my daughters have tangled mats in their hair. (They are crazy sleepers.)  I have both a high end hair spray and a generic hair spray. My hair has different needs depending on humidity levels and what I'm asking it to do....for every day hair I use generic spray; I buy the high end stuff during Beauty Brand's $8.99 sale (which ends this week!)

 

I use Kirkland (Costco) generic shampoo and conditioner.  It's a knock-off on Pureology, and I love it. I keep Pantene in my gym bag. 

 

This is probably way more complicated than you wanted to know....but I am picking about ingredients and how things work in my hair. I try to avoid sulfates, parabens, and other yucky stuff where I can.

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I use dandruff shampoo because I need it.  I will sometimes buy generic versions, but some generic versions work better than others so it is either certain generics or Head and Shoulders.  Since I chopped my hair short, conditioner is less critical.  I still use it, but I'm finding that pretty much it does not matter if it's cheaper stuff.  Right now I'm using Fructise. 

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I use cheap shampoo and mid-priced conditioner. I notice a slight difference on my hair, enough that I'm willing to pay the price.

 

I buy mid to high priced conditioner for my 5 year old (and store it out of her reach). I'm not loyal to a specific brand, I buy a big bottle at Ulta when it's on sale and it lasts quite awhile.

 

We both have fine straight hair but her pillow and car seat both make her hair fuzzy. When I use more expensive conditioner she has less breakage, less fuzziness, and her hair looks nicer. I've tried Suave, Pantene, Dove, Loreal and none really worked for her so salon products it is. Fortunately she only has to wash her hair 2-3 times a week and really doesn't need much conditioner.

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