Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare blog

Archive for the ‘Haircare’ category

CarolineCaroline

With a botanical trio at its heart – coconut, radish seed & yangu oils – our miraculous Botanical Shine Nourishing Hair Oil is fast becoming one of your top favourites, just a year after launching in 2013. How did we survive without this speedy multi-tasker, we all cry?

Customers I meet in store, online or on paper have all been raving about this new find, and we’re talking all ages – be it the teenage daughter protecting her hair from her new styling tongs, the swimmer keeping her locks in top condition, the working mum speeding up her morning blow-dry, or the party-goer’s secret to super-shiny locks… take a peek at some of our customer testimonials.

I’m amazed at how it’s revolutionised my haircare and it’s now my top haircare product for all the family. I use it on my own fine, oily, (highly highlighted) hair – with great effect. For me, it’s both a quick-fix between washes to calm and de-frizz – as well as really adding shine and manageability before blow drying. My latest trick is to use it pre-shampoo, as a ‘10-min-leave-in’ treatment (I use five pumps), then wash and condition as normal. Though nothing quite takes the place of our Botanical Shine Treatment, our hair oil can double up in this clever way when you’re short on luggage space.

The other bonus? It lasts for ages. Experiment and truly get to know (and fall in love with) this bountiful hair oil and all the different ways you can use it.

You love it (I know, I’ve been keeping notes in my ‘customers love…’ notepad!) and here’s how you’re all using it:

  • An intensive treat following highlights or bleach
  • Defining layers
  • Defrizzing unmanageable, curly or dry locks and restoring manageability
  • Adding shine
  • Enlivening hair with the beautiful aroma of our haircare range (sweet orange, patchouli, geranium, vanilla absolute, rosemary, carrot seed, cedarwood, lemon)

Not tried it yet? Do watch our short video for a quick-fire ‘how to’ and enjoy! Plus, read the 162 top reviews for more customer feedback…

Keep us posted with any new tricks that you’ve discovered with our hero oil too.

Caroline X

Before we launch a product here at Liz Earle, much detailed work goes on secretly behind-the-scenes! As I’m sure you’re aware, haircare took us 6 years to perfect – we knew finally that we’d hit on the ideal formulation when the phones were ringing off the hook with our happy testers wanting more product!

I’ve been out and about since the launch three weeks ago, hearing your first-hand experiences so thought I’d hop online to share some of these with you here….

I recently visited our John Lewis counter at Cheadle, and was literally stopped in my tracks as I headed into the store, by one of the John Lewis partners. Her striking platinum blonde hair was short and stylish, yet she explained that she was missing the shine and gloss from her naturally darker hair tone, and had been considering returning to her natural hue. However, Botanical Shine Shampoo and the Conditioner for Oily Hair then entered her life – and she showed me the shine and ‘life’ that she’d regained in her fine hair. She was so delighted that she’s going to continue life as a blonde!  I personally was thrilled to hear this and to see the results too. As a blonde myself (I have highlights to lift my dark blonde hair), before we launched haircare, I too used to wish for gloss and shine and even toyed with going darker after my daughter was born; so I couldn’t agree more that our new duo really does give your hair that life and shine.

I also bumped into a producer from the BBC at John Lewis in Oxford Street recently. As well as persuading her team to use Liz Earle skincare about 3 years ago (guys included), this lady was now passionate about spreading the good word about our haircare. Her thick, glossy dark bob was, she explained, ‘actually very thick and unruly’ and coloured, once a month. She’d found that our haircare combo had helped keep her scalp free from irritating itchiness and she’d noticed less hair in her hairbrush when brushing, suggesting that she felt her hair was getting stronger. She also praised the manageability of her hair after use – ‘it absolutely passed the combing through/tangle test’.  Her top tips for a great bathroom aroma: ‘combine the haircare in a shower with Orange Flower Botanical Body Wash and it really is an experience’.

I also jotted down some of the snippets from our recent chat room sessions, from customers who’ve been using the new range for only a few weeks, to give you a flavour from our online customers…

  • ‘I used the dry one [conditioner]. I’ve been using Philip Kingsley’s Elasticiser for the last 2 years as I have really coarse thick hair and don’t think I will need to use it now. It’s brill!’
  • ‘Feel that I can grade down conditioner now – my hair is in such good condition’
  • ‘I didn’t think you could get shine with blonde hair – everyone is commenting!’

Finally, I have also been struck by how many of you have described your haircare experience with Botanical Shine as achieving the results of a ‘special occasion’ haircare treat, but being affordable enough to use everyday. This is wonderful praise and we are very grateful that you’ve taken the time to let us know.  Thank you for sharing your stories with me. Look forward to hearing more!

This is a truly momentous and long-anticipated day for us all here at Liz Earle Beauty Co. so there really should be the written equivalent of a trumpet fanfare right here and now!! For so many years we have been the proud purveyors of Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare – and now we are adding a whole new dimension with our launch today of Naturally Active Haircare. Shampoo and conditioner have long been the most frequently requested products for us to develop. When we started our research for these more than six years ago, we asked our customers what kinds of products they would most like us to create. We had a staggering response – over 20,000 of you kindly wrote in answer to our questionnaire (many of you writing pages of detailed information as to what you would really like). From this incredible research, our team has worked tirelessly over the years to formulate a truly exceptional set of haircare products.

Liz Earle Botanical Shine Shampoo

Creating one naturally-based shampoo for all hair types, free from sodium lauryl sulphate, laureth and olefin sulphates (all of which can irritate sensitive scalps) has been a real challenge for us, which is why it has taken so long. Mainly because the usual more naturally-derived foaming ingredients don’t perform very well as washing agents. They tend not to foam properly, can strip or fade colour-treated hair and cause static. We know this because we tested over 100 different formulations using many different kinds of ingredients. Then, our team discovered a new breakthrough ingredient which does deliver outstanding amounts of foamy lather that gently cleanses without stripping, drying or irritating hair or scalp.

We have tested our new shampoo on very many different hair types, from fine limp hair to thick coarse hair, young children’s hair, older thinning hair, fine, wiry, colour-treated, permed – you name it, we have been there and tested on it! And the most exciting news of all is that our new shampoo works wonderfully well on all hair types. Yes – just as Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser works for all skin types, so Botanical Shine Shampoo works well for all hair types. How fantastic is that? No more confusion when we are faced with a baffling array of different shampoos, wondering which one to choose. We have taken away all the guesswork and very carefully formulated one shampoo which delivers gentle cleansing and outstanding shine for everyone. Excitingly for me personally is the fact that our new genius shampoo doesn’t irritate my very sensitive, eczema-prone scalp and all my problems
with itching and flaking are truly a thing of the past. What a wonderful result.

Liz Earle Botanical Shine Conditioners

In the same way that we have three Skin Repair Moisturisers for each skin type, so we have created three conditioners, depending on your hair type. Each one of our new Botanical Shine Conditioners contains key botanical ingredients to seriously condition and shine, depending on whether you have fine hair that needs light conditioning; normal hair that requires a little more nourishment, or dry / processed hair that benefits from a more deeply moisture-enriching formula. We have a conditioner to perfectly suit your individual needs and you will be amazed at how little of these silicon-free formulations you need to create the glossiest, healthiest-looking hair. Each of our three Botanical Shine Conditioners is based on natural plant oils (not silicons or mineral oils) and contains a wonderful native ingredient, found locally here on the Isle of Wight, called blue sea kale (also known as sea cabbage) which is an excellent anti-fade ingredient to keep processed hair colour-safe. Each conditioner also contains a new, unique and exciting emollient called yangu oil which comes further afield from Kenya. This unusual seed oil is hand-harvested by the local people in this developing country, who are personally benefiting from our partnership in producing this luxurious cold-pressed plant oil that delivers exceptional sheen and shine on all hair types.

If you’d like to find out more about the remarkable yangu oil, we have put together a short film from my travels. ( Just click on the film player above.) I hope you enjoy taking a little look behind the scenes on my field trips, but more importantly, our entire team, Kim and I very much hope you enjoy your first Liz Earle Naturally Active Haircare experience. Do please let us know what you think.

It’s getting on for a year since my last design blog and it has been a very busy, exciting and extremely creative 12 months here at Liz Earle!

You may remember that the last time I blogged it was about Christmas….well, I’ve a slight case of ‘deja vu’ because as I write these words I’m on a photo shoot for our 2010 Christmas gift guide…and it’s looking amazing! I can’t give the game away just yet but never fear I’ll be writing a Christmas blog very soon…as it is only about 15 weeks to the big day (scary I know!).

But I digress….the subject of my blog today is our new haircare range…how we approached the pack design, what inspired us and how we shot the haircare cover story for the autumn & winter newsletter.

The design work started well over a year ago…that was the first time I got my hands on the shampoo and three conditioners that our hard-working technical team had been working on for over six years. With this level of attention to detail in the formulations, I was determined to do the team proud when it came to the pack design.

As with all packaging design…not only does the pack need to function well, it needs to look great too and to my mind it also should convey the ‘ethos’ and promise of what’s inside it…so this is where we began. We used the products in the shower over a period of weeks in many different bottles, pumps and jars before settling on the final tube…checking that the pack was easy to use, didn’t clog up or dispense too much…even taking a prototype pack on holiday to check it survived the rigors of airport baggage handling and didn’t leak in my suitcase! Once the pack was chosen it was onto the ‘look and feel’….and the design challenge of how to represent a botanical haircare range without showing hair?

The image by Gareth Sambidge that inspired us

This is where brainstorm sessions are crucial to any design project…we get together as a team and bounce lots of ideas around…thinking around the problem until we hit on a number of solutions. These are then worked up to the next stage and gradually whittled down and down until we reach the final design you see on your bathroom shelf. Two images stuck in my memory from our initial design mood boards…a fantastic photograph of a girl shot from behind with her long, glossy, healthy hair literally ‘flowing’ down her back…and a strong, green, lush and striking shot of botanical leaves (pictured left) by renowned London-based photographer Gareth Sambidge. And this was where the spark of inspiration came…

Our Botanical Shine Shampoo

The graphic illustration across the front of the haircare packs represents ‘botanical hair’ shown as a luscious green, leafy stripe…mimicking a cross section through a head of healthy hair (in fact if you look really closely you’ll see that not all the lines are dead straight some are ‘swinging’ gently as hair would do as you walk), whilst at the same time looking like a succulent leafy plant that you could run your fingers through. Then because we wanted to represent the fact that our hair shined with health after using the shampoo and conditioners…we made the packs shiny too! This is a real departure for us as our skincare packs are all matt finish…the gloss not only looks great, but also has a very practical application as it helps to differentiate haircare from a ‘touch’ point of view from our other tubes when you’re in the shower!

The packs completed and the launch date fast approaching… it was then on to designing the launch newsletter. The newsletter cover choice however was easy and neatly completes the design circle for me – we went to photographer Gareth Sambidge…whose image helped inspire us originally…and worked with him to shoot a real botanical version of our graphic botanical illustration.

Our autumn winter newsletter
June photo shoot: Creating the right look

Rewind…to a flaming hot day in June 2010 and a day at Gareth’s studio in a quiet London mews. Carefully choosing plants with the right leaf structure and colour mix to represent the ‘hair’ illustration, we set about cutting selected leaves…working quickly as both sweltering June heat and studio lights seemed intent on drying the leaves out! Gareth skillfully shone varying degrees of light through the leaf structure to obtain the imagery you’ll no doubt recognise from our newsletter cover…the result, I hope, is a true, real-life botanical head of beautiful hair and one that hopefully answers my original design brief of how to represent botanical haircare without showing hair.